Lecture Programme


Lectures at the Lit & Phil

These talks are organised by the Lit & Phil (you don't need to be a member in order to attend any of their public events), and tickets cost £4 per talk, from the Lit & Phil Library, 23 Westgate Road, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 1SE, in person or over the phone (0191) 232 0192. It is advisable to book seats in advance; if you reserve a ticket and are subsequently unable to attend, please let us know as we often have a waiting list.

Gail-Nina resumes her series of triads of art lectures on linked topics in August, with three talks on The Bloke. Then, in the autumn term, she resumes with his counterpart, The Tragiuc Heroine. These lectures can be enjoyed separately - you don't have to book for all three.

Wednesday August 1st, 6.00 pm
Lovers, Popes and Soldiers: Men in Renaissance Art
When discussing the way people are shown in art, we often give less attention to the masculine figure. These lectures, starting with Mediaeval/Renaissance depictions of masculinity, remind us that men might be shown as individuals, ideals and stereotypes, with relation to status, temperament and fashion. From striped tights to clerical robes, this talk examines the way art constructs and reflects not only how men looked, but how they wanted to be shown.
Wednesday August 8th, 6.00 pm
Courtly Magnificence and the Dandy: Men in 17th and 18th Century Art
As court fashions reached new heights of formality and artificiality under such rulers as Louis XIV, the masculine figure became a construct of satin, lace and powdered wig. Perhaps it was in struggling to get free from this image that quieter and more practical tastes prevailed, but the 18th century dandy kicked back by embracing fashionable extremes that were a gift to satirical cartoonists. Class, money, age and occupation all contributed to a wide panorama of masculine imagery.
Wednesday August 15th, 6.00 pm
From the Victorians to the Twentieth Century
Faced with what was virtually a uniform of sober black suits, how did the 19th century artist find enough variation to make a good picture? From Impressionists and Pre-Raphaelites to the art of the twentieth century we explore the inventive handling of apparently limited possibilities, the manifestations of a new sort of dandy and the emergence of The Bloke - that quintessential chap who still colours our expectations (and possibly our dreams).

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Wednesday October 3rd, 6.00 pm
Helen of Troy and the Classical Femme Fatale
Wednesday October 10th, 6.00 pm
Cleopatra and the Allure of the Exotic
Wednesday October 17th, 6.00 pm
Ophelia, the Beautiful Victim

Summer lectures at Woodhorn Museum

Lectures will take place at Woodhorn Museum, QEII Country Park, Ashington NE63 9YF. Tickets, £3 are bookable through the Lit & Phil. Woodhorn now has a new membership scheme - you can buy an Annual Adult pass that allows 12 months access to the museum, with no parking charges*. Usually £7, if you buy this at one of these lectures, it's just £3.50 (£3 concession).

Thursday August 9th,2.00 pm
A Brief History of Collecting
Time, money and a touch of obsession have encouraged the long-established practice of gathering together categorised items. This may be for reasons of scientific research or family history, but is often for the sheer pleasures offered by accumulation and display. This illustrated talk explores the history of collections, including the early 'Cabinets of Curiosities' that brought together weird and wonderful and mysterious items from around the world, and considers the changing face of museums today.
Thursday August 16th,2.00 pm
The Art of the Postcard
Despite new and more instant means of communication, the postcard remains as a physical testament to our changing taste and need to keep in touch. The ones we know best are cards showing a particular place, but a deeper look reveals the popularity of sweet sentiment, family photos, vulgar humour and stylish design, not to mention the occasional addition of glitter, fabric and even hair. This illustrated talk explores the history, design and function of postcards, and their continuing role as historic collectables.