Session #4 - Catherine Grant - Fandom as Methodology

Catherine Grant, Fandom as Methodology, 2018

Fandom as Methodology

Session #4 - 23 March 2018

What does it mean to be a fan, and what might that mean for art practice and art writing? 

This MARs Session takes fandom seriously. Throughout this three-hour discussion we look at how artists and art writers can draw on models taken from fan cultures, exploring the idea of "Fandom as Methodology" in the company of writers and artists who have embraced fandom in their academic and creative practice.

The seminar includes presentations from Owen Parry, Kate Random Love and Alison Jones.


Catherine Grant is Lecturer in the Art and Visual Cultures Departments at Goldsmiths, University of London. She is currently working on the re-enactment of feminist histories in contemporary art. The project began with the essay “Fans of Feminism: re-writing histories of second-wave feminism” (2011), which tried to theorise her long-standing interest in passionate attachments to political ideas and queer sexualities. She has also recently published the article “A Time of One’s Own” in the Oxford Art Journal, December 2016 and is the co-editor of Girls! Girls! Girls! (2011) and Creative Writing and Art History (2012). With Kate Random Love she is working on an edited collection Fandom as Methodology.

Alison Jones’ paintings are figurative physical and gestural, and are imbued with questions of feminism and criticality. Her imagery is drawn from international art and culture magazines, and she uses a range of painterly languages from expressionism through fashion illustration, cartoons and graphics. Her methodology involves willfully muddling the discourses of contemporary art, hagiography, Marxism, feminism and journalism, misquoting theory and getting it wrong as a deliberate strategy for exploring the ideologies of the art world. She has also been engaged in a long-standing collaboration with Milly Thompson which erupts now and again for a rethinking and reiteration of art, feminism, showing off, luxury, distinction and BEING HOT.

Dr Owen G. Parry (b.1983, Wales) is an artist, researcher and fan working across live art, theatre, installation, moving image, sound and writing, exploring subjects including gay sex, trash, biopolitics, fandoms, online cultures and Yoko Ono. Owen initiated the Fan Riot project in 2015 ( exploring the relationship between participatory art and fan cultures, which includes a fan club series with contributing artists and fans, publications, artworks and performances. Owen completed a PhD at Goldsmiths in 2013, and is currently an associate lecturer in Fine Art at Goldsmiths and Central Saint Martins. His work has been included in shows, programmes and publications internationally.

Kate Random Love is a lecturer in Fine Art Critical Studies at Glasgow School of Art and Contextualising Practice at Manchester School of Art. She is interested in fandom and adolescence in contemporary art, especially in relation to difficult feelings about straight white dead boys.