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Tuesday Talks

The Tuesday Talks series presents leading artists, thinkers and curators who explore the driving forces, influences and sources of inspiration within contemporary art. The series is a collaboration between the Whitworth and Manchester Metropolitan University and is programmed by Pavel B├╝chler.

Tuesday Talk dates for 2020

Tuesday 21 January – until Tuesday 17 March 2020

At the Whitworth, 11am-12.30pm
Free, no need to book
Please arrive promptly as seats are limited

Past event | 21 January – Tony Cokes

Tony Cokes's video work can be described as a remix of contemporary pop music and text drawn from criticism, academic and journalistic sources. Presented as immersive multi-screen animations and characteristic by their bold use of colour and precise visual aesthetics they explore the complex relationships among popular culture and cultural theory, media production and racial representation, politics and social practice. Cokes is Professor of Modern Culture and Media at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island. He has exhibited extensively in the US, Europe and Australia since the 1990s and his works are held in some of the world's most prominent public collections. His first UK solo exhibition, If UR Reading This It’s 2 Late: Vol 1, is currently on view at Goldsmiths CCA, London (until 19 January).

Past event | 28 January – Jonathan Baldock

Jonathan Baldock works with sculpture, performance and interactive installation conceived often on a large scale as a ritualistic or theatrical encounter of the object with the audience. In his recent work he has used the traditional techniques of pottery, basketry and spinning to reflect on the decline of making and skills in the world dominated by technology, new means of communication and new forms of social and personal relations. Yet the work, inspired by his interest in folklore and is as remarkable by its humor and wit as by the unsettling questions it poses to human emotion and experience. Baldock's solo exhibition, Facecrime, shown last year at Camden Arts Centre, London, and Tramway, Glasgow, will open at The Bluecoat in Liverpool on 3 March.

Past event | 4 February – Mishka Henner

Mishka Henner, a Belgian artist living in Manchester, is well known for his conceptual referencing of photography as a cultural form in the conditions of new image technologies and the internet. His practice belongs to the growing number of post modern artistic strategies that both use and critically address the techniques of digital data gathering and manipulation, satellite imaging, surveillance, appropriation and the repurposing of found imagery. Henner was shortlisted for the prestigious Deutsche Börse Photography Prize in 2013 and for Prix Pictet in 2014. Alongside his gallery work, he is also a member the ABC Artists’ Books Cooperative, a network of artists creating and disseminating their publications by print on demand.

Past event | 11 February – Caroline Achaintre

Caroline Achaintre draws on a wide range of cultural references and influences - from German Expressionism to the Arts and Crafts movement, from Mardi Gras and carnivals to horror and science fiction, and from catwalk fashion to animism and ethnology - to create striking, colourful and often large-scale works in ceramics and hand-tufted wool. She uses these and other traditional media and techniques in ways that emphasise the process of making and appear at once labour-intensive, spontaneous and playful. Born in France and raised in Germany, Achaintre trained as a blacksmith before studying art at Chelsea and Goldsmiths College. Her most recent solo exhibitions include De La War Pavilion in Bexhill-on-sea, Moco, Montpellier, and Belvedere 21, Vienna.

Past event | 18 February – Adam Budak

Having studied theatre studies and the history and philosophy of art and architecture, Adam Budak has worked over the last two decades as a contemporary art curator at Art Bunkier Sztuki, Cracow, Landesmuseum Joanneum, Graz, the Hirshhorn Museum, Washington, and most recently the National Gallery, Prague. He curated the Polish Pavilion at the 9th Architecture Biennale in Venice, 2004, the Estonian Pavilion at the 55th Venice Biennale, 2013, and the Czech Pavilion at the 58th Biennale last year. In 2008 he was a co-curator of Manifesta 7 in South Tyrol and is currently working in the region on his third edition of Biennale Gherdëina, Ortisei, opening in June 2020. Among many others, he has worked with such acclaimed artists as Louise Bourgeois, John Baldessari, Sharon Lockhart, Monika Sosnowska, Cerith Wyn Evans, Ai Weiwei and Brian Eno.

Past event | Tuesday 25 February – David Bellingham

David Bellingham's prolific output as an artist and publisher of small books and printed ephemera is notable by the artist's ability to do a lot with little. He follows the traditions and strategies of conceptual art and visual and concrete poetry by using the most economical of means to propose intellectually rigorous reflections on art, culture, politics and contemporary experience. His texts, drawings, objects and sculptural installations are concise, formally modest, often humorous and always poetic. Bellingham lives in Glasgow where he studied - and now teaches - at Glasgow School of Art. He has had numerous solo exhibitions throughout Scotland and abroad, most recently at Phoenix, Brighton, curated by David Shrigley.

Past event | Tuesday 3 March – Simon Gowing

Simon Gowing is a curator and director of Tanya Leighton gallery in Berlin. Established in 2008, the gallery has grown into one of the foremost spaces in the city for contemporary work by artists from around the globe. Alongside contemporary painting and sculpture, the gallery's trans-generational programme is known for an emphasis on the historical legacy of experimental cinema, performance, minimal and conceptual art. Before joining the gallery in 2016, Gowing was curator at The Common Guild, Glasgow, worked as assistant curator on the 2014 edition of Glasgow International and as a project manager at The Modern Institute.

Past event | Tuesday 10 March – Maeve Rendle

Maeve Rendle's recent work in live performance and video resists an easy categorisation. Drawing on texts from the European literary canon – Chekhov, DH Lawrence, Beckett, Sartre and others – it plays with the social, personal and political uses and limits of language, voice and the communicative gesture. Rendle often works with large casts of performers, theatre and music students, professional actors or volunteers, yet her works are remarkable by their sense of intimacy, nuance and pared-down aesthetics free from the theatricality of much of contemporary production. Rendle studied in Nottingham and Manchester and lives in Preston. Through exhibitions and performances in most of the public galleries in the North West (including the Whitworth), as well as abroad, she has established herself as one of the most interesting artists in the region.

Due to unforeseen circumstances our Tuesday Talk with Claudette Johnson on Tuesday 17 March has been cancelled and will be rescheduled later in the year. 

Claudette Johnson

Claudette Johnson, the Manchester-born founder member of the radical BLK Art Group is widely recognised as a leading figure in the British Afro-Caribbean artists movement as well as one of the most masterly figurative artists working in Britain today. In her large-scale, energetic, confident and visually exuberant drawings in pastel and gouache on paper she confronts the historic conditions and conventions of the representation of black women in Western art. Her work is as engaged in the political discourse on race and identity as it is a deeply humane and personal reflection on the experience of people of African heritage in today's Britain. Having exhibited widely across the UK since the 1980s, Johnson had a major retrospective at Modern Art Oxford last year; her work is held in many public collections, including Manchester Art Gallery.

Enjoy previous talks and other audio recordings from the Whitworth's Soundcloud stream