So what’s it like going on one of our courses?

From Contemporary Italian Filmmakers to Foundation for Contemporary Art, our January evening courses kick off this week. Each course gives you the opportunity to explore a subject you’re interested in and meet like-minded people in a social environment.

But what’s it actually like going on one of our courses? Mary Stark one of our digital reporters lets you in on her experience…

“After going to see UnSpooling in the galleries at Cornerhouse in October, I signed up for the Artists and Cinema course because I wanted to find out more about the artwork and the curators’ ideas.  The exhibition guide explained that the eight week course would ‘introduce film-goers to contemporary artists’ relationship with film, exploring their responses to Hollywood and arthouse cinema’. As a current MA Photography student in Manchester with a background working in video production and in the arts, the course seemed an ideal way of enriching and expanding my personal interests, university studies and art practice.

The eight sessions involved a wide range of activities led by an interesting mix of artists, lecturers and gallery directors.  They included a tour of the exhibition with one of the curators, Andrew Bracey, and a panel discussion of ‘What Makes a Successful Artist Film?’ with artist David Blandy and director of Castlefield Gallery, Kwong Lee.

As part of the course, there were also two feature film screenings in the cinemas at Cornerhouse: Zidane: A 21st Century Portrait, directed by Douglas Gordon and Phileppe Parreno and Hunger, directed by Steve McQueen. The screenings and discussions were well underpinned with informal presentations and lectures giving historical and contemporary perspectives on artists’ work with film and moving image. After the final session, the course was concluded by a screening of selected shorts by Rosa Barba, along with a Q&A session by the artist.

Andrew Bracey, the artist, lecturer and curator who led the course, delivered a wealth of information with infectious personal passion and broad knowledge backed up by his own art practice. It was useful to be able to speak to a curator and artist who so openly discussed his ideas.

There was an unusual collection of backgrounds and interests from other people on the course, with art or film students, to people working in galleries or film archives, to those who were artists themselves or avid cinema-goers looking to broaden their understanding. The artists whose work was discussed and the guest speakers were leaders in their field. It was pretty impressive to have a Q&A session with Rosa Barba when she was showing at Tate Modern and had recently been in the Liverpool Biennial.

The course was rich with information and felt contemporary and current. The way it had been thoughtfully programmed with such a diverse range of activities meant that it was always enjoyable. ‘Artists and Cinema’ has affected the work I have been developing in my own practice and has enhanced my university studies immensely. I can highly recommend anyone with an interest in art or cinema to sign up for a course at Cornerhouse because for me, it has been a valuable and worthwhile experience.”

Mary Stark
Cornerhouse Digital Reporter

To see how Mary’s work has developed since attending the course at Cornerhouse click here.

If you would like to attend one of our January courses all the details can be found on our website. You can book a place online or ring our Box Office on 0161 200 1500.

Please note the German Political Cinema course has already sold out. Places are still available for Contemporary Italian Film Directors and Foundation of Contemporary Art. So book now while you still can!