Announcing UAL's 2023 honoraries
University of the Arts London is delighted to announce twelve exceptional changemakers and creatives who will be awarded honorary degrees at the 2023 graduation ceremonies, starting on 11 July.
From pioneering technologies for textile circularity to broadcasting on the frontline of the war in Ukraine, this year’s honoraries span a wide range of practices and fields - each using their creativity to drive change against global issues such as the climate injustice, structural racism, and economical and regional inequality.
Please join us in congratulating this year’s honorary doctors and fellows at UAL:
Beatrix Ong MBE
Graduating from Central Saint Martins, London College of Communication, and London College of Fashion, luxury fashion designer Beatrix Ong MBE won the role of Creative Director of Jimmy Choo at age 22. Ong forayed into furniture, which toured and was displayed in design museums across the globe from Milan, Hong Kong and Korea to Chicago.
With an ambition to combat the global challenge of textiles waste, using business as a platform for change, Cyndi Rhodes founded Worn Again Technologies – which pivoted to science for an answer and began development of a world-leading polymer recycling technology for end-of-use polyester and cotton blend textiles, with a vision to replace the use of virgin resource use in textiles.
Gavin Jantjes is an artist, activist, educator, curator, historian and artistic director. The first Black full-time senior lecturer in Fine Art at the London Institute (now UAL), he developed the Institute's policy for diversity. Exiled from South Africa during the apartheid years, his work is often referenced in discussions about apartheid, cultural reciprocity and freedom of expression. He exhibits internationally and recieved numerous commissions from the United Nations Commission on Apartheid, the UN Refugee Council and the Nobel Peace Centre.
Dr Gus Casely-Hayford OBE
Dr Gus Casely-Hayford, OBE is the inaugural Director of V&A East, Professor of Practice at SOAS, University of London and a curator and cultural historian who writes, lectures and broadcasts widely on culture. He received a fellowship for service to the arts and a SOAS Honorary Fellowship for service to Africa, and was also awarded an OBE in 2018 for his services to Arts and Culture.
Inua Ellams MBE
Born in Nigeria, Inua Ellams is an internationally touring poet, playwright, performer, graphic artist and designer. Ellams is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature as well as a Complete Works poet alumni. He facilitates workshops in creative writing where he explores reoccurring themes of his work: identity, displacement and destiny.
Film and TV director Peter Hoar has worked on several hit shows of recent years, including Channel 4’s It’s a Sin, The Umbrella Academy’s first season on Netflix, and Doctor Who: A Good Man Goes To War.
Yale design graduate, TED speaker and lecturer Dr Saki Mafundikwa is the founder and director of the Zimbabwe Institute of Vigital Arts, a design and new media training college. He wrote the first book on Afrikan typography and I the recipient of the 2022 President Award (Lifetime Achievement Award) from the UK’s Design and Art Direction association and has been published widely on design and cultural issues.
Shantell Martin is an artist and academic, working across a wide range of disciplines. Her work centres around making connections between fine art, education, design, philosophy, and technology, exploring themes such as intersectionality, identity, and play. A former student at both Camberwell College of Arts and Central Saint Martins, Shantell has presented solo shows at some of the most renowned art institutions.