Welcome to Criticism and Interpretation

For students on the Level 2 Elective, at Camberwell College of Arts, University of the Arts London, 2009 / 2010

Tutor - Adrian Holme

Welcome to the wiki! You can use this wiki as an information resource. You can also link your blog to the wiki, and, you can even create new content on the wiki yourself.

Announcement: January 19, 2010
Adrian Holme

Elective Event
Members of the Camberwell Criticism and Interpretation elective have an exhibition at Flat Time House on Thursday 21 January 2010.
Open to the public from 11.00-16.00 and Private View from 17.30-21.00

A Lesser Event at Flat Time House
Open from 11am, Private View 5.30-9pm
external image 16_flat-time-house-d.jpg
Our pieces are prompted by John Latham's ideas and theories on time and systems.
A Lesser Event is one of a series of collaborations to mark the end of our
Camberwell 2nd Year Criticism elective.
Karen Blake, Mike Doorly, Emily Iremonger, Thomas Kemp, Bella Pace, and Lerryn Whitfield
FTHo logo
FTHo logo

Flat Time House is a few minutes walk from Peckham Rye BR station. There are regular, fast trains to Peckham Rye from London Bridge (7 mins) and Victoria (15 mins). Buses to Peckham Library or Rye Lane.

Announcement: January 19, 2010
Adrian Holme

Elective Event
Igor Podoprygora, of the Camberwell Criticism and Interpretation Elective, has an exhibition of his work at ARTS, above Funky Munky,
25 Camberwell Church Street, SE5 8TR, from January 18-23, 2010 (18.00-23.00).
Private view Thursday January 21 from 18.00 till late


Announcement: January 18, 2010
Adrian Holme

Plans for the Elective Event
Some exciting plans for the elective event on Thursday 21-Friday 22 January 2010 (see the provisional tabulated plans).

Activities / events from our group include an exhibition 'Lesser Event' at Flat Time House (Thursday 21st); an event at Ruskin Park, 'Show Your Talent in the Park' open to all to participate (see flyer below); installation of work (including New York exhibition, Walk Peep Show, photographs and other work) at Wilson Road in the Ground Seminar Room and the Upstairs Corridor, plus performance work ('Just a Minute' and 'The Art of Being a Critic') at Wilson Road. Igor has an exhibition at Arts Gallery, Funky Munky in Camberwell (January 18-23).

Elective Event
Show Your Talent in the Park, Friday January 22, 2010 from 12.00-14.00, Ruskin Park (between Denmark Hill and Champion Park Grove).
Organised by members of the Criticism and Interpretation Elective. All are welcome to bring along work, perform, play and instrument. Contact Giorgia or Joanna.

Show your talent in the park

Announcement: January 15 2010
Adrian Holme

Elective Update January 15 2010
We will meet as normal today at 12.30 at Wilson Road (as outlined in my recent email)

Work in collaborative groups is progressing well from the communications I have had, with some exciting things planned for the Event.

Apart from the hand-in of work our task will be to clarify details of the elective event on January 21 and 22, and to work out any material / space requirements (and forms) that we need to let Jim know about, along with our proposed timings for our events. Jim is constructing a programme for all the electives, with the intention that, ideally one would be able to see all of the events / work of different electives on those two days.

I look forward to seeing you soon.

Announcement: December 9 2009
Adrian Holme

Elective Update Friday 11 December
Just to give you an update and revised timetable for the elective this Friday 11th December.

We will meet as normal at 12.30 at Wilson Road

There will be discussion and planning for the Event and associated exhibition (which I know is being discussed / planned, and David has requested input on ideas and requirements for this).
We will also have a presentation by Roman and Lucas on Mapplethorpe.

Following the meeting at Wilson Road, we will make our way to the Tate Britain to see the Turner Prize Exhibition (for those who wish to come).

Tate Britain www.tate.org.uk/britain/
Do bring your student card, since you can get in to the Turner Prize for a reduced rate of £6 with the card (normally £8)
The Gallery is open until 17.45 on a Friday – which should give us plenty of time.

