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Life Sciences Initiative

The Queen Mary University of London Life Sciences Initiative (LSI) presents a unique opportunity to improve the many and diverse health needs in Whitechapel and to change population healthcare worldwide. Consisting of four research centres: Genomic Health, Bioengineering, Mind in Society(MiS) and the Cross-cutting Centre for Computational Biology, the LSI presents an opportunity for researchers, students and academics to work together in improving the health of the local and greater population. As a multidisciplinary initiative, the LSI's work is presented in varying forms, stepping away from the norm and into the creative sphere. LSI's inaugural Image Awards took place in May 2017, celebrating science through art. View the gallery of winners and entrants here. In July 2017 LSI's MiS supported the People's Palace Project in producing the pilot of No Feedback, an immersive workshop based on research about the phenomenon of 'othering', linking to the horrors of genocide. With the workshop a success, it will go on to be presented at schools and community groups within Tower Hamlets.

The next Life Sciences Image Award Exhibition and Prize-giving Ceremony will take place on 27 June at 2pm. The above image is last year's winner. 

For more information, please visit our website, Facebook and Twitter

  • The State Crime Film Club+
    State Crime Film Initiative

    INTERNATIONAL STATE CRIME FILM INITIATIVE

    The State Crime Film Club brings together QMUL’s International State Crime Initiative (ISCI) and local and international NGOs (including Hackney Palestine Solidarity Campaign, War on Want, the Catastrophe Club and Amnesty International) with scholars, filmmakers, activists, diaspora communities and journalists to foster understanding of state crime, including state-corporate crime, genocide, war crimes, torture and international justice, amongst others. The Club has hosted screenings of films by Haydar Demirtaş which looked at issues of displacement, belonging and memory in Turkey; 5 Broken Cameras with the Palestinian filmmaker Emad Burnat; The Village Under the Forest, including a panel discussion during Nakba Week; and The Look of Silence with a Q&A with the director Joshua Oppenheimer.  Screenings are held at Genesis Cinema in Stepney Green, and the Bertha DocHouse at the Curzon Cinema in Bloomsbury.

    For more information, please visit the website

  • The Centre for the History of Emotion+
    Projects Global Research - Carnival Left
    Projects Global Research - Carnival Right

    THE CENTRE FOR THE HISTORY OF THE EMOTIONS

    The Centre for the History of the Emotions (based in the School of History) regularly collaborates with artists and creative partner organisations. They commissioned the playwright Craig Baxter to produce an audio play about the role of anger in medical settings. Tiffany Watt-Smith has collaborated with the theatre director Maria Aberg and neuroscientists Sophie Scott and Caspar Addyman to develop a pilot theatre piece on emotional contagion. The Centre has programmed other events at cultural festivals, including the Lost Emotions Machine, a community research project on emotional talismans; and a pop-up Museum of the Normal, which encouraged critical reflections on what constitutes ‘normality’ in medical and psychological discourses.

    For more information, please visit our website and Twitter

  • "What is Heritage?"+
    Historic Royal Palaces

    "WHAT IS HERITAGE?"

    “Heritage is personal [...] It might be the Golden Gate Bridge. It might be a play by Shakespeare. It might be a jar of Marmite.”-- Wendy Hitchmough, Historic Royal Palaces.

    “Cultural Heritage is a term that needs to be unpacked. It projects authenticity, purity and originality – the genuine article, ‘uncontaminated’ by external influences. But who creates, defines, controls and disseminates cultural heritage? A one-dimensional model of cultural heritage can act as a tool for social engineering, and often falls prey to identity politics, nativism, isolationism, nationalism and apartness. We need multiple cultural heritages - as a mimesis of the multicultural and multi-ethnic world we live in.

    “In my work on ‘World Cinema’, I have critiqued the notion that India’s cultural heritage can be collapsed into Bollywood, and argued that India’s new independent films reflect the real complexity of contemporary Indian culture. QMUL is teaching the first UK university module on new Indian Indie cinema. This work reveals the importance of democratising both tangible and intangible forms of cultural heritage.  Heritage can be enriched by adapting to the times we live in – otherwise it risks becoming exclusive, and eventually extinct.  We need more participatory, interactive and intergenerational perspectives on heritage, and we need spaces which encourage interaction and open access to a wide range of cultural heritages. It may be time to dismantle the unitary notion of heritage which often serves as a shorthand for majority cultures, communities, identities or national narratives.” - Ashvin Devasundaram, Lecturer in World Cinema, Department of Film Studies.

