Participant Artists 2015

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Introduction to the Painting Workshop, 22 June 2015, University of Wolverhampton:  (FLTR) David Gleeson, Simon Harris, Maggie Ayliffe, Simon Francis, Christian Mieves.


Participants Dirty Practice Workshop 2015

Maggie Ayliffe

Maggie Ayliffe is a painter and a cultural theorist. Ayliffe’s work focuses upon questions of gender and the feminine within the broad field of visual culture. She is an experienced lecturer in both Visual Culture theory and Fine Art practice and is an active member of a wider research community – having contributed to numerous symposia and public debates.

Ayliffe’s artistic practice engages the relationship between the feminine and painterly abstraction. She has shown her paintings extensively in the UK. More recently she has participated in exhibitions in the Netherlands and St Petersburg. Situated as it is within ongoing debates around art and gender and the current role of abstract painting, her work has been reviewed extensively in the art and national press.

Simon Harris

I am a painter who is actively engaged in the exploration and validation of pictorial space in painting. The main aim of my practice is the re-negotiation of formalist modes of painting practice and raises one central question: What are the implications for an immersive pictorial space in painting when thought outside of the historical figure-ground or subject-object regimes, but thought rather as a constructive enquiry for the viewer. In essence: not what is painting but what does painting do.

My research has re-examined aesthetic theory in which beauty and sublime have been explored through the concepts of duration; space; the virtual; and the actual. Subsequently, it is the inherent ‘fold’ between the viewer, surface and the pictorial plane that is pivotal in the exploration. In addition, it is the fundamental temporality of both the pictorial plane and its relation to the cinematic that the notion of the static image is re-imagined as a dynamic duration for painting.

Christian Mieves

My recent paintings draw upon a variety of art-historical sources. All of these paintings, however, are subject to a particular kind of treatment. They exemplify what I term the contaminated image: this process is at work on the painting surface, where the source image is always subtly modified through the painted gesture.

Mark-making here is not an index of expression, where the traces of paint are irrevocably tied to the artist’s sensations. Instead, the registration of the mark, and its emphasis upon material facture, explicitly foregrounds the contingency of the image. The continual adjustments and elisions of the surface create the sense of an image perpetually in flux. Subject to the transformations of the painted mark, the image is opened up to a process of potential corruption or contamination. Through this process, the image is simultaneously disguised and revealed, creating a polarity of distance and proximity: the material surface of the painting contrasts with the elusiveness of the referent.

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David Gleeson

My work is representational and is mostly a slow and thoughtful process. All that I do is grounded in observation which I try to combine with ideas, symbols, narrative, conjecture… In my work I try to look again at the everyday, a world that is barely glimpsed and often overlooked.  There is a bit of mystery, alchemy even, in the craft of painting. Working for long periods on a piece creates an internal tension on one hand and silence on the other. A silence that makes the works immensely contemplative. I prefer there to be a story that is not fully explained. I like the idea that the viewer can complete the story. During the process of development I do a lot of putting in and taking out, so the narrative is constantly changing, which keeps me intrigued.
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Simon Francis

The subject matter of Simon’s two dimensional imagery is about what makes us human.  Our experience of opticality associates strongly with our emotions, memory, cognitive abilities and perceptions in a multi linked process.  Simon’s belief is that the image plays a role of initiating that process and also maintaining communication.

Memory is one human property that Simon finds intriguing.  Memories have a baggage of information and emotions which play a part in determining our values and behaviour.  They become ghosts in our present and we have a relationship with them whether we like it or not.  Simon has made one particular series of digital imagery which dwells upon that relationship.  The information is obscure, the perception confusing but general and intriguing enough that we can associate with the imagery even on a personal level.

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