Talk Art

By Russell Tovey and Robert Diament

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Category: Visual Arts

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Actor Russell Tovey and gallerist Robert Diament host Talk Art, a podcast dedicated to the world of art featuring exclusive interviews with leading artists, curators & gallerists, and even occasionally their talented friends from other industries like acting, music and journalism. Listen in to explore the magic of art and why it connects us all in such fantastic ways. Follow the official Instagram @TalkArt for images of artworks discussed in each episode and to follow Russell and Robert's latest art adventures.

Episode Date
John Stezaker

Robert & Russell meet British artist John Stezaker. World-renowned for his collages, we discover how he chooses his source material - typically old film stills, vintage postcards, or Hollywood headshots. In a world saturated by images, Stezaker's manipulations create space both physically and metaphorically for alternative interpretations, for exploring the seams and fissures of the visual world.

Jun 13, 2019
Zoe Bedeaux

Talk Art returns! To kick off Season 2, Russell & Robert meet Zoe Bedeaux, the multi-disciplinary artist, poet, super-stylist and creative shapeshifter. We discuss harlequins, Picasso, Irving Penn and Louise Nevelson. Whilst learning about Zoe's collaborations with iconic image makers Judy Blame, Ray Petri and more recently leading photographers Juergen Teller and Tim Walker. You can view Zoe's film work 'From The Mouth of Babes Speak I' at Somerset House in London as part of a major new exhibition 'Get Up, Stand Up Now' until 15th September 2019. The show celebrates the past 50 years of Black creativity in Britain and beyond. @zoebedeaux @talkart

Jun 06, 2019
Zawe Ashton

Welcome to the final episode of Season 1! Robert & Russell meet leading actress, writer & director Zawe Ashton, author of new book 'Character Breakdown' and who initially came to prominence as Vod in Channel 4's Fresh Meat. We discuss Zawe's recent leading film role in art-world satire Velvet Buzzsaw (in which she starred alongside Renee Russo & Jake Gyllenhaal). We learn about artworks that Zawe has connected with over the years and discover which artist she researched while building her art dealer character for current stage performance in Harold Pinter's Betrayal on London's West End. Thank you for listening to Season 1. We will be back soon with more exciting interviews. Please message us at Instagram and let us know which episode you loved most from the first series. Thanks for listening. Art for everyone!!

May 23, 2019
Phyllida Barlow CBE

Robert & Russell meet British sculptor Phyllida Barlow CBE at the Royal Academy of Arts for an hour-long private tour of her current solo exhibition 'cul-de-sac'. World-renowned for using materials such as plaster, cardboard, scrim and cement, which turn the conventions of traditional sculpture on its head. We discuss her best-known works including the Tate Britain Commission 2014, and her installation for the 2017 Venice Biennale British Pavilion, where she represented the UK.

Listen in as we experience entirely new sculptures by the artist in the RA's Gabrielle Jungels-Winkler Galleries. Towering above like seemingly precarious structures, these giant site-specific works both test and take inspiration from the gallery’s architecture. In the form of a “cul-de-sac”, with only one way in and out, it gives visitors the freedom to find their way between them.

Alongside her own work, Barlow had a long career as a fine art teacher, including Professor of Fine Art and Director of Undergraduate Studies at the Slade until 2009, and Chelsea College of Art and Design before that. She was elected as a Royal Academician in 2011 and was also part of last year’s Selection Committee for the 250th Summer Exhibition. Barlow is represented by Hauser & Wirth.

May 16, 2019
Luke Evans

Russell & Robert meet leading actor Luke Evans, star of Beauty and the Beast, The Hobbit, Girl on the Train and Dracula Untold. We discuss collecting art while he's filming in different locations around the world, his friendship with iconic artist duo Gilbert & George, learning to draw in charcoal for his leading role in The Alienist and fond memories of growing up in Aberbargoed, in the south of Wales. We find out what Luke thought of recent exhibitions in London by Martin Parr and Phyllida Barlow, whilst learning how he was invited by Grayson Perry to be on the committee for this year's Royal Academy's Summer Exhibition. For more on Luke, follow his instagram: @thereallukeevans Don’t forget to leave us a review at Apple if you enjoy this new episode!

