Fine Art Visiting Speaker Series 2015-16


Wednesday 2 Dec 2015

Tim Dunbar

Guernica in Manchester Re-Representation is a drawing project based on an investigation into the circumstances surrounding the exhibition of Picasso’s Guernicain a car showroom in Manchester that is reported to have occurred during the first two weeks of February in 1939. The project includes a quarter scale “mapping” study of Guernica and a number of text-based drawings based on written descriptions of direct encounters with the painting. Drawings have been informed by reference to the ‘Manchester Foodship for Spain’ archive material in the Working Class Movement Library, and eyewitness commentaries of the Manchester Guernica exhibition, including two previously unknown accounts from students who studied at Manchester School of Art in the late 1930s. The project is underpinned by the notion of a ‘conspiracy of Guernica’ implicated by Herbert J. Southworth in his classic text “Guernica! Guernica! A study of Journalism, Diplomacy, Propaganda and History”.

The narrative of a drawing’s production process, it’s constant erasures, adjustments and re-workings allude to, metaphorically at least, a representation of history that has been constructed through a ‘dialectic of doubt’, the product of an exchange between the possibilities of certainty and the anxiety of uncertainty.


Wednesday 16 Dec 2015

Chris Dobrowolski

Chris studied Fine Art in Hull and when he first got there he built a boat from driftwood to try to escape. The boat failed but Chris ended up making a whole series of vehicles in a similar vein. The way he makes things has a deliberate “knocked up in the garden shed” aesthetic and each vehicle and escape attempt has its own story attached. Over the years, Chris has retold and refined these stories as both artist and teacher. The result is a performance that translates the experience of creating and testing a theory. This in turn enables an audience to share and participate in a journey of discovery.

His current work, produced by ‘ArtsAdmin‘, is a performance lecture called ‘All Roads Lead to Rome’ which is about driving his old family car to Italy where his father served during World War 2. Other recent works include ‘Antarctica‘, based on his role as Visiting Artist with the ‘British Antarctic Survey‘; ‘Poland 3 Iran 2‘ with 30 Bird Productions about international football in the seventies and ‘Vanishing Point‘ a series of miniature film installations with Leslie Hill of ‘Curious‘ as part of ‘Live Art Collective East‘.

Chris is an associate artist at ‘Art Exchange‘, University of Essex and has exhibited and performed widely. As well as working internationally he has also participated in the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. His work has recently been acknowledged and celebrated with the publication of a major book, ‘ESCAPE‘ published by Jardine Press in 2014.


Wednesday, 03 Feb 2016 

Lise Autogena

Professor of Cross-Disciplinary Art, Sheffield Hallam University.

I am an artist and a researcher. My practice-led research has involved large scale performances, site-specific works, and multimedia installations, usually developed in collaboration with organisations and individuals across many specialist fields. These projects have used custom built technologies and visualisations of global realtime data to explore how the economic, geographic, technological and societal systems we are creating, impact on our human experience and sense of self in the world.


Thursday, 18 Feb 2016

NB: This talk had to be postponed because of personal circumstances.

Denise Hawrysio

Denise Hawrysio was born in Toronto and currently lives in London, UK. She received her BFA from Queen’s University, Canada, and her MFA from the San Francisco Art Institute. She works in a variety of media including site-specific installation, bookworks, and printmedia and has exhibited her work in Europe, the United States and Canada.

She has been an active member of London’s art scene for several years, founding her own project space in the early 90’s, working collectively with many of Britain leading artists. She recently received fellowships for residencies at the Banff Centre for the Arts, the prestigious MacDowell Colony in the United States, the University of British Columbia and University of Alberta. Her artists’ books are in collections at the Victoria and Albert, the Chelsea Art Library, Yale University, the Bruce Peel Collection and the National Gallery of Canada. Her work deals with issues of displacement, hybridism, transience and mutation, utopia and dystopia, memory and identity. She has taught at the Architectural Association, University of the Arts, University of British Columbia and University of Southampton and presently teaches at University of the Arts, London.




Wednesday 2 March 2016 

Yelena Popova

With their transparent, softened geometric forms, Yelena Popova’s paintings recall the graphics and aesthetics of both Russian Constructivism and Minimalism, and open up conversations about the materiality of painting today.

Popova’s practice encompasses painting, video and installation, and all her work is tied together by an interest in exploring the concept of balance, whether in politics, representation, or in our relationship with machines.

“I’m not interested in making single objects, but in creating a complex network of facts, fictions, emotions, gestures, materials and images, which could relate to the world outside it,” the artist explains.
For a recent project she made paintings and video inspired by the metaphor of the discus thrower; the elliptical curves and repeated, rhythmic shapes on her linen canvases articulate the kind of balance, external and internal, expressed through fixed rotation. Popova’s films, which deal with overt imbalances such as Cold War topics and radioactivity, seem the perfect counterpoint to her 2D work, the flipside of the same theme.

Balance of Probability is a multi-part installation of paintings on linen that plays with similar ideas. The canvases in a range of sizes combine graphic pattern and unpredictable shapes with a delicacy of touch and thin gradients of pale colour that sometimes even show the grain of their linen surfaces. Precariously arranged on each other or held in place with makeshift pallet supports and even a doorknob, the paintings convey a sense both of dangerous asymmetry and of harmonious interconnectedness.

Lupe Nùñez-Fernández


‘Consulting the Oracle’ (2013), Caroline Walker (Detail). © Caroline Walker

Wednesday 13 April 11 AM (MK 045)

Dr Rina Arya

‘Representations of reality in postwar British art’.


Rina Arya is an art theorist who has a background in theology.  She is interested in a number of different subject areas including art, theology and spirituality, Francis Bacon, Georges Bataille, gender studies, aesthetics, critical theory, visual communication.