Because I think there will be a lot to discuss on Friday – I’d like to suggest a revised timetable

12.30 Wilson Road
Feedback on planning and discussion on the Event and exhibition

13.30 Presentation by Roman and Lucas – on Mapplethorpe

14.00 leave for the Tate Britain (Pimlico).

We will probably arrive at the Tate at around 15.00.

Following the Tate, for anyone who wishes, we will go for a Christmas drink at a nearby pub.

I look forward to seeing you on Friday

Announcement: December 8, 2009
Adrian Holme

This Week's session
This Friday, December 11, we will meet as usual at Wilson Road, at 12.30
We will have a feedback session and discussion on the Elective Event (January 21-22, see Plans for the Event, below), followed by a presentation by Roman and Lucas on Mapplethorpe.

We will then go on a visit (for those who wish), to see the Turner Prize at the Tate Britain (cost £8). And following this – a visit to a pub for an end of term Christmas drink...

I suggest Friday’s timetable:
12.30 Feedback and discussion on the Elective Event plans
13.00 Presentation on Mapplethorpe by Roman and Lucas
13.45 Visit to the Turner Prize (Tate Britain, Pimlico) followed by Christmas drink

Plans for the Event
The Elective Event takes place on Thursday 21st January (evening) plus an all day event on Friday January 22nd. There was a very good discussion last week of ideas on this, and it was agreed to set up a group to coordinate all the various collaborative groups and individuals under a kind of umbrella with some theme and a programme, as well as to consider how to use our 1hr 30 min slot in the Main Hall at Wilson Road on the 22nd. There were some very exciting ideas – some revolving around maps... Lerryn is one of the people coordinating this group and I understand a meeting is being held this week. It all felt very positive indeed.

(On the theme of maps, I’ve posted a few interesting links at http://criticism-and-interpretation.wikispaces.com/Psychogeography )

This coming Friday (11th) we will review together the plans and ideas for the event.

I look forward to seeing you this Friday!

For a review of last week’s session see Week 9 on this wiki

Announcement: December 2, 2009
Adrian Holme


This week - Friday December 4, Wilson Road
This week’s session will begin as usual, at Wilson Road at 12.30. I understand that Roman and Lucas would like to give a presentation on a photography show they have visited. I think we should also have feedback on plans for the elective event(s) on January 21-22, 2010. I will go through a quick briefing on the project hand-in (January 15).

Following this, the drawing students have invited us back to their studio for presentations / reviews of their own work – which I’m very much looking forward to.

So for this week our timetable will be

Wilson Road
12.30 Feedback on planning for the January events / my briefing
13.00 Lucas and Roman – review of a photography exhibition
13.30 Visit to the drawing studios at Peckham Road for presentations / reviews of student work

Next week – December 11
Can you let me know if you would like to make a presentation, or give an update on work for next week’s session (or tell me on Friday)?
We have scheduled a discussion on the Turner prize show which I am very happy to keep in if you like.
We might also have a studio visit – maybe to ceramics?

Since next week will be our last session before Christmas – would you like to have a trip to a bar / pub at the end of the session? Any suggestions welcome!

I look forward to seeing you on Friday

Announcement: November 27 2009
Adrian Holme

Many thanks for an excellent suggestion below. Let's discuss it today. Igor would like to defer his presentation, so we have time to do this. I think it's a great opportunity to discuss what we would like to do for the event in January.

And of course there could be an exhibition that was connected to the event but which went on for longer.

See you later


I suggest a new schedule for today

12.30 Announcements
12.35 Discussion on David's suggestion of an exhibition, as well as the related issue of the January event.
13.00 Bayly's group presentation
13.25. Adam Brown - on Sophie Calle

Announcement: November 27 2009
David Foulkes


I was thinking with all of our various interests and talents, that it’d be ace to hold some sort of showing or exhibition of our own work?

I have no links to any spaces or galleries, any idea of a concept or curation methodology. However I guess this is where we could all come together!?

Just an idea.....

