The Alternative Conservatoire

The Alternative Conservatoire

Next Saturday, the Alternative Conservatoire will present an exciting showcase of new works from the first composers to take part in its innovative artist development accelerator course, supported by the Trust.

Tickets can be booked here and a short video about the students’ experiences on the course can be seen here.

Hannah Uzor

Conversations with Grandma

Today sees the opening of Hannah Uzor’s solo show, Conversations with Grandma at the Niru Ratnam Gallery, 71-73 Great Portland Street, London W1W 7LP.

Hannah Uzor was the holder of the first Milein Cosman Scholarship at the Slade School of Fine Art, 2021-23. This new exhibition of her latest work is a profound exploration of memory, cultural identity and transformation.

The figure of the grandmother, as repository of stories, traditions and domestic practices (such as recipes) for future generations, is a key one in Uzor’s work, showing how those in the diaspora negotiate memories and everyday traditions to gain a sense of the past that can inform the present or point forward into possible futures.

Conversations with Grandma continues at the Niru Ratnam Gallery until 26 May.

Hans Keller Composition Fellowship

Electra Perivolaris

The Trust is pleased to be collaborating with the Young Classical Artists Trust in a new initiative aimed at supporting composers who are establishing their careers.

YCAT’s new Hans Keller Composition Fellowship will be awarded annually from 2024. The selected Composer Fellow will receive a commission to write two chamber works for specific YCAT artists, giving a valuable opportunity for composer and performers to work closely together throughout the composition process, with the finished works premiered across several regional UK venues, culminating in a Wigmore Hall recital.

The Trust is delighted that the first Hans Keller Composer Fellow will be the remarkable Electra Perivolaris. Described by Sir James MacMillan as ‘one of the most exciting young composers emerging in Scotland today’, her work has already been widely performed, including by the London Sinfonietta, the BBC Concert Orchestra and the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, and this year she was nominated for an RPS award for her work with Streetwise Opera’s Re:Sound project, creating new opera in collaboration with homeless communities.

The Milein Cosman Lecture on Drawing at the Slade

Milein Cosman

On 24 April 2024, the Slade School of Fine Art will host the inaugural Milein Cosman public lecture on the art of drawing — the first of a new series of lectures on drawing which will be held annually at the Slade in memory of Milein Cosman.

The inaugural lecture will be given by Professor Liz Rideal,  who will be discussing drawing by Slade artists, past and present, including Milein Cosman, who was a student at the Slade in the 1940s, when it was evacuated to Oxford during the war (you can read more about Milein’s time as a student here). Admission is free.  Further information and ticket details here.

Milein Cosman exhibition at the Stadtmuseum in Bonn

The Stadtmuseum in Bonn is hosting a new exhibition of the work of Milein Cosman this spring, opening on 8 March 2024.

The exhibition will feature works from the collection of Milein Cosman’s art donated by the Trust to the City of Bonn’s forthcoming Forum Exilkultur, a landmark project to place the work of exiled artists, past and present, in the centre of Bonn.

This important project has grown out of the work of the collector and publisher Thomas B. Schumann, who spent decades collecting and exhibiting the work of artists forced to flee Germany during the Nazi period, eventually amassing around 1,000 artworks by 200 different artists. Milein Cosman herself was a supporter of his work, and during her lifetime donated several of her own artworks to his collection. In 2012 Schumann published Lifelines, a substantial book of Milein Cosman’s art which he co-edited with the Trust’s then chairman, Julian Hogg. A permanent exhibition on the life and work of Milein Cosman will be an important part of the Forum Exilkultur when it opens.

Next month’s special exhibition at the Stadtmuseum, Capturing the Moment: the Artist Milein Cosman, runs from 8 March until 7 April and will include special lectures and tours about Milein and her art, together with a drawing workshop for children and adults: further details here. More information about the city’s forthcoming Forum Exilkultur can be found here.

The Milein Cosman Project Curator

For the last two years the Trust has been supporting the work of Grant Lewis as the Milein Cosman Project Curator at the British Museum. Based in the Museum’s Department of Prints and Drawings, Grant has been a key member of the team preparing the major exhibition Michelangelo: the last decades, including researching and writing the exhibition publication and organising an international academic conference to accompany the show and cement its scholarly legacy.

The exhibition opens on 2 May 2024. Full information and tickets are available here.

The Alternative Conservatoire

The Alternative Conservatoire

The Trust is delighted to be supporting the launch of an exciting new development in music education: The Alternative Conservatoire, whose first students start their course today.

The Alternative Conservatoire addresses innovation in art with innovation in pedagogy, providing a three-month accelerator course aimed at today’s culturally and aesthetically complex composer and music creator. Founded and directed by Joel Bell and Bushra El-Turk (whose Saffron Dusk for string quartet was commissioned by the Trust), the Alternative Conservatoire is designed to provide what traditional university and conservatoire courses do not. We hope that Hans Keller (who was famously suspicious of institutional music education courses) would approve!

Find out more here — and discover the first group of composers taking part in the 2024 course here.

Gabriel Kidd awarded the Milein Cosman Scholarship for Drawing at the Slade School of Fine Art

Gabriel KiddThe Trust is delighted to announce that the winner of the 2023-5 Milein Cosman Scholarship at the Slade School of Fine Art is Gabriel Kidd.

