March 30, 2017

9.00 am: ‘Tea-up!’ To the office, to fortify myself for start of the the morning:

9.30 am: A day of second- and third-year painting tutorials. I began with the second year students:

The shadow reflects, in part, the colour of the object that casts it. The reality of the source subject and the reality of the painted subject aren’t the same. Don’t confused them. Take your tune from the source, but play it in whatever way makes sense to you. What is it about the subject that intrigues you? Paint only that. Focus/unfocus. Hierarchies of importance (for you). Feeling the forms and forming the feeling. The paradox of making a static image of a mobile object. In painting, don’t change two adjacent values simultaneously. One at a time, please! Research can be prospective (after the fact); your completed painting may open your eyes to see correspondences in other artists’ work, which were not visible either before or when you were making it (BA Fine Art tutorials, from ‘The Black Notebook’ (March 30, 2017) 243).

11.00 am: I proceeded to the third year students, while the second year enjoyed their workshop criticism with Dr Forster:

It should fit like a glove with too many fingers. ‘What can you take from one painting to the next?’ ‘And, as importantly, what should you leave behind?’ It’s not about the number of paintings (noun), but, rather, about intensity of painting (verb). The greatest praise is due to the learner rather than their teacher. Visual poetry. Like a story that mutates as it’s passed from one generation to another. You can’t plan a painting beyond a point. Painting is a reaction to painting is a reaction to paint. Do as much as you can with as little as you can. ‘What are you leaving outside the studio door? Do you miss it? Invite it back in?’ Art is about fulfilling a psychological necessity, as well as the other things (BA Fine Art tutorials, from ‘The Black Notebook’ (March 30, 2017) 243–44).

The third year painters are picking up a pace. They’ve just one more week of tutorials before the rather late Easter recess. Thereafter, there’s only one more week of teaching before the studios are dismantled and the exhibition rises from the ashes, once again.

2.00 pm: I returned to the second year — moving from one mind set, aesthetic sensibility, and ambition to a next, like an astronaut journeying between the planets. Planet Alan:


3.00 pm: Down tools! A moment’s respite:

4.30 pm: My final tutorial shifted from visuality to sonority. I’ll not giving anything away. This is Jakob ‘tickling’ the ivories, electronically:

5.20 pm: Empty!

6.30 pm: The end of teaching-week round up +:

  • register updates;
  • tutorial appointments (regulars and new one-offs);
  • reference correspondence;
  • exhibition statement reviews;
  • admissions;
  • commiserations;
  • revision of material in readiness for tomorrow’s departmental Quinquennial Review.

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