May 09, 2019
Zadie XA

Russell & Robert meet Zadie XA, a Korean-Canadian artist with a strong focus on 'making', combining and exploring her own identity through film and performance, textiles and painting. We discover more about her technicolour universe including an upcoming performance at the Venice Biennale 2019, a mutual love of dogs (especially Rocky), shamanism, hip hop and performative style, the Yin/Yang symbol, ‘crits’ at art school and what it was like being an international student at Royal College of Art and so much more! Art Night, London’s nocturnal contemporary art festival have commissioned a new performance by Zadie in Walthamstow (the Mayor’s first London Borough of Culture) on the evening of 22 June 2019. More details: or at Instagram: @ZadieXA Zadie is represented by Union Pacific @Union_Pacific_London and Agustina Ferreyra @incomodina, Mexico City. Don’t forget to leave us a review at Apple if you enjoy this new episode!

May 02, 2019
David Shrigley

Robert & Russell meet David Shrigley, one of the UK’s most loved and respected artists whose hilarious and disturbing doodles, sculptures and anecdotes depict the world as an absurd place. We discuss wide-ranging topics such as worms, tattoos, Dada, taxidermy, making art books and being nominated for the Turner Prize. Whilst further exploring art as therapy, living in Brighton, songwriting, drawing dogs and what it’s like to have internationally recognised handwriting. Plus discover what David's wrestling name would be, if he were a champion wrestler!! Please leave us a review and rating if you’ve enjoyed this episode! For images of all works discussed in this episode, visit our Instagram @TalkArt 

Apr 25, 2019
Gavin Turk

Robert & Russell meet leading artist Gavin Turk. They discuss tailored suits, artist persona, veganism and a lifetime interest in the surreal form of an egg. We explore Turk's iconic early works including four antiqued mirror cubes in 'Robert Morris Untitled 1965-72' (1990) and the iconic 'Cave' (1991) an ‘historical blue plaque’ to commemorate work done by the artist during his time at the Royal College of Art, as well as a 'Tea Stain' (2004) edition that Russell gifted to Robert on his 30th birthday. This episode is released on the same day as Turk unveils a giant new bronze sculpture 'Oeuvre (Verdigris)' at Somerset House, in London on the River Walk. In association with Photo London, the artist is simultaneously inviting the global art community to upload and contribute their own ‘Portrait of An Egg’ to be exhibited at the fair. With spooky synchronicity this years social media phenomena has been ’The World Record Egg’ so this ambitious art collaboration is opening up ideas around social media, memes and the global obsession with recording the world photographically through our phones. You can submit your egg images until early May at Happy Easter holidays everyone, egg-citing times! Please leave us a review and rating if you’ve enjoyed this episode! For images of all works discussed in this episode, visit our Instagram @TalkArt 

Apr 18, 2019
Victoria Pomery OBE

Russell & Robert get the high-speed train to Margate to meet Victoria Pomery OBE, Director of Turner Contemporary. We explore her journey to plan, build & open the museum designed by architect Sir David Chipperfield, which has had over 3 million visitors since 2011 becoming an attraction of national and international importance. We discuss swimming in the sea before work, the incredible light in this seaside town, how art can give people hope and the inspirational history of JMW Turner who lived in Margate in the 1800s and painted more than 100 works, including some of his most famous seascapes, inspired by the East Kent coast. Please leave us a review and rating if you’ve enjoyed this episode! For images of all works discussed in this episode, visit our Instagram @TalkArt 

Apr 11, 2019
Ryan Gander OBE

Russell and Robert chat to leading conceptual artist Ryan Gander OBE. We explore artist persona, designing a kitchen sink, family ties, the soul of objects and why his art has been so commercially successful in Japan. Ryan reveals how a limited edition Rolex watch transformed into an artwork, why he worked with glow-in-the-dark concrete, the importance of empathy and why we should all ‘let the world take a turn'. For images of works discussed in this episode, visit our Instagram @TalkArt. Ryan’s new BBC Four documentary ‘Me, My Selfie and I’ is available to view on iPlayer until mid April 2019. Please leave us a review and rating if you’ve enjoyed this episode!

