We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. You can change your cookie settings at any time. Otherwise, we'll assume you're OK to continue.

Durham University

Centre for Visual Arts and Culture

Previous Events

List of months

Tuesday 2 February 2016

Tony Blair by Alastair Adams, 2013, National Portrait Gallery

Behind the Scenes at the Museum with Sandy Nairne: New Public Portraits - Icons and Idols at the National Portrait Gallery

6:00pm to 8:00pm, Hogan Lovells Lecture Theatre, Palatine Centre, Durham University, Sandy Nairne

Looking back over twelve years of commissioning new portraits, Sandy Nairne, former director of the National Portrait Gallery will discuss the key issues involved in this complex process. Questions will include the hierarchy of different media, the levels of trust required between sitter and artist, the relationship between public and self-image, and the role of the media in our understanding of public figures today. Citing recent works as diverse as Sam Taylor-Johnson\'s video portrait of David Beckham, Judi Dench painted by Alessandro Raho, Zaha Hadid portrayed in digital form by Michael Craig-Martin, and Tony Blair painted by Alastair Adams, Sandy will examine the question of what makes a successful public portrait.

To register for a free ticket, please click here.

Contact for more information about this event.

Wednesday 3 February 2016

Courtesy Eamonn McCabe

Behind the Scenes at the Museum: Masterclass with Sandy Nairne, former Director of the National Portrait Gallery, London

9:30am to 12:00pm, Birley Room, Hatfield College, Sandy Nairne

Following his public lecture on Tuesday 2 February 2016, Sandy Nairne, writer and curator and former Director of the National Portrait Gallery, will be giving a masterclass on working with museums and art galleries, which forms part of CVAC\'s impact-related training programme in \'Working with Museums\'.

The focus of the masterclass will be on the role of museums and art galleries in extending public engagement with history and using materials in collections as a field of active interpretation. The masterclass will take the form of an informal question and answer session. This will offer an opportunity to explore in greater depth the ideas presented in Sandy Nairne’s lecture. It will also afford participants the opportunity of discussing with Sandy Nairne particular ideas that they may have about projects relating to public engagement.

Contact for more information about this event.

Monday 8 February 2016

New Visions for Art with Alistair Hudson (Director of Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art) and Sarah Munro (Director of BALTIC, Gateshead):

7:30pm to 10:00pm, Durham Castle, Durham University , Alistair Hudson (Director of Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art) and Sarah Munro (Director of BALTIC, Gatehead):

The Centre for Visual Arts and Culture (CVAC) is delighted to welcome Sarah Munro (Director of BALTIC, Gateshead) and Alistair Hudson (Director of Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art) to Durham Castle to deliver a public lecture. Both are visionaries with a wealth of experience in cul-tural leadership gained in distinguished careers. Both were instrumental in the 2015 Turner Prize. Since his appointment in 2014 Alistair Hudson has transformed Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art into an institution dedicated to the promotion of art as a tool for education and social change. Sarah Munro became Director of BALTIC in November 2015 and there is an expectation that she will both re-energise the gallery and support the cultural infrastructure of the region as a whole with her passion and ambition. Both speakers will talk about their radical vision for art in the North East.

Please book your place here.

Contact for more information about this event.

Friday 19 February 2016

Exhibition by Michele Allen - Public and Private

7:00pm to 9:00pm, Durham Castle, Tunstall Gallery and Black stairs

In Public and Private Michele Allen presents a series of photographs, texts and a video work produced as a result of a four month residency at Durham Castle. The works respond to the castle’s history as a site of government and latterly as home to Durham University’s ‘University College’, known as the founding college as in 1832 it marked the inception of the first University in the North of England. The exhibition features three different but related bodies of work drawing on photographic and archival research related to the Castle and installed within its existing collections and architecture. The project has been experimental and the resulting work is deliberately open-ended, allowing it to form a dialogue with the castle as a context and to frame broader questions about the relationship of the heritage site to the region it once governed.

The exhibition runs from 12th February until 3rd March 2016. The Public open evening is Friday 19th February 2016, 7 - 9pm, Tunstall Gallery, all welcome.

Tuesday 23 February 2016

Annual lecture in Theology, Religion and Visual Culture: ‘Can Contemporary Art be Devotional Art?’ with Professor Ben Quash

6:00pm to 8:00pm, Hogan Lovells Lecture Theatre, Palatine Centre, Durham University , Professer Ben Quash

This will be the 3rd annual lecture jointly shared with Theology and Religion, and Visual Culture. We are delighted that Professor Ben Quash from Kings College London will be returning to County Durham.

As the Roman Catholic Church opens a pavilion at the Venice Biennale and many Protestant traditions cast aside their traditional distrust of images and storm back into the arena of contemporary visual art, a new set of critical categories may be called for. To be valuable, these should probably be both aesthetic and theological. What makes a work of art ‘work' in an ecclesial setting? And what ‘work' should be expected of it anyway? Modern art’s concern to find visual languages that would speak across boundaries of geography and culture seemed capable of making common cause with the Christian Church’s traditional desire that art should unify and solidify community. Such works could be shared objects of contemplation. But it seems that the ambitions of Modernism have given way to a contemporary art of shifting, impermanent, interactive engagement through which we all negotiate our own unique pathways. Can such works ever have a place in public worship? Might they serve devotion in other ways?

To register for a free ticket, please click here.

Contact for more information about this event.