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From antique to life: drawing, painting and printmaking inside the historic art school

Six-day practical and theoretical summer course

Short course

23—28 July 2018

This event has now ended

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Courses and classes at the Royal Academy

Photo by Evan Hutchinson, 2017

An intensive, expert-led summer course exploring the traditional teaching methods pioneered by the Royal Academy Schools, including working from antique classical casts as well as life models, exploring drawing, oil painting and printmaking.

Led by Mark Hampson, Head of Fine Art Processes for the RA Schools, and using the RA’s unique teaching facilities and Collection, participants are offered access to our highly acclaimed week-long summer course within the historic studios of the RA Schools. This is a rare and exclusive opportunity to experience working in the purpose-built Life Room and painting studios, both of which carry a palpable echo of the RA’s creative and practical history.

“This course has transformed my opinion about art. The calibre of instructors, lecturers and materials was unbelievable. This week has been amazing.”Previous summer course participant, 2017

Participants attending this unique course will follow in the footsteps of such historic artists as JMW Turner RA, John Constable RA, William Blake RA and John Everett Millais PRA, who entered the RA Schools as probationary students. The series of classes offered will echo and quote from the linear educative approaches – firstly drawing from the antique on day one, followed by the nude model on day two; focusing on proportion, anatomy and gesture; before engaging with classes in painting with oils and exploring introductory printmaking techniques throughout the rest of the week. This will be experienced in the same double-height, vaulted, sky-lit studios that have inspired generations of art students at the RA.

“The level of instruction, the technical demonstrations, and the historical context is something you do not get in any other school. It is the reason why the Royal Academy is the Royal Academy.”Previous summer course participant, 2017

Taking the traditional teaching methods of the RA Schools as an entry point of focus, participants will be introduced to drawing from the antique using examples from its historic cast collection. Drawing in pencil, chalks and charcoal from these will naturally evolve into the advanced study of drawing from both male and female life models. Following on from this, an extended period of exploring approaches to both printmaking and oil painting from the life figure will form the second part of the course. Technical approaches will include observational drawing, rendering, tonal and colour work, compositional organisation and a variety of physical applications towards surface painting.

The practical course will be complemented by additional experiences that include a tour of the RA Schools, the RA archive and collections, private state rooms and exhibition visits at the RA. Highlights from the RA archive and treasures from its collection will be visited and discussed and participants are invited to attend additional lectures that are rooted in both related and historic subjects such as the history of life drawing, the history of the Royal Academy and its 250 years of influence, and the relating cultural contexts.

The course will last six full days and is designed to provide tutor feedback and maximum teaching time, to study directly from the RA’s unique teaching collection with exclusive access to its world-renowned specialist facilities and expert staff.

For more information about the course timetable, and for any enquiries, please contact Mary Ealden, Academic Programmes Manager - mary.ealden@royalacademy.org.uk / 020 7300 8079

● Fully booked

● Cancelled

23—28 July 2018

The RA Schools, Royal Academy of Arts

£2,400. Includes all materials, light refreshments and lunch each day and drinks receptions throughout the week.