Tag Archives: alternative art education

Bibliography for a co-operative art school

Bibliography for a co-operative art school

This page includes bibliographies and reading lists on co-operative art education, alternative art schools, radical pedagogy and self-organisation. Complied in conjunction with the research project A co-operative art school? This bibliography accompanies the directory of alternative art schools and resources for a co-operative art school. For a collectively compiled syllabus on art education and radical pedagogy see the Radical Pedagogy Research Group. Continue reading Bibliography for a co-operative art school

🥧 ‘More pie, more sky pls’* 🚀

🥧 ‘More pie, more sky pls’* 🚀

I’m thrilled to invite you to an artist’s talk that I’m doing for my local alternative art school! hARTslane Alternative (HA!) was founded by artists Rachel Lonsdale and Sarah-Athina Nahasis, who have put together a stellar programme. The school is informed by an interest in artists’ working lives, and a concern for those who are ‘outside’. The syllabus is based on a skill-sharing model, alongside crits, artists’ talks, off-site visits and exhibitions. I’m looking forward to meet the cohort for a discussion on alternative art education and their ongoing development beyond the end of the course. Beginning with a history of the movement, we will workshop either a proposal for a new school, or a guide on how to start a DIY art school, peer support group or collective.

🫀 DIY Art School
19 June 2024, 6-9pm, Tickets £6
hARTslane Alternative, 17 Hart’s Lane, New Cross, London SE14 5UP
HA! was launched in April 2024 at hARTslane, a community-run gallery in New Cross. The open call for 2025 will be published towards the end of this year. 

In July I’m looking forward to teach at the inaugural Alice Black Academy Summer School. I will be delivering three lecture-seminars on critique, the institution of art, and Spectacle and the everyday, on 1, 3 & 4 July, 6-9pm. Alice Black is a young gallery, established in 2017 to represent artists whose work is materially driven and handmade. I’m so excited to be working with Alice Black to bring these lectures to a new audience.

🧜🏿‍♀️ Alice Black Academy Summer School 2024
July 1, 2024 – July 9, 2024, Tickets £150
Alice Black, 7 Windmill St, Fitzrovia, London W1T 2JD

The upcoming dates for Art + Critique are online! The course runs 15 Oct 2024 – 4 Mar 2025, 6:30-8:30pm with a new Pay What You Can tier scheme for the course fees. I’m hoping this will help me maintain the accessibility of the course and make it more sustainable. This may be the last time I offer the course in this format. It has been in development for 15 years, expanding and growing exponentially into a comprehensive programme on art practice and theory. On the one hand, I would like to expand this even further into a year-long independent study programme for a group of artists who would benefit from an extended period of critical engagement with their practice in a community context. On the other, I would like to make the lecture-seminar series of the course available to a wider audience, and launch a whole host of other courses and regular activities for artists, curators, writers and art audiences, that have been in the pipeline. I’m hoping to trial 1-2 of these in Spring 2025 and will post further updates closer the time.

🍒 Art + Critique, Autumn 2024
Critical & Contextual Studies in Art Practice Online
15 Oct 2024 – 4 Mar 2025, Tuesdays 18:30-20:30 BST/GMT+1
Pay What You Can £578 / £468 / £358

I wrote about co-operative art education for Towards New Schools, an essay series on recent shifts in art and design education by the Gerrit Rietveld Academie. Working with the Editorial Board was an excellent experience, I’m especially indebted to Harriet Foyster for her work and care in the editing process. *The title of this update is from a comment by the wonderful Emily McMehen in response to the essay. It set my mind at ease, because I’m often asked why I chose this essay title:

🥧 A co-operative art school is pie in the sky (2023) Towards New Schools, Epistemic shifts in art and design education. Gerrit Rietveld Academie and Sandberg Instituut, Amsterdam. Gerrit Rietveld Academie is an independent university of applied sciences for Fine Arts and Design, the Sandberg Instituut is the postgraduate program of the academy. Among the amazing resources by staff and students you will find: Extra Intra, an overview of intercurricular platforms, student initiatives and events; Hear! Here! a research project on education, exchange and listening, with a focus on Critical Pedagogy; Podcasts; and the brilliant Student Council website. 

