Fine Arts

Fine Arts


Fine Arts Residencies

From our foundation, the BSR has brought together visual artists of the highest calibre to work and develop their practice in this unique, multidisciplinary community.

Today, those who win residential studio awards represent the very best of established and up-and-coming contemporary practitioners in the UK and the Commonwealth: they draw on and contribute to the BSR’s uniquely lively and engaged intellectual environment to enhance their own practice and research.

Previous BSR Visual Art residents include: Phoebe Boswell, Marc Camille Chaimowicz, Celia Hempton, Holly Hendry, Winifred Knights, Julian Opie, Cornelia Parker, Eddie Peake, Elizabeth Price, Laure Prouvost, Emma Talbot, Mark Wallinger and Barbara Walker.

Our residential awards give 3 to 9 months in one of our seven catered en -suite studios.

Award holders are supported by a dedicated Visual Art Residency and Programme Curator, Marta Pellerini, who co-ordinates the exhibitions of work by the awardees as well as providing practical advice and information. Marta Pellerini supports the artists in the development of specific projects and studio visit during their stay in Rome. She curates also the BSR Fine Arts Talks Programme.


The artists in residence at the British School at Rome, present the results of their developing research three times a year, in the December Mostra, March Mostra and June Mostra. All of them take place at the BSR. On these occasions the award-holders are able to show their work to the Roman audience, creating a fruitful moment of dialogue and exchange.

June Mostra 2022, installation view at the BSR, photo by Roberto Apa
June Mostra 2022, installation view at the BSR, photo by Roberto Apa
June Mostra 2022, installation view at the BSR, photo credit Roberto Apa
June Mostra 2022, installation view at the BSR, photo by Roberto Apa

The American writer Rebecca Walker defined the rebirth of the feminist movement in the early 1990s as ‘third-wave’, following the first and second waves. This third wave was geared towards a radical rethinking of gender identity. Queer theory became the basis for the subsequent theory of gender, a subject which the selected artists will address from different perspectives in this series of talks. For more information, see here.

Linder Sterling, Pythia, 2017. Courtesy the artist and Stuart ShaveModern Art, Devonshire Collection, Chatsworth

To talk about justice would be to open up a vast philosophical discussion, to which this se-ries can only gesture. The practices of the artists selected for this coming year’s Fine Arts Talks (2019–20) bring up questions connected to social or political justice in the world today. If you google justice, the first page of results is about lifestyle and taste: ‘justice’ is both an expensive trendy clothing brand and an electronic music duo. In terms of an internet search, which is how most things are judged today, the idea of justice appears to have been coopted by riot chic, perhaps because it is increasingly a rarefied ideal, a concept that is hard to grasp in a world where social, political and environmental injustice reigns.

John Smith, still from A State of Grace, 2019 (3 mins. HD video), courtesy of the artist

Talks from Lockdown is a series of ongoing talks that begun in Spring 2020 with a focus on viruses of the body and of the mind and notions of transmission and cultural contamination. When the Black Lives Matter movement came to the fore in June 2020, the series changed its shape, taking a direction that is different only at first glance. It takes as it main theme issues of colonialism and decolonisation within institutions and museums.


What is materiality in contemporary art? In historical art, materiality played two important roles: to imitate the world and to overcome death. Certain materials also had specific meanings, indicating wealth and exclusivity.

Contemporary art prompts a different discourse around materiality. From the materiality of colour revealed in its plasticity in abstract expressionism to a reconnection with everyday objects in Pop Art, which began in the 1930s with the Surrealist object trouvé. Materiality can be a body in Performance Art or disappear in Digital Art. Many artists use materiality in a symbolic way, to investigate personal histories and collective memories.

The intention behind the series of talks entitled Talk Materialities, is to explore the wide panorama of contemporary approaches to art and materiality through the work of artists, curators and art historians.


Latest Events

Latest Events

The social life of texts in Renaissance Italy
During twenty years of reading and researching Renaissance texts, I have become fascinated by questions of reception and readership. This lecture traces the journey on
Wednesday 05/10/2022
Black History Month | Film Screening
A screening of the film They Call It Idlewild by artist Helen Cammock, followed by informal discussion over a drink. This event will be in
Tuesday 11/10/2022
CONFERENCE: Post-colonial Heritage in the Present: Museums, Archives, Art and Activism
The BSR is hosting Day 2 of the Conference, which will take place 12–13 October 2022. A full programme can be found here.  Left: Fig.
Thursday 13/10/2022