Thank you for reading

David Foulkes

Announcement: November 26, 2009
Adrian Holme

Sophie Calle, Talking to Strangers, The Whitechapel Gallery http://media.areimer.co.uk/2009/10/sophie_calle.jpg
Sophie Calle, Talking to Strangers, The Whitechapel Gallery http://media.areimer.co.uk/2009/10/sophie_calle.jpg

This week's session - November 27
Tomorrow we meet as normal at 12.30 at Wilson Road.
Igor’s group would like to present, and also Bayly’s group said they would like to.
Tomorrow, we also welcome Adam Brown who lectures in Photography at Maidstone UCA. Adam is going to give a seminar with us about the interpretation of Sophie Calle’s work.
I would therefore suggest the following timetable

12.30 Announcements

12.35 Igor’s group seminar

13.00 Bayly’s group seminar

13.25 Adam Brown – the interpretation of Sophie Calle


Next Week – December 4
I had scheduled in a seminar on the kitsch for this session. However, as we discussed, I think that other groups and individuals are likely to have further work to present, or work to update us on. My preference would be for this. What do you think?

Perhaps it would also be good next week to begin thinking / discussing about what form we would like the event on January 21 to 22 to take. Do have a think about this and discuss it in your collaborative groups.

In addition, students from drawing have suggested a visit to their studio to see their work. (Other courses are very welcome to do the same – ceramics would like to do this). So I suggest next week we might want to have presentations and discussions from 12.30 to 14.00 and then a visit to Drawing at Peckham Road, from 14.00-15.00.

I look forward to seeing you tomorrow


Announcement: November 19, 2009

Flat Time House
Flat Time House

This week’s session Friday 20 November
Tomorrow we will meet as normal at 12.30 at Wilson Road.

This will be followed by a walk to Flat Time House at 14.00 (for 14.30).

We are visiting Flat Time House at 14.00 – the home of artist John Latham, now a museum, which is in Bellenden Road near to the college, so we will have only 90 minutes maximum at Wilson Road.
Several people indicated they would like to present tomorrow, and I suggest we take some presentations next week as well – if that’s OK with you.
What I propose is:

Wilson Road
12.30 – La Cabina. We will screen the film chosen by Serden for discussion - La Cabina is 35 minutes long, plus discussion (see below for more details)

13.20 – Lerryn, Mike and Karen will present on the Damien Hirst show at the Wallace Collection. We can also discuss the reviews of Damien Hirst that I supplied copies of last week.

14.00 – Walk over to Flat Time House, Bellenden Road (map) for a seminar delivered by Elisa Kay and an opportunity to see the collection.

John Latham famously (aided by his students) chewed up and spat out a library book of Greenberg’s critical writings ‘Art and Culture’for which he was relieved of his teaching post at St Martins – the regurgitated remains, installed in a travelling case, now reside in New York’s Museum of Modern Art.
A radical view of space and time from this conceptual artist, painter, sculptor, filmmaker and philosopher

We will spend at least one hour at Flat Time House, so it would be good if you are able to stay at least until 15.30.

Other links to John Latham:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yFIJ8H6w4p4 John Latham Encyclopaedia Britannica (6 minutes)

Don't forget tonight's (Thursday) event at Flat Time House if you are around (see below).

Studio visits
Would you like to bring the group back for a studio visit at Camberwell? Please let me know if you would. Ceramics have expressed an interest in this. It could be a very nice opportunity to share your practice with others and get interesting feedback on your work.

Further presentations
Please email me, or speak with me tomorrow about further presentations (group or individual) and I will programme these in to future sessions.

Group work
Do continue to meet with your group and think about developing the work you have already done, or perhaps make new work with them? You can also make individual work or writings of course.

I look forward to seeing you tomorrow!

Announcement: November 14, 2009
As you know, we will be visiting Flat Time House this Friday (November 20).

Flat Time House - an event on Thursday November 19th
By a happy coincidence, an event - the showing of artists' film and videos responding to John Latham's ideas, will be held at Flat Time House and the nearby Wishing Well pub on Thursday November 19th. The event starts at Flat Time House at 18.30 on Thursday 19th and continues at the Wishing Well at 19.30.
If you wish to go you will need to book at info@flattimeho.org.uk or call 020 7207 4845.
Please see http://www.flattimeho.org.uk/project/32/ for further details.

