JUST LIKE THE REAL THING?
Speaker: Professor Nicholas Oddy, Head of Department of Design History & Theory, GSA
Thursday 05 March 2020, 6pm for 6.30pm
When Turner painted Rain, Steam and Speed he painted to capture an atmosphere, a sort of ‘railwayness’. Were today’s Turner to submit the equivalent painting to the Guild of Railway Artists he would most likely find it treated with suspicion, possibly rejected even; though the Guild have Rain, Steam and Speed on their website. So, what is the problem? Today’s railway artists like a different form of verisimilitude. This lecture moves from the world of art into the world of models and toys considering ideas of representation, authenticity and accuracy as it goes along.
Nicholas Oddy is Head of Design History & Theory at Glasgow School of Art. He has devoted much of his life to collecting things, a lot (but by no means all) are related to railways. He writes a lot about them too, but in the academic world he is better known for research into cycling history and road signage.
Nick’s academic interests are broad and tend to be driven by direct engagement with objects in the collectors’ market, mainly relating to late 19th and early 20th century. Including those relating to cycling and cycling culture generally. In the last few years this has moved into road signage and politics. Kitsch artefacts are also a favourite topic.
(The image is the packet for a children’s stencilling kit, probably from c1860, maker unknown.)
All Thursday Talks are open to the public. All Thursday Talks are £7 for members, £9 for non-members and £5 for students.
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