> > Tansy Spinks - Senior Lecturer in Fine Art

BeyondThe Bookshelves


May 24th - June 6th 2012

This exhibition in Chelsea Old College Library features objects and documentation relating to a six hour sound performance undertaken in the library on March 1st 2012

Tansy Spinks - Senior Lecturer in Fine Art

live improvisation, with Black Rice trio

Performance: 18.09.18

Black Rice trio, Tansy Spinks (violin/electric violin), Pete Nagel, (cello and objects), Rahel Kraft, (voice and electronics). A duo with ‘virtual’ 3rd member, in Berlin.
Horse Improvised Music event at Iklectik, Old Paradise Yard, 20 Carlisle Lane, Waterloo, SE1 7LG. http://www.iklectikartlab.com, http://horseimprovclub.wordpress.com

Image - immg_3340__1_.jpg

live improvisation event

National College of Arts, Lahore, Pakistan

Performance: Live improvisation (violin) for RM Naeem, artist/lecturer,National College of Arts, Lahore, July 30th 2018, with tabla player, Israr Chishti and guitarist Kashif Mohsin

Dr Tansy Spinks, Senior Lecturer in Fine Art


Tansy Spinks studied Fine Art in Leeds and has an MA in Photography from the Royal College of Art in London. Her recently completed PhD at LCC, UAL, Associating Places: Strategies for Live, Site Specific, Sound Art Performance, explored live, site-specific sound works, through a portfolio of 20 works.

She is involved in live solo and collaborative sound performances sometimes using an electric violin and looping device, or objects related to the space, performing at many venues including the V & A, Camden Arts Centre, Horse Hospital, Brighton Festival Fringe, Harold’s Wharf at Deptford Creek, Chelsea Parade Ground, Wimbledon Space, Parasol Unit, SLG, Beaconsfield, Grand Connaught Rooms, East Street Arts, Leeds, Pitzhanger Manor and many alternative spaces such as a Seafort off the north Kent coast, staircases, lifts, a market arcade and on top of a windmill.  

She has exhibited widely both at home and abroad and is a Senior Lecturer in Fine Art at Middlesex University, with a particular remit for the student exchange programme, a Lecturer at Camberwell College of Art, UAL and has been External Assessor at Hertfordshire and Manchester Metropolitan Universities and currently at Plymouth University. She also holds the award of LGSM (violin).

She lives and works in London, UK. Her exhibited photographic work is included in the collections of the The Museum of Fine Arts in Houston, Texas USA and the National Museum of Film, TV and Photography, Bradford, UK. Images have also been used by most of the major publishing houses for book and and CD covers. She is currently represented by Millenium Images.


The Great Learning by Cornelius Cardew

Paragraphs 1-7, a re-enactment of the original 1968-70 score

Invited participant in Paragraphs 5 & 7 at the Union Chapel, London N1 2UN on July 12th 2015. A Heritage Lottery funded event led by original Scratch Orchestra members, Michael Parsons, John Tilbury, Dave Smith, Bryn Jones and COMA participants with additional direction by Word Event Score author John Lely (Saunders J., & Lely J., 2014).

Chapter 5 included improvisations on one string fiddle and 50 minute improvisation on home-made electronic noise box.

Chapter 7, one hour (approx.) voice improvisation on a confucian text

Performances, shows and publications.

2015 The Great Learning, by Cornelius Cardew, participant in Union Chapel with original Scratch Orchestra members., improvising on voice, one string fiddle and noise box.

2015 MuSA15 conference, Karlsruhe, Germany, gave a paper on suggested new tripartite strategic model for approaching site specific sound art.

2015 Adri ,'snap' symposium, Middlesex University, showing of video of re-enactment of Bruce Nauman's piece, 'Playing a Note on the Violin While Walking Round the Studio' (1968).

2015 White Cube Gallery, Bermondsey, invited to interpret three solo Fluxus water scores as part of the Christian Marclay exhibition, performing pieces by George Brecht, (in front of Marclay..) Maciunas and Thomas Schmit. 

2014/5 awarded PhD for Associating Spaces: Strategies for Live, Site Specific, Sound Art Performance, from LCC, University of the Arts, London with David Toop, Angus Carlyle and Cathy Lane.

