Falmouth School of Art Intensives – short summer courses for artists

Cornwall Today article (full, from CT)

 

Cornwall Today magazine has featured two of the artists who participated in the Falmouth School of Art Intensives last summer, Judith Brenner and Carys Wilson.

Application is now open (until 29 April) for the 2016 Intensives, five-day courses for artists, practitioners and art educators, delivered at our beautiful Falmouth Campus.

Choose from Abstract Painting, Figure Painting or Drawing. For application form and full details: www.falmouth.ac.uk/fsaintensives

 

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Falmouth Student and alumni work featured in ‘7 Shades of Black’ Magazine

Amelia Tinton

© Amelia Tinton

Current BA(Hons) Drawing student Megan Fatharly and Film graduate Christian Villarba are working with Soraan Latif, who is the brains behind current online magazine 7 Shades of Black. The magazine promotes the work of emerging artists and hopes to push the boundaries and start a dialogue between artist and viewer.  Along with other writers the magazine is currently working on a campaign for next month to promote new and exciting talent.

Theo Crutchley-Mack

© Theo Crutchley-Mack

The work of BA(Hons) Fine Art student Amelia Tinton and alumnus Theo Crutchley-Mack has already been featured, and over the next month it is worth checking out the campaign as work of other talented Falmouth students and alumni is to be shared.

‘Take drawing seriously as mode of enquiry’ – Gemma Anderson in British Council VOICES Magazine

Published by the British Council VOICES Magazine, full article here: https://www.britishcouncil.org/voices-magazine/gemma-anderson-take-drawing-seriously-mode-enquiry 

Gemma Anderson

By Gemma Anderson

Does art simply represent the world ‘as it is’, or does it find other aspects in it, aspects that people wouldn’t normally detect? Gemma Anderson, who creates art in collaboration with scientists, explains why it is possible to be more than an illustrator when drawing and painting the world.

You use the term ‘isomorphology’ in relation to your work. What does it mean?

I created the term, based on the Greek isos, meaning same, morphe meaning form, and logos, meaning study.

In my drawing practice, I had started to see similarities in shapes repeated across the natural world. I noticed that certain sets of patterns recur in the animal, vegetable and mineral kingdoms, but I couldn’t find anything that documented these relationships. I realised that, as an artist, I could visualise relationships in a way that would be more difficult for scientists, because their work is so specialised.

What sort of patterns crop up again in nature?

There are several, including spirals, hexagons, different forms of symmetries, spheres, and branching forms.

For example, you might see a spiral in a snail’s shell or in an ammonite fossil. Practically all plants have a spiralling leaf pattern, or phyllotaxis (the scientific term for the arrangement of leaves on a stem).  And in the animal world, you see spiral forms in sharks’ egg cases. Even in humans, our heart valves and the cochlea in our inner ears are spiral-shaped.

Why do these patterns repeat?

Scientists and mathematicians talk a lot about this, and there are a lot of answers. But the main reason is that they are efficient. These forms all use space really well. They just allow matter to pack together in a smart way, that also happens to be beautiful.

Which other artists have inspired you?

I interpret a lot of the artist Paul Klee‘s work as a creative study of form that makes unconventional relationships between natural phenomena, which are usually organised separately. For example, in the work ‘Comedy‘ (1921) he draws plant and animal forms together into one body.

I’m also inspired by the German writer Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, who was a polymath and engaged with lots of scientists, although his work wasn’t visual art. His observations about plants were genuinely helpful to botanical scientists.

Are there similarities between the way scientists and artists approach their work?

Both scientists and artists are interested in the study of form. When I started, my expectations were that scientists spend most of their time observing things. I’ve since discovered that much scientific observation is less directly involved with examining the material of the natural world, and more involved with data and modelling. But the process of enquiry does cross over.

How do you work with scientists?

While studying at the Royal College of Art between 2005 and 2007, I began to contact the people who managed the scientific collections at museums and set up meetings where I would ask them if I could draw, say, a certain coral in their collection. At first, only about one person in ten would respond to my emails, so I had to follow up and be persistent. Slowly, I built up relationships with individual curators, who gave me space to draw; and eventually, we became friends. A lot of the relationship is about trust. They don’t have it written into their jobs that they have to help artists, so they are free to ignore your requests.

What’s the difference between your artwork and the sort of scientific illustrations one might see in a textbook?

Traditionally, the pattern is that there’s a scientist and an illustrator who is employed to represent the science. I am using drawing to ‘find’ repetitions in nature. So, although the etchings and drawings may look similar, the motivation behind my work and the questions I’m asking are different. My art represents my own understanding of the natural world, which comes from drawing. It’s qualitative. It isn’t representing a scientist’s understanding, which might come from other more quantitative methods, like DNA barcoding (a way to identify species).

How did you start?

In school, I was keen on drawing and also really liked science. I did biology and art at A-level, and enjoyed the process of mapping structures in each discipline. But learning biology through a textbook wasn’t the way I wanted to do it. Over time, through drawing in scientific collections, I was exposed to a vast range of objects in the animal, mineral and vegetable world, and that’s when I started seeing repeated patterns.

What advice would you give teachers?

