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‘Art School’ 15 November 2013–7 January 2014
‘Art School’ is an exhibition of new paintings and photographs by Paul Winstanley, showing this winter at Kerlin Gallery, Dublin
During the summer months of 2011 and 2012 Paul Winstanley photographed the empty fine art studio spaces of art schools throughout England, Scotland and Wales. The artist kept to certain governing rules: the camera was held at the same height for each shot, the studio was photographed as found and the lighting was natural. The result is a comprehensive photographic archive of previously overlooked and undocumented sites of creative potential. This archive has given rise to a truly remarkable body of paintings and a new photographic publication.
The paintings in this exhibition, drawn from Winstanley’s photographs, closely subscribe to this minimal experience of place that is both documentary and sublime. Painted on panel, they physically reflect the hard surfaces of walls and screens and re-create the memory of place as both illusion and object. The visual language approaches abstraction and yet these paintings never lose sight of their social and political content.
A book, Paul Winstanley: Art School was published by Ridinghouse on 21 November 2013. This contains the photographs on which the paintings are based.
Text by Jon Thompson and an interview with the artist and Maria Fusco
Ridinghouse 2013, £29.95 | $49.95 Hardback, 288 pp., 240 colour illustrations. ISBN 978 1 905464 78 4
Filled with photographs of unpopulated studios, Paul Winstanley’s exploration of British art schools highlights their importance at a time when the art school system’s existence is more fraught than ever.
In his latest series, Paul Winstanley documents undergraduate studio spaces from over 50 art colleges across the United Kingdom. These rough and ready, nearly neutral spaces are photographed as found: empty between school years. Collectively, the works highlight the abstraction of the interior with their temporary white walls, paint stains, neutral floors and open spaces. Photographed in this manner, their sterile nature is juxtaposed by their intended purpose of fostering intense creativity for a future generation of artists.
Over 200 full colour images, which combine various schools to form their own abstract space, are accompanied by a text by renowned professor Jon Thompson and an interview with the artist and Maria Fusco.
About the authors: Jon Thompson is an artist, writer and former Professor at Goldsmiths, University of London, London. Maria Fusco is Chancellor’s Fellow at Edinburgh College of Art, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh.
About the artist
Paul Winstanley, born in Manchester in 1954, now lives and works in London. He has been exhibiting since the late 1970s and over the past two decades he has had regular solo exhibitions in London, Paris, Munich, New York, L.A., and Hamburg. His first retrospective was held at the Auckland Art Space in New Zealand in 2008 and was accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue. Other solo shows include 'Driven Landscapes' 1993 at Camden Arts Centre, London and 'Annexe', Tate Britain, 1998. Recent group shows include ‘Window to the World’, Fondation de l'Hermitage, Lausanne (2013) and Museo Cantonale d'arte and Museo d'arte, Lugano (2012); ‘Lifelike’, Walker Art Center, Minneapolis and ‘The Deer’, Le Consortium, Dijon (2012); ‘Out of focus. After Gerhard Richter’, Kunsthalle Hamburg (2011); ‘Sea Fever: From Turner to Today’, Southampton City Art Gallery (2010); ‘Terror and the Sublime: Art in an Age of Anxiety’, Crawford Art Gallery, Cork (2009); ‘Conflict Tales: Subjectivity’, Burger Collection Berlin (2009); ‘Self as Selves’ Irish Museum of Modern Art Dublin (2009); ‘Inside Architecture’, Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (2008); and ‘8 Visions, One Dream’, Today Art Museum, Bejing (2008). Winstanley's work is represented in numerous public and private collections, including the collections of the Irish Museum of Modern Art, Tate Gallery, British Council, European Parliament, New York City Public Library and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.
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