‘A fantastic achievement’ – top grades for our artists

Our MA Creative Practice students have been celebrating completing their degrees in style.

Six learners, Catt van Leijen, Alexis Skarratt, Zoe Nicholson, Karen Hood, Hannah Alderson and Zoe Phillips, recently finished their degrees.

Between them they achieved five distinctions and a merit, to the delight of Creative Practice MA Programme Manager Dr Annabel Smith.

A celebration of talent

Annabel, who joined four of the students recently at their graduation ceremony, said: “For our six students to graduate with top results is a fantastic achievement and a real tribute to their talent and drive.

“It was a lovely moment of pride and joy to watch them receive their certificates. We also celebrated for the two who couldn’t make it on the day, Zoe Phillips and Hannah Alderson.”

Each student undertook a major final project to secure their qualification, with topics ranging from wild swimming and the threats of pollution, to the nature of creativity itself.

Life-changing projects

Alexis Skarratt’s Interruptions involved working with survivors of domestic abuse and incorporating their own words into a powerful multi-media installation.

She said: “I believe, as a mother of two children, that we should use the arts to explore topics that are difficult to address and as a starting point for meaningful conversations.”

Commenting on Alexis’ work, Dr Smith said: “This has been a life-changing project and deeply moving for all the participants and audience.”

For her final project Hannah Alderson, meanwhile, was inspired to explore the wellbeing benefits of working with clay after noticing how it had helped reduce her own anxiety.

Creative Practice student Hannah Alderson's poster for her Clay exhibition

Praising the resulting exhibition, tutor Caroline Miekina said: “Hannah’s posters, showcasing her research into exploratory activities with clay in the community, and her delicate, understated ceramics were presented to great advantage and attracted a lot of interest.”

Hannah is now working with health professionals with a view to starting a PhD on the subject.