My current research interests revolve around the aesthetics and symbolism of the medical museum; using its collections, taxonomies, and histories as metaphors for a contemporary subjective experience of the body, in life and death. My history as a mixed-race, post-colonial child informs a practice exploring interstices: between science and religion, the normal and the pathological, the familiar and the uncanny. These themes are visualised through mixed-media processes which include drawing, assemblage, and installation. Recent work combines historical and contemporary anatomical imagery with maps and literature to create layers of image and meaning, evoking new considerations of anatomical collections and their role in creative responses to the body. This mapping process – anatomical, geographical and conceptual - forms part of a metaphorical locating of the 'self': the medicalised or pathological self becoming a metaphor for the 'stateless' self that is brought into question by relocation from one country or state to another. My studio work is enabled by and intersected within a community engagement and public arts practice, making artwork for institutions as varied as schools, hospitals, libraries, and public conveniences. I have taught art at secondary school, FE, and HE levels, and regularly disseminate my visual research at conferences and seminars in the UK and Europe.
CV & Education
Qualifications and training
- 2011 - MA Arts in a Social Context. Colchester School of Art/University of Essex. (distinction)
- 2010 - Certificate of Education, Lifelong Learning Sector. Colchester Institute/University of Essex (in-service route)
- 2013 - “An Order of Things”,selection: Dept. of History, University of Liverpool.
- 2011 'Interstice/Confluence' (with Anne Barclay) Benham Gallery, Colchester.
- 2010 - An Order of Things, Minories Gallery, Colchester.
- 2009 - 'The Double-Skinned Shed', St Martins Church, Colchester.
- 2008 - 'Wearable Vanitas and other work', Platform Gallery, Mistley.
- 2014 - "Image:Text:Object - Practices of Research", Level 4 gallery,University of Southampton
- 2014 - "The Body is the Instrument of the Soul", Old Operating Theatre, London
- 2014 - "Fabrica Vitae", Vesalius Continuum, Zykanthos, Greece
- 2013 - “Conversa…Informação…Comunicação”: CECAL, Loulé, Portugal.
- 2012 - "Curious Pursuits", Portico Library, Manchester
- 2012 - "Outside 12:Un Lieu de Mémoire", Cuckoo Farm Studios, Colchester
- 2011 - "Retrofuturology", Observatory, Brooklyn, New York
- 2010 - “Paradiso Contrapasso”: Observatory, Brooklyn, NY, USA
- 2010 - “Women Artists in 2010”: New Brunswick, Canada.
- 2009 - “Long Nights”: William Angel Gallery, London.
- 2008 - “Wearable Expressions”: Palos Verdes Arts Centre, California.
- 2005 - “Dust to Dust”: Arts on 5 Gallery, University of Essex.
- 2011 - "Outside 11: Artist as Outsider", Cuckoo Farm Studios, Colchester
Artist talks and Conference papers:
- 2014 - "It's my Own Invention: An Anatomical Alice" (with Glenn Harcourt) at 'Vesalius Continuum', Zykanthos, Greece
- 2014 - "The Dying of the Light: Art seeking Self in the Medical Museum" (with Glenn Harcourt) at "Collect:Exchange:Display", Hunterian Museum, London
- 2013 - "Mapping the Remains: an Exercise in Comparative Museology" at "History and Cultural Representations of Human Remains", Natural History Museum, Toulouse
- 2012 - "Making Myself a Monster: Self-portraiture as Teratological Specimen" at "Cultures of Anatomical Collections", Universeteit Leiden, Netherlands
- 2011 - "Making Myself a Monster: Self-portraiture as Teratological Specimen"at the 9th Global Conference: Monsters and the Monstrous: InterDisciplinary.Net, Mansfield College, Oxford
- 2013-14 - “Exchanges2”: Changing Room Studio, Suffolk Artlink/University College Suffolk.
- 2011 - Wood Institute research fellowship, Mutter Museum, College of Physicians, Philadelphia, USA
- 2007 - Chantiers des Arts: (With Natasha Carsberg) Cunlhat, France.
- 2005 - Artist in Residence, Chateau De Sacy, Picardie, France.
Public Art commissions
- 2012 - "Reminiscence Points'" Ghyll Grove high dependency unit (BUPA), Basildon, Essex.
- 2011 - "Our Histories: the Old inside the New", Peterborough City Hospital, Outpatients, Peterborough
- 2008 - "Creative Conveniences", public art in public conveniences, Colchester and Dedham. In collaboration with Kate Farley and Andy Hazell. Colchester Arts Development.
- 2005 - 'Riverside Living Project': Interpretation panel. In collaboration with Gary Thrussell, Mencap, Colchester and Braintree Museums, and River Colne Conservation Group.
- 2015 - “The dying of the light: art seeking self in the anatomy museum”: in Dynamis: journal of history of medicine. Co-authored with Glenn Harcourt.
- 2014 - “Poor Thing” in IDN: Monsters and the Monstrous Volume 4, Number 1. Summer 2014. ISSN: 1756-770X
- 2012 - '"Making myself a Monster: self-portraiture as teratological specimen" in 'Twisted Mirrors: Monstrous Reflections of Humanity’ : Eds. Seth Alcorn and Steven A. Nardi. Interdisciplinary Press (e-book)