Frances Bossom Project Image

Frances Bossom

Digital Transformations: The History and Future of Gallery Education in the Context of Participatory Media (University of the West of England) 2018 -

My study will develop new knowledge and practices about; archives, art practice, learning and participatory media, specifically within the context of cultural organisations. Arnolfini’s Education archives are central to this study. This interdisciplinary contemporary arts centre was launched in was a room above a bookshop in Bristol (UK) in 1961 and has evolved over the last 50 years to become one of Europe’s leading cultural centres.


The Education Archives contain a variety of printed materials, including; reports, letters, project documentation, publicity and memos dating from 1976 to 2007. Sarah Torres Vega, a Museum Education Archival Researcher at the Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA, asserted that it is often the people who engaged in learning and education experiences in the museum that are the least likely to be involved in authoring the history of those experiences. I am particularly interested in capturing narratives, perspectives and experiences that are currently; marginalised, forgotten, hidden, ephemeral, critical, awkward or lost. My intention is to open up a dynamic and discursive action research project that explores how digital culture and physical encounters can work together, to intervene and disrupt the archives and institutional memory with co-production, decentred curation and re-enactment. 


Supervision Team: Dr Matthew Partington (Director of Studies), Dr Shawn Sobers and Phil Owen (Arnolfini Archivist)