The idea of art and design as an agent for social change is vital if we relate it to contemporary debates and approaches that artists are adopting in these effervescent times.
I have always thought of Modigliani as the sort of artist that can get you into trouble. Remembering the raised eyebrows with which my tutors greeted my proposal that I write my first long essay as a student about the relationship between his sculptures and his nudes, I was half-expecting there to be a warning sign at the entrance of his exhibition at Tate Modern. Instead the visitor is met by four galleries of sensational portraits – not to mention a film about his life in Paris and a queue for a virtual tour of his studio – before being treated to even a glimpse of an ankle. Join Gerald on the 3 February.
Through my writers’ group, I’ve met far too many talented writers who are frozen with fear when it comes to submitting their work for publication. I can understand why; I went through it myself. For years I would whip up tsunami-sized excuses as to why my work wasn’t good enough to be inflicted on others. Then something happened: I finally let go of my fears and insecurities, and my work found its way into the inbox of a publisher.
In the first part of this blog I offered five tips to help the beginner writer come across as more advanced than they actually are. From establishing the gender of your protagonist, where they are in the setting, their Point of View and then keeping the story moving I reflected on a few key components. So now I’ll resume…
Part of my job as a tutor is to look at some of the first creative writing people have shared with another person. It is a part of the job I relish, and I think it important to meet people’s first shared work with positivity and enthusiasm – where possible. I think it takes real guts to express yourself on the page and then offer it up to other people for feedback.
Poetry is in fact, enchantment, that it has the form it does because that very form casts a spell, and that when they thought they were bothered and bewildered, they were, in fact, being bewitched, and if they let themselves accept the enchantment and enjoy it they would eventually understand much more about the poem.
There are many challenges for students to overcome through distance learning; engaging with other likeminded students to create your own peer network has to be one of the trickiest. I believe that if students can find the time, the use of OCASA funded workshops has to be a tangible benefit to a student’s learning across all programmes.