2014 Sonic Activations of the Rake, performance at Pitzhanger Manor as part of Prop and Proposition, the Body as Sculpture, curated by Marcus Orlandi 

2014 The Laboratory of Sonic Possibility, Wimbledon Space residency and exhition event, as part of the Acts Re-acts  festival of performance research.

2014 Acts Re-Acts festival exhibititon, videos  shown: Seven Improvised Bows & Seven Improvised Bridges, (a collaboration with Klega)

2013 Leeds!, Leeds!, Leeds,! 45 minute recording played out for East St Arts gallery, Leeds, curated by Hayley Dixon

2013 Sounding the Portal installation for Sounding Space event and symposium, Chelsea College of Art.

2013 Four Full Stops, solo performance for the CSM Sensingsite seminar commission at the Parasol Unit, 

2013 Sonic Ritual, commission for the British Association of Sociologists, Goldsmiths' Engaging Tactics, Revealing Secrets strand, two 15 minute performances with assistant in the Masonic Chamber, Grand Connaught Rooms.

2013, Figures of Speech, published in On Scenography issue of Performance Research Journal, vol 18, no.3, p.198

2012 Take a Space proposal published for Tate Modern, Tate Tanks publication, for print-on-demand ,Impossible Schoolbook, by Fiveyears.org.

2012 Silent Zone, as part of the Contested Sights/Sites exhibition, Chelsea College of Art a six hour durational performance in the Old Library.

2012 dsh performance event at South London Gallery, as participant in Unknown Devices with David Toop.

2011 Conference at Arrhus university, Aesthetics dept., Denmark, gave a paper on Max Neuhaus: Sounds Leaving and Lasting, exploring the work of Max Neuhaus.

2011 Elusive, photography exhibition, Camberwell Space. Invited to perform solo live performance in lift, Floor Zero, show curated by Martin Newth and Sian Bonnell.   

2011, Take a Space, Make a Sound In It, two solo performances of interpretations of Improvisation Rites at Morley College, in the canteen, as part of The Engine Room, Cornelius Cardew festival.

2010 Video Tormented Matter acquired for the Wellcome Collection library from solo exhibition Reveal at The Pierhouse, Tower Bridge, event devised by www.funwithcancerpatients.com

2010, Seafort, Whitstable Biennale Satellite programme, performance on Redsands Seaforts June 2010

2010, Performance, Feral Glissando, and collaboration in staircase at Edinburgh University as part of conference, 'Experimenting with Geography', May 2010 a

2010, Performance, Feral Glissando, 2 and collaboration in staircase at Wolverhampton University conference, July 2010, 'Space; the Real and the Abstract,' gave a paper Sound as an Object in Space: Interpreting Space through Sound and Performance.

2010, Hoop, Beaconsfield Art Gallery, London, solo commission for RELLA, curated by Michael Curran and Lucy Gunning April 11th 2010

2010, Brixton Market, 3 solo performances commissioned by artinavan.com, for Spacemakers.org, Granville Arcades Project.

2010, Participant in Late at Tate (Britain), participant in the Laptop Orchestra, Unknown Devices directed by David Toop, March 5th 2010

2010 Tate Modern, Starr Auditorium, participant in Tomomi Adachi's speech ensemble as part of 'Speaking Out' conference on Feb 6th 2010

2009 Sonic Triangle, as part of 'Uncharted Stories' at Chelsea College of Art Triangle Gallery (5 live solo performances)

2009 Night Time Exhibition curated by Ana Laura Lopez de la Torre, Camberwell Space, and featuring in book: Night Time, distributed by Thisisunbound 

2009 Tate Britain COMA participant with voice and radio in Cornelius Cardew's The Great Learning and Cage's Landscape no x (for transistor radios).

2009 ICA weekend, Play For Today, voice participant as part of Cardew's Great Learning no 7 performance.

2009 APHE (Association of Photography in Higher Education) conference, University of Brighton, invited to give a paper entitled 'The Mercurial Practitioner'.

