S1: Turner’s Light

Andrew Graham-Dixon’s talk (20/10/21) on Turner pivoted on three ideas: an obsession with light, finding a new visual mode ‘grand narrative’ in painting that differed from Rennaissance mythic depictions, and that his work was instrumental to modern notions of the artist as expressive ‘auteur’. It was his mix of romantic engagement – light, vortex, extreme weather – with the sublime that caught my interest, typified by blinding light. This Turneresque valuation of light has its echo in folk horror and the use of the sun not as personification (Apollo. Helios etc), but instead as unseeing, regardless of human life and trials. Does this make light and not shadow essential to the Gothic? My summer paintings tried for the hallucinatory colour as a mode of conveying folk horror, but I now want to focus instead on blinding light, either via the nocturne or most interestingly through a shimmering, shattering dissolution of form. The light that fractures, atomises, and dissolves objects.

By tanyakrzywinskablog

After working in the computer industry and spending some years conducting research into cinema and digital media, I became convinced that the innovative qualities of videogames as participatory media required closer academic attention. As such I have spent most of my career championing the inclusion of games within the academy, and arguing for games as an art form, a role I continue as a Professor at Falmouth University. Alongside this, and my scholarly work on the Gothic, I also maintain, in various forms, a visual art practice. This blog comes out of enrolling on the MA Fine Art degree programme at Central Sr Martins. It is mainly a record of my reflections on the work that I have undertaken for the degree. After having written about folk horror in games and cinema as an academic, this blog will focus on folk horror as a focus for my art practice.

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