  • Research on Soviet Cinema+
    Project Global Research - Soviet Cinema Left
    Project Global Research - Soviet Cinema Right

    RESEARCH ON SOVIET CINEMA

    Research on Soviet documentary film by Jeremy Hicks (School of Languages, Linguistics and Film) led to the discovery of a previously neglected collection of newsreels and documentaries that depicted the aftermath of the Nazis’ mass killing of Jews in the Holocaust. These films showed the 1942 and 1943 unearthing of mass graves of the Nazis’ victims in Russia, Ukraine and Belarus, as well as forgotten or unseen images of the German Extermination camps liberated by the Soviets in 1944 and 1945, the most famous of which was Auschwitz. Due to suspicions of the Soviets during the Cold War, they had long been ignored and discounted.

    This research became the acclaimed 2012 book: First Films of the Holocaust: Soviet Film and the Genocide of the Jews, 1938-46, but the findings reached a wider public with the TV documentary Unseen Holocaust, in 2013, broadcast on H2 and History channels. This research informed an exhibition at a 2015 exhibition in Paris’s Mémorial de la Shoah Museum, on which Jeremy was a consultant. In 2015 he advised the Imperial War Museum on its restoration of German Concentration Camps Factual Survey, a 1945 film that the British planned to show the German population, but never completed. Jeremy also advised on the story of that film’s abandonment and restoration which was told in Night Will Fall, a documentary shown on Channel 4 and around the world in 2015. German Concentration Camps Factual Survey was released on DVD in Spring 2017.

    For more information, visit the website

     

  • Wasafiri+
    Project Wasafiri - Cover revised
    Project Wasafiri - Sophie Herxheimer

    WASAFIRI

    Wasafiri a quarterly magazine of international contemporary writing, encourages readers and writers to travel the world via the word. Since 1984, it has sought to open and extend the boundaries of established literary culture. ‘Wasafiri’, the Kiswahili word for travelers, captures the magazine’s ethos and its continuing concern with cultural traveling and translation. In today’s increasingly divided world, it works to profile literary diversity, challenge established literary canons, provoke cross-cultural dialogue and provide a space for the publication of distinctive new work from across the globe. Committed to searching out the ‘best of tomorrow’s writers today’, the magazine has discovered many who have gone on to become well-known voices. Wasafiri also hosts a regular programme of live national and international events. Its website (www.wasafiri.org) offers streamed interviews, dialogue and creative work to online audience across the world. ‘In a world which gives voice only to the few, Wasafiri comes to us like a choir of thousands, singing the stories of everywhere’—Aminatta Forna OBE, novelist

    Visit Wasafiri's website and Facebook page.

  • Queen Mary Visual Cultures Forum+

    Queen Mary Visual Cultures Forum

    The Queen Mary Visual Cultures Forum was created by Jenny Chamarette and Anna Kemp with the aim of bringing together the wide range of expertise in the field of art history and visual cultures within the university. Guests of the forum have published in areas including history of art, visual studies, film, new media, photography, painting, installation, performance, illustrated manuscripts and picture books. Many are also makers and creators with experience in film production, theatre directing, painting and curating. Past curators of the forum include Chloe Ward and Hannah Williams (History). The current curators are Emilie Oléron Evans (School of Languages, Linguistics and Film) and Matthew Walker (History).

    Visit the Visual Cultures Forum website.

  • Centre for Public Engagement+
    CPE 'Project' large

    Centre for Public Engagement

    Queen Mary University of London has a long history of public engagement, having started life as the People's Palace, built in 1887 to provide culture, entertainment and education to the people of east London. Queen Mary have continued this tradition to the present day, building involvement into institutional strategy and supporting a wide range of activities aimed at public engagement.

    In 2012 Queen Mary set up the Centre for Public Engagement, with the purpose of advising and supporting engaged activity, working to embed public engagement further within the university. We are proud of our record of working with others to discover and spread new knowledge and help to better the world around us. To see a range of the work that we do you can visit our 'Be Inspired' page containing many of the public engagement projects that have involved Queen Mary, our staff and students.

    Visit the Twitter page for more information. 

  • People’s Palace Projects+
    Project Community Engagement - PPP Left
    Project Community Engagement - PPP Right

    PEOPLE’S PALACE PROJECTS

    QMUL’s charitable subsidiary, the internationally renowned People’s Palace Projects (PPP), based in the Department of Drama, creates projects in a wide range of art forms and academic disciplines that focus on the fertile territory where art interweaves with social action. From London’s East End to Rio de Janeiro, and in international knowledge-sharing networks, PPP’s projects connect artists with audiences, participants and peers to make art that enriches lives.

