The Warehouse Art School in Oxford

The Warehouse Art School in Oxford

Continuing Practice Course

Next course starts: September 2020


Now entering its seventh year, this is a non-accredited course run by artists for artists, offering an affordable alternative to formal Higher Education courses. It offers a focus on the development of an individual’s practice within a structured yet responsive environment and gives practitioners of all ages a chance to focus on developing their work within a flexible environment. Uniquely, participants will benefit from working within the setting of a dynamic contemporary arts organisation with a full and varied programme of exhibitions and events.

The Warehouse Art School aims to provide a stimulating environment where participants are encouraged to take risks in their work and are supported in their continuing professional development through a programme of critical and practical teaching, delivered through projects, workshops, collaboration, networking and talks. Participants are encouraged to take advantage of the additional classes offered by OVADA including Life Drawing and Experimental Drawing and Contemporary Painting.

The core teaching day for the course is Wednesday (10am – 4pm), but the timetable also includes some Thursdays. The warehouse is ideally located only a few minutes walk from Oxford City Centre bus routes and Oxford Train Station. The warehouse is also within walking distance of a number of interesting galleries including Modern Art Oxford, The Ashmolean, Pitt Rivers Museum, the Jam Factory and Old Fire Station.

The course is aimed at artists wishing to consolidate, develop and professionalise their Fine Art practice at any stage of their career. There are no formal entry requirements, however it is essential that students must show commitment to the aims of the course and demonstrate an appropriate standard of work.

The number of participants will be restricted to 12 per year in order to allow for ample tutorial time and a uniquely student-led approach.

Course Outline

ProjectsIMG-20181011-WA0013 copy

In the first two terms participants will work on a series of projects aimed at allowing a range of approaches and ideas around contemporary art. At the end of each project the group will critique the work and share ideas. The final summer term will allow time to explore a self-directed project culminating in an exhibition in OVADA’s warehouse.

One-to-one tutorials and mentoring sessions will be offered on a regular basis throughout the year. The focus of tutorials will be the consolidation of a personal art practice.

Group Critiques
Regular sessions to present and analyse work will build confidence and encourage participants to give and receive feedback from their peer group as well as from Tutors.

Talks by Visiting Artists41382569880_3bbf6d3cbf_o
The Warehouse Art School is very proud of its visiting artists and talks series, with practitioners coming from varied backgrounds ranging from, painting, sculpture and installation, to performance, printmaking and photography and jewellery. Past talks have included: Jumana Hokan, Pat Jeffs, Angela Stauber, Holly Slingsby, Cally Trench, Cai Yuan, Saad Qureshi, Jenny Moore and Tommy Watkins, amongst others. Exposing participants to different ways of working is a key element to the course and getting them to think outside of their usual practice is developed through talking to and collaborating with different artists.

“It’s great to be in contact with resident artists. The artist talks were fantastic” – Former student

Professional Development Sessions
Writing skills for statements, biographies and CVs, will assist with proposals for gallery applications or further study. This process will also help to contextualise each person’s practice.

Trip to Banksy's 'Dismaland' September 2015

Group Trip to Banksy’s ‘Dismaland’

Portfolio Advice
Participants are offered a full Portfolio Review including support in documenting their work. Digital photography and design skills are offered as part of the course. Participants are also encouraged to share skills and run workshops in their areas of expertise.

Gallery Visits 
Visits to relevant exhibitions and festivals in Oxford, London and further afield will be arranged with a specific art-related agenda, tailored to suit the developing interests of the group


Study trip to Rome (2018)

Study Trips (costed separately)
An initial 3 day trip in September / October 2019 will have a UK destination. Past destinations include the Liverpool Biennial, Hull (UK City of Culture) and Bristol. This is a valuable time to connect with the group and see exhibitions. In the Spring Term the Warehouse Arts School undertakes a trip to a European City with past destinations including Berlin, Naples, Lisbon and Rome. These trips also provide research material for a project related to some aspect of the visit.

