Tag Archives: Wimbledon College of Arts

Announcement | Jocelyn Herbert Post Doctoral Research Fellow

The University of the Arts London and the National Theatre Archive are proud to announce the appointment of post doctoral research fellow Dr Eleanor Margolies. This unique collaboration between the National Theatre and UAL, supported by the Rootstein Hopkins Foundation, will support the NT in expanding the reach of the Jocelyn Herbert Archive, which is now housed in the NT’s Archive, to the widest possible audience. Workshops, visits and talks will encompass schools, colleges and the general public raising the profile of theatre design and the crucial role designers play in the production process.

Dr. Margolies whose recent publication PROPS, part of the Palgrave Readings in Theatre Practice Series, is an important point of reference for students and researchers will be working with Erin Lee, Archivist at the National Theatre and Professors Eileen Hogan and Jane Collins at UAL.

In addition to the outreach work, Dr Margolies will also be conducting her own research in the Jocelyn Herbert Archive looking at the legacy of this important 20thcentury designer for 21st century practice. This fellowship consolidates the close links already established between the National Theatre and UAL through events like the Jocelyn Herbert Lecture Series, the annual involvement of MA Curating and Collections at Chelsea with the archive and two weeks of intensive research by BA Theatre Design students from Wimbledon College of Arts.


Who is the Teacher-Researcher in Art, Design and Communication?

A Wimbledon College of Arts Event for UAL Research Fortnight 2016
Friday 11 March 2016, 2pm – 6pm (​Drinks Recpetion 6pm – 7:45pm)

​Academics do not just teach and undertake research – they are teacher-researchers. This half-day symposium addresses the role of the teacher-researcher in an arts university, with contributions from students and staff at Camberwell, Chelsea and Wimbledon Colleges of Arts.  Further and Higher education in art, design and communication is not just about getting a qualification – by definition, a university should expose students to leading research in their field of study. The curriculum that students follow and the courses and the programmes that they have chosen, should be responsive to innovative research in the discipline.  While there are ways of recognising excellence in research and (more recently) in teaching, we lack developed accounts of the relationship of research and teaching and the skills and capabilities of the teacher-researcher. An aim of the symposium is to arrive at some actions/ideas for further enhancement of the curriculum and the student experience through bringing teaching and research closer together. Topics we will cover include:

  • How do we describe the role of a teacher-researcher?
  • How do students understand the relationship of teaching and research within their courses and programmes?
  • How does the teacher-researcher work within the curriculum and the programme in art, design and communication?
  • Should the art and design curriculum respond to the latest innovations in research – if so how?
  • What spaces, technologies, objects and external institutions are important to develop good relationships between teaching and research?
  • How does the integration of research and teaching work at different levels, from FE to PhD?

Followed by drinks in the Green Room hosted by Simon Betts, Dean of Wimbledon College of Arts

Wilding the Edges

Wilding the Edges, a CCW Graduate School Event conceived by Edwina fitzPatrick and Geraint Evans, was an interactive walking tour on 25 March of Wimbledon’s unexamined places: a journey through spaces which straddle both city and countryside and where ‘wild’ and ‘cultivated’ environments overlap. Participants were invited to reflect upon the social and political implications of these hybridized spaces and to explore how we might respond to them as artists. The tour concluded with a BarCamp discussion in a local pub.

The participants encountered a range of surprisingly diverse landscapes as they walked between Wimbledon College of Arts and Wimbledon Common, led by artist Nick Edwards (Cape Farewell), writer Paul Kingsnorth (Dark Mountain), Lucy Orta (Chair of Art in the Environment, UAL) and David Toop (Chair of Audio Culture and Improvisation, UAL).