Flat Time House: 210 Bellenden Road, London SE15 4BW, near to Camberwell College of Arts
The Wishing Well Inn: 79 Choumert Rd (on the corner with Bellenden Road), London, SE15 4AR


Announcement: November 11, 2009

This Friday
This Friday (November 13, Wilson Road, 12.30) we will have the remaining presentation by groups – Arnar’s group and Bayley’s group. This will be followed by a talk and discussion from Gareth Polmeeron the subject of psychogeography – a way of looking at space, distinct from the architectural and more formal and symbolic approaches we have considered so far. Gareth will share something of his own work documenting and responding to his hometown of Dagenham as well as looking at psychogeographical approaches to London.

Following the session Jim Pearson is going to incorporate a screening of the film chosen by Serden – ‘La Cabina’ (Antonio Mercero, 1972) into his film screening in the main lecture theatre from around 2.45. So those of us who wish to remain can enjoy the film screening and discuss this work. (See report and photo for La Cabina, below).

Last week
I understand that the session at the National Gallery last week went very well. Thanks very much to Karen Blake for an excellent summary of Karly’s tour, which is posted on the wiki at http://criticism-and-interpretation.wikispaces.com/Week+5+-+Natl+Gallery
If anyone would like to add anything to this (e.g. something on Colin’s tour) please feel free, or email me a contribution and I can post it for you.

Group work and contributions to the wiki?
Any groups wishing to post material on their work may post it directly or email it to me and I can put it up for you.

The group work was obviously going very well in the presentations the other week and I imagine that groups will continue to meet and develop work in this way – it was inspiring to see how things were developing and I’m sure we can look forward to sharing more work in the coming weeks. Of course individual work is also possible and can also be shared.

Claude Levi-Strauss
external image claude-levi-strauss_machado1209828628.jpg
A notable event during the past fortnight was the announcement of the death of Claude Levi-Strauss, aged 100. Levi-Strauss was an anthropologist, an expert in Amerindian culture, but he was important for taking the somewhat esoteric discipline of anthropology and applying it to modern society. In particular he is credited with founding a discipline called ‘structuralism’ which proved to have an influence far beyond anthropology. It involved looking for underlying structure – in anthropology analysing kinship structures as a way to a deeper understanding of cultures and the connections between cultures. Structuralism was appropriated by literary theory as a way of analysing texts and later applied to analysis of art – where it mutated into the post-structuralism associated with strands of ‘postmodern thought’. There is an excellent obituary of Levi-Strauss at http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2009/nov/03/claude-levi-strauss-obituary

I look forward to seeing you on Friday!

announcement: November 4, 2009

This Friday November 6 – National Gallery 13.45, Sainsbury Wing foyer
Now, unfortunately I am out of action this week (see my email)... but this Friday Jim Pearson has kindly offered to take my place with you at the National Gallery, where we will have our second round of presentations in front of paintings by Colin Wiggins and Karly Allen. Please meet Jim at 13.45 sharp at the Sainsbury wing foyer of the National Gallery (same place as in week 2). For further details see my email sent today.

Last week's session of presentations was inspiring - I've documented it briefly here, but feel free to add to it - or even start a page for your group's activities. The two remaining groups will present in week 6 on November 13, after which we will also screen the film La Cabina, chosen by Serden (see below).

As the groups are working so well I imagine you will want to continue to work together, either continuing the work you have begun, further visits or associated creative or critical work. Perhaps if you haven’t done so, arrange a further meeting to discuss the next steps.

Of course anyone is free to pursue individual work too.

Announcement: October 28 2009

This Friday 30 October
This Friday we are based at Wilson Road – Ground floor seminar room at 12.30 (as in week 1). We will include some discussion of the Maggie’s centre visit in Friday’s session. If you have documented it in any way, including any writing on the visit then do bring it along – and also feel free to add to the Wiki.

