BIOGRAPHY

Biography

Alastair MacLennan was born in Scotland and has lived and worked in Belfast, N. Ireland, since 1975. His achievements as an artist have had a significant influence on performance art, nationally and internationally.

Performing in diverse contexts, his works convey political, social and cultural conditions. His Actuations (performance/installations) seek to fuse interrelations.

His works have (also) been presented as part of Black Market International (in Europe, America, Canada, Asia, Mexico, etc.),  by Trace Gallery, Cardiff, by the National Review of Live Art, Glasgow, by Le Lieu, Quebec, by Bone International Performance Art Festival, Bern and through NIPAF in Japan. He represented Ireland at the Venice Biennale in 1997. 

He has works in private collections in America, Canada, Italy, Poland, Germany, Scotland, England, Ireland, Wales and in the public collection of the British Arts Council, England.

He has received support for his works from national and international funding bodies, including AHRB (Arts and Humanities Research Board), Arts Council of N. Ireland, University of Ulster, Arts Council of Canada and the Scottish Education Department. He won the Visual Arts Category of the Belfast Arts Awards ( ’98 ) and is a recipient of a London Performance Award for outstanding creative achievement ( ’88 ), in association with Dance Umbrella and Time Out Magazine.

MacLennan is currently Emeritus Professor of Fine Art, from the University of Ulster, Belfast, an Honorary Fellow of Dartington College of Art, Devon and an Honorary Associate of the National Review of Live Art, Glasgow.

 

CV

Current

Emeritus Professor in Fine Art, University of Ulster, Belfast, Northern Ireland

Honorary Fellow, Dartington College of Art, Devon, England

Honorary Associate, National Review of Live Art, Glasgow, Scotland

D.o.B. 3 February 1943, Blair Atholl, Scotland

Education

1960-65 Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art, Dundee, Scotland DA and Post Diploma.

1965-66 Teacher Training, College of Education, Dundee, Scotland Specialist Art Teaching Certificate

1966-68 School of Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, USA MFA Degree

Employment

2009 – Emeritus Professor of Fine Art, University of Ulster at Belfast

1992-2008 Professor in Fine Art, University of Ulster at Belfast

1991-1992 Senior Lecturer in Fine Art, University of Ulster at Belfast

1985-1991 Senior Course Tutor in charge of MA Fine Art, University of Ulster at Belfast

1979-1984 Senior Lecturer in Fine Art, and Course Tutor for MA Fine Art, Ulster Polytechnic, Belfast

1978-1979 Senior Lecturer in Fine Art, Ulster Polytechnic, Art and Design Centre. Course Tutor for postgraduate studies in Painting and Sculpture

1978 Open University Tutor for “Art and Environment”.

1975-1978 Senior Lecturer in Fine Art, Ulster Polytechnic, Art and Design Centre, York Street, Belfast, Northern Ireland. First Year Fine Art Course Tutor

1975 Lecturer in Liberal Studies, Blackpool College of Technology and Art, Blackpool, England

1975 Part-time Lecturer in Art, Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Technology, Dundee, Scotland

1974 Adult Education Painting Instructor at Langara College, Vancouver, BC, Canada

1974 Instructor in Fine Arts for the physically and mentally handicapped in Pearson Hospital, Burnaby General Hospital, Banfield Extension of Vancouver General Hospital and Sunny Hill Hospital for Children, Vancouver, BC, Canada

1974 Instructor in Fine Arts at Vancouver Free University, Vancouver, BC, Canada

1973-1974 Officer (Jikijitsu), Vancouver Zen Centre, Vancouver, BC, Canada

1972 Adult Education Painting Instructor, Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada

1971 Painting Instructor, Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada

1970-1971 Assistant Professor, Foundation Studio, Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada

1969-1970 Lecturer, Art Department (Art Appreciation, History, Studio) Acadia University, Wolfville, Nova Scotia, Canada

1968-1969 Assistant Professor, Art Department (Art History, Appreciation, Studio) Eastern Illinois University, Charleston, Illinois, USA

1968 Painting Instructor, Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan, USA

1968 Graduate Assistant – Etching, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Illinois, USA

1966 Art Teacher, Belmont Summer School Camp, Perthshire, Scotland

1965-66 Student Art Teacher, Morgan Senior Academy, Goodlyburn Primary School, St Michael’s Secondary School, Dundee, Scotland

Other Professional Activities

2020

Q and A speaker on own donated art archive to DJCAD/University of Dundee, on research away day, at Malmaison Hotel, the Mal Suite, Dundee, Scotland.

 

Interviewed by BBC TV, re. participation in ‘TOGETHER NOW : The Engagement Project’ (organised by KCAT, Callan, Co.Kilkenny, Ireland) at the F.E.McWilliams Gallery, Banbridge, Co.Down, N.Ireland

 

‘ABOUT TIME’. speaker, for one day seminar, part of BIPF 2020, Bergen International Art Festival, in Kunst Garasjen, Bergen, Norway.

 

 Bbeyond committee- member, hosting ‘One-To-One’ sessions with fine artists from all disciplines, re. issues pertaining to their art practice.

