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Throughout Autumn 2022, leading artists spoke to students on our fine art courses as part of an inspirational series of talks. The talks focused on the artists’ work alongside their experience working in the industry. Here, we focus on the artists’ work:
Ailbhe Ní Bhriain
Ailbhe Ní Bhriain is an Irish artist working with film, computer generated imagery, collage, tapestry, print, and installation. Ní Bhriain's work is rooted in an exploration of imperial legacy, human displacement, and the Anthropocene. These intertwined subjects are approached through an associative use of narrative and painstakingly crafted visual language that verges on the surreal. She sidesteps directive positions and familiar binaries, exposing instead the layers of ambiguity and contradiction embedded in these fraught issues. The resulting worlds she creates are at once idiosyncratic, irresistible, and deeply unsettling. Her work has been exhibited widely both nationally and regularly involves collaboration with musicians and composers. Ailbhe Ní Bhriain is based in Cork, Ireland.
For Rachel Lancaster, painting slows down the act of looking; it invites the gaze to linger upon the otherwise overlooked. With a focus on the intersections of painting with cinema, photography and music, Lancaster edits and translates photographic ‘stills’ into oil paintings, drawing on found moving imagery, her own photographs, and drawings rendered directly from her imagination.
Although her style is contemporary, Lancaster is indebted to the painterly tradition of still life, and vanitas works; symbolic still lives that communicate earthly transience and the inevitability of death. She depicts detailed fragments divorced from greater narratives, rendering those fragments both descriptive and abstract, ambiguous and open-ended - the close-up texture of a slice of cake, for example, or an unlabelled parcel, uncannily illuminated, playfully enigmatic. Lancaster applies multiple thin layers of paint to the canvas, to produce varied optical effects; the immediacy of the paint’s surface plays off against the hazy, half-remembered qualities characteristic of her chosen images. She manipulates colour and utilises cropping and mark-making techniques, to play upon the latent, dreamlike sense of otherness found in cinema, re-imagining this upon the canvas.
Dafna Talmor is an artist and lecturer based in London whose practice encompasses photography, spatial interventions, curation, and collaborations. Her photographs are included in public collections such as the National Trust, Victoria and Albert Museum, Deutsche Bank, and Hiscox. Talmor's work is included in publications by people such as, Gemma Padley, Robert Shore, and Brady Wilks. Additionally, her work has been featured in publications such as Architectural Review, The Guardian, FT Weekend Magazine, American Suburb X, 1000 Words, Elephant Magazine, Camera Austria, Art Review, IMA, BJP, and GUP. Her first monograph - Constructed Landscapes - published by Fw: Books was released in October 2020 and longlisted for the 2021 Kraszna-Krausz Photography Book Award. Current and recent exhibitions include solo shows Constructed Landscapes at Carmen Araujo Arte and Constructed Landscapes (vol. iii) at TOBE Gallery (Budapest), group exhibitions Known & Strange: Photographs from the Collection at the V&A Museum (London), Stories We Live With - Selection from the Somlói–Spengler Collection at QContemporary (Budapest) and Occupying Photography: To the Milky Way via the Sea at NŌUA (Bodø). Talmor has an upcoming duo show with artist Hannah Hughes at Sid Motion Gallery (London, UK) in December and will be completing the Veszprém-Balaton European City of Culture Artist Residency, which will culminate in a solo show in June 2023, curated by Claudia Küssel.
Interested in the fine art programme at the University of Bolton? Take a look at our course page and find out more about the Bolton School of the Arts faculty that has been supporting students for over 150 years.
With courses driven by passionate, like-minded individuals, in wonderful facilities that enhance your creativity, our supportive learning environment will help you throughout your studies.
Additionally, our ‘no hidden extras’ guarantee means that students don’t have to buy any materials to create their art. Take a look at what our students have created on our course.
Want to find out more? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on 01204 903807.