Corinne Julius said how much she enjoyed meeting us. She also says that the thinkingardens group would welcome contributions on the visit to Maggie’s London, not matter how short. You can send comments to Anne Warham of thinkingardens. Send any comments in a word document with any pictures in place where you want them – you can send to Anne directly at the address provided in my email today. It is a nice opportunity to publish on the web.

This Friday we will have the group presentations of work you have been doing in the groups we set in the first week. (Anyone not working in a group who would like to present is also welcome.) The presentations may take any form. The suggested length was up to 7 minutes. (If you need longer that’s fine of course – perhaps you could let me know).

In addition, if anyone has any work in any form that they would like to share, then please bring it along – and perhaps let me know so I can programme things.

Also do try to read through the four handouts that I gave out last week (for those unable to be there last Friday I will bring in spare copies) – as we can discuss any responses to these.

In addition I will make the general presentation on criticism and interpretation that I did not have time to give in Week 1. As a result of this I would like to reschedule my talk on Manet’s Olympia and fit it in at a later stage.

Finally, in my email today I have attached a file with a brief review of the Damien Hirst paintings (a photocopy plus a transcription). Please read this review, plus another brief review of Hirst’s paintings at the Wallace Collection by Adrian Searle (2009, Guardian.co.uk, October 14), which can be found at http://www.guardian.co.uk/artanddesign/2009/oct/14/damien-hirst-paintings-wallace-collection/print We will do a little work on these writings.

Following the main session we will be screening a film suggested by Serden, called La Cabina (directed by Antonio Mercero, 1972, 35 mins). This screening will take place after a short break, at 2.45 in the small hall, First Floor of Wilson Road – see the post from Serden, below.

Studio visits?
Would anyone like us to visit their Camberwell studio following one of our sessions? It could be a great opportunity to see and discuss one another’s work. Our ceramics members have said that they would be happy for such a visit to their studios. Would anyone else be interested? Do let me know (or tell me on Friday) and I will arrange for this.

If you have any comments or questions, or ideas for further sessions please feel free to email me. And do feel free to make new wiki pages, or edit and add to existing pages – it’s your space. There are now five blogs linked to the Wiki too.
I look forward to seeing you again on Friday!

Announcement October 24, 2009

Film screening after next week's seminar (October 30)

As we discussed yesterday, Serden will show a film after our seminar next Friday. We will take a short break at the end of the seminar and then watch this film followed by discussion.

Film viewing: La Cabina (1972)
Director: Antonio Mercero
Running time: 35min
Language: Spanish (English Subtitles)
Country: Spain


Announcement October 21, 2009
This Friday – October 23 – Meeting 13.30 at Rogers Stirk Habour + Partners (Hammersmith)
At 2.00 we will have a talk from architect Will Wimshurst about the London Maggie’s Centre. We will then walk down to the London Maggie’s Centre itself (Charing Cross Hospital) to see the building and associated garden, where we will have another talk from broadcaster and writer Corinne Julius, looking critically at the garden and building and at our own responses to them.

Directions to the Rogers Stirk Harbour & Partners practice
ThamesWharf, Rainville Road, London W6 9HA
See, http://www.richardrogers.co.uk/Asp/uploadedFiles/Image/Practice/Locations/london.pdf
Nearest tube – Hammersmith underground

Last Saturday, the London Maggie’s Centre won the prestigious RIBA (Royal Institute of British Architects) Stirling Prize award – which was broadcast live on channel 4 (you can see the programme on 4OD).

This is a great opportunity to visit one of the world’s most noted architecture practices and visit an award winning building, with talks from one of the architects and a writer on garden design and its criticism. I hope you will find ways of documenting and reflecting upon the visit – and that it may perhaps stimulate other practical work in association with the elective.

