Gavin Edmonds

Gavin returned to full time education to try and resolve issues within his (painting) practice, deciding that drawing could provide the simplest means to achieve this. The MA Drawing course expanded his practice through experiment and reflection, literally: drawing within this context now opened into the 3 dimensional proposition of an installation: the  room to draw in, the picture plain became the door to the studio or gallery/exhibition space. As practical and theoretical interests developed they became Gavin’s research: assimilating psychoanalytical theory as a framework to explore (his) artistic practice.

Listening for Echoes: Psychoanalysis as a model for artistic practice.

Can a structured practical engagement between an aspect of psychoanalytic theory and artistic practice provide a means for understanding the temporal connections and psychic causality at play in the encounter with art?

Gavin’s research focuses on
 the psychoanalytical concept of Nachträglichkeit or ‘Afterwardsness’ (Laplanche 1992), proposing it as a model for the relationship between the artist, artwork and spectator. Nachträglichkeit  describes the psychical mechanism of deferred action, (relating to the temporal structure of trauma): how past events, experiences and memory traces are revised, as a result of experiencing a re-presentation of them in a different form, at a later time. This revision may give them new meaning and greater psychical effectiveness.

Through employing the biphasic dynamic of Nachträglichkeit  to generate four case studies of my artistic practice;  he will explore how artworks can transport us from present to past (and future) ; how internal/ external realities collide through (involuntary) chains of association, which he will track through the domains of: Heuristics; Autobiography; Psychoanalytic theory; and Art history, to then be employed as creative model for theoretical and practical engagement with works of art. Gavin see’s his practice based research as an intuitive process through which connections are not only unmasked but also created, constituted by subsequent reinterpretation (‘afterwards’).


Born in Gravesend Kent, 1967, Gavin studied painting at Kent Institute of Art & Design between 1992-95. He joined the MA Drawing UAL: Wimbledon, 2013-14 and is currently studying a Research Degree at UAL: CCW Graduate School.