 

Participation with ‘IN and EASE’ Zoom Meeting, re ‘Draw Breathing’ and ‘LIM(i)NAL’ online drawing exhibition, organised by Judit Bodor and Adam Lockhart, DJCAD/University of Dundee, Dundee, Scotland.

 

Participation in Trienal Performance DEFORMES ( Chile ) scheduled Zoom meeting, discussing the topic “Performance without Body”, guests being Alastair MacLennan and Boris Nieslony.

 

2019

Co-speaker (as an Edge 88 Artist) on the panel discussion, celebrating the 30th Anniversary of Edge 88, at the Edge of an Era event held at St James Church, Clerkenwell, London, celebrating seminal performance art events which took place in London, England, during the 1980’s.

Participant in performance art workshop ‘Vincular Mind: Sensing, Feeling and Making Sense’ by Denys Blacker, Flax Art Studios, Havelock House, Belfast, Northern Ireland.

Participant in public presentation of performance art workshop ‘Vincular Mind: Sensing, Feeling and Making Sense’ by Denys Blacker, Flax Art Studios, Havelock House, Belfast, Northern Ireland.

Visiting artist/lecturer providing one-to-one tutorials to Master of Fine Art students at University of Ulster, Belfast, Northern Ireland.

Facilitation for KCAT Arts Centre (Callan, Co.Kilkenny, Ireland) ‘Engagement’ Project.

Performance Art Workshop facilitator, for Guyu International Performance Art Festival, in public space, Xi’an, China.

Showing ‘Alchemist’ video (+ ‘Still’ performance) for Radical Re-think Conversations, Regional Cultural Centre, Letterkenny, Co.Donegal, Ireland.

On Panel re; discussion about ‘Street Space for Art Projects’, organized by Mirjami Schuppert, at PS2 Studios, Royal Avenue, Belfast Northern Ireland.

Work Leader at Paul Haller Soto Zen Sesshin at Benburb Servite Priory, Benburb, Ireland.

Panel member discussing durational performance and site-specific art, at Performensk (International Festival of Performance Art) c/o OK16, Minsk, Belarus.

3-day performance art workshop and 4th day public presentation facilitator, Museum of Contemporary Art, Oaxaca, Mexico.

Lecture/discussion of own art work, Sala Audiovisual de la Escuala de Artes Plasticas y Visuales de La Uabjo, Sede Santa Lucia, Oaxaca, Mexcio.

Presentation of own art work and practice at the University of Quebec in Montreal (UQAM), Montreal, Canada.

Presentation of own art work for ‘Conversations in Contemporary Art Practice’, series at Concordia University, Montreal, Canada.

Talk on own art work (& participation in ‘Alchemist’ video by Richard Ashrowan) for Somatic Distortion Series c/o Glens Centre Theatre, Manorhamilton, Leitrim, Ireland.

On panel discussion for ‘New Contemporaries’ at Courtauld Institute of Art, London, England.

Participatory speaker at Museu Oscar Niemeyer, for ‘p.Arte at the Museum’ – 1st International Performance Art Symposium, Curitiba, Brazil.

2018

Leader of 4-day performance art workshop, c/o Limerick School of Art and Design, Limerick, Ireland.

Work leader at Paul Haller (spring) Soto Zen Sesshin, c/o Servite Priory, Benburb, Ireland.

Seminar on own art practice for Dr. Christa-Maria Lerm-Hayes, Professor of Modern and Contemporary Art History and for her art history students, from the University of Amsterdam, in Flax Art Studios, Belfast, N. Ireland.

Work leader at Paul Haller (Autumn) Soto Zen Sesshin, c/o Servite Priory, Benburb, Ireland.

Mentoring/Facilitating for KCAT (Kilkenny Collective for Arts Talent) at Flax Arts Studios, Belfast, N. Ireland.

Selection Panel for emerging artists, c/o PS2, Belfast, N. Ireland, re funding from the Freelands Artist Programme, awarded to 4 organisations (of which PS2 is one) from across the 4 nations of the UK, Scotland, N. Ireland and Wales.

Lecture/presentation on own art practice, Weber State University, Ogden, Utah, USA.

Discussed N. Ireland’s Bbeyond Performance Art organisation’s activities, for ASIATOPIA 2018, at BACC (Bangkok Art and Cultural Centre), Bangkok, Thailand.

Participating artist for ‘Engagement Symposium’ c/o KCAT (Kilkenny Collective for Arts Talent), Callan, Co. Kilkenny, Ireland.

Facilitating ‘one to one’ advisory sessions for Bbeyond Performance Art/charity organisation, Belfast, N. Ireland.