    PPP partners with small companies, individual artists, major arts institutions, government departments, community groups and NGOs, from the UK to Brazil and in large festivals and showcases that reach audiences of thousands. PPP collaborates with people in challenging and vulnerable situations, from prisons or indigenous territories to areas of urban social exclusion and violence; from children in social care, to homeless choirs and world-leading disabled artists. PPP’s projects aim to amplify the voices of people who are underrepresented in conventional art contexts and situate them at the heart of creative examination of our society.

    For more information, please visit our website, Facebook and Twitter page

     

  • The Verbatim Formula+
    Projects Community Engagement - Verbatim Left
    Projects Community Engagement - Verbatim Right

    THE VERBATIM FORMULA

    The Verbatim Formula is a project led by QMUL Drama Lecturer Maggie Inchley, Artist Fellow Sylvan Baker, and Sadhvi Dar of the School of Business and Management. Together with Peoples Palace Projects and QMUL Widening Participation, the team delivers residential workshops for young people with experience of care. This work aims to support young people who sometimes face extraordinary challenges in entering and staying at university, helping them to think about the possibilities for their own futures.

    The project enables the young people to articulate their own experience, wishes and desires, to act as co-researchers and to start dialogues with adults who are responsible for their care and education. The Verbatim Formula’s ‘living archive’ – a bank of over 150 testimonies from looked-after children and foster carers – also provides a Portable Testimony Service, and can be used to facilitate conferences and as a training tool. The team has worked with the GLA Peer Outreach Team for the last three years in steering and facilitating the Beyond Care conferences at City Hall and with the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea with a group of child migrants. A recent grant from the Arts and Humanities Research Council has enabled them to share their experiences so that three other universities – Greenwich, Goldsmiths and East London – can hold their own residential workshops for care leavers. They are also working with Battersea Arts Centre to develop participatory evaluation techniques using creative practices that bring together service providers with their users.

    For more information, please visit our website.

  • The Season of Bangla Drama+
    Project Community Engagement - Bangla Drama Left
    Project Community Engagement - Bangla Drama Right

    THE SEASON OF BANGLA DRAMA

    The Season of Bangla Drama takes place every October, and is a collaboration between QMUL’s Department of Drama and the London Borough of Tower Hamlets, which has the largest Bengali community in the UK (up to 84,000 people or 35% of the Borough population). Founded in 2004, the festival takes place in the Brady Arts Centre, Rich Mix, Wilton’s Music Hall and QMUL over three weeks, and includes discussions, theatre performances, workshops, seminars and exhibitions. It aims to facilitate dynamic cultural exchange between the UK and Bangladesh and to raise the quality, professionalism and aspiration of British-Bengali artists through mentoring activities.

    Recent performances have explored complex and difficult social issues, such as the relations between different generations, gender, diaspora, radicalisation, orthodoxy and secularism, and migration, making use of comedy and modern innovation along with classical dance forms. These include a full-length dance piece from Tagore, Tasher Desh, using the armies of playing cards from Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland to reflect images of two-dimensional, emotionless drones who may or may not be “Western”; a men-only debate staged in a Dhaka tea-shop, with simultaneous translation; a semi-documentary piece on war rape survivors of 1971 (articulated through both live dance and film of survivors made in Bangladesh), juxtaposing actual rape testimonies with a woman’s monologue; a version of Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Ernest; a piece on infertility rendered in the classical ‘operatic’ style; performances which explore the murder of Altab Ali, the abuse of young boys in rural Bangladesh, and the horrors of World War 2; and a naturalistic family drama exploring how older men train the younger generation to subjugate their wives. Such performances provide occasions for introspection and reflection, and demonstrate how cultural activity can facilitate community cohesion and resilience.

    Performers have included Showmi Das, a leading exponent of classical Bangla forms and an innovator whose work explores the origins of Bangladeshi feminism over more than 100 years; ‘A’ Team Arts, Eastern Thespians, Bishwo Shahitto Kendro, Docklands Theatre Company, Jumble Abode Theatre Company, Kids for Kids, and Bangladesh Udichi Shilpi Goshti UK Sangsad. Other participants such as Komola Collective and Mukul and Ghetto Tigers have used the festival as a springboard to regional and national touring programmes. QMUL has also helped Tower Hamlets to develop robust practice-based methodologies for assessing the impact of the festival, and to connect with Dhaka University.

