What Makes Us Human?


Girl with a White Dog 1950-1 by Lucian Freud 1922-2011
Girl with a White Dog 1950-1 Lucian Freud 1922-2011 Purchased 1952 http://www.tate.org.uk/art/work/N06039

This Spring, CPVA invites you to join us for a series of panel discussions and seminars as part of our collaboration with the Tate Britain. Bringing together leading Art Historians, Philosophers and Artists we will be discussing the ideas behind the work of some of the most influential and powerful modern painters.

A ‘thrilling and thoughtful exhibition’, (Tim Adams, The Guardian), the exhibition All Too Human now open at Tate Britain provides a fantastic opportunity to explore these artworks and the philosophical ideas behind them: in particular, we’ll look at The Gaze, The Body and Anxiety.

Join us on the 12th May, 19th May and 2nd June at Tate Britain’s Clore Auditorium and find out more about the sensuous, immediate and intense experience of life in paint, as captured by these painters who strove to represent human figures, their relationships and surroundings in the most intimate of ways.

To book tickets for the sessions,

Each event will consist of a panel discussion followed by an additional seminar led by experts from CPVA, allowing a closer look at the philosophical texts and arguments in play.

‘Philosophy in the Gallery’ is a collaboration between The Centre for Philosophy and the Visual Arts at King’s College London and Tate, supported by the Cultural Institute at King’s.

© Tate Image Lucian Freud Girl with a White Dog 1950–1

Arts Meets Philosophy: CPVA Artists in Residence

Migration, Meaning, Time: CPVA Artists in Residence. Bush House Arcade, London

Exhibition: 1000-1700 Weekdays, Tue 26th Feb – Fri 22nd March (Free)

Opening and Talks: Tue 26th Feb 1800-2000
Registration Required for the Opening and Talks here

Listen to the Podcast about the exhibit ‘Sense of Time’ Soterious here

… or Watch the film

Follow us on twitter @Philosophyarts  to find out about future residencies.

The 2019 Bush Hous exhibition explores and challenges philosophical conceptions of migration, time and meaning. Resident artists Becky Brewis, Ben Cain, Ted Hunt and Jort van der Laan present work in response to research in the Department of Philosophy by Dr Sarah Fine on the ethics of migration, Dr Christopher Hamilton on the search for meaning and Professor Matthew Soteriou on the nature of time.

Ted Hunt’s work Sense of Time investigates the intersections between our ancient behavioural-driven selves and modern technologically-driven selves.

(c) Ted Hunt, Sense of time, 2018

Ben Cain’s practice deals with themes of work, labour and artistic action. Cain has recurrently explored art’s ambiguous relationship to industry, commodification and immaterial labour.

Working primarily with video, printed matter, and sculptural installation, Jort van der Laan’s work investigates ways in which body and mind are flesh-bound to a political present.

Using pencil and video, Becky Brewis’ work explores memory and the grubby handling of images over time.

becky brewis prints by kodak 4

(c) Becky Brewis, Prints by Kodak 4 (2018)

cpva event flyer 2019


Exhibition Free

Eventbrite Registration required for Opening Talks and Drinks, Tue 26th Feb 1800-2000. Register here

All Inquiries to philosophyandvisualarts@gmail.com

2018 (Now Closed)

Join us for an exhibition, talks and drinks showcasing the latest work by artists in residence at the Centre for Philosophy and the Visual Arts. Through their practice, CPVA Resident Artists explore, engage with and challenge philosophical models of freedom, meaning, purpose and truth. This show brings together their recent work and establishes a platform for dialogue between philosophers, artists and the public.

Artists Melissa Franklin, Hester Reeve, Cheryl Simmons and Siobhán Tattan will present new work made in response to lectures by John Callanan on Kant’s Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals and Christopher Hamilton on the Search for Meaning.

The exhibition will be open on weekdays between 10am and 5pm, from 30 January to 8 February. You will find us in the Arcade in Bush House, Aldwych, London.

