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Small-scale sculpture

Weekend-long practical course

Short course

● Fully booked

  • 23 February 2019, 10.30am — 5.30pm
  • 24 February 2019, 10.30am — 5.30pm
This event has now ended

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Julian Trevelyan RA, Driftwood Relief, 1975.

Oil on wood. 508 mm x 600 mm x 63 mm. © Royal Academy of Arts, London; photographer: Paul Highnam.

This course encourages participants to explore the meaning of sculpture in both a personal and a practical sense, using a diverse range of non-traditional art materials, techniques and objects to create unique small scale pieces.

‘The bricoleur is still someone who works with his hands and uses devious means…’
Claude Lévi-Strauss, Anthropologist, 1997

The term bricolage derives from the French verb bricoleur, meaning to tinker, and in English is closely linked to the phrase ‘do-it-yourself’. It refers to the construction of an object or artwork using found materials, often those closest to hand, or to a work created using a diverse range of mixed media, often mass-produced. Gathering, selecting and combining objects can create artworks that challenge and engage the viewer in both serious and humorous ways.

Particularly popular during the postmodern era, the approach was adopted when traditional materials were not readily available and elements of bricolage can be seen in the Surrealist, Dadaist and Cubist movements. However, the approach took on a significant political dimension in the 1960s and 70s when it was adopted by the Italian Arte Povera (Poor Art) movement, with artists such as Marisa Merz using the technique to challenge the commercialisation of the art world at that time. Arte Povera artists constructed pieces using rubbish and ephemera to both devalue the materialism of the art world and to place value on the everyday.

Over the course of the weekend, participants will use a range of techniques, including assemblage, collage, simple mould-making, binding and joining in order to create small-scale pieces inspired by a particular book, place or memory significant to them. Taking inspiration from contemporary artists including Yinka Shonibare RA, Grayson Perry RA, Anselm Kiefer Hon RA and Cornelia Parker RA, participants will gain further insight into artists’ ideas and methods through two short slideshow presentations.

One-on-one teaching time will enable individuals to create a truly personal piece, with the opportunity to share and discuss work and ideas with the group throughout the weekend.

● Fully booked

● Cancelled

  • 23 February 2019, 10.30am — 5.30pm
  • 24 February 2019, 10.30am — 5.30pm

The Clore Learning Centre, Royal Academy, Burlington Gardens

£420. Includes all materials, lunch and a wine reception at the end of the first day.