Gayle Chong Kwan


Gayle Chong Kwan was born in Edinburgh, Scotland, and lives and works in London. Her work is exhibited and published widely nationally and internationally, and is held in numerous public and private collections. She is represented by Galerie Alberta Pane Paris and The Artists Agency UK.

Gayle Chong Kwan's large-scale photographic, installation, sound, participatory, and video work is exhibited nationally and internationally, both in major galleries and in the public realm. Her work is an ongoing investigation into simulacra and the sublime, which she explores through constructed immersive environments and mise-en-scenes, constructed in states of resolution and dissolution between imagined futures, alternative presents, and fictional mechanisms.

Gayle Chong Kwan is currently a Phd Research Student in Fine Art (2012 - 2018) at the Royal College of Art London. In her research she explores the Poetics and Ethics of Imaginal Travel in relation to Fine Art, through the registers of shared communal travel and the individual or personal experience of hypnogogia and nyctalopia. She is conducting her research through field trips to Mauritius, and conversations and collaborations with environmentalists, historians, archivists, and scientists.
2012 - 2018 Phd, Fine Art, Royal College of Art, London
1997-2000 BA Hons Fine Art, Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, London
1994-5 MSc Communications, University of Stirling, Scotland
1991-4 BA Hons Politics and Modern History, University of Manchester

Public Speaking and Presenting
Gayle has been selected as a BBC BAME Expert in Fine Art, and took part in training to present on BBC TV and Radio, and has been interviewed on BBC Radio 4 about her work. She speaks at national and international symposia, conferences and academic events, and is a Visiting Tutor at Art Colleges and Universities. She has been interviewed on the radio and filmed speaking on a range of arts and culture subjects. She is invited to devise and run masterclasses, workshops, events and courses, based upon her research interests, for galleries and institutions nationally and international, including the V&A, Science Museum, Tate Modern, Southbank Centre, La Villette Paris, Centro de Desarrollo de Moravia Medellin, National Maritime Museum, Tate Britain, Hayward Gallery, South London Gallery, the Royal College of Art, The Royal Geographical Society, InIVA.

2015 British Council/Arts Council England International Artist Award - 'Photography in the Public Realm New York'
2014 FATHOM Award, Four Corners, London
2013 REFOCUS: The Castlegate mima Photography Prize
2012 The Royal Scottish Academy Award
2009 The Vauxhall Collective Photography Prize
2008 National Touring Award, Arts Council England
2005 Pépinières Européennes pour Jeunes Artistes Award
2005 International Fellow, Arts Council England

2015 Why Would I Lie?, Royal College of Art Research Biennale, London
2014 The Social: Encountering Photography, North East
2011 Gayle Chong Kwan, Giulia Giannola and Francesca Mila Nemni ‘Invisible Twinning’, Urban Meridian, Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Asia-Pacific Biennale, Berlin (with Publication)
2011 Gayle Chong Kwan ‘The Obsidian Isle’, New Forest Pavilion, 54 Bienniale di Venezia, Italy (with Publication)
2009 Gayle Chong Kwan ‘Cockaigne’, Tales from the New World, 10 Havana Biennale, Cuba (with Publication)

Selected Publications
Why Would I Lie?, Royal College of Art Biennale, Royal College of Art, London

Experimental Eating, Black Dog Publishing

Food, Nutrition, Agriculture. Challenges of the new millennium, L’Erma di Bretschneider

‘Mindscape’, 100 Years Minds in Motion, Max Planck Institute, Frankfurt

Gayle Chong Kwan ‘Blind Vistas’, Journal 01

‘Invisible Twinning’, Urban Meridian, Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin

Gayle Chong Kwan, ‘The Obsidian Isle’, Monograph, Published by Graphical House, Glasgow

‘Vauxhall Collective Awards’, Idea Generation

‘Havana Biennial’, Published by Havana Biennial, Cuba

‘Photography: A Critical Introduction’, 4th Edition, edited by Liz Wells, Routledge

‘Platform for Art. Art on the Underground’, Black Dog Publishing

‘Open Space. Art in the Public Realm in London 1995 – 2005’, Arts Council England

‘Stilled. Contemporary Still Life Photography by Women’, IRIS, Published by Ffotogallery

‘The Grand Tour: Gayle Chong Kwan’s Sensory Universe’, Equipeco, Italy, V22

'The Grand Tour', Monograph, published by ArtSway
‘En Route’, Portfolio, Issue 49

‘Atlantis’, Special Edition, Portfolio, Issue 50 

Selected Professional
Visiting Tutor, Art Colleges and Universities, National and International
AIR Council Member, a-n
2013 Judge, Camberwell Studio Residency Award, ACME
2012 Judge, Four Corners Photography Residency Awards, Four Corners Film
2009 Judge, Fire Station Awards, ACME
2007 Judge, Jerwood Photography Award

Self-Initiated Major Projects
2010-13 ‘The Obsidian Isle’: Biennale di Venezia, Italy; Street Level Photoworks, Glasgow; Galleria Uno + Uno, Milan; Peacock Visual Arts, Aberdeen; An Lanntair, Stornoway, Isle of Lewis; TRONGATE 103 Glasgow.
2010-14 ‘SINOPTICON: Contemporary Chinoiserie in Contemporary Art’, Arts Council England; V&A; National Trust; multi-site venues Plymouth; Danson House, London.
2007- 9 ‘The Grand Tour’: ArtSway, New Forest; Arts Co, London; MAC, Birmingham; Cite Internationale, Paris; Cittadellarte-Fondazione Pistoletto, Italy.



