Art piece showing student on laptop with rainbow coming out of it. By student Ellie Spearman

LGBTQ+ in Lockdown art exhibition

Our talented LGBTQ+ students have created a range of art pieces based on their experiences of ‘LGBTQ+ In Lockdown’. You can view the display in Keynes Atrium all month.

For millions of people across the UK, and the world, the Covid-19 lockdowns were a turbulent, emotional and difficult time that placed intense pressure on an individuals’ mental health. Many are still living, and struggling, with the aftereffects.

This exhibition showcases the creative talents of LGBTQ+ students at the University as they reflect on their experiences during the Covid-19 pandemic, and in particular the lockdowns throughout 2020 and into 2021.

For LGBTQ+ students, alongside the pressure of trying to juggle studies, work and the anxiety caused by the global pandemic, there was the additional pressure of being away from their university support networks, potentially being forced to live in a hostile environment, or having to pause or further delay treatment or medical processes for an unknown period of time. For many, lockdown was incredibly traumatic.

For other members of the community, the lockdowns represented an opportunity for deep self-reflection and discovery; a chance to explore their identities.

This collection of art and poetry, commissioned from over 20 student artists from the LGBTQ+ community, reflects the diverse range of feelings and experiences that are reflective of our wider community, both at Kent and beyond and offers a window into the different meanings that the word ‘lockdown’ had for students.

The artists were encouraged to reflect upon what lockdown meant for them as a member of the LGBTQ+ community, both the positives and the negatives. For some, lockdown was an experience that they hoped would never be repeated. For others, it was a period of contemplation and enlightenment. For many, it was both.

Thanks to Student Services and Kent County Council who funded this project. 

See more LGBT+ History Month events