Published on February 12, 2013 | by Myriah Towner


British Library and CSM to co–host Spring Festival

External view of the British Library

An evening of music and fashion awaits at the British Library. [Flickr: Emily Barney]

A five-day celebration of the creative industries will be held jointly by  Central Saint Martins (CSM) and the British Library.

The British Library is preparing for the second year of its Spring Festival, which will celebrate fashion, design and film.

CSM’s Fashion History and Theory students have co-curated and organised LATE at the Library: Fashion Flashback, an evening of music and fashion.

Fran Taylor, creative industries marketing manager for the British Library, told Arts London News: “As part of their major course project, 20 or so of the students from the Fashion History and Theory course have brainstormed ideas of what the LATE could be and came up with the logistics, speakers, and they will help run it that night.

“On and off over the years CSM and the British Library have worked together in many ways, but this is the first time we have collaborated on Spring Festival. It has been a really great partnership with the fashion history and theory students,” she said.

Visual scrapbook

LATE at the Library: Fashion Flashback will take place on March 1 and will pay host to a special talk by GQ editor Dylan Jones and fashion illustrator Tanya Ling. There will also be an exclusive paper fashion show consisting of specially commissioned designs by CSM print design students, and live costume drawing and sets by British DJs, Princess Julia and Jeffrey Hinton.

“We will be turning the space at the British Library into a kind of visual scrapbook.” CSM student, Reba Maybury

Reba Maybury, 22, a CSM fashion history and theory student, believes this event will allow guests to witness the inspiration that can be found at the British Library.

She said: “We will be turning the space at the British Library into a kind of visual scrapbook where we will be showcasing what a varying and rich source of inspiration the library holds for fashion creatives and academics.

“As students who study the history of fashion, we have been able to use our own knowledge to create different areas to the evening.”

Postcards sent in by fashion designers including Christopher Kane, Gareth Pugh, and Adam Selman telling guests about their favourite British Library collection items will be on display for the night in a pop-up exhibition.


The British Library’s historic issues of fashion magazines from Vogue to i-D will also be on display.

The evening will feature a styling area where guests can receive makeovers inspired by the library’s Cecil Beaton archives from cosmetic company Chantecaille.

“The evening will exhibit the exceptionally untapped resources that the library owns.” CSM student, Reba Maybury

“Essentially the evening will exhibit the exceptionally untapped resources or tens of thousands of varying books and objects that the library owns that has the potential to inspire any fashion creative, but we also hope that it will be a great night out too,” said Maybury.

During the five-day festival, the British Library will also display a series of installations, Encounters between Art and Science, created by CSM students on the first MA Art and Science degree in the UK.

Visitors will be able to discover the installations that will be distributed all around the building, to understand that art and science have much more in common than might meet the eye.

The Festival will take place from March 1-5.


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