• 28 to 29 November 2019
  • Co-organised by the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art & Tate Britain
  • Tate Britain and Paul Mellon Centre

On the occasion of a major exhibition at Tate Britain, this conference takes the art and life of the exemplary Romantic artist William Blake (1757–1827) as a launching-point for exploring politically pressing questions around the economics of creative freedom, the politics of self-expression and the mythology of the artist.

Through presentations and artistic interventions, the event will facilitate creative dialogues between the historic and the contemporary, experience and theory, art and politics, and across and between disciplines. These will consider the work of William Blake with the context of Romanticism and the artistic currents of his times, the creative legacies of his work and the contemporary resonances of Blake’s vision.

The conference starts with a keynote lecture by artist Laura Grace Ford on 28 November at Tate Britain and follows with a full day's conference at the Paul Mellon Centre on 29 November.

28 November, Keynote (Tate Britain)

Tickets for the keynote lecture should be booked via Tate's website.

29 November, Conference (Tate Britain and Paul Mellon Centre)

9:00–10:00: William Blake Exhibition private view at Tate Britain (Please enter via the Manton Entrance)

Take public transport to transfer to the Paul Mellon Centre

10:30–11:20: Registration & Coffee

Session One, chaired by Mark Hallett (Paul Mellon Centre)

11:20–11:40: Silvia Riccardi (University of Freiburg)
“What the hand, dare sieze the fire?” William Blake's Media-Transcending Journey

11:40–12:00: Todd Dearing (Flinders University)
Etching Out Blake’s Mythological Artist in Contemporary Times

12:00–12:30: Q&A

12:30–13:30: Lunch

Session Two, chaired by Martin Postle (Paul Mellon Centre)

13:30–13:50: Marte Stinis (University of York)
Blake, Swinburne, and Art for Art’s Sake

13:50–14:10: Colin Trodd (University of Manchester)
Modern Culture and The Blake Spectrum

14:10–14:30: Jason Whittaker (University of Lincoln)
The Eye Altering Alters All: Blake and the Psychology of Reception in Contemporary Visual Art

14:30–15:00: Q&A

15:00–15:30: Tea

15:30–16:30: Panel discussion with Martin Myrone (Tate), Amy Concannon (Tate), Dave Beech (UAL) and Laura Grace Ford

16:30–17:00: Performance by Luca George (Royal College of Art)

17:00: Close

Tate Britain: Map for Manton Entrance