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Past events

Corkscrew was established in 2013 to cater to the growing community of practice-based research students in Birkbeck's School of Arts. Since then, we have welcomed speakers from a variety of contexts to reflect on their work with students, and provided opportunities for students to share their work in progress.

Read more about past events below.


  • Professor John Hall (Falmouth University): Roles for practice in doctoral research in the arts (23.1.13)
  • Professor Anne Douglas (Grays School of Art, Aberdeen): A Distinctive Contribution? What can be known through art/design practice led research: three doctoral case studies (15.4.13)
  • 2014

  • Professor Adrian Heathfield (University of Roehampton): Practical Experience, chaired by chaired by Bruno Roubicek (Birkbeck PhD student) (27.1.14)
  • Dr Scott Thurston (University of Salford): Text, movement, sound, image:  Practice-Based Research Across Artforms (9.7.14)
  • 2015

  • Ruth Solomons and Richard Rosch (Birkbeck PhD students): Assemblage, Bricolage, and the Practice of Everyday (24.3.15)
  • Viviane Blanchard and Jo Coleman (Birkbeck PhD students): Texture and the affective potential of radio/audio programmes (8.6.15)
  • 2016

  • Professor Tim Ingold (University of Aberdeen): Making (27.1 16)
  • Research Inside Practice (RIP): A one day group crit session in the Peltz Gallery with practice-based PhD students from Birkbeck, Sheffield Hallam and Middlesex University, hosted by: Sophie Hope (Birkbeck), Becky Shaw (Sheffield Hallam) and Rebecca Fortnum (Middlesex) (27.1.16)
  • Practice-Exchange: Articulating Practice: A day-long symposium exploring how practice is imagined, seen, understood, theorised and examined in practice-based/practice-as-research PhD projects. Contributors included Broderick D. V. Chow (Brunel), Nela Milic(London College of Communication) and Holly Pester (University of Essex). Along with Corkscrew, he event was supported by CHASE and the Centre for Material Digital Culture at Sussex. (27.6.16).
  • Breath Catalogue: A performance and seminar exploring a collaborative work by artist-scholars Kate Elswit (Royal Central School of Speech and Drama) and Megan Nicely (University of San Francisco), data scientist/interaction designer Ben Gimpert, composer Daniel Thomas Davis and violist Stephanie Griffin, combining choreographic methods with medical technology to externalize breath as experience. (14.11.16).
  • 2017

  • The Particularities of Conference Presentation: a workshop using performance techniques to develop conference presentation skills. It asked: what are the formal features of an effective presentation?  What techniques can a presenter use to communicate with his or her audience – whether in the context of scholarly conferences, public lectures, or arts venues?  Run in collaboration with artists from Haranczak-Navarre Performance Projects, and supported by the CHASE Cohort Development Fund (3.3.17)
  • Twofold: the Particularities of Working in Pairs: a symposium investigating how practitioners in a range of settings work in pairs. Marking the end of artist Karen Christopher’s long-term duet series The Difference Between Home and Poem, the symposium asked: why do people so often work in pairs? What is the significance of working in pairs? And what is unique to the duo as a form? Practitioners from the fields of visual art, dance, spoken word, theatre and performance, and researchers studying how artists live and work together presented their work, and two new work-in-progress performances were shared - Tin Can People, The Katie & Pip Project and The Duet by Marcus Orlandi. Download the full schedule here. Co-hosted by Birkbeck Centre for Contemporary TheatreHaranczak/Navarre Performance Projects, and Corkscrew: practice-based/led research at Birkbeck. Supported by Generic Skills Funding. Presented at Birkbeck School of Arts and Camden People’s Theatre (3 & 4.3.17).
  • Doing and thinking: methods in practice-based research: A workshop exploring methods in practice-based research in the arts. How do practice-based methods differ from and overlap with 'conventional' academic research?  What is and isn’t shared by methods in different arts disciplines? What can we learn from one another's practice as researchers? How can we get under the skin of some of the sticking points or stubborn elements of our research processes? This half-day workshop brought together a range of scholars in art, theatre, film and creative writing who pursue their research through practice, with contributions from Katherine AngelEmma BennettKatie Grantand Sophie Hope. This event was co-organised by Emma Bennett and Sophie Hope as part of Arts Week. (15.5.17)
  • Practice Exchange: What discoveries can be made about the world through practice-based research in the arts? Two of our postgraduate researchers, Jane Quinn (The Imagery of Conflict since 1991) and Albert Pellicer (The Sonology Of The Unheard: A Poetics of Timbre) share their work in progress and welcome your feedback. (15.5.17)
  • Corkscrew Conversations: Over the course of 4 evenings in June current practice-based PhD students at Birkbeck were in conversation with invited guests from a range of disciplinary perspectives including art, graphic design, medical humanities and creative writing. We discussed the relationship between theory and practice in their research, explored how practice can be made visible and current issues practitioners face during and post-PhD. These events were co-convened by Bruno Roubicek and Sophie Hope. The speakers were: Ruth Solomons (Birkbeck) and Katrine Hjelde (Chelsea College of Arts); Jan Nawrocki (Birkbeck) and Dr Muna Al Jawad, (Consultant Physician, Brighton and Sussex Hospitals); Gerrie van Noord (Birkbeck) and Dr Stuart Bertolotti-Bailey (Liverpool) and Keith Jarrett (Birkbeck/SOAS) and Malika Booker (Leeds) (6, 13, 20 & 27.6.17)
  • Workshop on the REF and practice-based research with Prof Anne Boddington: Anne was the deputy chair of sub-panel 34 (Art and Design: History, Practice and Theory) for REF 2014, and came to share her experience and help us work through some concerns and questions we have about practice-based research. Specifically, she presented on:
  • - Ideas she has on the ingredients of a good portfolio.
    - How universities can best support practice-based researchers (staff and students).
    - How we might connect research – impact – teaching in practice. (27.9.17)

    Supervisors workshop: Dr Becky Shaw, Reader in Fine Art and Postgraduate Research Tutor for the Art and Design Research Centre at Sheffield Hallam University facilitated a workshop for supervisors of practice-based research students at Birkbeck. We explored our experiences and understandings of practice-based research; the particular challenges our students are facing and examples of the upgrade process and preparing for examination. (20.11.17)


    Doctoral Masterclass with Associate Professor Mia Lindgren from Monash University, Australia. This Masterclass focused on practice-based research methods in journalism, primarily in radio and audio forms, but with relevance to other fields and formats through exploration of the relationship between the creative project and the exegesis.  (15.1.18)

    For more information about Corkscrew or to get involved, contact Sophie Hope (