Eigil Nordstrøm, who graduated from our Fine Art programme last year, was awarded the 1st prize in the category of Painting and Sculpture at the ArtGemini prize 2014.  Eigil’s painting “Recollection” (pictured below) was chosen out of entrants from an astounding 44 countries to scoop the £2000 prize.  The prize was presented by Gok Wan and the panel of judges on the private view at the TriSpace Gallery on the 23rd of October.

Congratulations to Eigil and also another Academy alumnus Gary Scott who was also shortlisted for the prize.

1. In three words describe your intentions for the graduate show?

Violent, fragile, contemplative

2. Can you describe your work, your process and the vision you have for your exhibition space?

My current work straddles the boundaries between 2 and 3 dimensions; painting, drawing and sculpture.  I build up and scrape back; destroy and reconstruct, in a restless search for image, search for self and identity, search for elusive solid ground.  I hope that my show will create a psychological space of reflection, intensity and darkness, which may speak to viewers of their own condition.

3. What’s proving to be the most difficult part about preparations?

My working process is very messy so final presentation will be a factor.  Knowing when to stop making work to leave enough time for making plinths,  finishing touches and building the space is also something that will be difficult as I keep having ideas for new works that I want to get done in time- being ok with these coming later and the show being just a snapshot in time is important.

4. What one piece of your is closest to representing everything you want to say?

For me this work offers a psychological space of tension and isolation; the destruction and reconstruction of image and identity.  The use of materials emphasize the violence and fragility of the human condition, as well as creating boundaries which the figure is both fighting against and subject to.  I like that the figure and work itself are in a state of becoming- simultaneously dissolving and decaying; growing and finding form.

The ‘descent into the belly of the monster… The introversion of the conscious mind into the deeper layers of the unconscious psyche; confrontation with the shadow.’ JUNG

I think of these works as being equivalent, in psychological terms, to the Nigredo phase in alchemy- fundamental to which is the blackening- decay, putrefaction, dissolution and fixating of the volatile- necessary before the base materials can be separated and purified into the elevated and divine.  (Jung has written extensively on the alchemical journey and its analogies with the process of individuation.)

5. What unique opportunities has attending the AAL Fine Art programme given you?

This programme has provided me with opportunities for exhibitions and commissions in both the public and private spheres, as well as the opportunity to teach, which has been a really valuable experience.

6. What artist intrigues you at the moment?

The depth, intensity and gravitas of the human condition offered by the following artists in their various ways have all intrigued and affected me over the last year.

Anselm Kiefer
Annegret Soltau
Chiharu Shiota
Marina Abramovic
Matthew Monahan
Francis Bacon

Anselm Kiefer, Die bösen Mütter, 2007

Matthew Monahan, North Star Supplicant, 2007

7. What do you think you have got from the Academy that you might not have got from another college?

The Academy has given me a solid foundation of core skills in drawing, painting and sculpture that has given me the freedom and confidence to explore a wider range of possibilities in materials, scale and concept, as well as an intimate and supportive environment with some truly gifted and inspirational tutors.  In this I think it is unique.

8. What do you want to be doing artistically in 5 years?

In five years I hope to have the financial stability to be able to continue to grow and develop my work through established studio practice, residencies and active involvement in the art world around me.

http://saskiagall.com/

 

 

1. In three words describe your intentions for the graduate show?

Show my achievement

2. Can you describe your work, your process and the vision you have for your exhibition space?

My paintings focus on people and places that are important in my life. I paint relationship because it is a way to express love which I find difficult in the real world.  Some of these painting have spilt faces with several people of they are having a conversation, inspired by Picasso. Doing painting get me away from my obsessions and I feel calmer when I do art.

In the show I will have a mixture of busy urban landscape and portraits.

3. What’s proving to be the most difficult part about preparations?

The difficult part for me will be the installation as I get anxious about how to hang my work.

4. What one piece of your is closest to representing everything you want to say?

My closest piece to representing is the Shard From the Art Studio in Borough High Street. I like this piece especially because of the unusual view.

5. What unique opportunities has attending the AAL Fine Art programme given you?

The Academy has taught me to paint with vibrant colours. When I did drawing in measurement it taught me to draw more precisely. I learnt new technique for painting for example starting with the big shapes and then going to the smaller one.

6. What artist intrigues you at the moment?

I have been triggered by Picasso because of the split faces and vibrant colours. I am also influence by Hockney, Freud, Van Gogh and other traditional artists.

Weeping Woman 1937 by Pablo Picasso 1881-1973 © Succession Picasso

7. What do you think you have got from the Academy that you might not have got from another college?

I found that I learned to paint in the traditional way compare to some other university. I also found that the lesson are a lot longer in the Academy which means it give me more time with the tutors and give me more time to paint properly.

