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UAL to present honorary awards to leading creative figures

Oscar-nominated actor Ralph Fiennes, BAFTA-winning actor Tom Hardy, Turner Prize-winning artist Gillian Wearing and fashion designer Phoebe Philo are among twelve leading figures in the creative and cultural sectors to be given honorary awards by UAL this year.

Honourees slider
L-R – Tom Hardy, Phoebe Philo, Ralph Fiennes, Gillian Wearing

They will be recognised for their outstanding contributions to the creative industries at UAL’s graduation ceremonies at the Royal Festival Hall from 14th-17th July 2015.

The full list of honourees for 2015 is:

  • Bill Amberg, accessories designer
  • Zeinab Badawi,journalist
  • Jonathan Barnbrook,graphic designer
  • Simon Costin,set designer
  • Ilse Crawford, interior designer
  • Tacita Dean, photographer and filmmaker
  • Theo Fennell,jewellery designer
  • Ralph Fiennes, actor
  • Tom Hardy, actor
  • Phoebe Philo, fashion designer
  • Peter Saville, graphic designer
  • Gillian Wearing, artist

Ralph Fiennes studied at Chelsea College of Arts in 1981, before going on to study acting at RADA.

He said on receiving this honorary award: “I was only at Chelsea College of Arts for a year but I know that the intense stimulation of that course provoked me, or perhaps challenged me, to want to act – to be an actor.

“A career as an actor is not a career as a visual artist but for me there are strong links and connections between all artistic disciplines and expression. The work of an actor and the work of a painter or of a director may join forces.

“The questions and challenges I encountered during that brief time at Chelsea College of Arts were rigorous: they were about life, ways of seeing, ways of interpreting the world, ways of communicating. They haven’t gone away. I feel deeply honoured to receive this Honorary Fellowship from University of the Arts London.”

Tom Hardy studied at Drama Centre London before going on to win the BAFTA Rising Star Award in 2011.

He said on receiving this honorary award: “It is an unexpected pleasure to be honoured by UAL in any way. I am very grateful and proud to receive this honour and be acknowledged at all by such a prestigious establishment.”

Gillian Wearing studied at Chelsea College of Arts before going on to win the Turner Prize in 1997.

She said on receiving this honorary award: “Being accepted at Chelsea College of Arts in the mid-eighties changed my life. I had worked for six years before as an office clerk/secretary before applying to art foundation course. Being refused by all except the Chelsea Art and Design BTEC, I had gone there to become a graphic designer but was told by a tutor that I had a fine art sensibility and that I should pursue that. It is now incredible that I have the honour of returning, having been awarded an Honorary Fellowship for my outstanding contribution to Conceptual Art, and it is with deep gratitude that I accept this honour as I became an artist because of the college.”

The honourees will be recognised for their contributions to their fields in eight graduation ceremonies over four days at the Royal Festival Hall on London’s Southbank. Each will address graduating UAL students and share their experiences and advice for a successful career in the creative industries. For full biographies of all 12 honourees, please visit our dedicated graduation page.

The ceremonies will be streamed live on UAL’s website and live-tweeted under the hashtag #UALgrads.

UAL announces major investment in Camberwell College of Arts­

University of the Arts London (UAL) has announced a major investment of over £62million into the regeneration of Camberwell College of Arts and adjoining land.

Architect's vision for the Camberwell development

Architect’s vision for the Camberwell development

This is the first major work on the College for a generation, and will enlarge the existing 1970s building creating a new academic extension which will house a new lecture theatre, studios and library.

There will also be major alterations to the front façade of the building entrance and reception on Peckham Road, making the building fully accessible, as well as a new gallery and courtyard area.

Additionally, the current site is being expanded, with brand new UAL student accommodation being built to further enhance the campus feel.

Camberwell College of Arts, one of UAL’s six world-renowned Colleges, attracts students from all over the world who go onto become some of the leading artists of their generation. Illustrious alumni of the College include painters Howard Hodgkin, Terry Frost, Maggi Hambling and Gillian Ayres; filmmaker Mike Leigh and musicians Florence Welch and Syd Barrett.

