Greetings. I am an art historian, writer, editor, lecturer, arts consultant and blogger. I like to experiment with different forms of writing in both academic and art world contexts. I regularly review exhibitions for online platforms such as a-n, Axisweb, The Double Negative and This is Tomorrow, and I produce catalogue essays for artists, galleries and organisations on a freelance basis. I especially enjoy collaborations and frequently co-curate, co-develop and co-author with other writers, artists and curators. My interests are diverse, but broadly centre around the discussion of art across time and cultural spaces, sometimes through the metaphor of folly (https://follymatters.
wordpress.com/). I run a freelance business under the name Thoughtform, through which I provide commissioned writing, editing, consultancy and mentoring services (http://thought-form.com/).
I received a PhD from the University of Leeds in 2011, and continue to publish academic research on the subject of the art and architecture of Islamic Spain and its European reception, particularly through the work of Victorian designers and early travel tourism. I have given talks at numerous conferences, symposia and as part of visiting lecture programmes, including the Victoria and Albert Museum and the National Gallery of Scotland.
I am a visiting lecturer at the University of Manchester and a research fellow at the University of Leeds, where I teach across a range of subjects including Islamic visual culture, Orientalist art and architecture, and Victorian design and ornament. The binding thread of these topics is my longstanding dual interest in the divisions between fine art and craft, and the productive spaces of cross-cultural interpretation. I also give lectures in FE and continuing education settings on a wide range of art historical topics, from prehistoric to contemporary.
I also have a background in artist facilitation and project management in the arts, and have worked with numerous creative partnerships in the UK and Canada (where I’m originally from). I am currently the Managing Editor for the contemporary art writing platform, Corridor8 (http://www.corridor8.co.uk/), and have successfully secured an Arts Council England grant to run a critical art writing residency programme.
A strong advocate for the visual arts in the North of England, I am actively involved in the contemporary art scene, often acting as a mentor for early career writers. I have also been the recipient of art writing bursary schemes, including a partnership with the arts platform The Double Negative and The Royal Standard studios in Liverpool. I am always on the lookout for opportunities to work with artists and to help them develop their ideas in creative settings, such as studio critiques, workshops and open studios.