What a treat we had in store for us on Saturday 25th November as we skipped across Trafalgar Square in the winter sunshine. We, being Lavinia and Ellie, were heading to the Association for Art History’s Ways of Seeing conference (now in its 10th year) for a full day of back-to-back Art History talks.  We were also really interested to hear about the new Easel Initiative to help further equal opportunity accessibility within the arts.

We had a very interesting day listening to speakers whose talks were all based around one of the new A-Level themes: War, Art and Architecture. The talks ranged from Dr Christine Riding, Chair of AAH, highlighting the significance of Trafalgar Square as a type of war memorial in its own right, to Helen Neven from the Blenheim Art Foundation discussing contemporary art being exhibited at Blenheim Palace. We were spoilt with fresh ways to consider the new syllabus and how to approach its challenges.

As a sponsor of the ARTiculation Prize, we were proud to hear Alex West, winner of the the regional quarter finals in London, speak eloquently and passionately about Edward Ruscha’s Music from the Balconies (1984). We were also delighted to see parts of a documentary made by student Amber Bardell, discussing Cardinal’s Sin by Banksy. Amber’s documentary was this year’s winner of SPoKE, another competition we are proud to sponsor. We were excited to hear Andrew Ellis, of ArtUK.org, introduce Write on Art, a new competition for years 11- 13 which they have put together with the Paul Mellon Centre.

If these competitions appeal to you, don’t forget about our brilliant scholarship where we ask you to write two 400-word essays on an artwork you loathe and another you love. Our prize is 2-weeks on one of our courses – worth £3,975 in 2018*. There’s so much to get your teeth into and we encourage you to give them all a go.

A great, if busy, day of meeting old friends and new and discussing how to approach the new A-Level syllabus together as an Art History community. Congratulations again to Alex West and Amber Bardell for their wonderful presentations – we look forward to seeing the 2018 entries!

 

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