I’ve been having a bit of a jolly on a Monday for the last ten weeks in London. It all started when I was mooching through the Royal Academy of Arts website just before Christmas and came upon their series of lecturers called From Plate to Palette: a history of food in art. Well of of course my interest was piqued and my lovely hubby suggested it could be my Christmas present. Happy days all round.
If I have to be honest and these are just my thoughts, a couple of lectures just didn’t hit the spot, but its a new course and that happens. But when they did, the stars sparkled brightly and eagles soared as we reached heady heights of new understandings. Then it was blissful and worth every single penny. I think the most enjoyable lecturer and what we had all come to see was beautiful pictures of food, was from Quentin Buvelot, Senior Curator, Mauritshuis, The Hague. His enthusiasm and knowledge was captivating, I could have spent many hours listening to him as we explored the Dutch still life masters together. It was a memorable experience to have an expert highlight the hidden secrets in the grand masters of Clara Peeters and Osias Beert with such passion. One can only hope that he comes over and lectures in the UK again, he is not to be missed.
There were other lecturers that kept me spell bound, Georgina Gold who before starting her own company was a Senior Director in the Impressionist and Modern Art department of Sotheby’s in London – as well as long and illustrious career in Sotheby’s in Australia and many other posts. Her talk on the impressionists was mesmerising to the point that at the end of the lecture I looked down at my notes and found I hadn’t made any. I think we all bounced out of the lecture that day, it was brilliant.
Katy Deepwell, Professor of Contemporary Art, Theory and Criticism, Middlesex University gave me new insites into art and feminism. It was at this point that I realised that I really know nothing about feminism and art, so managed to make enough notes to explore that area further.
And of course I enjoyed the photography in week 9, by Susan Bright, lots to think about photographically speaking. Susan Bright gave us a huge amount of photographers to explore, I shall be going through my notes for a long time to come from this lecture.
And I think that is the point of it, of coming to something like a lecture. On face value, its an hour or two and depending on the day, your mood set or the lecturer will depend on how well you receive it. But if the lecturer can find a way of disseminating the information through to you, (and it does help that the RA gave us full notes including photographs after the lecture) it filters through for years to come. I know in the past I have been to lectures that have changed my outlook and my life completely, I see the world through different eyes, because of a lecture.
The amount of information given from the Plate to Palette lectures was huge, and now I am going to go through my notes for the next few months, probably much longer, taking my time, buying books, seeing art exhibitions, reading further. Who knows where it will take me and thats the part I love the most.