Apr 04, 2019
Tracey Emin CBE

Robert & Russell meet Tracey Emin CBE, one of the world’s most respected, successful and controversial artists. During an hour-long private tour of her current solo exhibition ‘A Fortnight of Tears’, we explore her mother’s recent death, grief, everlasting love, the supernatural, insomnia and abortion. Tracey reveals that nature is one of her biggest influences and how working in a small South of France studio enabled the artist to wholeheartedly and triumphantly return to painting. Learn more about her longterm connection to the work of Edvard Munch, her return to her childhood hometown of Margate and why, surprisingly, she doesn’t keep a diary. For images of all works discussed in this episode, visit our Instagram @TalkArt Please leave us a review and rating if you’ve enjoyed this episode!

Mar 29, 2019
Sadie Coles

Robert & Russell meet gallerist Sadie Coles, one of the world’s most respected and successful art dealers. Discover why she set up her gallery in London after managing Jeff Koons’ studio in New York in the mid 1990s; how she first discovered the work of Sarah Lucas and John Currin; the skill of representing new artists on the primary market and the importance of taking a longterm view. We discuss feminism and equality in the workplace and why it's good to be collegiate. Finally we explore childhood trips to visit Tutankhamun at the British Museum, a memorable performance by mime artist/choreographer Lindsay Kemp and a pivotal Nancy Grossman exhibition.

Mar 22, 2019
Martin Creed

Robert & Russell meet legendary artist and ‘poet of the everyday’ Martin Creed (and his dog Jimmy). Find out why this Turner Prize winner doesn’t read reviews of his own work, who his favourite comedians are and how music has informed his art. We delve deep into Creed’s creative output spanning more than 30 years. From a giant kinetic sculpture with the word MOTHERS lit up in neon, a live performance where athletes run through the Tate as fast as they can, to a more recent handmade textile work: a multicoloured neck-warmer (worn by the artist during this very interview).

Mar 15, 2019
Louisa Buck

Robert & Russell chat with leading British art critic and author Louisa Buck, columnist for the Art Newspaper and a judge of the Turner Prize in 2005. They explore how the art world has evolved since the 1980s and 90s, discover which artwork Grayson Perry made as a commission to commemorate the birth of Louisa's daughter as well as revealing the best, and very worst, interviews she's conducted. Happy International Women's Day!

Mar 07, 2019
Sarah Hadland and Laura Aikman

We celebrate the holidays with two dear friends, the actresses Sarah Hadland and Laura Aikman (both stars of The Job Lot comedy sitcom with Russell). Topics include Olafur Eliasson’s melting ice installation highlighting climate change, Yayoi Kusama’s infinity mirrored room, the paintings of LS Lowry, Beryl Cook, Picasso and Ed Ruscha. Plus we discover which guest once pole danced for Madonna! Happy Christmas everyone. We will return in Spring 2019 with a weekly season. Love Russell and Robert X

Dec 27, 2018
Pedro Pascal

Russell & Robert talk with leading actor Pedro Pascal, star of Narcos, Game of Thrones and forthcoming Star Wars 'The Mandalorian'. They discuss his favourite artist, a classic painting on display at Museum of Modern Art that offered Pedro comfort when he moved to New York in the mid 1990s, as well as his more recent art experiences at Tate Modern and Frieze Art Fair whilst filming in London for his latest movie Wonder Woman 1984.

Nov 23, 2018
Sir Michael Craig-Martin CBE

Russell & Robert talk with leading artist Sir Michael Craig-Martin CBE exploring 50 years of art-making. From his early 1960s work as a conceptual artist culminating in the seminal ‘An Oak Tree’ (1973) through to more recent decades as an internationally-renowned painter, sculptor and printmaker as well as his influential role as a teacher to two generations of Young British Artists at Goldsmiths.

Nov 08, 2018
Introducing Talk Art

Welcome to Talk Art! Actor Russell Tovey and gallerist Robert Diament discuss how they first became friends a decade ago, plus more recent adventures at Frieze Art Fair, the Turner Prize, South London Gallery and other exhibition highlights in London, as well as Robert's gallery relocating to the seaside town of Margate, Kent.

Oct 19, 2018