Florence Peake: CASS/West Dean Residency

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Florence Peake ‘The Keeners’, 2015. Courtesy of the artist and commissioned by SPACE.         Image credit Tim Bowditch.

14th May – 6th June 2017
Cass Sculpture Foundation and West Dean College
With thanks to Arts Council England.

West Dean College and Cass Sculpture Foundation are pleased to announce Florence Peake as the 2017 CASS artist-in-residence. This May, Peake will be resident at West Dean College for three weeks, making use of the incredible studio facilities, resources and technical expertise available at both the college and at CASS to create a new body of ceramic work inspired by Igor Stravinsky’s musical score The Rite of Spring. With the assistance of dancer Rosemary Lee, Florence Peake plans to choreograph a routine to be performed on a stage of raw clay. Through grabbing, pushing and pulling the clay, Rosemary will form violent eruptions on the surface to echo the dramatic score of The Rite of Spring. As a result, the surface of the clay will become an abstract documentation of this performance and a sculptural interpretation of Stravinsky’s composition. The clay stage will subsequently be divided into tiles to be fired in the wood-fired kiln at CASS. Continue reading

Heallreaf 2 – Tapestries on show in West Dean and London

William Jefferies

Two years ago, the inaugural Heallreaf exhibition (pronunciation guide: Hea is pronounced ‘hare’ and reaf as ‘reff’ – the full word sounding like ‘Hare-l-reff’) of contemporary woven tapestry took place at West Dean. The exhibition was organised by recently graduated Visual Arts student, Margaret Jones, and held in the Tapestry Workshop, now part of the Edward James Studios and host to the full-time Visual Arts programmes. Continue reading

Staff and Alumni News: Visiting ‘Las Pozas’

screen-shot-2016-09-25-at-09-24-33   aavs-las-pozas-beton-machineVisual Arts programme leader, Dr. David Stent, was awarded a research grant to travel to Mexico and visit ‘Las Pozas’, the extraordinary garden built by West Dean College founder, Edward James, between 1947 until 1984. From its position high in the mountains of San Luís Potosí, Xilitla looms large in the context of James’ life and work. He worked on the former coffee plantation, consisting of some 80 acres of rain forest punctuated by a series of waterfalls and natural pools – in collaboration with Plutarco Gastélum, as well as a number of expert carpenters, masons and other local workers. Continue reading

MA student’s Lystbækgaard Residency

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Later this month, graduating MA student Charlotte Arcedeckne-Butler will travel to Denmark to undertake a unique residency for female sheepherders. Located on the West Jutland heath on the outskirts of Kronheden, the farm of Lystbækgaard is owned by Denmark’s only trained female shepherd, Berit Kiilerich. The site, bordering Ulfborg State Forest, Klausie Plantation and Ulfborg Aktieplantage, has recently developed into a cultural destination including a visitor centre focusing on wool, shepherding and traditional craft skills. Continue reading

Art in Public Spaces

Art Week Exeter, 9-15 May

One aim of Art Week Exeter was to bring creative engagement to the streets and non-art spaces of the city. It included: Jimmy Cauty’s Aftermath Dislocation Principle: a 40-foot shipping container with peep-holes to view a vast dystopian post-riot mulitimedia landscape [1:87 model], which is touring sites of riots all round Britain, and an affordable Art Vending Machine sited in the Bike Shed Theatre. Continue reading

Two Evening Events in April

Evening Lecture: Artist and Weavers at West Dean Tapestry Studio
Thursday 19 April, 5:30-7pm. The Old Library, West Dean College. Free*
West Dean Tapestry Studio has an international reputation for working with leading contemporary arts practitioners. Known for its strong interpretive skills and artistic vision, the studio has an outstanding portfolio including  major commissions from John Piper, Tracey Emin, Martin Creed and Henry Moore. Current Master Weaver, Philip Sanderson, will talk about how the Tapestry Studio works with artists to translate their imagery into the medium of tapestry. Continue reading