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Introduction to Curation



An intensive one-week introductory course exploring contemporary curatorial practice, from contemporary theoretical discourses and their application to the shifting curated space, to the practicalities of curating and the skills required to put on an exhibition including the curatorial essay, marketing, website, panel and publications.  Taught through a mixture of practical workshops, theoretical talks and discussions, and personal project work.

Aimed at students wishing to develop an initial understanding of the principles and practicalities of curatorial practice, or for artists who may wish to gain an understanding of curatorial practice and its application and relationship to their practice.

Students will be exposed to a range of theoretical discourses and debates, as well as practical skills including essay writing, website publishing, social media marketing, panel discussion set up and more. No prior studio experience is necessary, although a basic interest in curation as a discipline is required. Traditional techniques and approaches will be demonstrated and discussed alongside the more experimental and questioning, and the place of each within contemporary practice will be discussed, seeking to challenge, with the emphasis on experimentation, questioning and improvisation.

The course will be taught by practising artists, curators and gallerist, through a mixture of exercises, theory, talks, gallery visits, and group crits and discussions. In response to this students, with guidance, will research and develop a piece of individual project work, through the week as a way to develop their own practice, extract and evolve what is learnt in the group sessions, and reflect it in their own practice, emphasis will be put on group discussion and feedback, as the ‘audience’, in a mutually supportive environment

All classes at Blake College of Art & Design are kept to a small number, allowing space for genuine 1:1 tuition, and a friendly, relaxed mutually supportive environment, in order to ensure that you make the best possible progress on your course and can be given guidance on your progression.

By the end of the course each student will have developed their curatorial project, and they will have learnt the principles of the following:
• Curatorial and critical theory (overview)
• Contemporary curatorial debates
• Experimental curation
• The curatorial essay
• Defining the curatorial space
• Curatorial materials – space, essay, panel
• Web publishing for curating and exhibition
• Social Media for curating and exhibition

Project Work
Students will be set a project, developing the work over the course of the week, and feeding into it from the demonstrations and exercises as well as 1-1 discussions and group crits throughout the intensive week. This will culminate in a group crit at the end exploring idea of curating and display, and the material language of the exhibition space.

Lectures and Discussions
The course will be punctuated by short talks to provide a context for the exercises and discussions. Starting with a short history of sculpture and overview of contemporary practice, lectures will then look at different curatorial approaches and curators. Students will be provided with a bibliography for the course.

Gallery Visit
There will be a day trip to some galleries and also evening trips to a gallery openings or private views, as a means of discussing curatorial approaches in situ and the students’ response to it.

Each course runs from 10am until 4pm from Monday to Friday and costs £450. Students wishing to take three or more courses can do so for £395 per course. All prices include VAT.
For more information, email study@blake.ac.uk

Earlier Event: August 15
Textiles Experimental Sketchbook
Later Event: August 22
Surface Design