  • Project Phakama+
    Project Community Engagement - Phakama Left
    Project Community Engagement - Phakama Right

    PROJECT PHAKAMA

    Project Phakama is a participatory arts organisation that specialises in developing work with young people locally and internationally. It is an Arts Council England National Portfolio Organisation and has been Arts Organisation in Residence at QMUL, hosted by the School of English and Drama, since 2008. Phakama is a Xhosa word meaning stand up, elevate and empower yourself. This reflects the origins of the company: Phakama grew from an international collaboration in 1996 between artists and arts educators from the UK and South Africa, keen to develop new approaches to participatory arts practice that foreground the voices and experiences of young people.

    The Phakama Give and Gain methodology, focusing on cultural equality and shared responsibility, has supported young people in Argentina, Brazil, India, Ireland, Japan and across Europe to develop public performances responding to the social, economic and political issues that shape their lives including climate justice (‘Message in a Bottle’), censorship (‘TripWires’), intergenerational inequity and social exclusion (‘The Edible Garden’). Phakama has an active youth board that model Phakama’s commitment to social justice, cultural access and supporting alternative training provisions for young people interested in arts and cultural development.

    For more information, please visit our website, Facebook, Twitter page and Instagram.

  • Mile End Community Project+
    Project Community Engagement - MCP Left
    Project Community Engagement - MCP Right

    MILE END COMMUNITY PROJECT

    Mile End Community Project (MCP) regularly works with various departments across Queen Mary, including Project Phakama, the Student Union, School of Geography, and the Centre for Public Engagement. Queen Mary provides specialist advice and academic research to support MCP’s work with communities, including projects like the Cutting East Film Festival or a research project on mother tongue languages. In 2014, as part of the Arts and Humanities Research Council-funded project ‘Mile End to Mumbai’, MCP were invited to India with the QMUL Department of Film Studies to present their filmmaking work with local communities at the TATA Institute for Social Sciences. The School of Geography also supported MCP to develop skills in storytelling for its ‘Re-Defining “Leadership” in the Community’ project, which focussed on communicating the history of a changing part of the city.

    Two young people talk about their work with MCP and QMUL:

    ‘I have been involved in a Project Phakama activity called the Rise Up Programme that is based at QMUL. The project helped me to gain experience and knowledge about different people from different backgrounds, and to bond and make friends. It has helped me to become more comfortable and confident when meeting new people and has also allowed me to gain skills in the creative arts. Mile End Community Project assisted me with getting ready for projects, providing art resources, invitation to events and opportunities to meet people working in different industries. They also played a key role in the projects we get involved in, whether it be in media or delivery. It’s great being around them.’ Humaira Tasneem

    ‘At the moment I'm working with Project Phakama on an art project I came up with, which will partly take place in the university space. This has led me to meet people from the Centre for Public Engagement and other artists at the university. With the help of the university, Phakama and MCP I successfully applied for funding to put together my own public art project, which is something I've always wanted to do – not to mention many other past projects I've had the opportunity to work on with Phakama to practice my craft in a professional environment. Working on art projects with Phakama has built up my confidence to progress my work and have more of a clear understanding of how things work and how to move forward. MCP has been extremely helpful and has gone above and beyond to provide advice and connections that would have been impossible to obtain otherwise.’ Ellis Lewis Dragstra

    For more information, please visit our website, Twitter and Vimeo: @Mileendcommunityproject

  • Cutting East Film Festival+
    Project Community Engagement - Cutting East Left
    Project Community Engagement - Cutting East Right

    CUTTING EAST FILM FESTIVAL

    Cutting East Film Festival. The official culture of east London in 2012 was defined by the London Olympics, global tourism and real estate development. The unofficial culture was characterised by (his)stories of migration, cultural and linguistic diversity and alienation from the mainstream, particularly for a young demographic rarely recognised by national versions of east London. Cutting East Film Festival was a response to this situation, a collaboration between Mile End Community Project, the London Borough of Tower Hamlets, the East End Film Festival, and the Department of Film Studies and School of Business Management at Queen Mary.

    Following consultation with groups of young people, the idea of a film festival defined and organised by those between the ages 16-21 gathered momentum. The project required a strategy for recruitment and training, and by Spring 2013 a group of young people were attending training on campus at QMUL every Tuesday evening, learning to curate, programme and market a festival. What they created combined live events, such as a poetry slam, graffiti artistry and combative discussion, with recorded media. The festival offers involvement through volunteering, performing or submission of a film to competition. The festival became part of an Arts and Humanities Research Council-funded project researching how young people repurpose film, and garnered support from QMUL’s public engagement fund, BFI’s audience network, and Film London.