8. What do you want to be doing as an artist in 5 years?

I am hoping to be making my living as an artist.

http://oliveryuchan.tumblr.com/

1. In three words describe your intentions for the graduate show?

Uncanny, Labrynthian, Cavenous

2. Can you describe your work, your process and the vision you have for your exhibition space?

“Metaphor is natural to the human imagination, but this potential can only be realized by allowing the unconscious full play.”(Lautreamonts, The Surrealist Manifesto, 1924). In my recent work I use the cave as a metaphor for the mind. I create psychological landscapes, which hinge on the notion of ‘making the familiar strange’. (Freud, Das Unheimliche, 1919).

3. What’s proving to be the most difficult part about preparations?

Thinking about how to install the show is the trickiest part. How to bring all the works together with each other and the space.

4. What one piece of your is closest to representing everything you want to say?

“The Sea of The Mind”

5. What unique opportunities has attending the AAL Fine Art programme given you?

A commission to build a piece of Public Art

6. What artist intrigues you at the moment?

Peter Doig

7. What do you think you have got from the Academy that you might not have got from another college?

The Art Academy has provided a truly supportive creative environment for me to develop within. Furthermore the Professional Development Program has given me a real insight into life as an artist outside of art school. I have also had opportunities to exhibit, and travel and teach through the college.

8. What do you want to be doing as an artist in 5 years?

In five years I want to be immersed in a world of paint.

www.rhiannonrebecca.com

 

1. In three words describe your intentions for the graduate show?

Appealing  – meditative – memorable.

2. Can you describe your work, your process and the vision you have for your exhibition space?

For me, the process of making art induces a kind of relaxed concentration and I try to share this same sensation with those who view my work. While absorbed in painting my attention hovers between the greater intention and the physical application of paint.  Moments of clarity and blurring comfortably co-exist.

I am most interested in capturing transitory episodes of beauty which are often found in the ordinary and mundane, such as the absent-minded observation of raindrops on a window pane or the motion of landscape seen from a speeding train. Ultimately, I hope to transform the transient and ordinary into something more permanent and beautiful.

I maintain a keen interest in composition, colour, and space, and I hope that my work can also appeal on a formal level.  Currently I prefer to work in oils.

I hope that my exhibition space will be a positive environment, where viewers can engage and the works will resonate.

3. What’s proving to be the most difficult part about preparations?

I am most concerned about the technicalities of the space – quite literally, the nuts and bolts of constructing walls and covering windows.  We need to convert what is a busy shared working studio environment into a gallery space with optimum light, clean lines, and ‘flow’, –  in order to create the most effective dialogue between the work and the viewer.  The painting is the easy bit!

4. What one piece of your is closest to representing everything you want to say?

Train Window I.

People seemed to ‘get’ this painting when I last showed it.  In that sense it must be the most successful recent piece.

5. What unique opportunities has the AAL Fine Art programme given you?

I have been privileged enough to have been guided by commercially successful artists with diverse talents across a variety of disciplines.  Apart from being hugely inspirational, by their very existence they offer up the possibility that life as an artist can be both enjoyable and rewarding.   And – by painting alongside some truly gifted artists, I have learnt to have confidence in my own creative abilities, and to treasure and nurture them.

6. What artist intrigues you at the moment?

I am currently reading The Secret Knowledge by David Hockney.  Despite having tremendous respect for him as an artist I am finding his research and observations into the use of optical aids (lenses and mirrors) by artists over the course of history fascinating.  This is of particular interest to me as I almost always use photographs and video stills for my paintings, and am often called upon to justify my use of them. Am I a cheat? I don’t think so. I am currently working on my argument and David is helping me!

7. What do you think you have got from the Academy that you might not have got from another college?

Ultimate flexibility. It has been a challenge to make time for my art while looking after my young family.  The structure of the Fine Art course has allowed me to switch attendance days around to suit me, while at the same time work towards the diploma as a meaningful end goal.

8. What do you want to be doing artistically in 5 years?

There is still, and always will be, more to learn. I hope I will still be growing and developing as an artist.

 

 

Two academy students, alumnus Tarek Tuma, and Fine Art student Ramez Bakir were involved in the recent Without Words : Emerging Syrian Artists exhibition at the P21 Gallery. There is now a documentary on this exhibition filmed by Thomson Reuters Foundation entitled Syrian artists confront horrors of War.

This documentary follows up on the success of the show as reviewed online by the Guardian.

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/jun/22/syria-art-smuggled-exhibition-london-uk