Dr Loraine Leeson
Senior Lecturer, Visual arts
Dr. Loraine Leeson is a visual artist specialising in the social practice of art and runs modules in Art Practice and the Community in the Department of Fine Art. She is also director of the arts charity cSPACE, Senior Research Fellow at University of Westminster and recently Fulbright scholar in residence at University of Washington Tacoma, invited to help develop the outreach aspects of their creative courses. Her current research focuses on the role of art in bringing community-based knowledge into the public domain.
Loraine is particularly known for her work in support of the campaigning communities of London’s Docklands in the 1980’s, and her later use of digital media and the Internet to explore collective creativity. A retrospective exhibition celebrating thirty years of her practice toured Berlin, London, Toronto and Dublin 2005-08, while The Catch public artwork involving three hundred local children was voted a London 2012 Landmark. Her recent Young Person’s Guide to East London involving four hundred teenagers was recognised by a Media Trust Inspiring Voices award and an Olympic Inspire Mark. The Active Energy project has involved six years creative work with The Geezers Club at an AgeUK centre in East London, exploring the contribution that older people can bring to the development of new technologies. In 2012 this extended into the US through a residency involving a seniors’ group in Pittsburgh at the Mattress Factory museum of installation with results shown at the Feminist and... exhibition, curated by Professor Hilary Robinson. Work continues with the development of a new design for a tidal turbine, first tested in 2013 in the River Thames opposite the Houses of Parliament.