Undergraduate Research Symposium 2021

Above: ‘Matter Poetics, Melange and the Lichenised Posthuman’, Harriet Fidkin, 2021

The VCRG hosted the 4th annual Undergraduate Research Symposium online on Thursday 18 and Friday 19 March 2021. Students across a range of UWE Art & Design programmes presented research papers on their final year Visual Culture projects. This work was produced in extraordinary circumstances during the COVID-19 pandemic and reflects some of the most pressing issues for those interested in visuality and cultural critique. Papers were organised into the following panels:

Thursday 18th March
‘Time, Environment and the Anthropocene’
‘Arts Education and Socially-Engaged Practice’
‘Femininity and Popular Culture’

Friday 19th March
‘Gender Performances and the Gaze’
‘Identity, Ideology and Resistance’
‘Horror, Spectacle and Psychological Impact’

Huge congratulations to the students who presented and many thanks to all who contributed to two days of fascinating discussion.

Panel 1: Time, Environment and the Anthropocene

Jocelyn Brett
BA (Hons) Fine Art


‘COVID-19 and the ‘Virus of Everyday Life’. An exploration into how distorted time perception and memory during lockdown may shape our society Post-COVID’

Harriet Fidkin
BA (Hons) Fine Art


‘Matter Poetics, Melange and the Lichenised Posthuman – How Artists and Writers Present Visions of an Interconnected Life Between Man and Non-Human Others in the Age of the Anthropocene’

Tessa McLellan
BA (Hons) Fine Art

‘The Paradoxes of Time: How Time Manifests in the Narratives around High Speed 2’

Panel 2: Arts Education and Socially-Engaged Practice

Miranda Parry
BA (Hons) Drawing and Print


‘GCSE Art and Design: How standardisation has negatively impacted creativity in arts education’

Maria Windsor
BA (Hons) Graphic Design


‘How did Hirschfeld-Mack’s displacement transform art education in Australia?’

Tabitha Gammer
BA (Hons) Fine Art


‘The Aesthetics of Delegation in Contemporary Art’

Natasha Watson
BA (Hons) Fine Art


‘Power of Protest: Occupying Public Spaces to Spark a Societal Sea Change’

Panel 3: Femininity and Popular Culture

Joshua Downton-Lewis
BA (Hons) Graphic Design


‘The impact of gossip magazines on the iteration of internalised misogyny’

Anastasia Sawyer
BA (Hons) Illustration


‘Female representation within character design, and the emergence of a new pseudo-feminist binary within the webcomic ”Marge Simpson Anime”’

Ella Watson
BA (Hons) Graphic Design

‘Cyborg Personas: To What Extent Are They Effective as a Feminist Device in Popular Music Culture?’

Reem Mokhtar
BA (Hons) Graphic Design


‘Does the “WAP” music video empower Black female sexuality or reinforce negative hyper-sexualised stereotypes of Black women?’

Panel 4: Gender Performances and the Gaze

Evie Haworth-Galt
BA (Hons) Fashion Communication

‘Summer of Love or Creepy Cult?: How Harry Styles’ ‘Watermelon Sugar’ Music Video Perpetuates a Double Standard of ‘Acceptable Sexism’ Within Pop Culture’

Phoebe Cowell
BA (Hons) Drawing and Print


‘How do films about mental health portray gendered performances of emotional labour?’

Kirsty MacLeod
BA (Hons) Graphic Design


‘Critical Review of the ‘Andy Warhol’ Retrospective at the Tate Modern from the 12th March to the 15th November 2020′

Louise Minton
BA (Hons) Illustration


‘How does Portrait of a Lady on Fire resist and produce gendered gazes of cinema and visual art in the portrayal of a lesbian love story?’

Panel 5: Identity, Ideology and Resistance

Content warning: Nudity

Jodi Atkins
BA (Hons) Graphic Design

‘The Subtlety of Racism in Modern Beauty Advertisements’

Lauren Mulhearn
BA (Hons) Illustration


‘How does the 1995 anthem ‘Common People’ expose the manipulation of class identities within Britpop?’

James Robinson
BA (Hons) Fashion Communication


‘Murals, a marker of Protestant and Catholic identities in Northern Ireland’

Marie Lister
BA (Hons) Drawing and Print


‘Parodying the phallus: feminism, phallocentrism and the photography of Lynda Benglis’

Kader Kaynat
BA (Hons) Fine Art

‘Memories and Nostalgia in the age of storage culture ‘

Anna McDonald Anakaa

‘An Analysis of the use of representations of Catholic saints, in the preservation of Yoruba faith traditions, by members of the African Diaspora in Brazil and Cuba’

Panel 6: Horror, Spectacle and Psychological Impact

Erika Dawn Lewis
BA (Hons) Illustration


‘The fear of female sexuality and the maternal body from 1970s horror’

Elise Dunn
BA (Hons) Fine Art

‘A Grotesque Paradox: A Study of the Adaptation and Portrayal of Beloved’

April Kirkwood
BA (Hons) Fine Art


‘How Does Parthenogenesis Underpin Representations of the Monstrous Female Within Historical Socio-medical Discourse?’

Jelena Rasevska
BA (Hons) Drawing and Print

‘Virtual Reality Porn: a new level of sexual pleasure or a destructive psychological weapon?’

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