History of Art


CSCA Workshop: Sarah Lucas and Psychoanalysis

21 February 2024, 6:00 pm–8:00 pm

orange chair

This event is free.

Event Information

Open to







Queenie Lee – History of Art


IAS Forum, Institute of Advanced Studies (IAS)
South Wing
Wilkins Building

This workshop uses the recent Sarah Lucas survey exhibition at Tate Britain as a springboard to consider the interactions between the artist’s work and questions of sex, violence, and psychoanalysis. With presentations from Philomena Epps and Ivan Knapp, chaired by Professor Mignon Nixon, participants will each present an informal paper or work in progress, exploring questions, ideas, and threads of their current research. The rest of the event will be dedicated to group discussion and collaborative thinking.

Thinking from the base in Sarah Lucas and Rachel Harrison
Ivan Knapp 

Thinking from the base considers Lucas’s decision to hang the sculptures in her exhibition at Tate Britain on chairs through a comparison with the work of Rachel Harrison. Exploring both artist’s engagement with images of masculine violence, the paper inquires how psychoanalytic accounts of creativity and the analytic setting might inform an understanding of the ways in which these images are reshaped into something like critique, something like analysis.  

Getting Snookered
Philomena Epps

This paper utilises a wall text included in the Sarah Lucas exhibition at Tate Britain as a starting point to consider the intersections between perversion, spectacle, and the commodity form within the expanded field of the ‘multi-discipline’: “Reasons for making a penis: appropriation, because I don’t have one; voodoo; economics; totemism; they’re a convenient size for the lap; fetishism; compact power; gents; gnomes; because you don’t see them on display much; for religious reasons having to do with the spark.”

Image: Sarah Lucas HAPPY GAS Installation View at Tate Britain 2023. © Sarah Lucas. Photo © Tate (Lucy Green).