Report on CACH Lecture by Stephen Moonie

On 8th June members enjoyed the third in a series of Saturday morning Lectures organised by Maggie Bassendine for the Contemporary Art Club.

This Lecture, entitled ‘Conceptual Art in Britain and the US’ was delivered by Dr Stephen Moonie, an art historian at the University.  Normally these talks are presented in the Gallery learning room but on this occasion it was delivered in one of the main university lecture theatres.  The venues’ IT and layout added significantly to the enjoyment of the event.

Dr Moonie stressed that conceptual art proper was bound up with the cultural ides of the late 60’ and early 70’s.  Many people think that conceptual art is reflected in the work of Damian Hirst and Tracy Emin, for example.  But this is not strictly conceptual art. What an artist actually does was challenged by all conceptualists. This idea meant that conceptual art was not immediately appealing. Although many of the conceptualists started out as painters, the conceptual art of the late 60’s and 70’s was not necessarily beautiful or saleable.  Stimulating questions like ‘what actually makes art, art’  and ‘can an artist unmake artwork’ challenged the idea that artwork needs to be a ‘physical thing’

This was just a sample of the talk, which was most enjoyable and stimulated many questions from the audience.

If you are nterested in joining CACH (Contemporary Art Club at the Hatton)? Please email Marion Thompson

Contemporary Art Club at the Hatton (CACH) August meeting

Contemporary Art Club at the Hatton logo

The next meeting of the Contemporary Art Club will be held on Saturday 10th August, 11:00-13:00, Learning Room, Hatton Gallery

The purpose of CACH is to give an opportunity for Friends of the Hatton who are interested in meeting informally to talk about their work and how it relates to art of today. The Club also hosts guest lecturers, most of who are highly qualified speakers or practitioners in art (see diary dates below).

If you are interested in joining CACH or want more details, please contact Marion at

CACH is only accessible to Friends of the Hatton. If you are interested but not yet a member, you can join here.

Report on CACH Lecture at the Gallery – 11th May 2019

London by Enrique Azcobar

On the 11th May members enjoyed an exclusive lecture at the gallery delivered by Enrique Azocar, a Chilean/British artist.

Enrique, who is a part time lecturer in Art and Drawing at Durham University, lives and works in Northumberland. He has worked on art educational programs for TWAM including work at the Laing Art Gallery. Enrique also runs a successful art studio where he tutors painting sessions in various media. Further details can be found at

The talk at CACH generated much discussion, notably with his painting entitled “London” (see above) (oil media, 137 x 125 cm) which depicted an aerial cityscape:

Enrique enjoys the process of making art, the development of an idea within the imagination and its workings in to a physical form. He said “These aerial perspective paintings can be said to encourage a dialogue between the pictorial sublime and the physical relationship between the viewer´s image and their experience of an imaginary urban area, from global macrocosm to the microcosm of its inhabitants’ perspective. These imaginary cities do not simply seek to revisit the urban past or our relationship with it, but to invade and reinvent it closely through its history and geographic design’s patterns.

“My paintings show colour relations and imaginative structures, within one varying composition. I placed pure colours next to each other with mesmerizing effect. I see my paintings as an ambiguous game that moves between the figurative and the abstraction. I have no intention whatsoever to imitate what I see. I’d like to think that I am exploring how artificial and arbitrary “The Sublime” can be, when reconstituted in the context of the studio, by using an imaginatively elevated perspective (aerial view).”

The lecture, which was interesting and informative, slightly overran its time limit due to the engagement of those present. More about the artist and his work can be found on his website,

If you are nterested in joining CACH (Contemporary Art Club at the Hatton)? Please email Marion Thompson

“Conceptual Art in Britain and the U.S.” a lecture by Dr Stephen Moonie

Saturday 8th June, 11.00–‐13.00, Learning Room, Hatton Gallery

Dr Stephen Moonie is an art historian. He specialises in the art and theory of the post-war United States, with a particular interest in the discourse of Modernist painting in the 1950s and 1960s. More broadly, he is interested in art writing, aesthetics and contemporary painting.

Previously, Stephen taught at the Department of History of Art at the University of Warwick. He completed his MA (Hons) at the University of St Andrews, and completed his MA (2005) and Ph.D. (2009) at the University of Essex.

His research interests focus upon post-war art and theory, especially Modernist painting and its criticism. He contributed to the catalogue for the exhibition at Tate St Ives and Warwick Arts Centre, The Indiscipline of Painting (2011).

Stephen is interested in art criticism and the problem of value judgments, and has written articles on the writing of British art critic Lawrence Alloway and the late critic/historian Leo Steinberg.

This lecture is part of Contemporary Art Club at the Hatton, to which all members of the Friends are invited.

Complementary coffee and biscuits available. Booking not necessary.

A talk by artist Enrique Azcobar

A painting by Enrique Azcobar

The talk will take place on Saturday May 11th 2019, 11am – 1pm, in the Learning Room at the Hatton Gallery. Refreshments will be provided.

Enrique’s talk is entitled Sculptural Dimension of Constructing a picture, a ‘harmony parallel to nature’. He is a practicing artist in Hexam and an invited Lecturer at the University of Durham Anthropology Department.

Enrique will analyse and discuss one of his large paintings during the presentation.

Note: This talk is part of the Contemporary Art Club and is only accessible to Friends of the Hatton.

No booking necessary for Enrique’s talk.

Contemporary Art Club at the Hatton (CACH) – Exclusive to Friends of the Hatton

New gallery entrance, photo by Colin Davidson

The next meeting is Saturday 23 March 11am to 1pm in the Learning Room of the Hatton Gallery.

This will include a group discussion about drawing. Please bring along one of your own drawings or images which you have strong feelings about or have responded to in anyway.

The idea behind CACH is to give an opportunity for Friends of the Hatton who are interested in meeting informally to talk about art. ‘Contemporary’ was added to the title to encourage exploration of art produced now.

There have been three meetings so far in November, January and February. At the February meeting we were pleased to welcome Richard Talbot, Professor of Fine art at the University. Richard’s talk was entitled ‘Rediscovering the Past and Celebrating the Future, the Redevelopment of the Hatton Gallery’. This fascinating talk was very well attended and provided a well-informed insight in to the development of the Hatton Gallery over the years. Many thanks to Richard Talbot and also to Maggie Bassendine for organizing it.

CACH is a new venture and we are gradually evolving an informal structure for the meetings, for example, breaking into smaller groups if a large number attend. Everyone then can have the opportunity to discuss interests and hear what is being said. At each meeting we will decide on an idea to talk about at the following meeting.

In addition, we aim to have a guest speaker every alternate month when all members of the Friends would be invited to attend. These events will be advertised in the Bulletin or through ‘Updates by Email’ depending on time constraints.

If you are interested in joining CACH or want more details please contact Marion.

Remember, this is only accessible to Friends of the Hatton.