Gabriel Kidd’s artistic practice centres upon the notion of collecting and the building of worlds, often returning to stories of myth and legend as they explore the substance of queerness. Gathering pieces of fragile ephemera, grass, stone, bone and bark, they make assemblages, textiles and drawings that exist somewhere between the fantastical and the real.

Explore more of Gabriel’s art here.

Hans Keller Forum

Hans Keller Forum

ChamberStudio’s Hans Keller Forum reconvenes in Cambridge today for the 2023-24 season. We are delighted to welcome four more talented ensembles to the programme: they are (clockwise from top left) the Talland Quartet, the Quartet Concrète, the Trio Havisham and the Lark Trio.

In the first of three residential stays together, they will be spending the next few days working intensively with mentors Richard Ireland, Alasdair Beatson and John Myerscough.

First performance of Awake

Today sees the world premiere of Mark-Anthony Turnage’s new work for string quartet, Awake, commissioned by the Castalian String Quartet with funding from the Cosman Keller Art & Music Trust and the Borletti-Buitoni Trust.

The Castalian String Quartet will be performing the work at the Edinburgh Festival, framed by Janáček’s String Quartet No.1 (‘Kreuzer Sonata’) and Beethoven’s String Quartet No.13, Op.130.

In this video you can hear the Quartet talk about Awake, explaining the genesis of the work and its links with the other works in their programme.

St Paul’s Opera schools programme

The Trust is pleased to announce that it will be funding the St Paul’s Opera schools outreach programme this summer.

This will enable the singers of St Paul’s Opera to take scenes from their forthcoming production of Carmen into local primary schools, sharing their passion for the music with young children. A special family matinee performance of the complete opera will also be performed at St Paul’s on Saturday 1 July 2023.

This drawing (left) of Spanish dancers by Milein Cosman comes from the Milein Cosman Dancers Collection held at the University of Salzburg. More images from this collection can be viewed online here.

Milein Cosman’s Archive goes to the Tate

Milein Cosman

The Trust is delighted to announce the acquisition of Milein Cosman’s archive by Tate Archive.

Tate Archive houses a rich collection of sketchbooks, drawings, letters, diaries, photographs and other personal papers of artists who worked in Britain in the twentieth century. It is also a centre of excellence for the study of émigré artists and Milein’s archive will join those of over fifty other émigré artists, including her great friend Marie-Louise von Motesiczky, pictured here with Milein on the steps of the Tate Gallery building where Tate Archive is housed.

As work on the archive progresses, further information will be posted here.

Functional Analysis at Oxford and Cambridge

Hans Keller

Hans Keller’s wordless method of musical analysis will be presented at special events this term in both Oxford and Cambridge Universities.

On Tuesday 7 February, the Chilingirian String Quartet and Andrew Marriner will perform Keller’s analysis of Mozart’s Clarinet Quintet in the Recital Room at the West Road Concert Hall in Cambridge, after which Cambridge PhD candidate Nicky Swett will discuss the psychological theory of musical similarity and difference at work in Keller’s score. Further details here.

On Thursday 2 March, the Castalian String Quartet will perform Keller’s analysis of Britten’s Second Quartet in the Holywell Music Room in Oxford, followed by contributions from Christopher Chowrimootoo, Marinu Leccia and Nicky Swett. Further details here.

Both events are open to the public and admission is free.

The Hans Keller Chamber Fellows at the Guildhall

The Confluence Quartet

The Confluence Quartet has now joined the Mithras Trio as Hans Keller Chamber Fellows at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama for the 2022-23 season.  They will be giving their debut recital at the Milton Court Concert Hall on Monday 27 February at 7:30 pm. Admission is free.

Yesterday the Mithras Trio gave a thrilling recital at the Wigmore Hall, featuring Frank Bridge’s Phantasie Piano Trio in C minor, Beethoven’s Op.70 No.1 (‘Ghost’) and the world première of Joy Lisney’s Petrichor.  You can listen again to this concert here.

The Hans Keller Forum

The Hans Keller Forum

ChamberStudio’s Hans Keller Forum returns to Cambridge this week for its second residential stay. The Aestus Quartet, the Astatine Trio, the Hirvi Quartet and the Kyan Quartet will enjoy another three days’ intensive coaching from Richard Ireland, Alasdair Beatson and John Myerscough.

Hannah Uzor, holder of the Milein Cosman Scholarship at the Slade will again be Artist in Residence and a lecture-recital on The Inner Workings of Britten’s Quartets will be given by Simon Rowland-Jones, illustrated by the Medea Quartet.

Free tickets for this lecture and for the public masterclasses can be booked here.

Peter Black

Peter Black

Peter Black, Milein Cosman’s Artistic Executor, retires from the board of trustees today, after sixteen years. Peter is the Trust’s longest-serving trustee, being one of the original four trustees appointed by Milein Cosman in 2006, alongside Julian Hogg, Christopher Wintle and Andrew Cherniavsky.

Earlier this year, Peter recalled his first meeting and long friendship with Milein Cosman for the publication accompanying the exhibition of her work at the Bundestag in Berlin in April and May: his memories can be read here.

Before he left the Trust, Peter and his colleagues were delighted to welcome two new art trustees, James Cahill and Donato Esposito.

Milein Cosman

Milein Cosman

Today is the fifth anniversary of the death of Milein Cosman.

It is sixteen years since she founded the Cosman Keller Art & Music Trust. All her beneficiaries are deeply grateful to her — and by her many friends she is sorely missed.

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