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Natalie Gale

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Academic Tutor

The focus of my practice is abstract painting, dealing with the materiality of paint and process. It is influenced by fashion trends: colour, surface pattern/print, texture and collection concepts are interwoven with formal painterly concerns as well as histories. My work is often small and overloaded expanding the frontal picture plane into the viewers’ immediate space, thus existing in the realm of Painting in the Expanded Field. 

I have curated and co-organised various exhibitions and events such as the touring show Malerei: Painting as Object, The Hearing Trumpet West Dean College, Chichester including artists such as Phylida Barlow, Alexis Harding, and Salvador Dali. Most recently I have organised a Common Room event, ‘IN PART’ an initiative of Foundation Diploma/Design and Art and Design Extended course to collaborate with artist and designer David Cooper (a former Head of Menswear for Alexander McQueen). This took the form of collaborative daylong workshop and a fashion-based exhibition in the National Glass Centre’s Project Space. 

I have worked in arts education for 15 years, in further, academic and gallery and museum contexts. I have ran The National Saturday Art Club (The Sorrell Foundation) at the National Glass Centre as well as teaching in a number of academic institutions nationally. I embed the University of Sunderland’s ‘student-centric’ ethos within my teaching practice - I believe that it is of great importance for creative students to develop their own individual artistic/creative voice.

In conjunction with this, I take great interest in building students’ critical and theoretical skills ensuring they are confident to discuss their practice professionally within and outside of a university context. In addition, I regularly organise professional opportunities for undergraduate and postgraduate students that have resulted in employment in all cases.

Teaching and supervision

Research interests for potential research students

My interests lie in the expanded field of painting. It is my current endeavour to create works that are cross-disciplinary and have a strong physical presence but with an undeniable connection to painting. I appropriate Eduard Manet’s concept of projecting space outward from the frontal picture plane into the viewers’ immediate space for instance, by, loading sculpted acrylic and oil paint on gesso grounds.

Alongside this the 60’s artist group Support Surface whose concerns were surface qualities, paint materials, colour treatment play a key role in expanding my own questioning of what is painting? What constitutes the boundaries of painting, if any? How it currently exists and what it may become? I am excited by the present homogenized inclusivity of painting that not only responds to and includes its historic discourse but also an endless variety of new media.

  • Painting in the expanded field
  • Fine art
  • Contemporary art
  • Contemporary fashion
  • Art and design education

Last updated 23 May 2023