Thursday 14 February 2019 at 8.00 pm

Out of the Blue: the Story of Blue in Art


Lecturer: Alexandra Drysdale
Location: DESY Auditorium


All are welcome and no registration is required. Entry fee for guests is € 15 and for students € 5.

Lecture Summary

Have you ever wondered where the blue in medieval illuminated manuscripts came from, or how chemists of the nineteenth century invented synthetic blues?
The Ancient Britons tattooed their bodies in a blue dye, and, two thousand years later in a Parisian art gallery Yves Kline in a public performance painted his nude models blue and dragged them across his canvasses.
Why does the Virgin Mary wear blue and what is significant about the blue used by Gainsborough in his portrait “The Blue Boy”? These are some of the questions that Alexandra will be addressing.
The story of blue takes us from the lapis lazuli mines in Afghanistan to the studios of Titian, Vermeer, Hokusai, Picasso and Matisse, to name but a few. The spirituality of Blue led Kandinsky and Franz Marc to name their art movement “The Blue Rider” in 1911.
As a professional artist , Alexandra pays special attention to the language of art within each painting: the structure, colour and tone.


Blue Horse 1, (1911) Franz Marc

Biography of Lecturer

Alexandra is an art historian and a professional artist specialising in painting, sculpture and performance. Her lectures combine art historical knowledge with personal expertise in aesthetics and artistic techniques. Art from all periods, including examples of her own work, is examined from an artist's point of view. This entails a perceptive analysis of a painting's structure, its meaning, and its relationship to the history of art. She puts a particular emphasis on studying the symbolic language of the imagination. She holds a BA (Hons) Fine Art from Chelsea School of Art and an MFA from Cambridge School of Art.

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Alexandra Drysdale's website


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