    For more information, please visit our website, Facebook, Twitter, Youtube and Flickr

  • Artist Fellowships in Drama+
    Artist Fellowship - Alexander Whitley
    Artist Fellowship - Dickie Beau

    ARTIST FELLOWSHIPS IN DRAMA

    Many visual artists, writers, filmmakers, musicians, composers, dancers and theatre practitioners work at QMUL, and we are proud to host visiting artists in departments across the university. These artists enrich the university with their creativity, provide researchers with new perspectives, and help us to communicate the value of our work to a broader public. In exchange, artists benefit from the university’s mentoring and resources, and from the creative challenge of developing their practice in an intellectually charged environment.

    QMUL Drama has a long and prestigious history of collaborating with a range of internationally renowned artists, organisations and companies who specialise in applied performance, live art, contemporary experimental performance, and directing. Many of these artists have been appointed as Industry Research Fellows. The fellowship scheme provides a sustained network of artists whose practice and research are a rich resource for our students and staff, who get to work with artists and companies like Dickie Beau, Karen Christopher, the Live Art Development Agency, Hackney Showroom and Fuel Theatre. Our students tell us that these connections with artists are a key factor in their choosing Queen Mary. In return Queen Mary offers these artists forms of support through mentoring, funding, studio spaces, library access and most of all the expertise of the community of scholars across the College.

    To see the current Artist Fellows, please visit the SED website and Twitter.

  • Lois Weaver+
    Creative Leadership - Lois Weaver Left
    Creative Leadership - Lois Weaver Right

    LOIS WEAVER

    Lois Weaver, an artist and researcher working in the Department of Drama, was interviewed by former student Hannah Maxwell. They talked about her course ‘Performance Composition.’

    Lois: It was designed to reflect how I had learned to survive as an artist in the 80s and early 90s in New York. One of the things I came to realise quite soon – after I decided I wasn't going to become an actress in a film, or an actress in a conventional play, that I was going to make my own work – was that I was going to have to be responsible for all of that work. I started to identify myself as an independent artist. You have to write it, you have to come up with the idea, you have to probably be in it, you have to shoot it, you have to produce it, you have to advertise it. I thought that that model, of the independent artist, was a really good way to get students to think about making work and how they might continue that post-university. But it was also a really good way to interrogate theory, and integrate practice and theory. It was a chance to reflect on what it means to compose all of the elements that you need to get on stage and do your own work, and to take that work out into the world and make yourself a life around making and doing and responding to the things in the world you want to respond to.

    Hannah: Obviously that comes from you in New York in the 70s and 80s and the WOW Café?

    Lois: In the 1980s there was a tendency to do more solo work. Holly Hughes used to say the reason we turned to solo is that was the kind of work we could make in our living rooms. Space was such an expensive commodity. So we all did turn to solo work. Peggy Shaw says there's no such thing as solo. That's true. I’m a big collaborator; I feel like I don't really know how to approach work until I walk into a room filled with all kinds of people. They give me ideas, and we support each other. So, in New York, at the WOW Café and Split Britches, we were building community alongside the work and we supported the work with the community. I wanted to bring that ethos to Performance Comp: that we need collaboration and community, and we need skills beyond just being the one in the spotlight.

    Hannah: It seems like that might be something that has renewed importance in the current political climate, and also given the future of arts funding: keeping that sense of do it yourself, get out there and just make the work.

    Lois: It's rooted in desire. My performance strategy, my creative strategy, is, what do I want? What do I want to do? What circumstances do I want to respond to through my work? And so I try to instil that in the students with some of my teaching. It's ok to start with what you want, what you want to do and do it as best you can. Now I worry that this political or economic climate is very different from when I started out in the 70s. I recognise that it's very hard and I do talk a lot about what it means to build a livelihood as opposed to preparing for a career, because I think in the current situation that's a more piecemeal but also more realistic way of surviving: just get all your skills together, do the work that you want to do and make the connections that you can make and just keep going. Don’t try to somehow 'make it to the top' – just stay on the road.

    For more information, please visit Lois Weaver's website, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube

  • "What is Heritage?"+
    Historic Royal Palaces

    "WHAT IS HERITAGE?"