Modern Art Oxford Painting Workshop OVADA Warehouse Art School

Painting workshop at Modern Art Oxford

Residencies and Offsite Projects
The Warehouse Art School is always looking for new and exciting opportunities for collaborations. These have included a student-led project at Modern Art Oxford, a pop-up exhibition at the Pitt Rivers Museum and an ongoing community project with a local primary school.

Artist Networking
There is a diverse and broad network of artists and designer/makers practicing in Oxfordshire. Participants are encouraged to develop and expand these networks, including the strong connections with many partner organisations and galleries in Oxford. OVADA’s series of talks, residencies and Associate events also create opportunities for participants to meet and work alongside established practitioners.

“A very useful opportunity to meet other practicing artists for exchange of ideas” – Former student

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Performance by Katie Hellon – End of Year Show 2017

A Group Exhibition at OVADA
In the third term, course participants focus their attention on a self-directed work for an exhibition at the OVADA’s warehouse space. They are given full support both in the planning stages as well as in the hanging and marketing aspects of the show. The course tutors are experienced curators and will be on hand during all stages to make sure each participant’s work is presented in the best way possible. Tutorials, group critiques and artists talks continue during this period to ensure an ongoing dialogue.

“A very positive dimension of being at OVADA is the spin-off of being part of a dynamic art community within Oxford” – Former student

The Warehouse Art School prides itself on tailoring the course to individual needs. To discuss personal requirements please contact the OVADA team:


The course benefits from the unique knowledge and experience of tutors who are able to provide for participant’s individual needs through technical, theoretical and contextual learning:

Didi Baldwin
Specialist Area: Printmaking and Painting

Didi Baldwin is an artist working in a variety of different media including printmaking, painting, drawing and collage. Her work is characterised by a sensibility that is borne out of a reaction to place and the moment. Her work has been exhibited in Portugal, UK & Japan, and she has undertaken residencies in the UK, Spain and Iceland.

Didi studied at both the University of the Creative Arts and at the Glasgow School of Art, before completing her MA in Fine Art Printmaking at the Royal College of Art in London in 2002.

Education has always acted as an important counterpoint to her art practice, and she has worked in teaching for over twenty-five years, tutoring at Foundation, Undergraduate and Post Graduate levels.

Roger Perkins
Specialist Area: Sculpture and Installation

Roger Perkins has been a professional sculptor for over forty years and has exhibited in the UK, Europe and the US. His work is also in a number of public museums and private collections and he has received a number of awards and grants towards projects in the UK and abroad.

His work is frequently time-based installation and transient in its nature – in terms of both material and subject matter. Alongside his professional practice he has taught art and design at Foundation, Degree and Post Graduate levels.

He continues his practice in the hope that, at some point, the world will make some sense to him.

Roger Pugh
New Media & Collaboration

After retirement from teaching, Roger completed a part-time degree course in Fine Art at Bucks New University. From there Roger was part of the first WAS cohort and continued as a student at OVADA for 4 years. In 2017 Roger was invited to join the WAS5 team, running monthly workshops, and has continued to teach on the course since.

Course Details

Cost per year: £1,900
The fee is non-refundable however arrangements can be made to pay in instalments. Additional costs will include the study trips and materials needed for individual projects. Enrolment in the Continuing Practice Course also entitles participants to free OVADA Associate Membership for one year.

Archive of past End of Year Shows:

2019: What Happened Here
2018: Casting About 
2017: A New Kind of Fun
2016: Third Space
2015: Breathing Space
2014: Making Space

You can view selected past projects on WAS’ YouTube channel.

To apply, please download the Application form.
Prospective students who demonstrate commitment to the aims of the course and an appropriate standard of work will be invited to an informal interview and portfolio presentation with the Course Tutors.

All enquiries should be sent to the joint course leader, Didi Baldwin: