School of Arts donates to Prospect Cottage Art Fund campaign

Derek Jarman's Prospect Cottage

The School of Arts is proud to have contributed to the Art Fund campaign to save Derek Jarman’s Prospect Cottage, which reached its £3.5 million target last week.

Derek Jarman (1942-1994) was a filmmaker, artist and gay rights activist. He was outspoken about his personal struggle with AIDS, and was a lead campaigner in the campaign to repeal Section 28, which banned the ‘promotion’ of homosexuality in schools. Jarman directed many feature, short and documentary films, including Jubilee (1978), Caravaggio (1986), The Last of England (1987), and Wittgenstein (1993). The School of Arts dedicated building, the Jarman Building, is named in his honour.

Jarman lived in Prospect Cottage, in Dungeness on the Kent coast, from 1986 until his death in 1994.

Prospect Cottage remains as an important part of his legacy. It was maintained by Jarman’s long-term companion Keith Collins (nicknamed ‘HB’), but was put up for sale in 2018, after Collins’ death. Fearful that this beacon of queer British creativity would fall into private ownership, a group of artists including frequent Jarman collaborator Tilda Swinton joined forces to launch the crowdfunding campaign to save and preserve Prospect Cottage for the nation. A range of works and objects including prints, ceramic plates and sticker sets by artists such as Tacita Dean, Jeremy Deller, Michael Craig-Martin, Isaac Julien, Howard Sooley and Wolfgang Tillmans were offered as rewards for those donating to the campaign.

Derek Jarman was recently the focus of a series of events held to celebrate LGBT History Month at the University of Kent.

The School of Arts made a contribution to the campaign and we will exhibit our donation reward – Howard Sooley’s photographic prints of Prospect Cottage and its extraordinary beach-combed garden – when the Jarman Building reopens.

To read more about the campaign, please see the Art Fund page here: