Karen Ingham is an interdisciplinary artist-designer and filmmaker. She was born in England and raised in the United States, Germany and Norway. She gained an MPhil and a PhD with the University of Wales for her research into historical and contemporary art and science collaborations in the biomedical domain. She is an awardee of a Major Creative Wales Arts Prize and of AHRC and Wellcome Trust awards. Her work is internationally exhibited and disseminated and has been shown at the ICA London, the Berlin, Sundance, and Edinburgh Film Festivals, Somerset House London, 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, Seren Books and CG Publishing.
Ingham’s primary art form is lens-based arts and hybrid craft. Her approach incorporates 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 a wide range of funders to research, exhibit, tour and publish a series of artist’s interventions, and her film works have been widely screened in festivals and on television.
Public engagement 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. International public engagement design and textile technology projects include ‘Pollinator Frocks’ (2010-2011) Wales Arts International and SCANZ 2011 New Zealand, and the current Cape Farewell photo-sculptural commission ‘Small Wonders’ for the world first Tidal Lagoon at Swansea Bay. Ingham’s practice also includes design and architectural projects such as ‘Keeper’ (2013 with Bella Kerr) and ‘Hybrid Lives Co-Working Space’ (2013 with the Royal College of Art and the AHRC Creative Exchange).
Hybrid design projects include STATES OF MIND – Group Therapy: Mental Distress in a Digital Age, FACT, Liverpool 2015 with architect and designers Ben Koslowski , Brendan Dawes and Roberto Bottazzi as part of the AHRC-RCA funded Creative Exchange.
She also writes on: the photographic memento mori, ‘A Dark Adapted Eye’ in Stilled (2006) and ‘From Tissue to Text’ 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). Recent publications include ‘Between: Intersections in Art and Science in the Practice of Two Contemporary Artists’ (Co-author Susan Aldworth) in Art, Science and Cultural Understanding,Common Ground Publishing (2014).
She is represented by Millennium Images London and her work is in several collections including The British Film Institute and The Wellcome Collection London.