Stories in the Dark and Magic Lanterns: Beaney Exhibition features work by Adam Chodzko

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Photo by Adam Chodzko.


Whitstable artist and School of Music and Fine Art Lecturer, Adam Chodzko, has stunning work featured in the exhibition Stories in the Dark, curated by artist Ben Judd. The exhibition is a co-commission by The Beaney House of Art & Knowledge and Whitstable Biennale, a festival of contemporary art.  (The exhibition is also part of the programme of the University of Kent’s International Festival of Projections, which ran 18 to 20 March 2016.)

Using rare, original magic lantern machines, projection devices invented in the 17th century that used the light of candles and oil lamps to produce shows that projected moving images for the very first time, and beautiful Victorian slides, this unique exhibition by artists Ben Judd, Jordan Baseman, Benedict Drew, Louisa Fairclough, Dryden Goodwin, Haroon Mirza, Lindsay Seers and Guy Sherwin, creates new work especially for The Beaney.

Mask Filter Arc and sea sponge in case

Adam Chodzko stuns us with images of dust ‘explosions’ in his work Ask The Dust, whilst his second work Mask Filter Arc he then combines the Beaney’s Venus Flower Basket with two magic lantern slides, creating a lantern whose intense flashes of light remind us of the process of inspiration and expiration, ugliness and beauty.

Says Adam about Ask the Dust: “A slide projector back-projects ‘images’ of dust ‘explosions’ onto a blind in the Explorers and Collectors gallery,sharing this ‘screen’ with moving patches of sunlight, channelled by a large arched window. The dust silhouettes are formed by tiny particles of debris, decay collected from the barrel of a cannon (captured from the Chinese during the Second Opium War, 1860) stored in the Beaney’s archives. Their apparently random arrangements, suspended in 35mm film slide mounts, now magnified, offer the possibility of being decoded and read, like tea leaves, as premonitions. Or perhaps as the animated frames from a recording of Chinese shadow puppet performance.”

The exhibition runs until Sunday 19 June.

Location: Special Exhibitions Room, The Beaney, 18 High Street, Canterbury, CT1 2BD

More info here:

Historic Dockyard exhibition makes waves



Launching at 6pm on Friday 6th May, visitors to The Historic Dockyard Chatham will see how emerging and professional artists have explored the controversial ‘freedom of the seas’ principle through a diverse range of artistic media as part of a new thought-provoking gallery show at No.1 Smithery. Of the Sea is a project in partnership with the University of Kent’s School of Music and Fine Art and is sponsored by Hatten Wyatt Solicitors and Advocates.  It represents the culmination of The Historic Dockyard’s biennial open art competition (Art in the Dockyard) which this year received a record number of submissions from across Europe. All works in the gallery show are competition finalists eligible for two prizes; The Dockyard Prize, sponsored by Hatten Wyatt Solicitors and Advocates, which will be judged on its contextual relevance to the Dockyard’s historical legacy; and The Curators’ Choice, which will be awarded to a work which expresses global, social and political significance. The winning artists in both of the categories will each receive a £750 cash prize.

The works were selected by a distinguished and specially invited judging panel comprising Adam Chodzko, international award winning artist and Senior Lecturer in Fine Art in the School of Music and Fine Art; Exhibition Curator Hannah Conroy from the Artist Pension Trust (formerly Folkestone Artworks Curator); Kathleen Palmer, Head of Art at Imperial War Museums; Victoria Pomery OBE, Director of Turner Contemporary, Margate; and artist Island Projects Director Nicole Mollet.

The variety of work includes lens based media, sculpture and performance art and explores powerful topics such as conflict, ecology, territory, migration, piracy, border disputes and the ebb and flow of oceans. Showing until 24 July.


For more info:

Discover the emerging artists of the future

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The amazing quality, diversity and range of student work from School of Music & Fine Art graduating students is showcased throughout May.


BA Event & Experience Design

BA Event & Experience Design is celebrated from Monday 9th May until Tuesday 17th May, with a range of innovative live events from EED 3rd Year projects in our production studios, performance space and in sites off the campus – ambitious projects, which creatively explore a broad range of formats and subjects, questioning what constitutes an event? This includes:

Huh – an interactive multilingual cultural experience by Nian Earn Ooi.
My Diary – an experiential journey via Taiwanese beauty products and treatments by Chien-Yi Yang.
K2, the Kreating Kindness Laboratory – an interactive opportunity to generate and receive a small act of kindness by Sophie Cawsey.
Tides of Misfortune, a circus of lost souls – an interactive performance by Jade Alcock.
Gothic Butterfly – an artist launch event by Jade Wildes.
5 Minutes – a physical and immersive game environment by Garrick Chan.
The Secret Garden Project – an immersive walk in Chatham by Charlotte Harding.

From 21st May, there will be a showcase of past EED student projects presented in Room 101. This will take the form of documentation.


