Lanchester Gallery Projects



David RushtonFrancis McKeeInga ZimprichNeil CummingsNeil MulhollandPen DaltonSimon BellTerry Atkinson

What is to be done? The Coventry Echo

18 November 2010

LGP organised a symposium to analyse the echoes of events at CSAD (then the Lanchester Poly) 1968–72 and look at current art educational practice and the perceived systematised failures and/or successes. The speakers examined the role that the regional art school played in the “radical” UK art education narrative and its significance to the wider counter culture of the 70s.

In the late sixties and early seventies, CSAD held a vital subset of staff and students who together were responsible for formidable critical opposition to the art education model’s perceived compliance with the market definition of the art object and its reliance on the centrality of the author. The Art and Language collective’s critical agenda was to shift focus beyond the material paradigm and to construct an education capable of reflecting conceptual practice. The 70s administration of CSAD repelled this self conscious overturn of the traditional material/author-centric regime. This unyielding stand, common through regional art schools at that time, created a network of opposing force which became part of the wider counter culture of the decade.

The symposium reviewed the legacy of Art& Language’s Art Theory course in relation to examples of contemporary institutional and pedagogical practice and questioned if the  art education institution can function as a site of self-organisation, agitation and change.

Terry Atkinson: Artist and Co-Founder of Art & Language

Simon Bell: Senior Lecturer, Design and Visual Arts, CSAD

Neil Cummings: Professor of Theory and Practice of Art, University of the Arts London

Pen Dalton: Artist and writer

Francis McKee: Curator, Writer and Director of the Centre for Contemporary Arts, Glasgow

Neil Mulholland: Professor, Edinburgh College of Art

David Rushton: Artist and Co-Editor of Politics of Art Education

Inga Zimprich: Co-Founder of The Faculty of Invisibility