Curator Profiles

The curatorial collaborative is embarking on this experimental project in cooperation with a selection of fine artists with the aim to explore various approaches to exhibition making. In “Housed: Cookhouse” (2015), five students from the MA Curating & Collections programme attempt to make a contribution to the contemporary art discourse on curating and investigate the relationship between the exhibition maker, the artist and their work. The curatorial collaborative’s fundamental objectives are to examine how to best overcome obstacles which arise within an institutional context and those created by practical parameters in addition to finding a cohesive aesthetic language despite the radical challenge of the absence of knowledge regarding artistic, structural content.

Sara Elmasri  Helsinki, Finland

I received my undergraduate degree, BA in Modern History & English and Comparative Literature from the American University in Cairo. Prior to enrolling at Chelsea my work experience was both event management and freelance photography. My research interests involve exploring curating non-contemporary work by using contemporary curatorial practices.

Pawel Mendrek Katowice, Poland and Vienna, Austria

Pawel Mendrek is coordinates art projects for such institutions like KulturAxe Vienna, Chelsea College of Arts in Londyn, Oberliht/Independet Art Association from Chinsinau, MitOst Fundation, Berlin and Academy of Fine Arts in Katowice. In 2012 together with 2 other artists, created artist collective Travel Agency. The Travel Agency is long time, nomadic art project, composed of several threads revolving around the concept of strangeness and alienation, belonging to a place, emigration, embroiled identity. This work resulted with such curatorial shows like ‘mary and margareth’ for Kronika Gallery, Bytom (2013), ‘intercity’ for Action Gallery, Warsaw (2014) and ‘paradise’ for Loft 8 Gallery, Vienna (2015).

Pawel Mendrek is also a visual artist and Associate Professor at Faculty of Intermedia and Stage Design at the Academy of Fine Arts in Katowice.

Oxana Smirnova  Moscow, Russia

An independent curator. Completed a Master degree in Curating and Collections at Chelsea College of Arts. Curated projects (Moscow): Manuel Vason: Intimate Collaborations (Solyanka VPA, 2015) – a performative photography exhibition, which formed a part of the 6th Moscow Contemporary Art Biennale; Covered with Snow (Solyanka VPA, 2012) – an annual winter exhibition at Solyanka VPA (Moscow), which featured Disney and Russian animated films and significant contemporary Russian artists; Bond by GQ (Solyanka VPA, 2012) – an exhibition to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the release of the first Bond film, which featured famous movie artefacts and photographs by the British artist Terry O’Neill. Curated projects (London): Bill Jubobe: Bob Cobbing (Chelsea Space, 2014); In Peril on the Sea: Sailing Ships, Stormy Seas (Chelsea Space, 2015); Jocelyn Herbert and Samuel Beckett (Wimbledon Space, 2015); Re-recordings: The African, Asian and Afro-Caribbean Visual Art Archive (Chelsea Space, 2015); LIVE (Cookhouse, 2015); Housed (Cookhouse, 2015).

Fabian Strobel  Düsseldorf, Germany

Graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in art history and philosophy from the Ludwig-Maximilians-University in Munich. I gained various practical experiences through internships at Galerie Voss, Düsseldorf, and by initiating the curatorial projects art.spiring and wals.gallery, where I held the position of the project coordinator. My current dissertation is focusing on Performance Art and the question, how you can exhibit Performance Art without the actual act of performances.

Roberta Vacca  Alba, Italy

I received my undergraduate degree in Science of Cultural Heritage in the Università degli Studi in Turin. Since moving to London four years ago I worked in different realities between which the Southbank Centre, the Estorick Collection of Modern Italian Art and Chiswick House. My curatorial research is focusing on live performance and the strategies to preserve, document and reenact this type of art.

Yang Yang  Beijing, China

After completing my BA studies in English Literature in China I decided to move to the UK where I received my first MA degree in Linguistics at the University of Leicester in 2009. My current research is focusing on text-based conceptual art.

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