In other co-operative news, I attended the Co‑op Hackathon in Oct 2023, and I’ve been meaning to write about this, but here we are. The event was a thoroughly positive experience. It was organised by Terry Tyldesley, who is a musician and producer and this was reflected in every aspect of the event. I was also very excited to meet Rose Marley, the new CEO of Co-ops UK, who is already bringing positive change. All the projects inspired a hopeful sense of a common future, as did the amazing people behind them. I will post a more lengthy review at a later stage. Suffice to say that I’m still working through all the fabulous tips and ideas that I came away with for the co-operative federation of art schools. I also re-connected with the amazing Larisa Blazic, and I will post more about what we are hatching in future updates. In the meantime, here’s a video about the Hackathon:

💻 Stories from the Co‑op Hackathon 2023
19-20 Oct 2023, The Foundry, 17 Oval Way, London SE11 5RR
There have been a number of exciting developments and milestones for the co-operative federation project within the last year and I’m really looking forward to complete the many offshoots of the project. But, due to lack of funding, the work is on hold or chugging along in the background until I have time to put in a DYCP application.

📓 In solidarity economy news, the Lonely Writers’ Club was a therapeutic 3-week lull before the start of the academic year last autumn. Led by Yancey Stickler and Austin Robey, this project was an offshoot of Metalabel, a unique publishing platform for creative groups and collectives launched in 2022. Developments like this indicate as sea-change in the mindset of many people who work in the creative/digital industry. Partly due to Covid, and partly due to all the layoffs in the digital industries, many of these workers are rejecting the culture of competition and burn out, and embracing collectivity and collaboration in solidarity economies.  While I have reservations with this somewhat conservative and commercial approach to solidarity, mutual aid and the commons, these developments can only be a good thing. Some recommended reading and viewing: After The Creator Economy by Austin Robey and Severin Matusek (2023), introduced by Matusek in What’s after the creator economy? Interdependence.fm’s podcast Post-Individualism, Metalabels and Web 3 with Yancey Strickler (2022),  Post-Individual (2024) and Adam Curtis on the dangers of self-expression (2017) by Yancey Strickler. The links in this paragraph will lead you to a host of additional resources.

🖌️ Finally, if you practice one act of self-care for your practice and mental health in 2025, I highly recommend Artquest’s 30works/30days. The highlight of my day in April was seeing all the amazing work that others had made. On the first day I got the work in by the skin of my teeth, then I worked at different times of day, leaving enough time to come back to it or make something else. The work was both a record of the day, as well as the theme that made every day special. Each day brought a different kind of challenge, it created some anxiety and longer work hours, but all the more rewarding because you completed something – or at least made a good go at it.

This daily manual engagement was empowering and invigorating in itself, but also because it was an investment in something for its own sake. I made the rules and the process involved discovery, inspiration, attention, invention, speculation, experimentation and so on. This mindset also revealed my teaching practice to me as a form of sculpture. Preparing a course or workshop is an entirely conceptual and abstract process, and you cannot prefigure what will happen in the pedagogical environment. Rather than working with concepts and variables when updating my courses, I have started to visualise them as sculptures, intuitively hacking parts off, taking them apart and putting them back together in radical new configurations. Let’s see if it works.

September Update 🏮🍂

September Update 🏮🍂

The days are getting shorter, the evenings are cooler, and we’ll be spending more time indoors. I usually dread this time of year, but I’m looking forward to getting a lot of work done. At least that’s the plan. Invariably, something always blows my plans out of the water; overcommitting, unexpected workloads or crises, and burn out. But I’m learning to pace myself and take time off. Working longer hours doesn’t necessarily mean getting more done, in fact if you’re tired or stuck it’s better to take a break or even a nap.

I recently found some time to return to the co-operative art school project for the first time since lockdown and it’s very exciting! Those who’ve been waiting to hear the outcome of the survey will be happy to know that it should be ready in the next couple of months. I have no social science training so I have no idea what I’m doing. I make it up as I go along, taking several different approaches, especially as the sample is quite small and the perspectives so diverse.

Plans and developments in the pipeline; I’m putting together a funding application for the next stage of the co-operative art school project, working on some writing and interviews and planning to publish an open call for the 2nd issue of URgh! on co-operatives in the arts. More on these and other developments in the next newsletter.

For the time-being I wanted to let you know that there are still a couple of slots for free Artquest One to One advice sessions in Oct/Nov. So head on over there if you’d like to discuss your practice and plans for the future. Be the first to find out about new Artquest One to One dates as soon as they’re posted by signing up to the Artquest newsletter, it also comes with a great selection of opportunities.

The Autumn 2023 Art+Critique online course starts in about a month and there are four places left. The course is popular beyond the M25 and it is more affordable as an online course with hybrid off-site visits, so the format is the same. We have just completed one year of a pilot peer support group for those who want to stay in touch after completing the course. I’m still working on a  couple of new shorter courses so stay tuned for updates.

