News Article

Complimentary Evening Lecture Series Offer the Public Access to Art-Related Debate and Discussion

16 May 2019

Imagine becoming part of an artwork by having dinner at a gallery or discussing global warming in an iceberg-shaped tent. Social dimension, interactivity and activism were key elements of art in the 1990s and 2000s, which followed the idea of relational aesthetics originally developed by curator and art critic Nicolas Bourriaud. Artists such as Liam Gillick, Jorge Pardo and Dominique Gonzales-Foerster were interested in the reactions of spectators to the changing environment they had created.

Relational art and aesthetics was the theme of a recent public lecture at Christie’s Education in London. “For better or worse, a wide range of work produced during the 1990s and 2000s fell under the spell of Bourriaud’s ideas. The classic example is Rirkrit Tiravanija’s Untitled (Free), from 1992, for which the artist cooked and served Thai curry to visitors to the 303 Gallery in New York”, explains Dr Bill Roberts, lecturer of the new MA Art History and Art World Practice programme at Christie’s Education London. “The notion of the exhibition as an arena for a social encounter or event of some kind is one of the most significant tendencies within contemporary art of the last few decades.”

The aim of the free lecture series, hosted in London throughout the year, is to bring interesting art world topics to the widest possible audience and provide a ‘taster’ of the student experience for the master’s programmes being offered at Christie’s Education. Relational aesthetics, the history and theory of installation art will all be covered in the new MA Art History and Art World Practice programme starting this September.

The next event takes place on 6 June. Dr Andrea Mattiello, Byzantine and Contemporary Art Historian and Guest Lecturer at Christie’s Education, will present a lecture on Eliasson, Gormley, and McCall: Choreutic strategies for the senses to explore the concept of choreutic strategies in the work of artists as diverse as Olafur Eliassion, Anthony Gormley and Anthony McCall.