BA and MA Fine Art

Continuing a tradition of showcasing bold, exploratory exhibitions, framed by the stunning backdrop of one of the country’s most iconic locations, the Historic Dockyard Chatham, visitors will encounter a broad range of artistic styles and media from our 26 graduating BA and MA Fine Art students – an explosion of imagination and a celebration of art’s potential for society.  The Degree Show preview is on Saturday 21st May, 1-5pm, after which work will be available for the public to view until 31 May as follows:

Sunday 22nd May, (10am-5pm):    
Tuesday 24th May – Tuesday 31st May inclusive (10am-5pm):    
This exhibition offers the public a fascinating insight into contemporary art’s most recent practices and processes such as a ‘Grand Design’ home evolved by a hoarder, an oozing conversation with the earth, a system of tunnels, angry letters about Gillingham’s Samurai sent to Medway council, a Dockyard worker’s fall down a well as sculpture, personal Facebook data becomes food, a dream-like exploration of the car industry, hand movements translated into Fibonacci sound, an autobiographical feature length film made on a mobile phone and a performance where the rules of tennis are applied to an exam.

The Degree Show’s aim is to encourage audiences to explore the potential of Medway as a dynamic hub for art, with the School of Music and Fine Art as a major conduit for these activities, positively impacting on the community and offering imaginative suggestions and visionary strategies for cultural regeneration. As well as involving students from Kent, and across the UK, this year’s Degree Show exhibitors include student artists from Iran, Thailand, China, Russia, Italy, Cyprus, Mexico, Hong Kong, Isle of Man and Ghana.

The Fine Art Degree Show exhibition catalogue features essays by academics across University of Kent’ Schools: Emily Rosamond, Grant Pooke, Simon Smith and Howard Griffin.

Degree Show visitors can attend a wide range of exciting educational activities.  Young people attending can also participate in workshops with some of the exhibiting artists. On Tuesday 24h May and Wednesday 25th May, Education Days will be held for local schools and colleges.  Attendees will be able to view the Show and hear talks from the artists; they will also be encouraged to produce their own artwork in response to their experience of the Show.  If you would like to bring a school, college or university group to this event (all ages welcome) please email:

Visitors to the Degree Show will also be able to visit the Historic Dockyard’s thematic exhibition of international contemporary art works, “Of the Sea,” a competition (in collaboration with the School of Music and Fine Art) whose jury panel includes Kathleen Palmer (Head of Art, Imperial War Museum), and Victoria Pomery (Director of Turner Contemporary, Margate).

During this period there will other exciting events, including concerts performed by SMFA music students as follows:

Tuesday 17th May to Friday 20th May, 9am – 6pm
School of Music & Fine Art music student solo recitals.

Friday 20th May, 12 noon, Galvanising Shop Performance Space
MA Music Student Lunchtime Recitals

Check our webpage for updates and regular bulletins!

All events are open to all and FREE to attend. Click here to get your special Visitor Pass!


The Degree Show Address:
The Historic Dockyard, Chatham, Kent, ME4 4TY
Entry is at The Historic Dockyard Chatham Visitor Entrance, via The Galvanising Shop (next to the Dockyard’s visitors’ car park on the East Road).

Contact Details:
For further press information and images of the works on display please contact School Reception:
or telephone 01634 888 980.
Twitter: @unikentmfa #smfacreative #smfashows16


Tribute to Janet Hodgson: Artist and Teacher

Janet Hodgson


We are sorry to have to announce that Janet Hodgson, Associate Lecturer in Event and Experience Design, died on 16 March 2016, aged 56. Janet was a highly regarded artist and teacher who is remembered with much affection and respect by those who had the good fortune to work and collaborate with her and by those who were taught by her.

Training originally as a theatre designer at Wimbledon School of Art, Janet’s extraordinary multifaceted career also saw her work with archeologists and historians, and her art has been exhibited internationally. Joining the University of Kent in 2006, Janet made a huge contribution to the BA Event and Experience Design course, working as an Associate Lecturer on a range of modules across all three stages. A moving tribute to Janet’s legacy can be seen here:

Janet will be very greatly missed.

3 Concerts in 3 Days!

Photo by Stacey Cooper


Don’t miss the incredibly varied programme for our Easter Concert on Weds 6th April at 7.30pm in the Galvanising Workshop when music students perform a lively array of scored and improvised music that encompasses Elgar, Adele, Bowie, Duke Ellington and drumming from Senegal.

In addition to the University Orchestra (Medway) performing the first movement of Edward Elgar’s Serenade in E minor in an orchestral arrangement prepared for this concert, the Chamber Ensemble perform works by Maurice Emmanuel and Luigi Boccherini.

The Chamber Choir will sing a range of songs that include Adele’s Skyfall Bond Theme, and Life on Mars, by David Bowie who sadly died earlier this year.  The Little Big Band play work that includes George Shearing and Duke Ellington, whilst the Jazz Improvisation Ensembles perform Miles Davis, Kenny Dorham, Sidney Bechet and a Handel arrangement.

And the World Percussion Ensemble presents Kumpo, traditional djembe drumming from Senegal in our own concert version.

So there is definitely something for everyone – a feast for the ears!

And the day before, Tuesday April 5th at 12 noon, there is another popular Ensemble Performance Lunchtime Concert when you can hear our students studying band and ensemble playing.

Both events take place in the Galvanising Workshop, Chatham Historic Dockyard.

And don’t forget the Popular Music Gig on April 7th, 8pm until late, takes place at Cargo Bar, Liberty Quays, showcasing bands from the School of Music & Fine Art who will perform sets of original material and covers. These are exciting evenings with a fantastic atmosphere and always draw a crowd!


No booking required for the lunchtime concert but for the Easter Concert, please book via


For info on all 3 concerts and full programme for the Easter Concert go to

To keep in touch with our upcoming events, please check