Tate Exchange: Studio Complex

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15 Jan - 21 Jan 2018

12pm to 6pm

How to survive as an artist in the metropolis. 

Join and help us remake the studio of the future.

London, once a city with overlooked spaces open to occupation and experimentation, has become an increasingly difficult environment for emerging artists. Those graduating from art school now find fewer spaces in which to work, with affordable studios a thing of the past. In the five-year period between 2014 and 2019, it is predicted that 30 per cent of artists’ studios in London will be lost (see GLA’s Artists’ Workshop Study).

In response, artists are challenging and re-inventing the studio. Could it be a park bench, an online space or a public building? As artists, can we resist the tide and find new ways of reinstating art practice within the heart of the city?

Around 200 students from across our Art Programme will construct fully functioning studios in Tate Exchange. Drop in and select a studio (or a series of studios) and join in a wide range of practical activities incorporating the many and diverse ways in which art is made today.

Tate Exchange: Studio Complex programme: 

Monday 15 January, 4, 6pm

Monday Guest Lecture | Sonia Boyce in conversation with Graham Ellard, 4 - 6pm

Chaired by Alex Schady
A discussion about the contemporary ideas of the studio in the urban metropolis. 


Wednesday 17 January

Workshop | Sound and Spaces | 12pm – 5pm 

Led by Susan Trangmar (Reader in Fine Art, Central Saint Martins)

A group based experimental workshop of sound events, demonstrations and performances by students from MA Fine Art course: Natalie Lambert, Hyyn Ah Kwon, Tom Cardew, Tiffany Howe, Orna Kazimi, Shu Zhang, Susana Uvidia.

The works are being presented and improvised on site, all are open to audience participation. 

Annihilation Lab Workshop | 12 - 6pm
A workshop giving the opportunity to learn about photogrammetry and virtual reality.  The workshop led by students from the Annihilation Lab project at Central Saint Martins is part of a research in progress, exploring the process and the potential of photogrammetry using objects supplied

As part of this the workshop  'Photogrammetry Yourself”  demonstrates how we are able to create a three dimensional computer generated portrait from two dimensional images. Taking portraits from participants then at the end of the day they can find their three dimensional portrait  uploaded on the sketchfab website. 


MA Contemporary Photography; Practices and Philosophies Symposium:
“…nonart is more art than Art art”

1pm Daniel Rubinstein: 'Why art has no future?'
1.50pm Pat Naldi
2.10pm Diana Lloyd
2.30pm Nick Ferguson
2.50pm Nela Milic
3.10 - 3.30pm Panel Q and A with all speakers

Borrowed from Allan Kaprow’s Essays on the Blurring of Arts and Life, the event “…non art is more art than Art art” will instead seek to challenge the very concept of the artist studio within contemporary and future artists practices. With Creative Enterprise Zones incorporating artists studios planned by the London Mayor, these urban models will not only further capitalise on the financially and culturally lucrative status of art and artists for governments, developers and other private and corporate investors within regeneration schemes, but will arguably also elevate the status of the artist above other citizens, and away from being in lived social space. Thus shifting artists’ practices into a yet more sanitised inverted looking activity. “…non art is more art than Art art” will question the very need of the artist studio and argue for artists not to reinvent the studio but to divest themselves and their practices conceptually and physically from this traditional model – one that is historically based on the romantic figure of the male artist, and art market transaction – and instead, transcend the boundaries of what it means to be an artist in the 21st century.

Lecture | UAE Venice Pavillion | 4 – 6pm
This event is anchored in the exhibition Rock, Paper, Scissors: Positions in Play, the national pavilion of the United Arab Emirates at the 57th International Art Exhibition - Venice Biennale, curated by Hammad Nasar. One of the strands of research informing the exhibition explored the influence of the artist Hassan Sharif in the genealogy of ‘playfulness’ in the UAE. 

In the early 1980s Sharif went to art school at Byam Shaw School of Art  (since absorbed into Central Saint Martins) and his time there has been the subject of a collaborative research project by CSM MRes candidates Market Jonasova and May Rashid Saif Ali Alqaydi. Their research into Hassan Sharif’s studies at Byam Shaw School of Art focused on the significant transformation of Sharif’s practice during his stay in London. In order to understand this turn in Sharif’s practice, so influential for later generations of Emirati artists, they explored the unique institutional structure of Byam Shaw at the time. The performative artworks enacted by Sharif during his studies provide an insight into a moment in the history of the British artistic education when an experimental and international environment encouraged artists to expand beyond the autonomous zones of individual studios.


Saturday 20 January

Paul O’Kane: ‘Days of the Water Sun – Remembering the Studio’ | 4 - 6pm
For Tate Exchange: Studio Complex, Paul O’Kane has written a talk titled: ‘Days of the Water Sun – Remembering the Studio’. Paul will reflect on a long poem that emerged from the shortest, greyest days of a seven-year period spent living a rather ‘romantic’, hermit-like and impoverished existence in an artist’s studio that doubled as home (or vice versa). Along with these subjective memories Paul ‘s talk will refer to the strategy of another artist, Bada Song, who contrived a positive and creative way to respond to the loss of her own London studio (a result of the avaricious property boom that emerged from the financial crash of 2008). Paul will refer to two recent artists’ books which further document the content of his talk, and provide a simple publication made as a hand-out to mark this event.

Visit the Tate Exchange website for more information.