I’m an artist, writer, and arts educator with a widely multi-disciplinary studio practice that ranges from “traditional” mediums (drawing, painting) to new media such as digital, video, and installation. While drawing with just about any medium is usually my favourite thing, I also love teaching art and learning new ways to be creative!

Speaking of new ways to be creative, in January 2023, I embarked on the Drawing Development Year (online) at Royal Drawing School! This is a fantastic opportunity to focus on drawing with a cohort of like-minded artists/makers, all of us working together from home studios with support from experienced artist-educators. This is the 2nd (or 3rd?) iteration of their Drawing Development Year offered as an 100% online format and l am looking forward to taking a bit of a break from teaching digital creative skills through a URL to being on the student-side of online learning for a change. Not only will I be working on “traditional” drawing skills in a very contemporary way, I expect I’ll also be thinking about and learning a lot from *how* this practical/hands-on training is being delivered in a virtual environment.

In my “day job”, I teach creative digital skills and support learning technology (online and in person) at University of the Arts London, to help students (as well as my colleagues) use available technology to aid their teaching and learning as well as foster a skill set they can use beyond university.

Alongside my studio practice, I sometimes keep an online arts journal “Kelise Soixante-Douze” (kelise72.com) where I review arty stuff from exhibitions/events to art classes, books, and sometimes, artist tools and techniques. I also enjoy volunteering for Tate where I lead guided arty tours and talks for visitors, most recently conducting 30-minute “Family Tours” for the younger art-lovers and their caretakers. In these tours, I guide the group to see and talk about 3 artworks along a particular art theme or term, with a pre-prepared creative activity at the end. So fun!

As for exhibiting, well I’ve been pretty busy with my course so it’s been a little while but most recently, you’ll have seen work from my #365LoveNotesToSelf project in “Love and Loss”, Tate’s Staff Biennale 2022 (16-23 March 2022) at Tate Modern. In this series, began 14 February 2022 and ending 365 days later, I engaged a daily drawing practice as a kind of art therapy, as a tool to find self-love and as a means of commitment to self-care by looking in the mirror 20 minutes a day.

Previous to the pandemic years, in August 2019, for “Inside Job – Tate Staff Biennale 2019” in conjunction with Tate Exchange at Tate Modern, I collaborated with fellow artist, Olga Suchanova, to share “Object Self“, a project in which we created portraits using avant-garde digital technology as a fine art medium. Other recent exhibitions include: “2018 Passion for Freedom Festival” (October 2018) in London, “Inside Job” at Tate Modern (April 2018) and “Stations of Water” (October 2017) a group exhibition and education programme at St Paul’s Cathedral in which nine artists were commissioned to present work in conjunction with their Just Water 2017 campaign.

Previously, I’ve been a part of an ambitious international project called “Connect:Katowice and London“, a year-long venture 2016-2107 in which 30 or so UK and Polish artists collaborated across borders, language, and culture to make artwork. Our first exhibition and workshop took place 1-16 December 2016 at Hornsey Town Hall in London followed by the culmination of “Connect:” in a large collaborative exhibition at Rondo Gallery in Katowice, Poland, in June 2017.

I hold a PgCert in Academic Practice in Art, Design, and Communication from UAL (for which I was awarded a Distinction and Fellowship with Advance HE, “a member-led, sector-owned charity that works with institutions and higher education across the world to improve higher education for staff, students and society”. ) I earned the MA in Fine Art from Chelsea College of Arts (2015), and the BA Fine Art (Painting) from Wimbledon College of Arts (2013).

Before my life as an artist, I trained in computer science/maths and enjoyed a 20-year career in IT – but, I’m happy to admit, I have more to say and share as an artist than I ever did making software for banks and insurance companies.

I live and work in London, UK.

Check out my Instagram for daily updates on my studio activities:  @kelisefranclemont

For more detail about my projects and exhibitions, click the link to my cv/bio.

To read about other arty things I get up to in London, check out:
http://www.kelise72.com – stories about art, the unusual, and out-of-the-way places.

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  1. […] was a thing” is collaborative effort between British-American artist Kelise Franclemont and Gazan poet Mosab Abu […]

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