Lecture programme 2019/20

Monday 16th September 2019

Bruegel: A very contemporary Master

Lecturer: Nirvana Romell

Nirvana holds a BA in History of Art and an MA in English language and Literature.  She has 17 years experience of lecturing on three continents.  Since her arrival in the UK in 2003 she has worked as a freelance lecturer, public programme consultant and tour director.  She regularly presents art history courses and lectures as well as training staff and volunteers at the Manchester Art Gallery, the Walker Gallery and other art and learning institutions. Although she now lives in Geneva, she remains loyal to her British audience and is a frequent visitor to the North West.

"450 years have passed since the death of Pieter Bruegel the Elder, one of the greatest painters of his time and the founder of a prolific artistic dynasty.  Just over forty of his paintings have been preserved to this day and they still mesmerise the viewers and puzzle the art historians.  His art amuses, amazes, teaches, tells stories and sometimes even frightens; it never ceases to connect and inspire thoughts.  Most importantly, in terms of art history, it also innovates on a grand scale, not just within the Dutch borders, but in the overall history of European art."


Monday 21st October 2019

  The Age of Jazz! Art Deco fashion and style

Lecturer: Dr. Sally Hoban

Sally has lectured extensively on art, design and antiques at the University of Birmingham and throughout the UK.  She has broadcast on BBC 2, BBC 4 and BBC Radio 4.  Her publications include Miller's Collecting Modern Design. She is a freelance journalist. 

Art Deco swept across Europe and America in the 1920s, bringing with it a transformation in design.  From brightly coloured geometric patterns to the soaring lines of New York skyscrapers, Art Deco helped introduce Modernism to a mass audience.  The new style also affected fashion, which was reflected in Hollywood movies.  The lecture also examines the movement's legacy today. 

Monday 18th November 2019

Fine Art Forgery: Craftsmanship or Conjuring Trick?

Lecturer: David Phillips

David studied History at Oxford and has worked for the Nottingham castle Museum.  He has lectured in Museum studies and Art History at the University of Manchester.  His publications include "Exhibiting Authenticity.".

"Fake scientific and documentary evidence can play as big a role in forgery scandals as clever fabrication of the artwork itself.  This "ripping yarns" survey features the familiar Tom Keating and Van Meeregen with a supporting cast of exotic rogues, coming right up to date and local with the Greenhalghs of Bolton.


Monday 9th December 2019

The Cuisine of Art and the Art of Cuisine

Lecturer: Ghislaine Howard

Ghislaine is a painter of national repute who has exhibited and published widely.  She is an associate lecturer at Manchester Metropolitan University.  She also lectures at her studio gallery and a wide range of public venues. 

"This lecture will be a feast for the eyes and tickle the taste buds.  It will feature the art, anecdotes and recipes of famous artists who loved their food.  We will look at Toulouse Lautrec, famous for his fabulous meals and infamous cookbook, as well as many others, including Renoir, Monet and Cezanne.  Bring a pen and paper!!"


Monday 20th  January 2020

Urban Noir: Edward Hopper's "Nighthawks"

Lecturer; Dr. Kathy MCLauchlan

Kathy graduated from Oxford University and the Courtauld Institute. She is a course director at the V&A and a freelance lecturer specialising in 19c Art History.  She is currently head of the Visual Art Department at Morely College, London.

"Edward Hopper's paintings of urban life are typically characterised by a sense of loneliness and alienation.  The most celebrated is "Nighthawks".  It is the inexplicable quality of the scene portrayed that has made it so intriguing to generations of viewers.  The lecture considers the background to this masterpiece and offers possible reasons for its lasting fascination."


Monday 17th February 2020

Provenance matters: The mass faking of the Russian Avant-garde on the world art market

Lecturer: James Butterwick

James began collecting and selling Russian art in 1985 and has established himself as one of the world's leading experts.  He moved to Moscow in 1994, becoming the only foreign member of the Russian Society of Pri collectors.  In 2008 he became the only foreign member of the International Confederation of Antique and Art dealers in Russia.  He acts as a source of museum quality paintings with flawless provenance. In 2015 he opened the first gallery dealing in early 20c Russian art.


 "With the opening of Russia post Glasnost came a huge estimated that as many as 95% of the surge of interest in Russian Avant-garde.  However this brought with it an industrial scale faking of Russian Art.  Reputed specialists have estimated that as much as 95% of the pictures on the market are unacceptable to leading auction houses, museums or dealers.  This lecture will examine the evidence for and against such paintings."


Monday 16th March 2020 

`(The Material Culture of Al-Andalus

Sadly this lecture has had to be cancelled due to the lecturer having a hip operation!  We seem to be fated in our attempts to get a lecture on the art of the Middle East! )

Joan is delighted to welcome Adrian Sumner who has very kindly agreed to step in at the last moment to replace our booked speaker with his new lecture on The History of Fashion in Art and Art in Fashion from the Middle Ages right up to Alexander McQueen.  This lecture is lavishly illustrated!


Please note that the April, May and June lectures have been cancelled due to the outbreaK OF CORONAVIRUS. `We hope to resume in September!