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Department of Politics

Dr Bernadette Buckley BA MA PhD

Position held:
Lecturer in International Politics

+44 (0)20 7919 7750

b.buckley (

Warmington Tower Room: 611

Office hours:
Monday 17:00-19:00

Biographical information

I joined the department in 2007. Before arriving at Goldsmiths, I was a lecturer in Contemporary Art Theory & Practice at the International Centre for Cultural & Heritage Studies, Newcastle University.  There, I established a new MA - ‘Gallery and Art Museum Education Studies’ - which was the first of its kind in the UK.  Prior to this, I was Head of Education & Research at the John Hansard Gallery, University of Southampton.  Here I worked with a wide range of artists, academics, curators, writers, city councilors, other gallery sector professional and members of the public, to stimulate public debate and to create new opportunities for research to occur at the interstices between art and politics. I played a key role in the successful application for a £5.2m HLF funded Capital Build Project to relocate the John Hansard Gallery into Southampton city centre.

In 2007 I won, in conjunction with Tate Modern, AHRC funding for a research student to undertake a new Collaborative Doctoral Award.  The studentship has since been filled by Alex Hodby and it will explore the politics of ‘new institutionalism’ as exemplified by Tate Modern.  I am a Board Member of Tate Papers and the Journal for Museum Education.  I am also a member of Polarts, the ECPR Standing Group for Politics and the Arts.  I was awarded a bursary from Historical & Cultural Studies, Goldsmiths College, to conduct doctoral research into the ontology of curating and in 2003, I was awarded a PhD without Correction.

Research interests

My research interests traverse a number of different fields.  I have long since been interested in the complex relationships between art and war and/or art and terrorism.  Simultaneously however, my interest  in ‘Gallery Studies’ has led me to explore the relationship between ‘curating’ and ‘creating’ and to investigate the ontology of curating from the perspective of the ‘event’.  In this vein also, I am interested in the (de) differentiation between ‘contemporary art’, ‘heritage’, ‘education’ and other areas of practice.  Additionally here I have explored notions of (un)‘education’ both in ‘artistic’ and in ‘gallery’ practices.

I have recently been involved in a collaborative research project, funded by Arts Council England, engage, Museums and Library Archives Association and the Reading Agency.  This study investigated the practices, learning outcomes and impact of writers/ visual artists who are currently working with young people and educators in cultural sites and schools.

I was co-investigator for the En-quire research project (Phases 2-3), which explored pedagogical skill-sharing amongst artists in educational projects.

I was also Academic Advisor for the Panacea project funded by Wellcome Foundation for Medical Research: 2006-2007 (£94k).

Selected publications

Chapters in edited volumes:

  • Mohammed is Absent, I am Performing’ in Iraq and the Destruction of Heritage, P.Stone, & J. Farchakh, eds., HMP: London, 2008

  • ‘Terrible Beauties’, in Art in the Age of Terrorism, eds. G. Coulter Smith & M. Owen, Paul Holberton, New York, 2005

Publicly funded research:

  • Artists Insights, (forthcoming) With A Newman & C Whitehead, published by Arts Council England/ engage/ MLA, 2008

  • En-quire Research Project, Phases 2-3: 2006-2007 (£40k) Co-investigator.  Study funded by En-quire North East. Investigates pedagogical skill-sharing amongst artists in educational projects.  Focuses on artists’ mentoring projects.  Conducted with AS-level students to develop video works using digital technology.

Exhibition catalogue essays:

  • ‘Borjana Ventzislavova’ in At Home in Europe, Culture 2000/ ISIS: London, 2007

  • “Samar Asamoah’ in North and South, National Glass Centre/ Reg Vardy/ JHG/ NGCA/ SCAG/ Millais: Sunderland, 2007

  • ‘Everybody’s Going to Die’, in Paranoia, ACE/ Freud Museum: London, 2006

  • ‘Paradoxa’, in An English Journey, FVU/JHG: London, 2004

  • ‘Making Public Spectacles of Ourselves’ in Do You Really Want It That Much? . . . More! Ursula Bickle Foundation, 1999-2001

Edited exhibition catalogues:

  • Sarindar Dhaliwal Record Keeping, Cornerhouse: London, 2004

Published interviews
Interviews with Diann Bauer, Breda Beban, Juan Bolivar, Neil Bromwich, Andrew Cross, Sarindar Dhaliwal, Sunil Gupta, Cameron Jamie, Joan Jonas, Kathy Kenny, Marta Marce, Andrea Mediji-Jones, Hans Ulrich Obrist, Katie Pratt, Michael Pinsky, Danny Rolph, Miho Sato, Hans Scheirl, Zoe Walker


I am currently establishing a new MA in Art and Politics, the latter of which is programmed for delivery in 2008/9.  I also teach a third year half unit entitled, Art and War.

Areas of supervision
Contemporary art and theory; contemporary gallery studies, the politics of art, post aesthetics, the aestheticisation of politics, the categorization of art after the ‘end of art’, (un)education in contemporary art practices

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Content last modified: 02 Feb 2012

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