2008

PhD examining and supervisory roles

Committee membership of Bbeyond (performance art organisation) , Belfast, N.Ireland, UK

Committee membership of Flax Art Studios, Belfast, N.Ireland, UK

Performance art workshop for Performance Art Laboratory (PALA), Tejakula, Bali

Performance art workshop, FM. Theatre Power studio, Hong Kong, China

Performance art workshop for artists collective, Dublin, Ireland

2007

Performance Art Workshop, by Black Market International, For New Territories (International Festival of Live Arts), Glasgow, Scotland, UK

Presented a one week Performance Art Workshop in IPAH, (International Performance Art Hildesheim), Berlin, Germany

Co-presented a 2 day Performance Art Workshop with Brian Connolly, at the Firestation Artists Studio, Dublin, Ireland

2005

Curator of international artists for Interakcje(7), 7th International Art Action Festival, Piotrkow Trybunalski, Poland.

Co-Curator of Bus Project, ‘In Place of Passing’, international performance art event organised by Bbeyond, various locations, N. Ireland

Co-Curator of Relations II, Asian/Irish International Performance Art Festival organised by Bbeyond, in conjunction with Catalyst Arts, Belfast, N. Ireland

2004

Member of Bbeyond and co organizer of Relations, a festival of performance art, involving Asian and Irish/N.Irish artists, at Catalyst Arts, Belfast, N.Ireland 

2003

Honorary Founding Member, Trace Installaction Art Space, Cardiff, Wales

2002

Co-Selector of the 2002 Victor Treacy Award, Butler Gallery, Kilkenny Castle, Ireland

2001

Advisor to the Visual Arts Development Committee, Sabhal Mor Ostaig, Isle of Skye, Scotland.

Member of HEFCE UK Universities Research Assessment Exercise Panel 64: Art and Design.

1998

Nominator of Artists for the Paul Hamlyn Foundation (London) Awards to Individual Artists 1998-2000: Visual Arts

1988

Invited by the Irish Commissioner for the 48th Venice Biennale to join the Committee to select the Artist(s) to represent Ireland in the 48th Venice Biennale, Italy

1995

Invited to be on the Advisory Board of Performance ResearchJournal, published by Routledge

Co-Curator of `Exchange Resources´, Festival of Time-based Art involving Artists and Artwork from Canada, Italy, Mexico, Iceland, Poland, Japan, USA, Spain, France, Czech Republic, England, Ireland and Scotland and hosted by Catalyst Arts, Belfast, Northern Ireland

1994

Served as Northern Ireland Arts Council Representative and Selection Panel Member for New Regeneration Trust, re Public Art Commission for Newry City Centre, Northern Ireland

Served on the National Council for Educational Awards, Dublin, as an Assessor Evaluating the Bachelor of Arts Degree in Film/Video at Dun Laoghaire College of Art and Design

1993

Internal Examiner for MPhil, University of Ulster at Belfast, Faculty of Art and Design

Member of External Validation Panel of the Robert Gordon University (Aberdeen) Postgraduate Diploma/MA in Art and Design.

Joined Board of Directors for the new Temple Bar Mixed Media Art Centre, Dublin, Ireland

1992

Selector and Judge for Northern Ireland’s `New Contemporaries´ Exhibition, One Oxford Street Gallery, Belfast, N. Ireland

Co-selector for `Third Degree´ Art projects for the Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin

`Advisory Network´ Artist Associate for Hybrid magazine

Patron for Circa Art Magazine, Belfast, Northern Ireland

1991

Selector, `Available Resources´ Initiatives, Northern and Southern Ireland, Europe and Canada

1990-92

Member of the Arts Council of Northern Ireland Visual Arts Committee. Joined ARCHA (Archives and Research for Contemporary Humanism and Art), Cologne, Germany

1990

Selector for the UK `New Contemporaries´ Exhibition. (Selected work shown in the ICA, London, the Arnolfini Gallery, Bristol, The Third Eye Centre, Glasgow, and the Arts Council Gallery, Belfast)

1988-92

Member of the Board for the Rome Scholarship in Sculpture, London, England

Panel Member reviewing `New Work´ for the Massachusetts Council of the Arts and Humanities, Boston, USA

1986

Chairman for the Banquet Debate, topic `Crossing the Boundaries´ for the National Review of Live Art, Britain’s Performance Art Festival, at Midland Group, Nottingham, England

1983

Member of the Artists Collective of Northern Ireland

One of three organisers and selectors of `Nova´, a touring Northern Irish Arts

Council Exhibition for emerging Irish Art and Artists

1977

Founding member of Art and Research Exchange, Belfast, Northern Ireland

External Assessor

1999-2002

External Assessor for M.A. Fine Art Combined Media Course, Chelsea College of Art and Design, London, England

1998

External Examiner for PhD Candidate, Painting School, Royal College of Art, London, England

1998

External Examiner for BA Honours Fine Art, Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art, Dundee, Scotland

1997-98

Awards Examiner and External Examiner for BA Honours Fine Art, Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, England

1994-98

BA Honours Fine Art Course at Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, England

1993-96

BA Honours Fine Art Course at Staffordshsire University, Sheffield, England

1989-92

External Assessor to BA Honours Fine Art (Sculpture), Kingston Polytechnic, England

MFA Fine Art, Glasgow School of Art, Scotland

NCEA, Ireland

1981-83

Chief External Examiner of Certificate and Diploma Fine Art Courses for the NCEA (National Council for Educational Awards), Dublin, Ireland