Central Saint Martins
Everyone who has ever been a student in London knows about Central Saint Martins. Located just behind King’s Cross station, the buzzy streets, cafes and shops give way to Granary Square, an open space on the canal side with 1,000 choreographed fountains (each individually controlled and lit!), great restaurants and fashionable art students. The famous art school is housed in an old grain store, the Granary Building, and teaches acting, fine art, design, fashion, graphics, jewellery, textiles and foundation courses. It has a library, two galleries, a theatre and a talk-space on campus, next to satellite locations in Holborn and Archway. Among the alumni of the school are Turner Prize winner Laure Prouvost, musician Jarvis Cocker and fashion icons John Galliano, Stella McCartney, Alexander McQueen, and Zac Posen.
CSM’s in-house Lethaby Gallery displays both historical and contemporary collections, including books, prints and original artworks. It also collects work by staff, students and alumni, conducts research, produces publications and curates exhibitions. The gallery is a showcase for fresh talent and innovative art. CSM also has an Art and Design Teaching Collection which is open to all and offers the opportunity to study works from the 13th century to the present, including early printed books, prints, illuminated manuscripts, embroideries, 1920s German film posters, textiles and garments. A separate gallery called The Window Galleries is visible from The Crossing at King's Cross 24/7.
At in-house Platform Theatre, CSM hosts a regular programme of plays and performances. Although the theatre sometimes invites professional companies such as Dance Umbrella and the London Mime Festival, its day-to-day agenda focuses on displaying the talent indoors – from students of all departments, whether it is Drama, Communication or Fashion. The theatre “aims to present all aspects of the performing arts within a flexible space.”
Last but not least: Futuro House is a project space by artist Craig Barnes, a futuristic bubble that resembles a spaceship and is situated on the roof of the school. Here, CSM encourages students and the wider college community to organize events that contribute, challenge, or propose alternative interpretations to what the idea of the future might hold. Although the public can’t partake in these events, Futuro House is freely accessible on every first Wednesday of the month (booking required) under the expert guidance of the artists, Craig Barnes.