Wishing you a prolific and satisfying autumn 🏮

📌 Artquest One to One
Free one-to-one remote advice sessions for London-based artists
Book a free Artquest one-to-one advice session to get feedback about your work, build a strategy for an upcoming project, get practical career advice, discuss the logistics of operating as an artist and find out about other arts organisations and how they can support you.

🍒 Art + Critique
Critical & Contextual Studies in Art Practice Online, Autumn 2023
17 Oct 2023 – 5 Mar 2024, Tuesdays 18:30-20:30 BST/GMT+1
£ 435/£ 348 Concessions (student, unwaged, disability)
This course integrates practice and theory to address our concepts of art, how they are transformed and the problems of making art in the broader context of social conflict.  The syllabus offers a solid background in essential histories and discourses of contemporary art to help artists address questions about their practice and its context: about what art is, how it is judged and how it relates to society. The curriculum emphasises critical inquiry in art practice and research and supports participants as they develop their practice and research in a series of lectures, seminars, workshops, group tutorials, off-site visits and assignments. The curriculum fosters experimentation and collaborative study in a community of peers.

Judd: Specific Objects

[SYMPOSIUM] BOOK CLUB
#17 Judd: Specific Objects

Friday, 21 April 2017, 18:00 – 20:30
88 Fleet Street, London EC4Y 1DH
Rail/tube: City Thameslink, Blackfriars, St. Paul’s
Free, please book your place

In April we’re reading Specific Objects, a controversial essay by Donald Judd, originally published in 1965. This discussion will be chaired by Richard Burger. Continue reading Judd: Specific Objects

Can You Hear Me?

Can You Hear Me?

Nalini Malani [2020] Can You Hear Me. Whitechapel Gallery, London. Screenshot of hybrid visit to the exhibition
Nalini Malani [2020] Can You Hear Me. Whitechapel Gallery, London. Screenshot of hybrid visit to the exhibition

In October 2020 we visited the exhibition Can You Hear Me by Nalini Malani at the Whitechapel Gallery with members of the Art+Critique Autumn 2020 cohort. This was our first hybrid off-site visit and everyone was asked to write a critical review of the exhibition. Any number of things could have gone wrong. Continue reading Can You Hear Me?

📌 Artquest One to One 🍒 Art+Critique Summer 2022

📌 Artquest One to One 🍒 Art+Critique Summer 2022

As we await the arrival of summer the pandemic appears to be at bay, but only by giving way to new fronts of crisis, disinformation, struggle and resistance. Artists have been particularly impacted in the last two years and still reeling as we emerge into the new dystopian normal, so you’re not alone. Book a free advice session with Artquest One to One to discuss your practice and plans for the future – new dates in late May and early June will be posted soon.

The Summer 2022 Art+Critique online course starts on Saturday, 23 April and continues for 16 weeks until 6 August 2022. The course is popular beyond the London bubble and Covid is still creating some uncertainty, so there are no immediate plans for face-to-face courses. We have just wrapped up the Autumn/Winter 2021-22 course and it’s always sad when the regular meetings with a fantastic group of beaming faces come to an end. But we’re hatching a plan for follow-up sessions for alumni of the course. If that is you please stay tuned and I will be in touch with more info.

The Festival of Alternative Art Education is still postponed indefinitely for the time-being but I’m looking forward to restart the Co-operative art school? action-research project with an new strategy. If you have completed the co-operative art school survey please stay tuned for news and updates. If not then head over there and fill it in because I might finally have the chance to compile the report during the break. Hope you get some sun whether you’re taking time off or raging on 🐞

📌 Artquest One to One

Free one-to-one remote advice sessions for London-based artists
Book a free Artquest one-to-one advice session to get feedback about your work, build a strategy for an upcoming project, get practical career advice, discuss the logistics of operating as an artist and find out about other arts organisations and how they can support you. New dates in late May and early June coming soon.

🍒 Art + Critique

Critical & Contextual Studies in Art Practice Online, Summer 2022
This course integrates practice and theory to address our concepts of art, how they are being transformed and the problems of making and exhibiting art in the broader context of social conflict. The curriculum surveys essential histories and discourses of contemporary art, demystifies the art world and provides multiple entry points into critical theory. The lectures address the questions of what art is, how it is judged, how it relates to society and what is at stake for artists today. The programme fosters collaborative study and provides practical tools in workshops and group feedback sessions.
23 Apr – 6 Aug 2022, Saturdays 10:00-12:30 BST (GMT+1), for 16 weeks
Course fee £360 / Concessions £288
For more information and to register please visit the course page. For detailed information on the schedule, lectures and reading please download the course outline. If the course fees are a barrier to your participation please get in touch so that we can find a way to make it more accessible for you.

📢 Outpost Online & Art+Critique 🍒🚀

📢 Outpost Online & Art+Critique 🍒🚀

It’s been a long hard slog but things are starting to look up with the easing of restrictions and a potential end in sight for Covid. In the meantime, if you’re feeling stuck or want to hatch some plans sign up for a free advice session with Artquest Outpost Online.

The next Art + Critique online course begins on Thu, 14 Oct 2021 and continues over two terms until 10 Mar 2022. I will continue to offer this course online to accommodate those who wish to participate from outside London and the UK. If you’re interested in a face-to-face course in London please stay tuned for updates when this becomes a viable option.

The Festival of Alternative Art Education is still postponed indefinitely due to restrictions on large indoor events, please stay tuned for updates and new dates when the events can go ahead.

📢 Outpost Online

Free one-to-one remote advice sessions for London based artists
https://www.artquest.org.uk/project/outpost-online/

I’m very excited to be working with Artquest to provide one-to-one advice sessions to answer your questions and provide feedback on your work. This is an opportunity to get practical career advice, discuss the logistics of operating as an artist, and find out more about other services and organisations that can help you navigate the art world in these unprecedented times. When booking you can select which advisor you would like to meet based on their areas of expertise. Each session lasts 45 minutes and is conducted on either Skype or Zoom. The sessions are very popular so you are asked to book one session per year. The regular advisors are not all available every month, so if the slots are booked up or if your chosen advisor isn’t available please try again the following month.

🍒 Art + Critique

Critical & Contextual Studies in Art Practice Online Course
https://videomole.tv/artncritique

This course integrates practice and theory to address our concepts of art, how they are being transformed and the problems of making art in the broader context of social conflict. The syllabus will help you develop your practice and research in a series of lectures, seminars, workshops, tutorials and off-site visits. The lectures series surveys the histories and discourses of contemporary art, demystifies the art world and provides multiple entry points into critical theory. The programme fosters experimentation and collaborative study in a community of peers, and provides practical tools to empower you to pursue your practice with confidence.

Course aims, outcomes & learning objectives
By the end of the course participants will have a sound grasp of the historical underpinnings and current debates in contemporary art. They will be able to critically discuss and evaluate contemporary art. Participants will leave the course with critical awareness of contemporary art practice, a road map and a toolbox of methodologies for their continuing practice and the confidence to pursue it independently.

Who is it for?
The course is open to everyone at any stage of their career or level of experience but it is particularly suited to those who have a background and experience in art and wish to develop their practice and extend their knowledge of contemporary art practices and discourses.

Art + Critique: Critical and Contextual Studies in Art Practice Online Course
Thu, 14 Oct 2021 – Thu, 10 Mar 2022 with a five-week Winter Break
Every Thursday 6:30pm-8:30pm GMT+1 (BST)
Course fee: £340 / Concessions £272. If the course fees are a barrier to your participation please get in touch so that we can find a way to make it more accessible for you.

For more information about the course schedule, lectures and reading please visit the page and/or download the Course Outline

New course: Art + Critique

New course: Art + Critique

Very excited to launch a new course! It combines almost a year’s worth of critical studies lectures and seminars, group tutorials and workshops into one term so it’s going to be pretty intense. Designed during the transition from lockdown to whatever it is we have now, it tries to make up for some of the community, context, interaction, challenge, motivation, freedom and future horizons that we lost in the last six months.

Continue reading New course: Art + Critique

CRITICAL STUDIES BIBLIOGRAPHY

CRITICAL STUDIES BIBLIOGRAPHY

A comprehensive bibliography for the Art + Critique Critical & Contextual Studies lecture and seminar series. You can use it as a further reading list or to locate references that are not in the handouts, reader or further reading and resources. Please click the headings for a drop-down list.

Continue reading CRITICAL STUDIES BIBLIOGRAPHY

Art + Critique: Critical & Contextual Studies in Art Practice

art+critique 2024 featured image, cropped image of a black and white studio in the foreground with large windows, outside is an urban landscape with a pink and blue sky, the pink of the sky is reflected in the the studioArt + Critique

CRITICAL & CONTEXTUAL STUDIES IN ART PRACTICE: ONLINE COURSE

This course integrates practice and theory in a comprehensive programme that emphasises critical inquiry in art practice. Through a series of lectures, seminars, workshops, group tutorials and off-site visits, the syllabus supports participants as they explore and develop their practice and research. The curriculum fosters experimentation and collaborative study in a community of peers. It provides a supportive environment where participants will extend and develop their ability to discuss, write about and judge contemporary art, as well as their ability to reflect on and contextualise their own practice.

