Explore the evocative nature of visual image within the tumultuous contemporary culture we are experiencing. Create dynamic, petite yet vital bodies of works by integrating photography with the abstract materiality of the artist’s hand.

There are no available registration dates at this time.

 NOTE: This class will be held in a live, online format using the Zoom Platform. 
Class meets Mon & Wed 4-6pm ET from Sep 19-28, 2022 + arranged 1:1 Crits with instructor

I thought of a labyrinth of labyrinths, of one sinuous spreading labyrinth that would encompass the past and the future and in some way involve the stars. — Jorge Luis Borges, from “The Garden of Forking Paths”

Grounded in experimentation, lecture and conversation, Culture, Identity & the Overpainted Image explores the evocative nature of visual image within the tumultuous contemporary culture we are experiencing. Through a head-long immersion into visual culture, we will create dynamic works from photographic images in strong consideration of not only accepted principles of visual art, but of the highly illuminated relationship in which art, history, culture, and visuality constantly impact the boundaries by which they are defined.

We will create petite yet vital bodies of works by integrating photography with the abstract materiality of the artist’s hand.  Our tools will be high-quality photographs, film, or video and wet media in either ink, oil or acrylic paint. This class is intended for artists, photographers, cinematographers and image makers of all experience levels.  

This workshop is taught asynchronously from my studio loft for four, two hour group sessions – as well as individual crits with the instructor.  Be prepared to show up, to create and experiment with your works as described below, and to contribute to the conversation!  This is an all-inclusive class without regard prior experience.

  • Each class will begin with a critique of works from the previous class, a lecture of contemporary art and cultural norms, and work. To accomplish this, your works MUST be presented in a PDF slide (Preview works well).  
  • The first session will begin with introductions and shared group discussion about our own individual fascinations and concerns, moving quickly into personal explorations of landscape, portraiture, and still life.  The instructor will provide also an introduction to relative contemporary art and artist’s working in dialogue with class goals.
  • Between classes, students are encouraged to continue working on their own (as time dictates) and to pursue a continuation of thought and ideas that are important to them by maintaining a sketchbook. All students will schedule an individual consultation with the instructor.
  • Our final class will focus on group presentation, continued studio work, discussion and review.

For the first class, please show up with a tangible example of your current work from which to begin work: a printed photograph or video still, on matt or glossy paper.  Have digital files at hand as well to share and discuss your work. 

Students should also be prepared with:

  • Continuing edits of digital images 
  • PRINTS from which to work with wet media
  • Desktop from which to set up and work
  • Wet media of choice: inks, oil, and acrylic paints, appropriate tools and mediums 
  • Blank page sketchbook for drawing, writing and recording perception

Suggested Texts:

  • Visual Culture: The Study of the Visual after the Cultural Turn, Margaret Dikovitskaya 
  • Post Constructuralism, A Very Short Introduction, Catherine Belsey
  • Regarding the Pain of Others, Susan Sontag
  • Photography, Trace and Trauma, by Margaret Iverson
  • On Photography, Susan Sontag

*A materials resource list will be emailed to registered students prior to class. 

Will's strait by Kate Beck 2022

See more of Kate Beck’s work at https://katebeck.art.

All images: ©Kate Beck

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Instructor: Kate Beck

Katherine Beck (b.1956, University of Maine, Bennington College, Maine College of Art, Goddard College, MFAIA) is an American painter, writer and freelance editor. She is known for her poetic, large-scale surfaces imbued with motion and light. Her latest works merge photographic image with the abstract materiality of painting, using color and line to blur the space between figuration and abstraction while referencing both the personal and global experience.