PAINT Symposium 

Saturday 27 July,  10am – 5pm
£15 for the day, students have free entry  


A symposium on the subject of painting today to be held at Messums West on 27 July 2024 with leading artists, academics, curators and art historians exploring contemporary painting dialogues including concepts of abstraction and discussing the current position of abstract painting. The day will be divided into two parts, the first of which will consider concepts of abstraction and the role of abstract painting and a second session focusing on figuration. The closing event is the John Golding lecture, an inaugural event named after the artist and art historian, John Golding, whose writing and practice represent a framework for analysing and discussing the abstract language. Golding’s seminal book Paths to the Absolute (2000) continues to inform thinking on abstract art today.

The morning session forms part of our John Golding Lecture Series launched in conjunction with MESSUMS ORG representation of his estate and dedicated to understanding and updating consideration of abstraction in painting. We gather minds together to share thoughts on contemporary practice and evaluate our understandings of the past. Speakers will consider the inspiration and innovation of abstraction internationally with particular focus on Mexico, America and Australia.

The afternoon session forms part of our representational painting review series. Academics, established artists, and the next wave of young painters choosing representational painting as their language examine and share insights into current preferences and practices to understand its vitality and direction. This session will include guest speakers and a panel discussion to debate ideas.

The day will culminate in the first keynote speech from the John Golding Lecture Series. This lecture series will begin at Messums West before touring to other venues giving audiences the opportunity to engage with Golding’s legacy.

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