RogersStirk Harbour+ Partners
http://www.richardrogers.co.uk/theory (It is really worth spending some time on the theory section to see how architects write critically about their discipline)

More on the Stirling Prize


Maggie’s Centre – London

Dan Pearson (designer of the garden)


Corinne Julius studied Interior Design at the Royal College of Art and Sociology and Psychology at the University of Sheffield before lecturing in Environmental Social Psychology (the effects of the built environment on human behaviour.)
She has worked as a reporter, producer and presenter on BBC Radio 4. Her half hour features include 'The Creating Eye - Richard Rogers' and 'Designed in Britain: Made in Japan' which followed the progress of Dan Pearson's and Thomas Heatherwick's projects in Japan. Corinne is design and applied arts critic on Front Row. She writes on the applied arts and design for the Evening Standard, Crafts and Blueprint.
Corinne has won 2 Garden Media Guild Awards for best Radio Broadcast and is a founder member of Thinkingardens. She is a trustee of Contemporary Applied Arts and is an honorary fellow of the Royal College of Art.

Saturday’s visit to Alexandra Blum’s studio, Dalston
This Saturday 24th October I have arranged an extra visit to the studio of artist Alexandra Blum. Alexandra’s work focuses on urban space, and combines drawings from maps and diagrams with those made on location in the city itself. For 12 months she has been in residency in Dalston drawing streets and charting the demolition and the construction of buildings. http://www.alexblum.co.uk/index.html
Meeting at Dalston Kingsland station (London Overground) at 14.45.
It would be useful to let me know if you would like to come along to this visit, just to give some idea of numbers.

Last week’s visit
I hope you enjoyed last week’s visit to the National Gallery – I have updated the Wiki with an account of the visit, especially Colin Wiggins’ talk. (For the next trip to the gallery in week 5 we can swap over the groups so you experience the other speaker.) It would be good to document the visit and your own responses to it which you can do in your own log, via a blog, or directly in the Wiki.

Announcement October 17, 2009

London Maggie's Centre - wins the RIBA Stirling Prize

London Maggie's Centre - Channel 4
Tonight (Saturday 17th October) on Channel 4 at 20.00 there was a live programme on the RIBA Stirling Prize Awards featuring the London Maggie’s centre which we will be visiting next Friday (along with Rodgers Stirk Harbour and Partners architectural practice who designed the building). http://www.channel4.com/4homes/architecture/riba-stirling-prize/riba-stirling-prize-2009-shortlist-09-07-24_p_1.html . I am very pleased to report that the London Maggie's Centre has won the RIBA Stirling Prize.

You can watch the programme on Channel 4 on their 4OD service http://www.channel4.com/programmes/4od

Announcement October 14, 2009

This Friday, October 16, – National Gallery (Trafalgar Square) visit – Meet 13.45 Sharp in the foyer of the Sainsbury Wing
Space and time from the Mediaeval to the Renaissance
We will divide into two groups for this – group one will go first with Colin Wiggins and group two with Karly Allen for the first of the seminars in front of paintings. The groups will then swap over to hear the other seminar. Afterwards we will all gather in a room at the gallery to discuss what we have experienced of the talks.
See the email I have sent today for details of the groups.

The purpose of the seminars is, on the one hand, to talk to you about works from the late mediaeval and early renaissance, examining the way that space and time are represented in the paintings.
In addition, this is an opportunity to reflect upon the ways in which scholars talk about paintings – how they talk critically and interpretatively – look for things that are descriptive, analytical, interpretive, or evaluative.
After the session
Following this you will have an opportunity to pursue your own research in the National Gallery or other nearby galleries in London. (E.g. The National Portrait Galleryis just around the corner; the ICAis also nearby on the Mall; The Sir John Soane museum is in Lincoln’s Inn Fields in Holborn– it’s quite small so it's good for small groups rather than large ones; the Photographer's Galleryis now in Ramillies Street, off Oxford Street).
If anyone wants to speak with me I will be free after the session.

I do hope you enjoy the session – it’s a great opportunity to hear experts in art talk in front of the works themselves – and an opportunity to speak with them and ask questions.
I also hope that your elective work is progressing well in general.


Monkeys as Judges of Art
Monkeys as Judges of Art

Gabriel Cornelius von Max, 1889, Monkeys as Judges of Art, oil on canvass, 85 x 107 cm - Neue Pinakothek, München