New art history blog! Let me introduce myself – OurWarwick

New art history blog! Let me introduce myself

United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (the)
Leigh Mencarini | History of Art Contact Leigh
Art and society, Widening Participation and being a mature student.
Find out more about me Contact Leigh

Hello there. If you’ve clicked through to read this, I’m guessing you’re either interested in art history or you’re wondering what might be going on in that photo. 

Well, that’s me, trying to upstage a Robert Indiana artwork at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park, and I chose it by way of introduction. 

I’m Leigh, I’m an art history undergraduate currently in my second year. I’m a mature student, a parent, and now I’m a blogger. How do you do?

(I should say that I don’t often lark about outdoors like that… it was a special occasion, my 40th birthday). 

Anyway, given the one-way nature of a blog, I figured I’d get all the me-me-me stuff out of the way first as, going forward, I’d really rather write about art history and getting to grips with studying at uni full-time.  

So, for my first blog, here are five things about me that might be useful to know before you decide on a return visit… 

Five things about Leigh

  • I didn’t really visit art galleries as a kid. I always loved drawing, and have an A-level in Art and Design (pictured below) but most of my art exposure to the ‘Old Masters’ et al came from books in the school library. My passion for art really flourished in adulthood; it has always been something I’ve returned to in life. 
  • I come from a Widening Participation background, although the term wasn’t properly established when I left school. I’m keen to see that people from under-represented groups have the support they need to succeed in higher education. I’m a member of the Widening Participation Student Advisory Group (WP SAG) and especially encouraged by the work of Warwick’s Widening Participation and Outreach team and the WP Student Network
Leigh, a white teenage female standing in front of a number of her A-level artworks
  • Prior to study, I was a journalist. Instead of going to university after my A-levels, I went straight into a newsroom and worked in several across the Midlands and London/South East over a 20-year period. And it was really good fun, actually… I had some amazing opportunities to travel (pictured below) and met some incredible lifelong friends.
  • If you spot me in the wild, I am most likely hanging out with my two primary school-aged children, both of whom manage to clutter my brain with Minecraft nonsense, and my Spotify playlist with ridiculous songs. BUT – and I really do mean this – they’re absolutely the best thing ever. You learn to love the Crazy Frog.
White woman looking puzzled while holding a professional camera
  • I chose Warwick after trying the free (FREE!) Gateway to HE course with the Centre for Lifelong Learning, intending to work towards earning a Social Studies degree. What actually happened was I transferred to the History of Art department later on. Though the CLL is a fantastic department, I’m happy with my choice. The History of Art team is small, supportive and friendly, exactly what someone like me needs, given the multiple spinning plates I have on the go, and my somewhat unorthodox journey to university. The subject itself can incorporate all kinds of social, cultural and political issues, while at the same time engaging me in ways I couldn’t have imagined at the age of 18, let alone 40.

So, what can you expect from this blog? Well, I’ll definitely be looking at the art and cultural offerings in and around the university area, so exhibition reviews and previews within easy reach of campus.  

I’ll also be sharing some of my own study techniques, which you might find helpful if you’re just getting grips with university. They’re not tried and tested, just suggestions! 

Most importantly, I’d also love to hear from you in the comments below. If you have any questions or thoughts, things you want to know or want to talk about, I’ll do my best to cover them in future blogs. 

In the meantime, thanks for hanging on this far!  

United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (the)
Leigh Mencarini | History of Art Contact Leigh
Art and society, Widening Participation and being a mature student.
Find out more about me Contact Leigh

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