Undergraduate and Masters students from the University of Bedfordshire’s School of Arts & Creative Industries have taken part in end-of-year Degree Shows to celebrate their work and showcase their future potential.
Held across both the Bedford and Luton campuses, the shows were open to the public and featured a variety of exhibits curated by the students, including live performances by Acting and Dance students, roaming Fashion and Makeup models, short film and animation screenings, projections of augmented reality footage, and walls adorned with the work of Photography and Art & Design students.
Staff chose to name the combined Degree Shows ‘Grow’ to highlight how each student develops and embraces their creativity during their studies. The show also included impressive work by Foundation Year students on the cusp of their degree, illustrating the skills and confidence that this group have already gained ahead of their first year of undergraduate study.
The first of this year’s Degree Shows opened on Friday May 5, with Acting, Dance and Performing Arts students taking to the stage in the main theatre on the Bedford campus to wow audiences with their creative pieces.
Barbara Shukla, a final-year Acting student who took part in the Bedford showcase, said:
“It was a memorable show that summarised the three years of our hard work – an opportunity to express ourselves as performers at the main theatre stage for the last time and celebrate the end of this beautiful chapter along with other students and teachers.”
The Luton campus Degree Show, held on Thursday May 11, saw a variety of student projects on display in the University’s Alexon Building, including work from courses such as Fashion Design, Make-Up & Fashion Design, Animation, Graphic Design and Interior Architecture & Design.
In the nearby Hat Factory, attendees were treated to the exciting screenings of short films created by Film Production and Media Performance students.
Denver Schroffner, an Art & Design Masters student, decided to leave a career in hospitality to return to education and pursue his passion for design and architecture, with underlying references to his pastry skillset. Speaking about his work – a levitating garden – he said:
“Sustainability was at the core of this project and I am proud of my work. Looking at it now, I’m happy with it – it’s an interesting piece and definitely exciting.”
Dr Carlota Larrea, Head of the School of Arts and Creative Industries, congratulated all students on their hard work:
“It’s been a really amazing year for this Degree Show. We had a lot of external visitors and it’s a great opportunity for students to present their work to guests in an official capacity. We encourage them to speak about their work and talk about their pieces and influences – it’s an essential part of their student life.”
The Degree Shows weren’t the only attraction in town this month, as three Photography alumni from the University launched an exhibition at the Hat Factory. The showcase, Pancea, builds on the work that these graduates showcased in the University’s 2022 Degree Show.
Speaking about their exhibit, Photography alumna Irena Gil said:
“We were absolutely thrilled to have the opportunity to showcase our work at the Hat Factory Arts Centre. Our work is an expanded version of what we presented at our Degree Show last year, centred on the themes of mental health and recovery. We extend thanks to Luton’s Culture Trust team for their invaluable support in bringing our vision to life and sharing it with a wider audience.”
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