Decolonising@Lincoln Design Competition
Academic Subject Librarian, Oonagh Monaghan has been the lead on a very popular competition in collaboration with School of Design students within the College of Arts.
The competition was initiated as an idea for internal use by the library that grew into a larger project with input from colleagues from the University-wide ‘Decolonising@Lincoln Steering Group’.
The decolonisation of Higher Education is a global movement. At the University of Lincoln it involves recognising, examining and attempting to address the detrimental legacies of colonialism on knowledge, pedagogy, ways of working and the campus environment.
The work is contributing to raising awareness of how the voices and perspectives of Black, Indigenous and other non-White people have been marginalized, and to include a broader range of voices, ideas, approaches and intellectual perspectives in teaching, learning, research and scholarship.
The competition brief asked students to create a recognisable and memorable image that would promote and highlight parts of the University Library collection which help amplify marginalised voices.
The image will also be used on other material in the Library, across the University and in its publicity material as the overarching theme for Decolonising@Lincoln. This includes the Decolonising@Lincoln website which will launch in Autumn 2022.
The competition was judged by a core team of School of Design academics, members from the Decolonising@Lincoln steering group and Marilyn Clarke, Library Director at Goldsmiths University.
At the prize giving event, Oonagh Monaghan said: “I was incredibly impressed by the images and creativity shown by the student competition submissions.
“It has been a rewarding experience to develop the idea of the competition, work with students and staff and ultimately see the results come to fruition.
“In addition to the winning design, we also have a second design which will be incorporated into the library space as a large mural.”
Third year Illustration student, Cherry Wright was the winner with Rhoda Datsomor, also a third year Illustration student, and Dinh Huy Truong, MA Design student, selected as runners up.
The winning design has already been utilised in presentations and is on the cover of a ‘zine’ created for the recent Art Librarians Conference (ARLIS 2022). The zine was recognised at the conference and will feature at the British Library.
Cherry’s design will also be used in a dedicated library space and within promotional materials including bookmarks and shelf-ends. Additionally, runner-up, Rhoda, will be commissioned to reproduce her design on a larger scale mural on prominent display in the library.
Library colleagues are working with the team from the Reimagining Lincolnshire Project (Professor Heather Hughes and Dr Victoria Araj) on a collaborative project for Black History Month in October 2022. They have all attended Wikipedia editing training and have a partnership with Wikimedia UK who are supporting the initiative.
The training will be working to develop a Wikipedia ‘Editathon’ as part of Black History Month activities in October 2022.
The event will be open to all university staff, students, and volunteers on the Reimagining Lincolnshire Project with the aim to update and improve existing Wikipedia pages and create new ones.
Another project is the ‘Reimagining Zine’ that will be produced from the Decolonising@Lincoln fund. The Reimagining Lincolnshire research has been a wonderful public history project, utilising Lincoln’s diverse heritage to engage with local people and organisations.
The aim of the zine will be to celebrate some of these stories in an accessible format and engage students, staff, and people from Lincolnshire and beyond for their creative responses to the hidden voices of Lincolnshire.