    “Heritage is personal [...] It might be the Golden Gate Bridge. It might be a play by Shakespeare. It might be a jar of Marmite.”-- Wendy Hitchmough, Historic Royal Palaces.

    “Cultural Heritage is a term that needs to be unpacked. It projects authenticity, purity and originality – the genuine article, ‘uncontaminated’ by external influences. But who creates, defines, controls and disseminates cultural heritage? A one-dimensional model of cultural heritage can act as a tool for social engineering, and often falls prey to identity politics, nativism, isolationism, nationalism and apartness. We need multiple cultural heritages - as a mimesis of the multicultural and multi-ethnic world we live in.

    “In my work on ‘World Cinema’, I have critiqued the notion that India’s cultural heritage can be collapsed into Bollywood, and argued that India’s new independent films reflect the real complexity of contemporary Indian culture. QMUL is teaching the first UK university module on new Indian Indie cinema. This work reveals the importance of democratising both tangible and intangible forms of cultural heritage.  Heritage can be enriched by adapting to the times we live in – otherwise it risks becoming exclusive, and eventually extinct.  We need more participatory, interactive and intergenerational perspectives on heritage, and we need spaces which encourage interaction and open access to a wide range of cultural heritages. It may be time to dismantle the unitary notion of heritage which often serves as a shorthand for majority cultures, communities, identities or national narratives.” - Ashvin Devasundaram, Lecturer in World Cinema, Department of Film Studies.

     

  • Waking David+
    Project Creative Leadership - Waking David Left
    Project Creative Leadership - Waking David Right

    WAKING DAVID

    Waking David is a feature film which draws on Henrik Ibsen’s work to explore the dangers of secrets, lies and miscommunication. The film follows Scarlett, an American psychologist, on a lecture tour of England. Scarlett decides to look up her half-sister Amy and find out about her father who died ten years earlier, but her family refuses to communicate with her or each other about the past. When the shattering truth is finally revealed, it forces everyone to reassess their relationships to one another. The film explores the dangers both of keeping secrets and digging them up.

    The director, Kevin Nash, began developing a process of improvisation as part of his research for the Film Studies MA at Queen Mary. This process was used to create Waking David. A group of three actors created characters from scratch based on people they knew; Kevin and the actors then produced a synopsis based on a hypothetical situation where these characters would meet and come into conflict. From this synopsis, scene by scene, the dialogue was improvised and edited into a completed script. Waking David has been screened at the Phoenix Film Festival in Arizona, the East End Film Festival, and the Stony Brook Film Festival on Long Island, NY.

    For information on a recent screening, please visit the website and Twitter

  • Music at QMUL+
    Project Creative Leadership - Music at QMUL Left
    Project Creative Leadership - Music at QMUL Right

    MUSIC AT QMUL

    Music at QMUL supports practice and education and fosters research activity. QMUL provides Music Scholarships which allow students to develop specific and high level skills. We have also developed collaborative relationships with a range of leading music and arts organisations, which enrich our students’ experiences and opportunities, support staff and student research, and develop the artistic profile of QMUL in public settings. Those organisations include Harrison Parrott International Classical Music Agency, London Chamber Orchestra, Spitalfields Music, City of London Sinfonia, East London Music Group, Shadwell Opera and Ossian Ensemble among others. QMUL also has a Composer-in-Residence, Edward Nesbit. This residency has led to several world premieres at QMUL as well as a commissioned work realised by QMUL’s largest ensembles.

    A specific example of the ways in which Music at QMUL works with partners is its multi-dimensional relationship with the London Chamber Orchestra. QMUL student ‘LCO Music Scholars’ work alongside members of the LCO on their education programme, Music Junction. Staff and students from Global Shakespeare have led and participated in LCO concerts at Cadogan Hall and QMUL, and a workshop at St Paul’s Way Trust, a local school. Staff from the Centre for Digital Music are actively involved in curating and planning a major science and music festival, while students are engaged with the LCO’s managing agency in developing new media products.

    For more information, please visit our website, Facebook and Twitter.

