The Slade Lectures

The Slade Lectures, which were founded in pursuance of the will of Felix Slade in 1869, focused on art historical topics, as they continue to do so today.  John Ruskin delivered his first lecture as the Slade Professor of Fine Art in 1870.  The Slade Professorship in conjunction with the University’s museums, libraries and college collections helped to foster a wider interest in the history of art.

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The Slade Lectures 2020

Professor Karen Lang

Philip Guston (1913-1980): History and the Art of Painting


Professor Karen Lang has taught at the California Institute of Technology, the University of Southern California and the University of Warwick.  The editor of The Art Bulletin during the journal's centenary year, she has been a Leverhulme major research fellow, a Paul Mellon fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts at the National Gallery of Art, Washington DC, a Getty scholar, Rudolph Arnheim Visiting Professor at the Humboldt University Berlin, and Leverhulme Visiting Professor at the University of Warwick.  Professor Lang is Deputy Chair of the Advisory Board to the research group Bilderfahrzeuge: Warburg's Legacy and the Future of Iconology, which involves the Warburg Institute, London, and Institutes of Art History in Germany, Italy and France.  She is also one of the founding editors of the open access journal 21: Inquiries into Art, History and the Visual/Beiträge zur Kunstgeschichte und visuellen Kultur.  Professor Kang has published extensively on modern and contemporary art, on philosophical aesthetics and on the intellectual history of the History of Art.  The edited volume Field Notes on the Visual Arts: Seventy-Five Short Essays and 'The Ruses of Chance', an invited essay for the Critics Page of The Brooklyn Rail, have recently appeared.  Philip Guston: Locating the Image, an exhibition of the artist's works on paper will open at the Ashmolean Museum in November 2019.  Details can be found here.

The series of eight lectures will take place at 5pm, Weeks 1-6 in Hilary term 2020.  The lectures will be delivered by Professor Karen Lang, Slade Professor of Fine Art 2019-20. 

22 Jan:   History and the Art of Painting

29 Jan:   Troubled Beauty

5 Feb:     Fable

12 Feb:   Locating the Image

19 Feb:  The Little Theatre of Philip Guston

26 Feb:  Wandering into the Night


All welcome to attend. Booking not required.

Venue: Mathematical Institute, Oxford.

Please note: no photography or recording is allowed during these lectures.

The Slade Lectures 2020 poster is a winning competition design created by Ena Naito, a 3rd year Fine Art student at The Ruskin School of Art.

Past Lectures

slade lectures
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Slade Lectures, 2017