Take drawing seriously as a mode of enquiry. Encourage your students to look closely at different examples of plants in the classroom, and they may start to genuinely see the five-fold symmetry or spiralling leaves of a particular flower. Don’t underestimate drawing as a way of learning and making comparisons.

For example, if you look at crystals and insects, there are symmetries in their forms: both have types of bilateral and four-fold symmetry. Crystals are more geometric, and insects are less symmetrical, of course; in real life, you only get the endless variations on these patterns. You never see quite what you expect and that’s part of the fun.

What advice would you give young artists?

I always say to my art students, try to exercise initiative. And if you want to find something out, ask! Don’t fear looking silly. There have been lots of times when I’ve been following a particular line of enquiry that might seem obvious, but not knowing is part of the process. It’s important to ask unconventional questions.

Also, use the freedom to enter lots of different disciplines that comes with being an artist. In most of society, it’s difficult to step outside the normal pattern of your work, but artists can. It’s a rarity that is available to us.

Volcano the Bear

One of our BA(Hons) Illustration lecturers, Nick Mott, has another ongoing career in music.  Recently, a group that he co-formed 20 years ago, Volcano The Bear, has had a box set released on the German record label, Miasmah.

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The box set comprises 5 vinyl LPs and a 50 page book of photos and illustrations.  You can listen to a 35 minute mix of 9 of the tracks here.  The box set is also available to borrow in the collection of the Penryn campus library.

mott13

In Leicester, England in May 1995 Aaron Moore, Nick Mott, Clarence Manuelo & Daniel Padden created a free form group named Volcano The Bear out of their frustration with standard musical limitations.  Now, after 20 years of experimenting with improvisation, folk, Dada, Post Punk, Krautrock, noise, surreal comedy, pure avant-garde and more, the group has obtained a cult following and high critical praise across the globe.  Reknowned for their highly theatrical and obscure live performances, as well as their mind-blowing catalogue of releases, VTB truly is a one of a kind group, consistently pushing forward with their own unique, experimental approach to sound making.

Commencing manages to be both a retrospective of the group’s 20 year history as well as it’s own unique release filled with vast amounts of material.  The 5 albums, 64 tracks & over 4 hours in length, has been carefully put together over the last couple of years to become an entity – working as much by itself as well as a whole. Expect an abundance of unreleased material, alt-versions, tracks from early cassette albums never released on vinyl, live recordings, pieces from forgotten compilation appearances and more, all mixed and compiled together to form 5 stand-alone albums.

More information on the release can be found at sonicpieces, and at thewire.

 

Virginia Verran – wall drawing at RIBA Bookshop

Virginia Verran at RIBA

Virginia Verran at work on the drawing

Falmouth Fine Art Associate Lecturer Virginia Verran currently has a wall drawing, RIBA (Space), at RIBA Bookshop, Portland Place, London W1B 1AD.

The work is in connection with the launch of a new book, ANCHOR, edited by Joe Graham. ANCHOR is the result of an artist drawing research project in which artists, writers and curators with an interest in drawing were invited to respond to the phenomenology of the Outline. Verran’s work is also included in the book.

ANCHOR is published by Marmalade Publishers of Visual Theory, London, 2015; Virginia Verran’s wall drawing will be in place for at least a month.

Detail of Virginia Verran's RIBA (Space) wall drawing

Detail of Virginia Verran’s RIBA (Space) wall drawing

 

‘Drawing Thoughts’ – Issue 20 of Interalia Magazine devoted to Drawing

Isomorphogenesis no.13, (c) Gemma Anderson

Isomorphogenesis no.13, (c) Gemma Anderson

Interalia is an online magazine dedicated to the interactions between the arts, sciences and consciousness. The January 2016 – ‘Drawing Thoughts‘ – explores contemporary thinking on the practice of drawing, discussing its creative, expressive and educational value, and its fundamental importance to translating and analysing the world. The issue’s overarching aim is to affirm the value of drawing, and includes an interview with Falmouth BA(Hons) Drawing Lecturer Gemma Andersonclick here to read the interview with Gemma.

Contributions also include exclusive interviews with Zaria Forman, Anita Taylor and Angela Eames and Visiting Lecturer to Falmouth, Deanna Petherbridge. ‘Drawing Thoughts‘ also includes articles by James Faure Walker, Karen Kurczynski, Wendy SmithMaureen McQuillanStanzaEve Andrée Laramée, Jaq Chartier, Danielle Groves, Richard Bright and Garry Kennard; plus a video by Sir Roger Penrose: ‘How Drawing Is Used for Maths and Science.’

Anita Taylor will deliver the Keynote Lecture at the forthcoming Observations Drawing Forum at Falmouth University, an event for staff and students, alongside which will run a staff drawing exhibition.

http://www.interaliamag.org

Fine Art Lecturers published in E.R.O.S.

BA(Hons) Fine Art Lecturers Neil Chapman and Gillian Wylde have had work published in E.R.O.S. Issue 7, ‘The Interior’.

E.R.O.S. is the journal of Eros Press. It is published biannually and is dedicated to the subject of desire. It covers a wide range of fields, drawing together often disparate disciplines under the auspices of each issue’s theme.

http://erosjournal.co.uk

Image: Richard Wentworth104747-94c839b58df44620ac3de0e5e58ef4b1