  • SSFX (Space Sound Effects)+

    SSFX (Space Sound Effects)

    SSFX (Space Sound Effects) brought current space physics research and data into the independent film world through partnership and collaboration. An international short film competition challenged independent filmmakers from across the globe to submit works incorporating sounds from space in creative ways. These weak ultralow frequency waves measured by satellites were made audible by QMUL space physicist Dr Martin Archer, who studies them due to their role in space weather and impacts on our technology. The brief was very open with no restrictions on the subject/genre of film and allowed the sounds to be modified, but their usage was a key judging criterion. Entries from UK as well as Brazil, Canada, Italy, Portugal, and USA were judged by a panel of physicists and film industry experts. Seven films, of impressively high-quality, were chosen for screening at a special film festival held at a Rich Mix in Shoreditch, London which screened the films, heard from the filmmakers and discussed the research. The films subsequently went on a global tour, infiltrating 18 prestigious film festivals and over 800 screening events across 8 countries. Audiences that don’t attend science events have therefore been exposed to space weather research in an innovative way, sparking their interest in learning more. The project culminated in the online release of a feature length anthology film. This sees the short films narratively connected by a framing story depicting the severe effects on everyday technology that space weather can have.

     

  • Network: Centre for the Creative and Cultural Economy+
    Network project banner left
    Network project banner right

    Network: Centre for the Creative and Cultural Economy

    NETWORK recognises the importance of strong and sustainable partnerships with the creative economy. It has been built on Queen Mary University of London’s existing creative economy networks established through Creativeworks London, through London Creative and Digital Fusion, and through research activities in its School of Electronic Engineering and Computer Science, Centre for Commercial Law Studies, School of Geography, School of English and Drama, School of Business and Management, and People’s Palace Projects. Partners from these established networks are participating in a range of NETWORK projects, workshops, and collaborations.

    NETWORK has the capacity and the experience to support the development of cross-disciplinary approaches to pressing challenges within the creative economy.

    NETWORK can bring particular experience and expertise to collaboration, co-created research, and the support of creative-economy innovation in East London and the Thames Estuary.

    NETWORK will build new partnerships, helping researchers and creative economy business that could benefit from collaborating to find each other.

    NETWORK is committed to working in close partnership with Schools, with relevant Centres and professional services teams across Queen Mary.

    For more information, please visit NETWORK.

  • qMedia+
    qMedia project left
    qMedia project right

    qMedia

    qMedia brings together the Centre for Digital Music, the Interaction Media and Communication group, the Multimedia and Vision Research group, Media and Arts Technology, and researchers in Social and Pervasive Computing to engage in large-scale, interdisciplinary research. Its research in computing, digital media, coding, and semantic audio and video is applied to theatre, film, TV, broadcast Radio, advertising, gaming, fashion, architecture and the visual arts. Members of qMedia include Elaine Chew, who uses technology to visualise musical harmony, and Marcus Pierce, who investigates how the brain processes music. In EECS's cognitive science group, Geraint Wiggins leads a computational creativity lab which explores how computers can simulate human creativity in language and in music.

    For more information, please visit our website

     

  • The Centre Digital Music+
    C4DM project left
    C4DM project right

    The Centre for Digital Music

    The Centre for Digital Music is one of the world's most prestigious centres for the scientific study of music, embracing music cognition, augmented instruments, audio engineering, machine listening, interactional sound and music, and performance. Through a concert series, the Human Harp and Melody Triangle, and other projects, the C4DM uses performance to bring its research to life for public audiences. Recently the EPSRC granted the Centre for Digital Music in the School of Electronic Engineering and Computer Science (EECS) £6 million to develop new technologies for the music industry. The Centre's innovative magnetic resonator piano is one example of how creative technology pioneered at QMUL can have commercial applications. Another is LandR, a spinout company formed in 2012, which developed innovative tools for automating the audio production process. Joshua Reiss and his team drew on advances in audio engineering and research in human sound perception to create tools for manipulating audio much the same way a professional would operate a mixing desk. As of 2017, LandR was valued at $40 million, and had over 685,000 users.

    For more information, please visit our website and Twitter.

     

  • The Augmented Instruments Laboratory +
    Augmented Instruments Lab project left
    Augmented Instruments Lab project right

    The Augmented Instruments Laboratory

    The Augmented Instruments Laboratory is a research team within the Centre for Digital Music that focuses on creating new digital musical instruments, especially those using electronics to extend the capabilities of familiar instruments. Led by Andrew McPherson, the lab's research covers new expressive tools for expert musicians, systems to help with instrumental teaching and learning, studies of performer-instrument interaction, and hardware and software tools to create musical instruments.

    In 2009, Andrew created the magnetic resonator piano (MRP), an electronically-augmented acoustic grand piano. The MRP uses electromagnets to create vibrations in the strings of a grand piano, and a scanner on the keyboard measures the continuous position of every key, letting the player shape each note in real time like a string player might. The MRP has been used in over twenty compositions and has been performed worldwide, including collaborations with the London Chamber Orchestra (2013 performance in Cadogan Hall) and the band These New Puritans (2014 performance in Barbican Hall).

