The award winning New York based art writer and critic Eleanor Heartney, delivered a lecture to a packed Auckland Art Gallery Auditorium on Tuesday January 22. Eleanor was in Auckland as a guest of the Whitecliffe MFA programme and our MFA students attended the lecture and also got to meet Eleanor as part of discussions and critiques that took place as part of the January MFA seminar week.
Her lecture, Art Today - Tales of plastic surgery, genetically altered rabbits, and other acts of art, is based on her recently published survey of contemporary art, which examines the extreme pluralism of the contemporary art world and suggests how we might think about art in an era when all the old categories, definitions and organizational schema no longer seem to work.
In addition to her extensive publishing career, Eleanor has been guest critic in the MFA programme at Montclair State University in the USA and her interest in contemporary art education was manifest in the amount of time she committed to interacting with students during the Whitecliffe January MFA seminar.
Head of Fine Arts Department, Noel Ivanoff said “Our MFA programme revolves around four intensive one-week seminars per year and in our July and January seminars, we are committed to bringing high quality international guests as a means of stimulating conversation, both within our programme and through the wider arts community. Public lectures such as Eleanor’s at the Auckland Art Gallery auditorium are a means of sharing these guests while they are in Auckland”.