Duncan Bullen




University of Brighton, United Kingdom


Born in Norwich, Duncan Bullen completed a BA (hons) in Fine Art at Leeds Polytechnic in 1989. He then went onto complete an MA in Printmaking from the Royal College of Art.   In 1991 he was awarded a printmaking scholarship at the British School at Rome.  After which he undertook a series of annual residencies at the Eremo di Santa Caterina, a former hermitage on the Italian Island of Elba. In 2005 he was artist in residence at the Experimental Printmaking Institute based at Lafayette College, Pennsylvania.

He has had several solo exhibitions since 1992 including Dark Light (2001) and From Silence (2003), Jill George Gallery, London, Night Prayers (2004), Eremo di Santa Caterina, Italy and Silence and Light (2006), University of Chichester. His work has been included in many group exhibitions in the United Kingdom, United States of America, Latin America, Africa, the Far East and Europe, most recently at Soundwaves Festival (2011), Brighton, Drawing of the World (2009), Museum of Art, Seoul, Korea and Figuring Light; Colour & the Intangible, (2008) Djanogly Gallery, Nottingham.

Since 1999 he has worked as a Senior Lecturer at the University of Brighton, where he is currently Course Leader for Fine Art Printmaking.


Chromatic Fields: Print Media and the Artist's Book


My research interests centre around drawing as a form of meditative inquiry into colour as light, silence, time and perception, in which print media and the 'artist' book have a pivotal position. Drawing (I see printmaking as an extension of drawing) is reduced to the fundamental activity of making one mark after another, in both intuitive and predetermined sequences. In recent drawings colour is activated by a concentrated series of dots (almost like pixels in a digitised image) of colour pencil. When viewed from a distance, they dissolve, producing a fluctuating surface of indeterminate colour.
My commentary will focus on a collaborative project with composer Jamie Crofts, which centres on a limited edition book-work which seeks to assimilate different disciplines, in this case, drawing, music and print media, as a means to examine aural and visual liminality. The project investigates the relationship between composition, notation, drawing, music and silence, as well as the importance of accuracy and inaccuracy of the human hand, resulting in fluctuations in touch and pulse.  A shared interest in repetition and near ' repetition allows for the possibility of variable permutation of small units, in which the interactive act of opening and turning pages adds a sequential and temporal dimension. The book incorporates screen-printed score, image, and contains a CD of mp3s and data.
The paper will also discuss the nature of a collaborative practice between artist and composer, and artist/composer and printer/designer. My concern is with positioning print as an extension of drawing, and as a means of extending its field through the vehicle of the artist's book and collaborative practice. My reductive abstraction invites a slowing down of visual perception and the attentive nature of compositional processes connect to ideas of contemplative practice that run counter to a society fixated by speed.


Tuesday 27 September


3:30pm - 5.00pm






www.duncanbullen.com; http://artsresearch.brighton.ac.uk/research/academic/bullen
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