Course Code E2302P019
Tutor Gavin Maughfling
Course Dates Thursdays: 11th January to 21st March 2024
Times 10:30AM - 4:30PM
Experience Level All Levels
Fee £630

This course is part of our Elective Skills Workshop series. You will be studying alongside students from our pre-degree and degree programmes.

How can we tell a story in a picture? And how can we use the formal elements of painting – composition, spatial dynamics, light, shadow, colour, paint’s materiality and gesture – to go beyond surface appearance to reach for deeper meanings about the protagonists’ inner feelings, about the context of what is being shown, and about what happened before, and what will happen next? 

This course will take you through a structured programme exploring how you can answer these questions in your own work. We will draw on the work of both historical and contemporary artists working with narrative. We will have a strong focus on different developmental processes and how these can be used to generate ideas. You will progress from a series of experimental studies to a final narrative painting which reflects your personal interests and language.

By the end of the course you will be able to: 

  • Analyse the work of others and apply findings to their own work
  • Create multi-figure narrative paintings from a range of sources
  • Use collage to develop compositions for narrative painting 
  • Utilise key elements of visual and painting language to create narrative paintings
  • Research, plan and realise a self initiated project

This course is suitable for all levels. Students can move at their own pace depending on their experience, with as much support from the Tutor as they wish.

  • Beginner

    Choose a Beginners course if you are looking for a broad introduction to the medium you are studying. Students spend time learning the very basics of the taught medium, for example, how to mix colours, use different tools, set up an easel. Our Beginner courses are suitable for students with no prior experience, they tend to follow a more structured path than our other courses, ensuring each student receives the guidance they need from the tutor.

  • Beginner +

    Choose a Beginner + course if you are looking to hone your skills, focus on a specific subject area and build your confidence. These courses are suitable for those with some basic skills in and knowledge of the taught medium, but still follow a structured path with guidance from the tutor.

  • Intermediate

    Our Intermediate courses are suitable for students who have considerable prior knowledge of the taught medium or have completed a Beginners/Beginners + course with the Art Academy.

    These courses tend to be less structured and instead are tailored to the classes’ needs and the direction they want to advance in. Choose an Intermediate course if you are looking to improve your skills and have more critical discussions around the work you produce.

  • Advanced

    Choose our Advanced courses if you have considerable knowledge in the taught medium. You are expected to be able to work independently and have critical discussions around your work.

     Our Advanced courses include our Masterclasses.

All attendees must be aged 18 or over.

Gavin Maughfling lives and works in East London. Recent exhibitions include MOCA London’s web exhibition programme in 2023, the Beep Biennial Painting Prize at Elysium Gallery in 2020 and 2022, ‘Figure and Ground’ at Bermondsey Project Space in 2022, ‘Between Parts Undone’ at studio 1.1 in 2020, the Creekside Open at APT in 2019, ‘Artworks’ at the Barbican Trust Project Space in 2019, ‘Beyond the Binaries’ at the House of St. Barnabas in 2018 and ‘In the Open’ at Sheffield Institute of the Arts in 2017, as well as solo exhibitions at no format Gallery in 2021 and 2019. He has co-curated exhibitions in London and Singapore. His work is held in public and private collections including the National Government Art Collection. He is a member of British Contemporary Painting.


Research: identify your personal narrative theme or subject by week 3. Collect A RANGE of potential sources: photographs (your own and found), sketches etc.

You’ll need a hardback sketchbook (minimum A4) throughout the project.

Mermaid Court

165A Borough High Street
London SE1 1HR
tel: +44 (0) 207407 6969

Nearest Tube/ Rail: London Bridge or Borough (both a 5 minute walk).

Please note that London Bridge has two exits, the most direct route is to follow signs to “Borough High Street”.

Students are welcome to use our Common Room/ The Barn during break times, where you can prepare hot drinks and/or food.

You are also welcome to make tea or coffee.

  • You will need to have paid in full before the first session of your class. Your place is not guaranteed until we have received full payment. Please book early in order to guarantee your place on the course.
  • If you purchased a pack online this will be given to you on the first session of your course upon your arrival. Packs can be purchased on our Materials Page or on the individual course page when you make your booking.
  • Please don’t wear your best clothes as there is always a chance you will get messy. If possible bring an apron or overalls.
  • All artwork MUST be taken home at the end of the course or it will be disposed of. Paintings that need to dry should be collected within a week. For clay sculptures that need hollowing and firing, you will receive a separate email when they can be collected.
  • Please ensure that your mobile phone is switched off or is on silent during the class.
  • Health and Safety Guidelines will be provided to you at the beginning of your class.
  • Sometimes our photographer will pop in to get some images of our classes in progress. We will typically inform you beforehand if photography is taking place during your class; if you do not want to be photographed please let the photographer know!
  • To find out more about what’s going on at the Academy follow us on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. If you’d like to share images of your course, your progress or your finished work we’d love to see them! Please bear in mind you must have the permission of tutors, other students and models to photograph them.
  • If you would like more information or advice please contact
  • For further details please see our Short Courses: Regulations & Policies page.


Places Available!

Fee: £630.00

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