Automatic Romantic-Synthetic Sublime: The ‘blot’ paintings of Alexander Cozens.

About This Project

A talk that continues the Williamson’s series The Things that live Under the Stairs.  Artist, curator and lecturer Vincent Lavell will be giving an in-depth response to the Williamson’s works by Alexander Cozens.

150 years before the Surrealists experimented with automatic drawing, Alexander Cozens was creating landscapes of the imagination.  How do his ideas resonates with our ideas today of the landscape, travel and the search for the sublime?

Vincent Lavell will respond to a work by Cozens from the Williamson store, in an attempt to examine our own responses to the landscape and seeking the ultimate travel experience.

This talk will take place on Thursday 16th May at 7pm.  Tickets are £3, available on the door.  The Williamson Cafe will be open for food from 6pm (cash only).

Alexander Cozens (1717–1786) was a British landscape painter in watercolours, born in Russia. He taught drawing and wrote treatises on the subject, evolving a method in which imaginative drawings of landscapes could be worked up from abstract blots on paper.

Vincent Lavell was born in Liverpool in 1960. He studied painting at Liverpool Polytechnic (1983-86) and at the Metropolitan University Manchester (1992-93).   Lavell has worked in a variety of educational contexts including universities, prisons and hospitals. His work has been widely exhibited and one of his paintings is in the Williamson’s collection. From 1989 to 2004 Vincent worked as a freelance educator and Education Curator at Tate Liverpool. He continues to teach full time at Wirral Met College and has a studio based in Liverpool.

THE THINGS THAT LIVE UNDER THE STAIRS:  Tangential talks inspired by the Collections

This talk is part of a series of monthly lectures taking places on the third Thursday of the month at the Williamson Art Gallery. Artefacts in this collection currently reside in the basement of the building. These objects rarely, if ever, see the light of day and are a curious mix indeed!

To find out more about the series, or other talks at the Williamson, check our Events pages.

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