I am an artist, lecturer and doctoral research student specialising in contemporary women's and feminist art practice (Ph.D. in progress: The Place of Painting). My work is archived at the Elizabeth A Sackler Center for Feminist Art 'Artabase' based at the Brooklyn Museum in New York and I am the UK representative for the Feminist Art Project (Rutgers.edu, USA).
The Observer on Sunday/The Guardian in 'Britain is not radical enough': "The drawings for her degree show, which reverse the female submissiveness advocated by a religious pamphlet posted through her door, put women in a dominant position while the men are bent and bound in sexual submission. The male figures have been censored, but to protect whom? The spam I receive contains more indecency than Ms Gorrill's work, and it is much less interesting because she makes a valid point."
Most recently, I have been working with 'collage', reconstructing and reviving the art historical female nude from recycled materials, inspired by Hannah Hoch's 'Cut with the Kitchen Knife' work from the 1920s.
CV & Education
I am an artist, lecturer and doctoral research student specialising in contemporary women's and feminist art practice. My work is archived at the Elizabeth A Sackler Center for Feminist Art 'Artabase' based at the Brooklyn Museum in New York and I am the UK representative for the Feminist Art Project (Rutgers.edu, USA).
I’m a PhD candidate, Artist and Lecturer – I’m passionate about painting and my interests lie in the art market and gender issues, underpinned by a prize-winning MRes from Northumbria University.
I am the recipient of The Place of Painting PhD scholarship at Coventry University, and my research is a full 80,000 word thesis initially inspired by Georg Baselitz’s recent comments that ‘women cannot paint’. Entitled ‘Contemporary British Painting: Gender, Validation and Visibility through Auctions and Prizes’, I have created a unique Critical Catalogue Raisonné that I investigate with SPSS statistical analysis, creating a predictive model for the future of contemporary British painting. This enables me to answer some key questions relating to aesthetics, market performance, prize-winning qualities, gender and artworld discrimination.
My artwork is digitally archived by The Brooklyn Museum New York (EASCFA) and I am currently developing a body of new large-scale work that reflects some of the findings of my PhD research, in particular hexadecimal colour analysis and gender/aesthetic differences in contemporary British painting.
Ph.D Design and Visual Arts: The Place of Painting Coventry University Sep 13 – Aug 16
MRes Gender Studies/Art History (Distinction/Prize) Northumbria University Sep 09-Sep 13
BA (Hons) Contemporary Arts (First Class) University of Cumbria, Sep 09 – Jun 11
FDA Contemporary Drawing (First Class) University of Cumbria, Sep 07 – Jun 09
Foundation Dip. Art & Design (Distinction) Cumbria Inst. Arts, Sep 07 – June 09
LECTURING AND TEACHING EXPERIENCE
I have devised/rewritten and delivered the following modules and courses for Cleveland College of Art and Design, Middlesbrough, 2012-2013: Watercolour and ink painting, painting techniques, Contemporary collage, Life drawing, Life sculpture - drawing with clay, Figure drawing for fashion illustration, Contextual studies, Contemporary Art Theory, Art & Design techniques, etc.
My lecturing experience includes both practical and academic skills-based teaching within the arts, course design, delivering small and large group lectures, master classes, essay and dissertation supervision, writing research papers/presenting research at conferences.
2013: Awarded scholarship for PhD Design & Visual Arts, Coventry University
2012: Shortlisted for Passion for Freedom, International Artists Award in London
2012: Postgraduate and alumni research award, Northumbria University
2011: MRes scholarship award, Northumbria University
2011: Selected for postgraduate research scholarship, Newcastle University
2011: Shortlisted for the Cartazini Award, Paris
2010: Finalist and Artist Award at London’s Salon Contemporary Gallery 'Best of British'
2009: The Stead McAlpine Creative Travel Award
2009: The Burnetts Drawing Award
'Locating Aesthetics in the Economy of the Visual': the 13th ELIA Biennial Conference, The Glasgow Royal Concert Hall, 2014 (co-written with Professor Judith Mottram, Dean of School of Material, The Royal College of Art)
‘Contemporary British Painting at London Auctions: Artist’s Age, Gender and Valuation in the 1990s and the Present Day’, 2014 (co-written with Professor Judith Mottram, Dean at The Royal College of Art)
'Aesthetic Models and Perceiving Paintings' (co-written with Professor Judith Mottram, Dean at Royal College of Art) - to be presented at the Tenth International Conference on the Arts in Society at Imperial College London in 2015
'Painting and Selling the British Female Nude: Gender, Valuation and Visibility through London Auction Houses'
2012: Postgraduate and PhD public research conference, Northumbria University (organiser and speaker)
2012: Postgraduate international networking: Multi-disciplinary Gender Studies Symposium, Northumbria University (organiser and speaker)
2011: Women, Art and Religion through the controversial work of Helen Gorrill, DegreeArt Gallery, London (speaker), with gallerists, academics and critics
2011: Invited to talk about art practice on Frank Skinner’s Opinionated, The BBC in association with Avalon TV
2011: Invited to talk on gender studies, BBC Radio Cumbria
SOME SELECTED PRESS (please see www.helengorrill.com for comprehensive list)
The Guardian/The Observer on Sunday – ‘The drawings for her degree show, which reverse the female submissiveness advocated by a religious pamphlet posted through her door, put women in a dominant position while the men are bound and bent in sexual submission. The male figures have been censored but to protect whom? The spam I receive contains more indecency than Ms Gorrill’s work. And it is much less interesting.
