Art Talk: Modernism in Art @ Espai la Senieta, Moraira
Mar 25 @ 10:30 – 20:30

Lecturer: Brian Nicholls

For many people Modern Art can be confused with Abstract Art, which is more correctly called Abstract Expressionism. One perception as to what is ‘modern’ depends on whereabouts in history one is standing.
In the middle of the 19th century J.M.W. Turner, towards the end of his life, produced work that was considered at the time to be incomprehensible. Some experts now believe that he was in fact the ‘Father’ of the Impressionist movement.
Clearly, Modern Art is not a precise definition, and today most art historians regard it as a, post-Impressionist, general classification, that includes ‘Fauvism’,’The Blue Rider Group’,’ Expressionism’, ‘Cubism’, ‘Futurism’, ‘New York Realism’ and on up to the ‘Pop Art’ era.
I will present examples of work in all of the above groups and will try to give some indication as to what the artists of the 20th century, now free of the need for photographic realism, sought to communicate in their work.

Art Talk 8th Apr: The Life and Works of David Hockney @ Espai la Senieta, Moraira
Apr 8 @ 10:30 – 12:30
Date: 8th April 2019 Location: Salón de Actos, Espai la Senieta, Moraira (next to the large free car park) Subject: The Life and Works of David Hockney OM, CH, RA. Lecturer: John Hopwood Everyone knows of the artist David Hockney and most know that he is a Yorkshire lad who has done well. How well he has done can be gauged by the fact that he sold his first painting for just £10 in 1955 and on the 15th November 2018 his ‘Pool with two figures’,painted in 1971, sold for $90.2m (£70.35) – a world record for a living artist. David Hockney is now recognised as probably the most influential and prolific British artist of the 20th century. In the short time available it is impossible to cover his life and work in great detail but I have endeavoured to present a ‘potted history’ of his background, the times he has spent in Yorkshire and California and illustrations of some of the many ways in which his art has developed over the years.
Art Talk: Outdoor Art in Spain: Architecture, Sculptures and Murals @ Salon de Actos
Apr 29 @ 10:30 – 12:30

Lecturer: Peter Atkinson

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The presentation will explore a national selection of the art that can be viewed in Spain’s outdoors, covering the work of A-listers and unknowns.  It will range from whole buildings  (religious, civic and residential) to minor architectural details, and will include art that is transient or trivial as well as the monumental and permanent.  We’ll look at bells, clocks,fountains and streetlights; at saints, pilgrims, crosses and cloisters; and at local and national heroes.

Banksy has said that “art should comfort the disturbed and disturb the comfortable”.   A few of the items that we look at may meet one or both of these lofty aspirations.  Less ambitiously, I hope you’ll find all the work to be pleasing or interesting.

History Talk 13th May: 1492 and All That! @ Espai la Senieta, Moraira
May 13 @ 10:30 – 12:30
Date: 13th May 2019 10:30 Location: Salón de Actos, Espai la Senieta, Moraira (next to the large free car park) Subject: 1492 and All That! Lecturer: Cheda Panajotovic 1492 has become a magical number that is now seen as the dividing line between ‘The Middle Ages’ and ‘The Renaissance’. It happened to be the year in which Cristopher Columbus ‘discovered’ the lands of America and for some reason is seen as ‘the moment’. In this talk we ask if Columbus deserves his fame and indeed if there was much more to this period in Europe’s history when the world actually DID change forever.
History Talk 27 May: The Franco Years and the Restoration of Democracy @ Espai la Senieta, Moraira
May 27 @ 10:30 – 12:30

Date:  27th May 2019 10:30

Location: Salón de Actos, Espai la Senieta, Moraira (next to the large free car park)

Subject: The Franco Years and the Restoration of Democracy

Lecturer: Alan Oliver

The Civil War ended on 1st April 1939.  The German and Italian forces that supported Franco left Spain after the Victory Parade in Madrid. Franco consolidated his rule through the Falange, and constantly changing his government ministers. It was effectively a one party fascist state, with the Catholic Church playing a major role.

Franco had a historic meeting with Hitler in 1940, when no agreement was reached.

After WW2 Spain became increasingly isolated by the democracies but received economic support from Argentina. Eventually, at the height of the cold war, the Americans offered Franco a loan in return for bases. Thereafter, the Spanish economy slowly improved.

Franco agreed with Don Juan, the Spanish pretender to the throne, that his son Juan Carlos would be educated under Franco’s control, in an attempt to persuade Juan Carlos to accept the Falange doctrine, and ultimately to succeed Franco on his death.

When Franco died in 1975, Juan Carlos was quickly crowned, but immediately moved towards establishing a democratic government and a constitutional monarchy. In February 1982, an attempted army coup was denounced by the King who appeared on television, and stated that Spain was now a democracy. He has remained very popular in Spain as a result of this action.

In 1986 under the Socialist Government of Gonzales, Spain joined the EU, and rapid economic development occurred. More recently, since joining the euro, and after the financial crisis of 2008, the economy has declined with high unemployment especially amongst young people, The country has huge debts both at national and comunidad level. Juan Carlos abdicated in 2014 as a result of failing health and declining popularity. His son  is now King Filipe VI, Recently, the Spanish political scene has been dominated by the issue of Catalan independence.

Further reading

The Franco Years and the Restoration of Democracy

  • Hooper   John  (2006)                   The New Spaniards       Penguin Books
  • Preston   Paul  (1995)                    Franco                             Fontana Press
  • Preston  Paul    (2004)                   Juan Carlos                     Harper Collins
History Talk 10th June: History of The Bicycle @ Espai la Senieta, Moraira
Jun 10 @ 10:30 – 12:30

Date: 10th June 2019

Location: Salón de Actos, Espai la Senieta, Moraira (next to the large free car park)

Subject: The History of The Bicycle – Not Intended for Biking Enthusiasts!

Lecturer: John Hopwood

This will be a light-hearted but informative talk on the history of bicycles.

It will include details of the earliest known forms of bicycle through to the latest developments as well as some surprising details concerning the best selling vehicle in the world – the Chinese Flying Pigeon with more than five hundred million produced since it was first introduced in 1950.

The talk will also include some irreverent looks at those MAMILS (Middle Aged Men in Lycra Tights!) we see hobbling round the local coffee bars.

Art and History Talk: The Art of Illustration @ Teatro, Espai la Senieta
Jun 24 @ 10:30 – 12:30
Art and History Talk: The Art of Illustration @ Teatro, Espai la Senieta

Date: Monday 24th June 2019 10:30

Location: Salón de Actos, Espai la Senieta, Moraira (next to the large free car park)

Subject: The Art of Illustration

Lecturer: Brian Nicholls

Due to a rather curious snobbery in the Art World, Illustrators are often regarded as some sort of lesser being than ‘real’ artists. 

The only way that this could be quantified is that Art should be driven purely by emotional interaction with the subject matter whereas the illustrator is offered a commission to illustrate a particular subject. 

In terms of skill, creativity, craftsmanship, technique and quality there is no difference.

Many famous artists in history, such as Toulouse Lautrec have accepted commissions to produce commercial work. Toulouse-Lautrec is just one notable example.  

It is true that a lot of pedestrian, boring and uninteresting work is produced primarily for the advertising industry. This tends to overshadow the huge volume of highly talented work that is produced by illustrators in many other areas.

In this revised talk I will take a brief historical look at the early, often very funny, educational illustrations of the mid 19th century and then move on to cover more modern work in the Publishing, Historical, Political, Graphic and Children’s book areas.