Successful British artist James Gillick visited The Thomas More College of Liberal Arts in Merrimack, N.H., at the beginning of this semester for a lecture on the "vocation of the artist and the role of beauty in the contemporary world," the College reported.
Gillick, who sells his works of art in top London galleries, explained to students that artists need not only skill, but also a business sense to succeed.
The College reported:
He is unusual in being able to both paint well and know how to market his work. He sells to both the secular and Catholic markets, religious and non-religious subjects. Grinding his own paints and framing his own canvasses, he draws on both modern and traditional artistic techniques to create paintings that will last for generations. In addition to his own work, Mr. Gillick employs up to four apprentices a year, offering intensive, highly directed training in everything an artist needs to succeed – from painting technique to marketing and book-keeping. Jacqueline Del Curto, a former Thomas More student, is currently studying under his direction.
...Exhorting the students of Thomas More College to hold fast to the lessons learned from their consideration of the good, true, and beautiful, Mr. Gillick concluded his lecture by taking a series of questions and answers such as: why does apparently ugly art seem to sell? Is there a danger for Catholic artists of being compromised in their work? Is it beneficial for an aspiring artist to study under a professional? Thoughtfully addressing students’ questions with wit and dexterity, Mr. Gillick’s lecture opened the winter semester on a rousing note.
Thomas More College is unique among Catholic colleges and universities in its offering of special guilds for students to join. The guilds "contribute to the development of the student, the life of the College and the common good," according to the College. The Saint Luke Sacred Art Guild educates students in the methods, tradition and theology of art. Students study under artist-in-residence David Clayton and have the opportunity to paint sacred icons.
The Thomas More College of Liberal Arts is recommended in The Newman Guide for its strong Catholic identity.
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