I am an artist and researcher. My work moves fluidly between territories - in art, academia and beyond - often drawing on my background as an ethnomusicologist and performer. Sometimes I describe my approach as 'social art and/as research': I want to make work that works, research that is alive and resonant, art that is rigorous and thoughtful – and to maintain a dual identity, never picking sides.
A dominant theme in my practice is ‘tradition’—its nature and relevance in contemporary society—and the ways that we come together, regardless of anything else, to make sense of time and place. I believe in the power of 'folk'—the original DIY—and that the things we make and do and think for ourselves matter, now perhaps more than ever.
I like working with people, especially those who might not ordinarily call themselves artists or don’t feel welcome in formal arts or educational settings. Creating open contexts and gentle provocations, I'm at my happiest when I'm finding new ways to facilitate the telling and sharing of stories, particularly the ones that aren't listened to enough.
Recently, I've been thinking about the possibilities of a non-anthropocentric social practice, via parallels between plant and human populations and exploring how we can create new traditions to build greater empathy with the non-human lives around us.
I have a PhD from Manchester School of Art.
CV & Education
2017: Bling! Bank Street Arts, Sheffield.
2017: ‘This Girl Can’ Morris Dance, Cecil Sharp House, London.
2014: Making Traditions [Pop-up], People’s History Museum, Manchester.
2019: Play, Air Gallery, Manchester.
2019: Dancing England [Pop-up], Nottingham Playhouse.
2018: 2021 Open, 2021 Visual Arts Centre, Scunthorpe.
2018: Crowd Show, NNContemporary, Northampton.
2018: Next Wave, RBSA Gallery, Birmingham.
2017: Creating the Countryside, Compton Verney, Warwickshire.
2017: The London Group Open, Cello Factory, London.
2017: Blowing a Gail, The Old Town House, Warrington.
2017: Reclaim Photography Festival, The Light House Media Centre, Wolverhampton.
2016: LEAVE//REMAIN, Bank Street Arts, Sheffield.
2015: KULES Public View, Olympus Engineering / Airspace Gallery, Stoke-on-Trent.
2018/19: Jersey Heritage, Jersey.
2017: Bank Street Arts, Sheffield.
2015: KULES @ Airspace Gallery, Stoke-on-Trent.
Funding and Awards
2018: Malcolm Taylor Grant, English Folk Dance and Song Society
2018: AFS International Bursary
2018: Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation Award
2017: Arts Enterprise Grant, ‘This Girl Can Morris Dance’
2015: British Council Travel Grant
2015: National Centre for Research Methods Bursary
2014: Economic and Social Research Council Bursary
2013: PRS for Music Foundation Award
2009 – 2014: Vice Chancellor PhD scholarship
2014: Manchester School of Art, Practice-led PhD (Vice Chancellor Scholarship)
2009: SOAS, University of London, MMus Ethnomusicology (Distinction)
2006: University of York, BA Hons History of Art (First)
2019: Practice-based Research Fellow, University of Leeds
AHRC-funded project, 'Cultural Participation: Stories of Success, Histories of Failure', School of Performance and Cultural Industries
2019: Arts Research and Development Co-ordinator
2018/19: Lecturer (maternity cover), Nottingham Trent University
School of Art and Design
2018: Research Fellow, Anglia Ruskin University
WISE / Amazon project
2017/18: Senior Research Associate, University of East Anglia
AHRC-funded Connected Communities project, 'Participatory Arts and DIY Cultures', Department of Art, Media and American Studies
2016/17: Research Associate, University of Sheffield
AHRC-funded project, 'Digital Folk', Department of Music