2008 Henry's Ballad at Harold's Wharf commission for 'Concrete Dreams' at APT, Deptford (3 performances) with other exhibitors including Cornelia Parker, Anya Gallaccio, Jefford Horrigan, Silvia Ziranek. Curated by Fran Cottell and Liz Harrison.

Videos: video pieces currently touring in One Minute Videos Volume 3 (Hull, Manchester, Salford, etc) 2009/10 and Volume 4. Berlin and on tour internationally to date (2015), devised and curated by Kerry Baldry.

Tansy Spinks' research in the University Repository

Sound art and music: philosophy, composition, performance

Dack, John and Spinks, Tansy and Stanović, Adam , eds. (2020) Sound art and music: philosophy, composition, performance. Cambridge Scholars Publishing, UK. ISBN 9781527557819 ...

Black Rice trio, improvisation

Spinks, Tansy and Nagle, Pete and Kraft, Rahel (2018) Black Rice trio, improvisation. [Performance] ...

Improvisation: violin, tabla, guitar

Spinks, Tansy and Chisht, Israr and Mohsin, Kashif (2018) Improvisation: violin, tabla, guitar. [Performance] ...

Moire in Sound

Spinks, Tansy and Amrani, Maya (2017) Moire in Sound. [Performance] ...

Forest of Plasticity

Spinks, Tansy (2017) Forest of Plasticity. [Performance] ...

Associating places: strategies for live, site specific, sound art performance

Spinks, Tansy (2015) Associating places: strategies for live, site specific, sound art performance. PhD thesis, University of the Arts London. ...

The echo of Henry's ballad

Spinks, Tansy (2016) The echo of Henry's ballad. [Performance] ...

Interpreting Bruce Nauman's 'walking round (the studio) playing one note on the violin' as an invited response to the site specific work Pentagon Petal

Spinks, Tansy and Cottell, Fran and Mueller, Maryanne (2016) Interpreting Bruce Nauman's 'walking round (the studio) playing one note on the violin' as an invited response to the site specific w...

Performance for microphone and beach performed by The Lab of Sonic Possibility

Spinks, Tansy and Garrelfs, Iris (2016) Performance for microphone and beach performed by The Lab of Sonic Possibility. [Performance] ...

Bowed lamps

Spinks, Tansy and Garrelfs, Iris (2016) Bowed lamps. [Performance] ...

Black rice 1

Spinks, Tansy and Nagle, Pete and Kraft, Rahel (2016) Black rice 1. [Performance] ...


Spinks, Tansy (2016) Leeds!Leeds!Leeds! n.paradoxa: international feminist art journal , 37 . pp. 24-25. ISSN 1461-0434 ...

In the mind’s ear

Spinks, Tansy (2016) In the mind’s ear. [Show/Exhibition] ...

The laboratory of sonic possibilities

Spinks, Tansy and Garrelfs, Iris (2014) The laboratory of sonic possibilities. [Performance] ...

Fluxus water scores

Spinks, Tansy (2015) Fluxus water scores. [Performance] ...

Sites and interventions.

Spinks, Tansy and Kassianidou, Marina (2011) Sites and interventions. In: The Practice Exchange, 2nd March 2011, Chelsea College of Art, Green Room.. ...

Hoop [sound performance in the exhibition RELLA].

Spinks, Tansy and Curran, Michael and Gunning, Lucy (2010) Hoop [sound performance in the exhibition RELLA]. [Show/Exhibition] ...

Feral Glissando [sound performance part of Experimenting with geography conference]

Spinks, Tansy and Gallagher, Michael (2010) Feral Glissando [sound performance part of Experimenting with geography conference]. In: Experimenting With Geography, May 2010, Edinburgh University....

Henry's ballad at Harold's wharf [part of Concrete Dreams].

Spinks, Tansy and Cottell, Fran and Harrison, Liz (2008) Henry's ballad at Harold's wharf [part of Concrete Dreams]. [Show/Exhibition] ...

Sonic Triangle. [part of Uncharted Stories exhibition]

Spinks, Tansy and Guerrero-Rippberger, Sara (2009) Sonic Triangle. [part of Uncharted Stories exhibition]. [Show/Exhibition] ...