Family History Inspires Show

A death in the family prompted one fine art student to embark on a journey of discovery about her relatives from past generations.

When her Grandfather passed away three years ago, Gray’s School of Art student Hannah Russell (22), from Forres, discovered there was a wealth of things she did not know about her family.

“I was very close to my Grandad but I had never really spoken to him about family,” Hannah explained. “At the funeral, people were exchanging all these stories that I had never heard and it made me want to find out more. It made me ask those questions about why I’m here, where I came from.”

Former Forres Academy pupil Hannah began researching the history of her family tree, using the images and items that she found from previous generations to create a variety of multi-media outputs, ranging from cushions to wall hangings. Her work is currently on display at the school’s 128th annual degree show, which runs until June 22.


Hannah, who specialises in printmakinHannah Russellg, said: “It’s all about family and exploring the links that exist between the different generations. I looked at what jobs members of my family have done, where they’ve come from, their hobbies, until I had built up a picture of them and could see if there are any links between me and them.

“I wanted to see if it made me understand where I have got certain traits from, if they come from older generations.”

She added: “This piece of work has definitely made me more sure about why I am the person that I am now. It’s also answered some of the questions that other family members had. When you look back at where you came from, the people you came from, it is easier to see those common threads that run through a family.”
Gray’s School of Art Degree Show 2013, sponsored by BP, showcased a huge range of undergraduate talent across a variety of disciplines including 3D and product design, painting, printmaking, sculpture, fashion and textiles, graphics, digital media, visual communication, photography and electronic media.

Hannah will graduate in July with a BA (Hons) degree in Printmaking, after which she intends to move home to Forres where she will continue with her work.

Release by
Jenny Rush Communications Officer | Design and Technology

Photography by Martin Parker

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