    In 2011, Andrew developed TouchKeys, a sensor technology transforming the piano-style keyboard into an expressive multi-touch control surface. TouchKeys sensors install on the surface of every key, measuring the position of the fingers on the key surfaces. TouchKeys lets the player intuitively add techniques such as vibrato, pitch bends and timbre changes by moving the fingers along the keys. The project spun out into a company, TouchKeys Instruments Ltd, in 2015. The kits and instruments remain available to the public, with more information at http://touchkeys.co.uk.

    From 2014-2016, the lab developed Bela, an embedded hardware platform for ultra-low-latency processing of audio and sensor signals. Bela began as part of a research project into 'hackable' electronic instruments which are open to modification by the performer. The project gradually evolved from a specific instrument to a more general maker platform aimed at musicians, engineers and hobbyists. In 2016, Bela launched on Kickstarter, raising over 1000% of its fundraising goal and shipping to backers worldwide. A spinout company, Augmented Instruments Ltd, was formed in late 2016 to continue the project. Bela has been used in many workshops and hack days, and thanks to the support of the user community, now supports at least five programming languages. It has also been used to create accessible musical instruments in partnership with the One-Handed Musical Instrument Trust.

    Other lab projects include a digital bagpipe chanter (created by Duncan Menzies) with software to support teaching and learning traditional Highland piping ornamentation; an augmented violin (created by Laurel Pardue) to help beginners reduce the complexity of learning the instrument; and studies of Foley artistry (Christian Heinrichs), tactile interaction (Robert Jack), active control of stringed musical instruments (Liam Donovan) and audience perception of risk and error in performance (Astrid Bin).

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  • 'The Alice Look'+

    'The Alice Look'

    Kiera Vaclavik (School of Languages, Linguistics and Film) curated 'The Alice Look', an exhibition based on Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and childhood fashion at the Victoria and Albert Museum of Childhood. She also collaborated with the composer Paul Rissmann on a new composition which was performed by the London Symphony Orchestra at the Barbican. As part of her exhibition, Vaclavik worked with a pattern cutter to produce a new garment. Her research was also the basis of an entire fabric collection based on Alice by the luxury department store Liberty London - the first time a design brief had originated outside the company.

  • Creativeworks London+

    Creativeworks London

    Queen Mary University of London was the driving force behind the development of new collaborations between higher education and the creative industries, most notably through Creativeworks London (CWL). Since June 2012, QMUL has led this Knowledge Exchange Hub for the Creative Economy, which was funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council and European Regional Development Fund and involved 21 universities and research organisations and 22 creative-industry small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) as partners. CWL has undertaken research on the cultural geographies of innovation in London, the changing nature of London's audiences, and London's digital economy. Between 2012 and 2016, CWL engaged with more than 450 creative businesses and funded 143 collaborative research projects. It ran a 'creative voucher' scheme to promote co-created research between arts and humanities researchers and the creative economy, as well as residency schemes for creative entrepreneurs and for early-career researchers. These generated benefits including the development of prototypes, software, and apps; business growth and innovation; the enhancement of democratic citizenship and the building of new audiences and new publics; new training opportunities within the creative economy; the creation of resilient networks and partnerships to support future growth; and 14 creative business 'spinouts'. Since 2016, CWL has also been working in São Paulo, Brazil on projects focussed on development through innovation in the creative economy.

    For more information, please visit our website and Facebook page.

  • Life Sciences Initiative+

    Life Sciences Initiative

    The Queen Mary University of London Life Sciences Initiative (LSI) presents a unique opportunity to improve the many and diverse health needs in Whitechapel and to change population healthcare worldwide. Consisting of four research centres: Genomic Health, Bioengineering, Mind in Society(MiS) and the Cross-cutting Centre for Computational Biology, the LSI presents an opportunity for researchers, students and academics to work together in improving the health of the local and greater population. As a multidisciplinary initiative, the LSI's work is presented in varying forms, stepping away from the norm and into the creative sphere. LSI's inaugural Image Awards took place in May 2017, celebrating science through art. View the gallery of winners and entrants here. In July 2017 LSI's MiS supported the People's Palace Project in producing the pilot of No Feedback, an immersive workshop based on research about the phenomenon of 'othering', linking to the horrors of genocide. With the workshop a success, it will go on to be presented at schools and community groups within Tower Hamlets.

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