Reader in Fine Art
Strategies of mapping, site and image
The interface of private and public memory
East and West Europe
Pam Skelton studied painting at Camberwell College of Art and Design 1969-72 and at the Design School of the English National Opera, London, 1974-75. After moving to Birmingham in1980 she became involved in the struggle to address the inequality experienced at that time by women tutors and women students in art schools. From, 1997-1999 she was chair of the Women Arts Library. In the early 1990’s her art practice shifted away from painting to lens based media to address her emerging research interests.
My work involves collaborations and multidisciplinary research which focus on neglected, contested, or under represented histories. Working principally in moving image and lens-based media, I am concerned with the interface of public and personal memory in the aftermath of Fascism and the legacy of the former Soviet Union in East and West Europe. I am particularly interested in how art can address unresolved histories and conflicts and bring insight and understanding to past actions and repressed or forgotten events.
Private Views: Spaces and Gender in contemporary art from Britain and Estonia funded by Arts Council England in 2000. This project explored the identity positions, politics and struggles of women artists from East and West Europe.
Burning Poems, 2005-2007, addresses creative freedom and censorship was commissioned by the British Council in Russia and shown in St Petersburg, Moscow and Sochi.
Konspirative Wohnungen // Conspiracy Dwellings, 2007, looks at state surveillance an is a public art project in Germany, based on a study of the topography of Stasi secret meeting places in Erfurt a former East German city. From 2007-2010 a cluster of projects emerged from Conspiracy Dwellings that explore the ethical and cultural boundaries of surveillance including the collection of essays in the book Conspiracy Dwellings: Surveillance in Contemporary Art.
From a more personal perspective Hotel Minerva is a 2 channel video installation made for Archive of Exile a Speculative AHRC project that explores personal and trans-generational memory. Led by cultural geographer Jessica Dubow, from Sheffield University, this two-year cross-disciplinary project 2009-2011 brought three artists and three academics together to investigate what an archive of exile might be. The resulting work was shown at the exhibition Archive of Exile that was held at the Bank St Gallery and conference in summer 2011.
In the Event of Snow, 2013, is a single monitor video animation commissioned for the exhibition Cartographies of Life & Death: John Snow & Disease Mapping funded by the Wellcome Trust People Award and National Lottery / Arts Council England. In the Event of Snow is a cinematic assemblage of archival photographs of Soho sourced from Survey of London, English Heritage and Snow’s Maps from Wellcome Library, London in which in several photographic images are scrutinized and ‘inhabited’ linking Snow’s famous mapping project of the 1854 Cholera epidemic to pre-WWII Soho.
[Image: Installation view of Pam Skelton’s Hotel Minerva, from the Archive of Exile exhibition, 2011) image, courtesy of the artist. ]
Selected Outputs and Achievements
- 2010: Chapter, 'Konspirative Wohnungen // Conspiracy Dwellings', in Conspiracy Dwellings: Surveillance in Contemporary Art, ed. Outi Remes and Pam Skelton, Cambridge Scholars Publishing, pp 1-18.
- 2010: Chapter, Antagonistic Dwellings: Surveillance in Stasi Germany, An Art Project in Special Number, Cityscapes of the German Democratic Republic, ed. Renate Rechtien, in German Life and Letters Volume LXIII No. 4. October 2010. (Wiley-Blackwell), pp 458-474.
- 2007: Catalogue Konspirative Wohnungen // Conspiracy Dwellings, Kunsthaus Erfurt.
- 2006: Chapter 'Konspirative Wohnungen al Potenzielle Erinnerungsorte', in Geheime Trefforte des MfS in Erfurt, ed. Heinrich Best, Joachim Heinrich, Heinz Mestrup, Published by Herausgegeben von der Landesbeauftragten des Freistaates Thüringen für die Unterlagen des Staatssicherheitsdienst der ehemalien DDR, pp 107-114.
- 2004: Chapter,'Restretching the Canvas' in Unframed: Practices and Politics of Women's Contemporary Painting, ed. Rosemary Betterton, I.B. Tauris, pp 162-183.
