VS1: Embodiment - East Wing Biennial

R.B. Kitaj: From Tipperary to Westwood

Speaker: Michael Ajerman

This lecture presents a visual conversation of ideas, proposing that artists, R.B. Kitaj and Walter Sickert strangely echo each other through personality and artistic merit. Contemplating working methods, pictorial imagery, and opinions, Michael Ajerman ruminates on the idea of influence and reference through each artist’s writing, painting, and critical response, creating a web of shared and contrasting forms, ideas, and sensations to ask if Sickert was a looming shadow in Kitaj’s atelier and mind.

Research in 2018 for this lecture was made possible through UCLA’s R.B. Kitaj Research Fellowship enabling Ajerman to access the UCLA Library Special Collections which holds over 200 boxes related to the artist. He has continued to research these ideas independently through 2023.

Michael Ajerman studied at the Corcoran School of Art, New York Studio School, and Yale Summer School at Norfolk. In 2003 he completed his Masters Degree at the Slade School of Art and received the British Institute Award from the Royal Academy.

Ajerman has consistently exhibited his paintings internationally in solo and group shows. Recently his work was showcased by the David Zwirner’s site Platform.

In 2018 he was awarded UCLA’s Kitaj Research Fellowship culminating in the lecture, From Tipperary to Westwood. During the 2020 pandemic, Ajerman created the London Lockdown Lecture Series, an independent series of online art lectures.

Organised by the VS1: Embodiment curatorial team with the Research Forum.

This event has passed.

2 Oct 2023

Monday 2nd October 2023, 6.30pm - 8.30pm

Free, booking essential

Vernon Square Campus, Lecture Theatre 2

This is an in person event at our Vernon Square campus. Booking will close 30 minutes before the event begins.


Photograph of the interior of an artist's studio. The walls and floor are covered with paintings, drawings, and books and there are two easels central.
R.B. Kitaj's Yellow Studio, Westwood, L.A., California 2007. Copyright with R.B. Kitaj Estate.