The history of painting is overburdened with its limitations and the various stages of its death. Yet, what we are experiencing is a healthy will and a strong desire to continue to work with the medium and to explore the meaning behind its fluid substance. Why is that?
This studio will tackle the ever-present dilemmas that loom over painterly language and communication. We will trace the history of its doubtful presentiment and objecthood, and chart its relations to other media including sculpture, performance, moving image and film in order to affirm its resilience and unearth its future potential.
What is it that painting can still do the other forms of art production can't? What is essential, and what is marginal to the future and the health of its production and meaning? To find out, we will consider its multivalent networks and relations, from formalism and materiality, representation and illusion all the way to its institutional functions and relevance.
In order to do that, we will consider all its working methodologies and styles. Drawing, print, sculpture, craft, movement, performance, sound – these all qualify and are not exhaustive in their utility and the need for reinvention.
In this art studio, we expect to unearth answers that challenge our perceptions, formed not only through painterly history but also via those current social, economic and political circumstances, which point right at the changing nature of representation and communication. This art studio will look at the presence of digital and virtual technologies in relationship to painting's production, explore the ethics and the legitimacy of painterly gesture and mark-making. This studio's concerns with the painting’s health will further venture into the formal and material elements of painting, exploring its object-like status, the embodiment of content or, indeed, its lack.
Through practical workshops and reading groups, regular gallery visits and field trips, we aim to establish multiple working methodologies and critical pressure points that will allow us to confidently endorse and embody the unending pursuit of painting in its resilient act of resistance.
Breuvart, V (ed), Vitamin P: New Perspectives in Painting, London, Phaidon 2002
Clark, TJ, Farewell to an Idea, Yale UP, Boston, 2001
Elkins, J, On Pictures and the Words that Fail Them, CUP, Cambridge, 2011
Flam, JD (ed), Matisse, Henri. Matisse on Art, UCP, Berkeley, 1995
Hollander, A, Moving Pictures, Harvard UP, Cambridge (MA), 1991
Kudielka, R (ed), Bridget Riley: Dialogues on Art, Zwemmer, London, 1995.
Newman, B, ‘The Sublime is Now’, in O'Neil, JP (ed.), Barnett Newman: Selected Writings, UCP, Berkeley 1992
Obrist, H-U, Gerhard Richter, The Daily Practice of Painting: Writings 1962-1993, Thames & Hudson, London, 1995.
Rose, B (ed), Art as Art: The Selected Writings of Ad Reinhardt. UCP, Berkeley, 1991
Rothko, M, The Artist’s Reality: Philosophies of Art, Yale UP, Boston, 2004.
Ryan, D, Talking Painting, Routledge, London, 2002
Schwabsky, B (ed), Vitamin P2: New Perspectives in Painting, London, Phaidon 2011
Staff, C, After Modernist Painting, IB Tauris, London, 2013
Studio 1: The Divided Selfie
Mel Brimfield and Dr Jonathan Whitehall
Studio 1: The Divided Selfie sets out to explore artistic practices that engage with identities, self-perceptions and the role of these in our virtual and lived lives.
Studio 2: The Black Box: Art, Apparatus and Not Knowing
Galia Kollectiv and Patrick Ward
Studio 2: The Black Box: Art, Apparatus and Not Knowing explores the implications that come with not knowing how our digital technology actually works.
Studio 3: Acts of Resistance
Dr Andrea Medjesi-Jones and Dr Michael Stubbs
Studio 3: Acts of Resistance tackles the issues that artists face in the language and communication of painting.
Studio 4: Things, Objects and Non-Objects
Rosemarie McGoldrick and Bob and Roberta Smith
Studio 4: Things, Objects and Non-Objects examines the relationship between the artist and the objects they make.
Studios 5: New Frontiers
Ania Dabrowska and Spencer Rowell
The studio raises questions about the representational and non-representational in photographic media, inviting students to explore issues, ideas, senses, stories, rumours, myths, facts, fictions, dreams or other concerns that matter to them and relate to the theme through approaches that test the possibilities and limits of photographic media today, from analogue traditions through digital and post-digital to any combination of cross media practices or actions.
Studios 6: Making it Real
Mick Williamson and Sue Andrews
In Studio 6: Making it Real, we emphasise the mapping out of the student’s own position within the medium, from the development of their conceptual and critical confidence and understanding of the medium, to exploring and mastering techniques. The emphasis will then shift to taking the work from the realm of the studio into the real world in preparation for graduation and subsequent launch of students’ professional or postgraduate journeys with further emphasis on professional practice.