ROOM: Experimental Art Space



 They left behind monoliths as remote observers that were also capable of taking a variety of actions according to the wishes of their creators…. who had abandoned physical form, but their creations, the monoliths remained, and these continued to carry out their original assignments…” 2001 A Space Odyssey.

On loan to the School of Music and Fine Art until June 2016, ROOM is a converted 20ft shipping container designed by architect Simon Barker. Painted bright blue and fully fitted with power and light, ROOM functions as studio, gallery and public engagement space. Located outside the Pilkington Building on the University of Kent Medway campus at Pembroke, with the aim of extending student activities beyond the studio to encourage cross-disciplinary dialogue and exchange.

The shipping container or TEU (Twenty foot equivalent unit) with its promise of plenty has become a powerful symbol of standardisation and globalised trade. Sixty percent of the goods arriving in containers at the port of Naples escape official customs inspection and go unchecked, begging the question; what is really inside?

To keep ROOM activated, and to shape its new ‘assignment’ The School of Music and Fine Art invites any department in the Universities of Kent, Greenwich or Canterbury Christ Church to contribute artworks, ideas, knowledge or processes to ROOM.

ROOM is ideal for experimental use of sound and video projection and performance but also includes wall space and vitrine space for 2D and 3D objects.

ROOM can be booked for a maximum of 5 days. Whilst its use can be for wondering, experimentation and research, rather than exhibition, it is essential that you allow an open door policy for the passerby; ROOM is a transmitter of new and developing forms of knowledge so it is important that this signal is maintained. You will need to produce a brief proposal and sign a ROOM use agreement which includes health and safety guidance and a risk assessment.

To book ROOM please first contact ROOM’s curatorial team made up of SMFA students and staff, who will help facilitate, promote and archive your project, via Emma Murton;

For information on upcoming events at ROOM please see the news-feed on the SMFA webpage and Facebook page.


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