Nigel Carrington, UAL Vice-Chancellor, said: “Camberwell College of Arts has been at the heart of the community for nearly 120 years. UAL is delighted to contribute to the arts-led regeneration of Camberwell through this major investment in our college’s facilities and the building of 264 new student rooms.”

The project has been designed by RIBA award-winning Stephen Marshall Architects.

Drawing of the new facade at Camberwell College of Arts

Drawing of the new facade at Camberwell College of Arts

The announcement of this development follows news last month that an award-winning architecture practice has been chosen to design UAL’s new campus for London College of Fashion on Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in Stratford. The new campus will bring together London College of Fashion’s 6,500 students and staff for the first time in the College’s 100 year history.

 

Pride Heroes

Pride Parade London photograph Alex Simmons
Professor Dominic Janes reflects on the LGBT Pride month 2015 theme, pride heroes.

“There are of course many lgbtq heroes and many will be named in the course of Pride week in London. However, heroism takes many forms, not all of which get the publicity they deserve. In Westminster Abbey there is the tomb of the unknown warrior. I would therefore like to advocate the idea not of a tomb but of a living, shouting, parading memorial to those millions of lgbtq heroes who are, or were, only known to smaller circles of friends, lovers and colleagues.

It is important, I think, to focus not just on those who were, in contemporary terms, out and proud, but also many others who were what we might call ‘in the closet’. They found ways, more or less easily, to cope with the pressures of a society in which prejudice was rife. I am, in particular, thinking about those who have attempted to reconcile their sexual identity with their religious beliefs. In recent research that I have been carrying out I have been exploring lives lived in the ecclesiastical closet which had formed so as to construct a place in which to contain same-sex desire and to display its signs in coded forms decipherable to those in the know.

This meant that some churches in the earlier part of the twentieth century were able to provide a degree of safety and community in a time of rising homophobia. Yet, a closeted life of service to God and the community, however redemptive of personal sin, placed distinct limits on the further development and elaboration of queer self-expression. In the classic model of later twentieth-century gay liberation it was precisely through emergence from this closet interpreted as a place of religiously inspired repression that modern gay subjectivity was achieved. According to this viewpoint the duty of the closeted homosexual is to ‘come out’ and to emerge as unambiguously gay.

However, another way to look at things is to say that modern gay subjectivity was formed out of past queer cultural constructions. Because of the long history of homophobia such cultural constructions of same-sex desire are partly and inherently derived from the experience of repression, secrecy and shame. So we should salute those heroes of the past from before the act of the legalisation of same-sex acts who attempted to reconcile social justice with the truth of their own personal desires.”

Dominic Janes is UAL Professor of Cultural and Visual Studies and the author of Visions of Queer Martyrdom from John Henry Newman to Derek Jarman (University of Chicago Press, 2015).

Dominic Janes Visions of Queer Martyrdom

On 25 June Dominic Janes presents Visual Arts and Queer Secrets, where he will be in discussion with three of today’s leading exponents of queer art history and visual culture, Prof. Whitney Davis (Berkeley), Prof. Jason Edwards (York) and Prof. Reina Lewis (UAL) to explore the continued importance of sexual secrets in the year that sees the 25th anniversary of the publication of Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick’s book Epistemology of the Closet. Find out more and book your place

The stars of Game of Thrones

Game of Thrones title
As Game of Thrones reaches the season finale we head to Drama Centre London, the prestigious alma mater of three stars from the cult series, to hear more about actresses Gwendoline Christie, Emilia Clarke and Tara Fitzgerald.

Contender for the Iron Throne Daenerys Targaryen is played by Emilia Clarke, who graduated from Drama Centre London in 2009. BA Acting Course Leader Seb Harcombe recalls:

“Emilia had this quality, as a student, which was very special and attractive – a kind of bright, spirited, devil-may-care gutsiness. She worked extremely hard to make the most of her exceptional talent, but always with a tremendous sense of humour, fun and brio that belied a deep and sometimes surprising inner strength and resilience. I remember her vividly, standing in the corridor one day after an intense rehearsal, laughing uproariously in a sparkly sequinned red costume ball gown. It’s absolutely no surprise to me that she has achieved so much, and  this combination of qualities – acting as if the world depends on it, but knowing of course that it doesn’t really –  is one that I try to instil in so many actors, going into a profession that can require so much persistence and positivity.”

In a Foreign Bed BA Acting Group 45  20082009 Emilia Clarke last on right  Photo Mark Duffield

Emilia has been nominated for an Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actress for her role in Game of Thrones and was Vogue’s cover star this spring. She’s currently filming her next major film, Me Before You.

AmeliaClarke_Vogue_COVER

Gwendoline Christie has developed a major fan base playing warrior woman Brienne of Tarth on the show. A graduate of BA Acting at Drama Centre London, she reflects on her time as a student, saying: “The training is endlessly stimulating, exciting and tough. It provides realistic preparation, not just for the profession, but for life itself.”

Maggie, can you remind me? BA Acting Group 41 – 2004/2005 Gwendoline Christie at back  Photo: Mark Duffield

After walking the runway for Vivienne Westwood at Paris Fashion Week, Gwendoline will be back on screens later this year in Star Wars VII – The Force Awakens and The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part II.

Their roles in Game of Thrones have seen Emilia Clarke and Gwendoline Christie nominated for Outstanding Performance by An Ensemble in a Drama Series awards at this year’s Screen Actors Guild Awards.

Annie Tyson, who taught both stars of Game of Thrones, recalls: “Both actors really connected and relished the demands of the training at Drama Centre and while they did not find it easy, as it’s a notoriously demanding course, they were completely committed and did some wonderful risky work. Both in different ways had real wit and imagination – I remember Emilia doing a monologue to camera and thinking how transparent her interior life was and I have a really strong memory of Gwen in an obscure Spanish Golden Age play being completely compelling and rather disturbing. Very different personalities but both with unique talent.”

The Country Wife BA Acting Group 41 20042005 Gwendoline Christie standing Photo Mark Duffield

Star of stage and screen and fellow Drama Centre London graduate Tara Fitzgerald joined the Game of Thrones cast in series 3, playing Selyse Baratheon. She’s just completed filming Legend, a major bio-pic of the Kray twins, set for release later this year.

The Game of Thrones season finale airs in the UK on Sky Atlantic. Catch more of Drama Centre London’s illustrious graduates on TV this season, including Gemma Chan in Humans on Channel and Helen McCrory and Tamsin Topolski in Penny Dreadful.

Read more about courses at Drama Centre London

View the schedule for Drama Centre London’s summer show written by Mark Ravenhill when the terror has ended the victims will dance

when the terror has ended the victims will dance

Search film and television courses at UAL

 

UAL’s Stratford development moves into next major phase

An award-winning architecture practice has been chosen to design UAL’s new campus for London College of Fashion on Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in Stratford.

Allies and Morrison, in conjunction with RIBA Gold Medal winners O’Donnell & Tuomey and other renowned practices, have been chosen to design the new culture and university complex. The development is part of the ‘Olympicopolis’ scheme announced by Mayor of London Boris Johnson, on Stratford Waterfront in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

An artist’s impression of chosen concept – final designs will be revealed later this year.

An artist’s impression of  the chosen concept – final designs will be revealed later this year.

The architects were chosen by a jury which included representatives from each of the institutions to be housed in the scheme, including UAL Vice-Chancellor Nigel Carrington.

It will bring together London College of Fashion’s 6,500 students and staff for the first time in the College’s 100 year history.

Nigel Carrington said: “We’re delighted to have Allies and Morrison on board for this project. They have a proven track-record of delivering iconic buildings in line with what we would expect for UAL. Over the coming weeks and months we will work with the London Legacy Development Corporation and the architects to make sure UAL’s requirements are met, revealing the final designs later this year.”

The new campus will include two major research centres focusing on sustainability and innovation in the fashion industry. It will provide widespread access to advanced fashion technology, business incubators, and a changing programme of public exhibitions.

The Waterfront site will also house new locations for the Victoria and Albert Museum and Sadler’s Wells. Discussions are also underway with the Smithsonian Institution to join the scheme by opening its first permanent museum outside the United States.

Mayor of London Boris Johnson said: “Stratford Waterfront is set to become a world leading centre of culture and higher education, and I am thrilled that we have been able to appoint some serious talent to work on the designs. Their work will be key to a project that is expected to generate nearly £2bn and bring 3,000 new jobs to the Olympic Park.”