A Visit from Ivan Hicks

West Dean College celebrated the first glimpse of spring with a talk by Edward James’ former Head Gardener, Ivan Hicks. The event attracted artists, scholars of Surrealism, and gardeners alike, as Ivan recounted his experience of working with James and the friendship that ensued. Ivan shared images from his personal archive of correspondence that was exchanged over a period of ten years – the manifestation of two creative minds with a shared passion for horticulture, music, and wildlife. Continue reading

Artist-in-Residence: Katie Schwab

West Dean College is pleased to welcome Katie Schwab as its new Artist-in-Residence. Selected as part of last autumn’s Open Call, Katie will be spending three-weeks based in the Visual Arts department, working in close proximity to full-time students. Over the next few weeks Katie will give a talk about her practice and ongoing residency project to staff, students and alumni, as well as conducting one-to-one tutorials. Continue reading

One-day Symposium at West Dean College

One-day symposium at West Dean College

Friday 26 January 2018, 11am-6pm

Reflecting the resurgence of craft and skills-based making in art over the past decade, this one-day symposium explores common ground between contemporary art and studio ceramics. Emphasising the commonalities between artist and craftsperson, the event focuses on practical, theoretical, and professional aspects of working with clay, embodied in its malleability and resistance – its plasticity.

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Artist-in-Residence Exhibition

Florence Peake’s RITE is a layered reinterpretation of a monument in Modernism’s history: Igor Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring, composed in 1913 for Sergei Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes. Choreographed by Vaslav Nijinsky, the original performance is notorious for the riot it provoked on the first night, when theatregoers apoplectic with anger had to be forcibly removed. Peake’s take, though, has little to do with those mythological beginnings. Instead, it taps into The Rite of Spring’s vital force, lending it a renewed sense of urgency.  Continue reading