Friday, 20 August 2010

Old Drawings #59

Small Lemba Drawing (Charcoal on cartridge paper)

Despite my reservations about the first trip to Cyprus, I returned to Paphos in 2000. I still didn't like it much, but a visit to the Cyprus College of Art at Lemba did pique my interest.

For some years the students at the College had been building and adding to a strange wall round the edge of the yard. Made of concrete, wire, bottles and general junk, it was a fascinating structure and it led me to produce some drawings. This was the first.

My interest was such that I immediately made this painting from the drawing. As was always the case at Uni, no one expressed any interest in either the painting or the drawing and I came to believe that it was in some way wrong.

Looking at it now, I realise that it was, as I secretly suspected then, an interesting direction I could have taken. Another nail in the coffin of my University course.

Organic Form, Lemba (Oil on blockboard, 21 x 22 ins)


Bee Skelton said...

Ouch! Not quite the recommendation for me just starting off on my uni course. But just goes to show, you conquered inspite of it. When alls said and done, self-learning/crit/appraisal is truer. Maybe uni's purpose is to give students options and ultimately the confidence to kick against it all and go their own way in the end. Just wish I'd done it years ago, to give time for all the aftermath. I need to live to be atleast 100 I think. Here's to long life ;)) Hugs Bee

harry bell said...

The problem with my course was that the tutors, in addition to not being particularly good at tutoring, abandoned the uni's traditional approach to drawing, painting and sculpture ("the Scottish model") for which is was well regarded, and insisted on trying to get the students to embrace the more fashionable Conceptualist approach, despite not practising that approach themselves.

I resisted their attempts and they ignored me, so all I really got out of it was the use of a very big studio for four years. It's taken a long time for me to realise that.

Unfortunately, I've seen the same thing happening elsewhere, including some Scottish art schools who had previously been a bastion of excellence. Fingers crossed that your course doesn't fall prey to the rot.