Gemma Meek

Twitter: @gmeek89

Previous Education

PhD Art History (2015 – 2018), Manchester Metropolitan University
MA Art History (2012 – 2013), Manchester University, Distinction
BA Art History (2009 – 2012), Aberystwyth University, First Class Honours
ABC Foundation in Art & Design (2008 – 2009), MK College, Distinction
BTEC National Diploma Art & Design (2006 – 2008), MK College, Distinction

Thesis Title

Reading Socially Engaged Book Art: Establishing New Dialogues


Dr Danielle Child and Dr Simon Faulkner

Research Summary

In the last fifteen years, there has been increased activity from artists using book art as a mode of socially engaged art practice. Often this involves artists collaborating with particular social groups (homeless participants, communities formed around place, women’s groups, etc.) in the production of books, to investigate ideas of identity, political activism, modes of individual expression or skill sharing. Yet, little documentation and critical analysis exists on these new modes of engagement, to posit them historically or explore how book art in these contexts are to be read. The aim of this PhD is to fill this gap in knowledge, to contextualise socially engaged book art case studies, through the formation of a critical framework in which to read book art and through the establishment of a definition and survey of the historical precedents for these practices.

Research Interests

Socially engaged art, community art, book art, participation, collaboration, education (museum/gallery in particular), photography, modes of writing.


‘The Exposure of Self: Reading Wonderland Artists’ Books.’ (2016) Essay published online as part of an Arts and Humanities Research Council funded project.

‘Report on the Homeless Library Session at the Booth Centre, Manchester’ (2016) In Blackburn, Lois and Philip Davenport (Arthur + Martha, eds.) The Homeless Library: A Catalogue of Homeless Lives. Blurb Ebook.