Karen Ingham is an artist, writer, and curator. She was born in England and raised in the United States, Germany and Norway. She gained an MPhil with the University of Wales in 2001 and a PhD in 2006 with research into historical and contemporary art and science collaborations in the anatomical theatre. In 2009 and she was awarded a Major Creative Wales Arts Prize to develop new ideas around identity, transience, mutability and synthesis. Her work is internationally exhibited and disseminated and has been shown at the ICA London, the Berlin and Edinburgh Film Festivals, the Enter3 Festival Prague, Waag Amsterdam, and The National Museum and Gallery of Wales amongst other venues. She has several publications in distribution with Dewi Lewis Publishing, Ffotogallery Publications, and Seren Books.
Ingham’s primary art form is lens-based arts. Her approach is interdisciplinary, incorporating theory and practice, and she often works site-specifically. Major themes are: biomedical discourse and museology, Wonder Chamber (2012), Narrative Remains (2009), Anatomy Lessons (2004); art and neuroscience, Seeds of Memory (2006); mutability, transience and the vanitas, Vanitas: Seed-Head (2005); the photographic memento-mori, Death’s Witness (2001); art, science and technology interactions, Fragile Mass (2008); and the notion of locatedness and dislocation, Lost (1998) Paradise Park (2000) Ha Ha: Margam Re-visited (2002) and Unnatural Histories (2008). She has received support from The Wellcome Trust, The Arts & Humanities Research Council, The Arts Council of Wales and The Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, to research, exhibit, tour and publish a series of artist’s interventions. These interventions are often staged in exclusive domains such as the Dissecting Room, the Anatomical Museum, and the Medical Research Laboratory. Her practice often addresses the museum space and museology and her fascination with the Wunderkammer (Wonder Chamber) is reflected in her interest in the intersections between art, science and technology.
Whilst grounded in a philosophical discourse, public engagement across art and science is also important, as demonstrated by her AHRC Sci-Art Research Fellowship Seeds of Memory (2005/6) with the Cardiff Neuroscience Research Group, and her film and exhibition Narrative Remains (2009), a collaboration with the Royal College of Surgeons Hunterian Museum in London funded by The Wellcome Trust Arts Awards. She also writes on: the photographic memento mori, ‘A Dark Adapted Eye’ in Stilled (2006) and ‘From Tissue to Tex’ in The Journal of Performance Research, Issue 15.1 Memento Mori (2010) and on contemporary revitalisations of the anatomical theatre and the body therein, ‘Art and the Theatre of Mind and Body’ in The Journal of Anatomy (2010), ‘The Anatomy Lesson of Professor Moxham’ in (Ed. Maaike Bleeker) Anatomy Live: Performance and The Operating Theatre, University of Amsterdam Press (2008) and Anatomy Lessons (2004). In addition to her own practice Ingham acts as an artist/curator. In 2008 she curated the group show Reasoned Uncertainties, elements of which were shown in Bilbao in 2009 and she was an AXIS Open Frequency Curator for Wales for 2008-09.
Recent projects include Wonder Chamber (2012) with Ffotogallery, supported by the Arts Council of Wales and Pollinator Frocks (2010-2011) Wales Arts International and SCANZ 2011 New Zealand. Ingham is represented by: Millennium Images London, Oneofeditions.com and IRIS International Resource for Womens Photography. Her work is in several collections including The AHRC Study Resource for Artist’s Film and Video at Central St. Martins, The British Film Institute and The Lux Centre, London.
For academic and scholarly activities go to:www.smu.ac.uk/research/index.php/karen-ingham