The National, United Arab Emirates (national paper) – ‘One of the standout collections is work by Helen Gorrill that, while relatively tame compared with some of the artist’s more unabashed work, is still a remarkably daring series. Large paintings shows women in gratuitous poses, clad in the garb of trashy, commercialised titillation. Yet their faces are smeared, their bodies tarnished and the scale of the pieces draws parallels with iconography. Gorrill is remarkably combative in her art.’
Embroidery Magazine – ‘Helen Gorrill’s Confession Chamber is an intriguing interactive installation in which visitors are invited to make their own confession and leave it hidden or revealed in the chamber.’
Skin Two – ‘Helen Gorrill and Pharrell Williams’ chairs are both in keeping with Dali’s ideology. By blending human limbs and furniture, you combine objects not normally found together which, surrealists say, liberates the imagination.’
BBC – ‘The now much talked about artist Helen Gorrill…these are good paintings.’
Zeitgeist Magazine – ‘Gorrill's confession chamber is a fascinating affair, it works on so many levels and has endless depth to it...Having already gained national and international press attention for her controversial drawings showing anonymous men in sexually submissive positions, Gorrill describes her work as exploring "post-feminist concepts of power and control, that investigate enforcement, reinforcement and reactions to patriarchal society. With the subject of patriarchy so immediately apparent in her new project, I can't help but wonder whether Pope Benedict XVI has gone slightly beyond this concept with his decision to just omit the existence of women from his new children's book completely.’
SOME SELECTED EXHIBITIONS (please see www.helengorrill.com for comprehensive listing)
New Bond St, London - 2014-15
Affordable Art Fair, Hampstead, Battersea & Bristol, 2014
Creation Fine Arts, Solo Show Femmes Fatales, 2014
Wish you were here AIR Gallery, New York 2013
Sweet’Art The Crypt Gallery, Lonhttps://www.axisweb.org/dashboard/profile-cv/don 2013
Love where you live MIMA, Middlesbrough 2013
Passion for Freedom Unit 24 Gallery, Adj Tate Modern 2012
The Affordable Art Fair London Battersea 2012
Womart Funoon Gallery, Dubai 2012
Religionis Violenta London West Bank Gallery 2012
The 20:12 Olympics DegreeArt Gallery, London 2012
Exposition Georges Bataille Galerie Hors Champs, Paris 2012
National Science Week Centre For Life Museum, Newcastle 2012
The London Art Fair Selected to represent DegreeArt Gallery 2012
Dei-cide (solo show) DegreeArt Gallery, London 2011
21st century pin-up FineArte Gallery, Paris 2011
FLOUT Axis Arts Centre, Crewe 2011
I-SHO 73 Women, Feminist Art Tottenham Ct Rd, London 2011
Artist of the Year Awards Debut Contemporary, London 2011
Open Your Mind The Gallery, Hong Kong 2010
Censored Zine Islington, London 2010
Box of Desires 2 Centre for Recent Drawing, London 2010
The Body Collective 2 Qsand Arts Centre, Morecambe 2009
Enlightenment Northend House, Milton Keynes 2009
A Crash Course in Phantasy Empire Gallery, London 2009
A postcard says 1000 words APW Gallery, New York City 2009
Sex is not the Enemy Bodhi Gallery London (Amnesty Intl) 2009