The BarCamp held at the Dog and Fox pub immediately after the walk debated the groups’ observations made in response to the urban edgelands that flank the railway tracks, the recently contested space of a recreation ground, the narrow pedestrian lanes that link suburban streets and the open space of the Common with its inevitable historical associations. Sightings of foxes and parakeets along the way reminded the groups of a more culturally familiar notion of wild nature.

barcamp tweet

The urban-based perception of wilderness was one of the propositions for discussion in the BarCamp with the suggestion that it is an urge that resides within us as much as a place. The ways in which evolving technologies shape our relationship with place, the impulse to transcend the physical and social boundaries of the city and the ways in which our perception of the natural world can be radically altered by choosing to inhabit a semi-wild or feral environment were all raised as topics for debate. Toop’s walk was conducted entirely in silence leading to a discussion about how much we understand an environment through listening.

The Wilding the Edges walking tour and BarCamp was bookended by projects led by Toop and Orta. In addition to leading two of the walking tours, they ran preparatory workshops and presented lectures about their research to the Wimbledon MFA students. They returned after the walk to support the students in taking their experiences forward for an exhibition in mid-May at Wimbledon.

The students working with Toop are focusing on how we experience and generate sound. The students working with Orta are working on her Genius Loci project, exploring the metaphorical inhabitants of urban and natural environments.

The day was documented with tweets, photographs and audio recordings.

Programme Director Research Profile: Lois Rowe

Beginning a series of profiles of the Programme Directors at each of the three CCW colleges, the Graduate School would like to introduce Dr Lois Rowe. Rowe is Programme Director for Fine Art at Wimbledon College of Arts. ‘I oversee the undergraduate Fine Art pathways as well as the MFA, MA Drawing courses and MA Painting, which is pending validation. Following a course review within the Fine Art programme earlier this year we are currently exploring new methodologies for teaching and finding ways through which staff research can more effectively enrich the student experience.

At Wimbledon we are interested in cultivating research around several key areas, which include performativity, collaboration, the materiality of painting and site-specific engagement. We organise an annual off-site exhibition called PARK within Wimbledon’s Cannizaro Park, which has been ongoing for over three decades. This long-standing, prestigious and unique exhibition invites a broad range of diverse responses to the park environment, playing a significant part in the development of contemporary public art practice. Student works include subtle, monumental, and interactive sculpture, performance, photography and video, and interventions with the fabric of the park and daily park life. The exhibition is accompanied by an education programme, which invites local school groups to collaborate with our students in workshops and art tours.  We also host an annual festival of performance each year, which is called Acts/Re-Acts. We are delighted to be working with our Practitioner in Residence Marvin Gaye Chetwynd again this year as we continue to extend and develop our projects with current students, alumni and staff.

I have exhibited my own work internationally since the late 90s. My research is concerned with the relationship between contemporary art and formulations of the sacred. I make narrative films and videos that explore sculpture, narrative voice and costume. The main focus of my ongoing research is on art that can be considered in relation to “numinosity”, a term that German theologian Rudolph Otto popularized in the early 20th century, describing the characteristics that are common to all religious experiences. The numinous was for Otto an “unnamed Something”, or an “X”. My PhD thesis, which I completed in 2012, argued that contemporary art that can be considered as numinous today similarly alludes to an X: a nebulous form of power that was, prior to our secular, current day, linked to deity. My thesis attempted to define the nature of such numinous power, particularly how it can typically neither be identified nor claimed by the viewer. Examples cited within the text to illustrate this dynamic were works by well-known “spiritual artists”, such as Bill Viola and James Turrell- artists whose work reinforces the idea that there is an inherent mystery present within the experience of their work, presenting a figuration of power that can never truly be accessed by the viewer.

My research draws upon Carl Schmitt’s definition of the sovereign as being the individual who decides upon the exception. I am interested in a particular claim to power through art that responds to a decision to turn away from established forms of legitimacy and instead develop one’s own legitimacy. Moreover, Richard Rorty’s concept of “ironism”— his term for putting things into one’s own vocabulary through an acknowledgement of oneself and language as contingent—is an ongoing theme in my research. I also respond to current issues and events for the online journal The Conversation.’

Image: Still from the film Argument from Design, Rowe, 2006