- 2005: Burning Poems, Pam Skelton, Catalogue Anna Akhmatova Museum, St. Petersbury, British Council/Anna Akhmatova Museum.
- 2000: Chapter, Shifting Subjects - Beyond the east/west divide in Private Views, Spaces and Gender in contemporary art from Britain and Estonia, ed. Angela Dimitrakaki, Pam Skelton, Mare Tralla. Women's Art Library/IB Tauris, pp10-17.
- 2013: Exhibition: In the Event of Snow, in Cartographies of Life and Death: John Snow & Disease Mapping, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine
- 2012: Exhibition: Off the S[h]elf: the Self and Subjectivity in the artists book, Stockwell Studios, London
- 2012: Screening, Conspiracy Dwellings in The Conversation and Surveillance, Passenger Films, Urban Lab, London
- 2011: Exhibition: Rosa, a window installation, at Goodens Gallery, curated by Chris Meigh-Andrews, Vyner Street, London
- 2011: Archive of Exile, Bank Street, Arts, Sheffield.
- 2011: Conference Paper, 'Who Lives Where?' Covert Cultures conference organised by The Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Science and Humanities (CRASSH), University of Cambridge.
- 2010: Exhibition: What's the Difference! Chromosome works by Pam Skelton, Mirror Gallery, South Hill Park Arts Centre, Bracknell, UK.
- 2010: Presentation: Roshini Kempadoo and Pam Skelton presenters at the Pervasive Media Studio, Bristol, and Creative Media Seminar.
- 2010: Screening: 'Dangerous Places: Ponar' in Surviving History Exhibition South Africa Tour 2010 in Holocaust Centres in Cape Town, Durban and Johannesburg, South Africa.
- 2009: Exhibition Dwelling in the Space of Conspiracy Institute of Contemporary Interdisciplinary Art, University of Bath. UK
- 2009: Lecture/In Conversation with Jessica Dubow: 'Dwelling in the Space of Conspiracy' installation: Institute of Contemporary Interdisciplinary Art, University of Bath.
- 2009: Exhibition: Dwelling in the Space of Conspiracy Institute of Contemporary in ISEA09, Ormeau Baths Gallery, Belfast, N. Ireland.
- 2009: Convenor, Conspiracy Dwellings - Surveillance in Contemporary Art, Panel ISEA09, Belfast, N.Ireland.
- 2008: Paper, Conspiracy Dwellings Symposium, South Hill Park, Berkshire,
- 2008: Presentation: Liquidators, at the Nuclear Forum: Art Catalyst/SCAN, presentation Royal Society of Art, London
- 2008: Screening of Ghost Town, Wisconsin Jewish Film Festival, Madison, U.S.A.
- 2007/8: Exhibition: Conspiracy Dwellings, South Hill Park, Bracknell, UK
- 2007: Exhibition: Burning Poems, 2nd Moscow Biennale
- 2007: Exhibition: Socchi Art Museum, Russia
- 2007: Public Art Project: Exhibition: Conspiracy Dwellings // Konspirative Wohnungen: Erfurt, Germany
- 2005: Exhibition: Man (The Flaming Sideboards) Aine Art Museum Torneo, Finland.
- 2005: Exhibition: Site Specific Installation: Burning Poems, site specific video installations at the Anna Akhmatova Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia.
- 2005: Exhibition: Death is Part of the Process, Void Gallery, Derry, N. Ireland
Current Research Students
Idit Nathan: Art of Play in Zones of Conflict: The case of Israel-Palestine.
Sława Harasymowicz: Double Exposure: Memory, Post Memory and Autobiography as Practice; a study of Contemporary Polish Art.
Aviva Leemann: Reading the Material Text: Interactions Between Art, Word, Object and Audience.
Strategies of mapping, site and image: the interface of private and public memory: artists using Archives: aftermath of conflict in East and West Europe, diasporas, trauma and memory.