Continue reading Art + Critique: Critical & Contextual Studies in Art Practice

(Slow) Marathon: riveting + inspirational!

(Slow) Marathon: riveting + inspirational!

Thanks to everyone who came along and contributed to the Alternative Art Education (Slow) Marathon! We launched URgh!#1, amplified the movement, opened up the discussion on some of the more esoteric aspects of self-organised art education, demonstrated the possibilities of online education and had a lot of fun!

Continue reading (Slow) Marathon: riveting + inspirational!

URgh!#1 at the (Slow) Marathon

URgh!#1 at the (Slow) Marathon

URgh!#1 July 2020 on Alt. Art Education. Front Cover by Emma Edmondson
URgh!#1 July 2020 on Alt. Art Education. Front Cover by Emma Edmondson

URgh! #1 has arrived and it looks great! Thanks to Footprint Workers Co-op and to all the contributors for their amazing work!

The zine launch is on Sat, 25 July at the (Slow) Marathon, get your printed or digital copy on the day from this page. Continue reading URgh!#1 at the (Slow) Marathon

Interview with Feral Art School

Feral Art School: an interview with Jayne Jones and Jackie Goodman

Feral Art School is a Hull-based co-operative founded in 2018. The art school offers courses in drawing, painting, printmaking and textiles, as well as day schools in fashion and documentary photography. I caught up with Jayne Jones and Jackie Goodman to find out how they set up the co-operative and hear more about the programme, their working methods and expectations for the future. Read their fascinating insights on coops, the ambiguities of their structure and the challenges and debates around funding and accreditation.

Continue reading Interview with Feral Art School

Self-organisation for a co-operative art school – Antiuniversity Now! 2020

Self-organisation for a co-operative art school

A workshop on self-organisation and collectivity for a cooperative art school

Fri, 12 Jun 2020, 6-9pm
All welcome, please book your place
This event is part of Antinuniversity Now! Festival 2020, 6-13 June

Continue reading Self-organisation for a co-operative art school – Antiuniversity Now! 2020

Artquest Research Residency at Conway Hall Library

Artquest Research Residency at Conway Hall Library

As higher education gears up for two more weeks of strikes about pensions, casualisation, workload and pay levels, and independent unions continue their campaigns on wages, outsourcing and zero hours contracts, the extent of the reforms that the 2010 student protests and occupations were fighting becomes all too clear.

Continue reading Artquest Research Residency at Conway Hall Library

Feral Art School: an interview with Jayne Jones and Jackie Goodman

Feral Art School – A new Art School for Hull - www.feralartschool.org

Feral Art School: an interview with Jayne Jones and Jackie Goodman

Feral Art School is a Hull-based cooperative founded in 2018. The school offers courses in drawing, painting, printmaking and textiles, as well as day schools in fashion and documentary photography.  They have a textiles studio and darkroom for Feral members to use as studio and teaching spaces on a cooperative and collective basis. They’ve organised exhibitions in pop up spaces and last summer they hosted the event What Artists Want: What Artists Need, to explore the future of art education, with contributors from organisations and alternative art schools from across the UK. 

Jayne Jones is a painter and Jackie Goodman is a multi-disciplinary artist and writer. They are founding members and project managers of Feral Art School. I caught up with them to find out how they set up the co-operative and hear more about the programme, their working methods and expectations for the future.  They shared fascinating insights about coops and the ambiguities of their structure, membership and constitution, and the challenges and debates around funding and accreditation.

Continue reading Feral Art School: an interview with Jayne Jones and Jackie Goodman

URgh!#1: alternative art education

URgh!#1: alternative art education

The first issue of URgh! on alternative art education includes critical essays, histories, documents, guides, interviews, fiction, poetry and visual art on alternative art schools, study groups, peer-led and self-organised education, collectivity and collaboration, co-operative art education, mutual aid, alternative economies, creative labour and the critique of neoliberal reforms in higher education. URgh!#1 on alternative art education launches on Saturday, 25 July 2020 at the Alternative Art Education (Slow) Marathon.

DOWNLOAD PDF or scroll down to ORDER A PRINT COPY

Continue reading URgh!#1: alternative art education