re_fabricate: collaboration and hidden universes…

It lives…

…we have dates, times, rooms (A17)

Tuesday 27th February 2.00-6.00 Theme: Collaboration

We hope to be; interrogating the idea of collaboration, discussing ideas of the transdisciplinary studio, co-creating a collaborative book-arts piece, using paper airplanes as part of a question and answer and (we hope) co-creating some  music with Nicholas Stevenson and Oliver Wilde of Oro Swimming hour (if the second half of them can make it):

‘not so much a band but a hidden universe you can visit…the music gets written in a collaborative dada-esque parlour game’

Tuesday 6th March 2.00-6.00: Storytelling. words, images, objects

Tuesday 13th March 2.00-6.00 Design & Sustainable Futures

Tuesday 20th March 2.00-6.00 Psychogeography & magical realism (with the very magical Jac Cattaneo)

But, in the collaborative world of planning all ideas are still completely up for grabs, so please get in touch if you’d like to participate and share yours.


The Journal of Unfinished Ideas

Look! We have software and a journal page, although this, at present, is not even a journal of started ideas. Yet.

This, for the record, is not even our idea. To create a journal of unfinished ideas comes from  Roger Connah‘s pamphlet which he gave to Del, HE Curriculum Leader, during the artist blacksmith exhibition ‘Forge’.

So, although the journal is rooted in Connah’s pedagogical practice, we will try to use the opportunities of the web 2.0 to enable a shared, co-edited journal with all who participate in re_fabricate.

We have no fixed ‘aims’ for the journal, but for starters, we would like to:

  • start interesting conversations and not finish them, to see how they progress from different perspectives
  • form a record of our work within re_fabricate so we can capture some of the discussion and ‘live’ moments
  • consider the relationship between theory and practice in a way that isn’t wholly abstracted
  • let people who can’t come to the ‘live’ sessions still participate

If you’re interested in getting involved with this aspect of the project, please feel free to get in touch at




Padlet ideas-board

Thanks to those who have posted on our Padlet board. I’m moving this to a post of its own. The password is re_fabricate and you just have to double click to post a message. The aim of this is to find out what everyone involved would like to get from the re_fab project. Everyone’s ideas will, of course, be different. But if we know them, then we can try to incorporate them in the planning.
(or just pop into the Padlet wall to say ‘hi’of course – that would be great, too)

The Padlet is here – thanks loads to those who have posted. We have some good ideas to start to explore as we move forward with planning sessions.




Huge thanks to everyone who has emailed and spoken to me in the last few days expressing their interest and sharing ideas for what is now starting to get called re_fabricate (but this can still be changed).

We have over 30 people, but we know that there will be some unable to make the suggested times/dates of sessions and because of the high level of interest (yay) in the project we are working to find ways to include everyone. Maybe a corridor re_fab or we’ll do some shorter sessions on top of the core four…there are always creative ways to think around questions and we mustn’t forget the ‘journal of unfinished ideas’ (which I have to find a webspace for)

At this stage, what we’re trying to do is sort out when Victoria is free (as she has teaching load here and in London) and plan around this. Once we’ve a core group of people who can make core times, we plan.

Each session, at the moment, looks to be grouped round a key external theme which will also take into account new trends in teaching and learning. Key points are:

  • Victoria and Sarah will facilitate each session and note-take to sum up our work and thoughts; within each re_fab there will be various activities that are led by different people from different areas of practice. This (we hope) will stimulate new thinking about a problem-area from different perspectives
  • Each session will be developed by a core ‘planning team’. This will consist of students, staff and hopefully some external input; again, Victoria and Sarah will facilitate planning so we have a good balance of practical activity, ideas-generation and external concept in each session
  • A journal-entry will precede each session – we are looking for a digital platform so that this can be an ‘open’ journal where everyone involved adds their own ideas and stories. The journal will remain ‘live’…

So, if you have an idea you’d like to see explored within re_fabricate, please let us know, either by posting on the comments thread below or by emailing me directly “”

More from me later as we move forwards with this project!



Hello all and welcome to Re_fabricate (working title).

Victoria Powell, (Critical Studies Lecturer at Hereford College of Arts) and Sarah (Scholarship Development Manager at Hereford College of Arts) are launching this new initiative as part of the legacy of the AoC Scholarship Project.

There isn’t currently a space at HCA which formally brings creative minds together from across the courses, year groups, staff and external creative community to problem-solve and innovate in transformative ways.

This initiative (formerly under the working title of ‘Porous’) aims to do just that and to provide a space to learn from and inspire each other. This will, in turn, support our creative, critical and reflective practice, as well as our collaboration skills.

We now are super-excited to have over 30 staff, students, members of the external creative community (including alumni) interested in joining the group, and we’re ready to move forward in co-deciding  a manifesto for the group, as well as deciding on suitable dates and times to meet. We’ll have to limit live sessions to 30 people, but want to include as many people in the wider project as we can.

Our overarching aim is to bring together interesting people to workshop through innovative ideas; these could be around sustainability and ethical design, material futures, embodied learning in a digital age, storytelling – or anything else we think useful – the group will co-create the content, but we’ll frame our teaching and learning in terms of the OU’s ‘innovating pedagogy‘ series of publications.

We will be running (initially) four workshops, each lasting four hours. We hope to extend this beyond the initial trial period. These will be accompanied by a ‘journal of unfinished ideas’. Watch this space to add to the journal.

Please let us know if you are interested in finding out more or participating in the project by leaving a comment below or emailing or you can tweet to #re_fabricate.

(The project has been inspired by many things, including the Porous University symposium in 2017 that Sarah was able to remotely attend through @virtuallyconnecting, working with Openlab and  Eventmovement, a digital commissioning platform to share ideas created by Newcastle University and being part of University of Wales Trinity St David Enhancement themes.)