We will be open late on 5 February, when there will be talks by the artists and academics, followed by drinks! Doors will open at 5.30 pm, and talks will start at 6. Tickets for this event are free, but spaces are limited. Please register at Eventbrite to secure a place.

We hope to see you all there!


In collaboration with King’s College London Cultural Programming


Open Call: Artist-in-Residency 2018


The Centre for Philosophy and Visual Arts, in partnership with Kunsthuis SYB (the Netherlands), is proud to announce a continuation of their joint residency programme. This two-stage residency is an exciting opportunity for artists with an existing interest or curiosity in philosophy to be included in university life, attend the lecture series they applied for, and develop their research, after which they will be awarded time in Kunsthuis SYB to develop (a) new piece(s) of work.

Visual artists working in any discipline or media are invited to write a proposal in response to a topic discussed one of two lecture series. The Search For Meaning, led by Christopher Hamilton, discusses the human condition in light of philosophical and literary sources. The Ethics of Migration, by Sarah Fine, offers an overview of key debates about the ethics of migration in contemporary political philosophy.

For more information about what this residency offers, please download the info pack. To apply, please email us a completed application form, along with a CV and up to 5 images, by midnight on Friday the 3rd of November. We will aim to make our final selection by the 1st of December.

** Update **

Applications for the 2018 residency are now closed, and we are in the process going through all submitted applications. Thank you to all of you who have taken the time to apply. We aim to make our final selection by the 1st of December. Applicants will be informed via email, and once our selection has been finalised our resident artists for 2018 will be announced on this website.

CPVA at Tate – ‘All Too Human: Bacon, Freud and a Century of Painting Life’

CPVA is delighted to announce an upcoming series of lectures, panels and workshops examining the philosophical context and implications of Tate Britain’s 2018 ‘All Too Human’ Exhibition.

Girl with a White Dog 1950-1 by Lucian Freud 1922-2011

Details on the exhibition and booking can be found here.

Details on the lectures and workshops will be posted on this page.

CPVA would like to acknowledge the generous support provided for this project by the King’s Cultural Institute.


Practice-Based Research Degrees in the Arts: Problems and Prospects

“There are hundreds of kids in Britain doing PhDs – PhDs! – in fine art….It could not be a worse situation”

Michael Craig-Martin, in Baldessari and Craig-Martin (2009) ‘Conversation’ in Madoff (Ed) Art School (Propositions for the 21st Century), pp 45-6.
Image courtesy of The Wildgoose Memorial Library © Jan

The last decade has seen significant growth in the number of practice-based or practice-led research degrees offered by universities and art schools. This event will examine the problems and prospects for such courses. How do students and supervisors understand the relationship between the practice and thesis components of the project? How should they do so? What are the broader effects on artistic practice of training within such a framework. Ultimately, are practice-based research degrees fit for purpose?

This round table discussion was held on Friday the 24th of March 2017 at King’s College London, and was realised in collaboration with The Culture Capital Exchange. Below is a full recording of the event:

Dr. Jonathan Clark (Head of Research, Trinity Laban Conservatoire)

Prof. Robert Hampson (Distinguished Research and Teaching Fellow, Royal Holloway)

Dr. Jane Wildgoose (Artist, Researcher, Broadcaster)

Dr. Sacha Golob (King’s College London, Philosophy and Director CPVA)

Introduced by:
Evelyn Wilson (The Culture Capital Exchange)


This spring, the CPVA is launching a new initiative that aims to allow artists to develop their practices with the help of access to academia. These mini-residencies will be small-scale, with artists being invited to join lectures, seminars, or meetings that have specific relevance to a project or a body of work. The mini-residency programme will be ongoing, on an ad-hoc basis, and will – for now – be granted by invitation only.

The first artists to be invited to a mini-residency are Melissa Franklin and Cheryl Simmons. They will be welcomed to King’s later this spring, and will take part in a joint presentation with our other artists in residence towards the end of 2017.

Continue reading “Mini-residencies”