Mercury Prize-winning and internationally acclaimed musician PJ Harvey collected an honorary degree at Goldsmiths today, bringing a bit of rock and roll to proceedings.
Harvey was among a group of creative and visionary individuals honoured at the graduation ceremony, including LGBT rights campaigner Peter Tatchell, architect Zaha Hadid and journalist Neal Ascherson.
Liz Bromley, registrar and secretary of Goldsmiths, said: “Our honorands this year are a remarkable group of people.
“They have changed communities through their inspiring architectural designs. They have pointed out the ridiculous in the news and made us laugh. They have inspired us with their words, their music, and their art. They have fought for our rights. And they have helped us to understand who we are now by looking to the past.
“We have invited them to join the Goldsmiths family and will be welcoming them into our community.”
Harvey, who is the only artist in history to have won the Mercury Music Prize twice, is one in a long line of musicians, artists, writers, actors and progressive thinkers to receive the accolade from Goldsmiths.
She joins the ranks with the likes of Tony Benn, Michael Caine, Mary Quant, Harold Pinter, Blur’s Alex James, Sam Taylor Johnson (who is also a graduate of the college), Dire Strait’s John Illsley, Gary Hulme and Placebo’s Brian Molko.
Harvey has released eight studio albums, as well as being a keen artist – she paints, draws, sculpts – and a poet. In December 2013, she gave her debut public poetry reading at the British Library, and was a guest editor on BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme. She has also been awarded an MBE for services to music.