Professor Neil Cox (History of Art, University of Edinburgh) publishes on modern art in France, especially artists and writers associated with Cubism and Surrealism, and also has interests in aesthetics and continental philosophy.
Neil has written extensively on the work of Georges Braque and Picasso, both in terms of their common enterprise in Cubism and their subsequent and very different careers. Alongside this, his work on the question of violence in surrealism has revolved around the intellectuals Georges Bataille, Michel Leiris and Maurice Heine, and their fascination for the figure of the Marquis de Sade.
Among his key publications are Cubism (Phaidon: London, 2000) and The Picasso Book (London: Tate, 2010). Beyond this, he has published many articles and essays on topics ranging from Renaissance representations of the wars of religion to two recent key essays on American sculptor Richard Serra (2015 and 2017). He has curated several major exhibitions, such as Cock and Bull Stories: A Picasso Bestiary (1995, Croydon Clocktower); Constable and Wivenhoe Park: Reality and Vision (2000, Art Exchange, University of Essex); and most recently In the Presence of Things. Four Centuries of European Still Life Painting, Part 2: The Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries, 1840-1955 (2011, Calouste Gulbenkian Museum, Lisbon).
From 2013-16 he was Director of the ARTIST ROOMS Research Partnership, based in History of Art at the University of Edinburgh, working with Tate and National Galleries of Scotland to develop research and public engagement events around the most significant collection of modern and contemporary art in the UK. This led to many events and publications, including publications by University of Edinburgh students and staff, film screenings, conferences, public presentations and debates.
Neil’s seminar “The Shape of Feeling” focusses on recent abstract drawings by American artist Richard Serra, and builds on a recent catalogue essay of the same title. Neil will explore the play of medium and process in this large body of work via ideas drawn from philosophical aesthetics and literary theory. The idea of the lyric, and what the lyric might mean in modern drawing, is central to the discussion.
The seminar will be chaired by Professor Andrew Patrizio.
The talk is free and open to all. Drinks are served afterwards in the John Higgitt Gallery.