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‘Lunchtime Encounters’ series forms part of new University Arts Strategy – University of Reading

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‘Lunchtime Encounters’ series forms part of new University Arts Strategy

Release Date 27 June 2018

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Staff, students and visitors to campus were recently invited to a series of ‘Lunchtime Encounters' hosted by the University of Reading.

The series, which started on Monday 4th June and ran until Thursday 14th June on the Whiteknights Campus, was part of the University's new Arts Strategy and aimed to bring people across the University together.

The ‘Encounters' took place in the temporary PER[form] structure built by Architecture students and ranged from dance performances, to choir rehearsals, to creative interactions with academic research from various departments across the arts and sciences.

In 2017, the University set up a new Arts Group to consider, among other things, how art can be more visible across campus and how it can be used to engage with staff, students and the local community.

Arts Development Officer, and curator of the ‘Lunchtime Encounters' series, Miranda Laurence, said: "The Arts Strategy is all about using arts and creativity, in whatever form that may be, to enhance the campus and to connect with people - whether they are staff, students or members of the local community.

"We're still in the early stages of developing the Strategy but the ‘Lunchtime Encounters' series was one of our first events. It was a chance for people to take some time out of their normal working day, participate in something different and chat to people they might not usually interact with. But more than that, it allowed us the opportunity to speak to people about the Strategy and gather ideas for what could be done on campus in the future. It is an exciting time for the arts at Reading."

PER[form] structure

The PER[form] structure was designed and built by students from the University's School of Architecture. Working with award-winning architect and TV presenter, Piers Taylor (featured on programmes such as The World's Most Extraordinary Homes and The House That £100k Built), the students worked to a design brief from the School of Arts and Communication Design.

In addition to being used for the ‘Lunchtime Encounters' series, the wooden structure is being used as an outdoor performance space by the School of Arts and Communication Design for a number of events throughout May and June.

The School of Architecture is now in its second year and this is the second time students have built a large-scale structure. It fits in with the School's ethos of designing through making and gaining practical experience as part of their education at Reading. Drawings, pictures and writing about the planning and building of the PER[form] structure made up part of the end of year exhibition at the School of Architecture.

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