Commission, Nuit Blanche, Toronto
'The People's Forest', William Morris Gallery, London

'Le Desir', Group Exhibition, Galerie Alberta Pane, Venice
'Atlantis', Sea Swim, Head Above Water, Crescent Arts, Scarborough
'The People's Forest: The Fairlop Oak', Barbican
'Microclimate', Invisible Dust, Normanby Hall, Hull City of Culture
'The Field Kitchen Bath', The Edge, Bath
Peckham Platform Retrospective, Peckham Platform, London
'The People's Forest: The Fairlop Oak', Walthamstow Garden Party

'Know-How', Group Exhibition, Galleries, University of Bath
'Atlantis', Head Above Water, Group Exhibition, Peninsula Arts, Plymouth
'The Pan Hag' Field Kitchen, East Durham, commissioned by Forma
'Plot', 'What's your Location: Re-Imagined Reality', Contemporary Art Platform, Kuwait City.
'Food, Nature, and Consumption', The Odd Guides, River Leaway Commission, CREATE, London

'Photography in the Public Realm, New York', ICP/Aperture, New York
'Intimi Nutrimenti', Solo Exhibition, Musei di Strada Nuova, Palazzo Rosso, Genoa, Italy
'The Obsidian Isle', Venice Pavilion in London, hARTSlane, London
'Anthropo-scene', Solo Exhibition, Bloomberg Space, London
'The Pan Hag', East Durham Creates/FORMA, UK
'Atlantis', Solo Exhibition, Architecture en Jeux, Cultural Centre de Blagnac, France
'Plot', Why Would I Lie?, Royal College of Art Research Biennale, London
Artist in Residence, Stills, Edinburgh
'Wastescape', Temporary Commission, Horniman Museum, London

'Atlantis', Solo Exhibition, El Circulo, Plaza Roldan, Mexico City
'Plot', Moving Image Commission, FATHOM Award, Four Corners, London
'Mindscape', Permanent Commission, The Max Planck Institute for Brain Research, Frankfurt, Germany
'Wastescape', The Politics of Food, Delfina Foundation, London
'The Macaroni', The Tourists, Felbrigg Estate, National Trust, UK
Venice Printmaking Workshop Residency, Venice, Italy

The Politics of Food Residency, Delfina Foundation, UK
Delfina Foundation, Art14, London
'Wandering Waste', Stills, Edinburgh, and Deveron Arts, Huntly
, Royal Scottish Academy Award
'Betwixt and Between', Solo Exhibition, South Square Gallery, Thornton

'Arripare', Refocus: The Castlegate mima Photography Prize, Stockton
'Gardens of Adonis', Art/Dinner Event, Tate Modern, London
'Blind Vistas', Solo Exhibition, Galerie Alberta Pane, Paris
'The Obsidian Isle', Solo Exhibition, An Lanntair, Stornoway, Isle of Lewis
'The Obsidian Isle', Backdoor Gallery, Clydebank, Scotland
‘Mountains in the Warehouse’, Cinnamon Kitchen, London
'Sensory Round Table', The Hockney Gallery, Royal College of Art, London
'Blueprint' and 'Interlude', Couriers of Taste, Danson House, London

FORMER WEST, Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin

'The Golden Tide', Estuary, Museum of London, London

'Wastescape', Festival of the World, Southbank Centre, London
'The Golden Tide', Our Mutual Friends, Film and Video Umbrella, London
'Double Vision', Peckham Space, London
'The Obsidian Isle', Peacock Visual Arts, Aberdeen
'Memory Trace', Commission, The Wellcome Trust, London
'The Obsidian Isle', Galleria Uno + Uno, Milan
Participatory Installation, National Maritime Museum, London
'Mottisfont Flows', Artist in Residence, Mottisfont Abbey, National Trust, UK
Intimate Revolution: Discourse on Disappointment, Various Venues, Shanghai/ Beijing, China

Galleria Uno + Uno, MIA, Milan Image Fair, Milan, Italy
'Blueprint' and 'Impressions of Inner Mongolia', SINOPTICON: Contemporary Chinoiserie in Contemporary Art, Plymouth Arts Centre and Plymouth City and Museum Art Gallery, UK

Galleria Ines Barrenechea, Just Mad, Art Fair, Madrid

Sport Your Food, IMAF, New York, Milan, London
‘Invisible Twinning’, Cultivation Field, Reading, UK

'The Obsidian Isle', Street Level Photoworks, Glasgow (with publication)
'Sensory Banquet', Artist in Residence, Samphire Hoe, Kent Cultural Baton/Eurotunnel, UK
'The Obsidian Isle', New Forest Pavilion, 54th La Biennale di Venezia (with publication)
Giphantie, Solo exhibition, Galerie Alberta Pane, Paris
'Invisible Twinning', Haus de Kulturen de Welt, Berlin (with publication)
Solo exhibition, Galeria Ines Barrenechea, Madrid
'Pas de Piqueur', Etat d’un Lieu, Pépinières Domaine National de Saint-Cloud, Paris
Vault Art Glasgow, Glasgow, UK
Savernake: The Spirit of the Place, Monika Bobinska Projects at Jen Hills London, London
Galleria Uno + Uno, Berliner Liste, Berlin
The Doubt of Beauty: Photographs from Collection Gibelli, Palazzo Te, Mantova, Italy
Vault Art Fair, Glasgow
‘Manipulated Memory Tasting Booth’, China Through a Looking Glass, V&A Museum, London
MiArt, Milan, Italy
BREATHE Residency, Chinese Arts Centre, Manchester, UK

SINOPTICON: Contemporary Chinoiserie in Contemporary Art, Symposium, V&A, London, UK
'The Ossianic Landscape', The Ossianic Landscape, The Project Room, Trongate 103, Glasgow, UK
'Save the Last Dance for Me', Whose Map is it?, Iniva, London
Sensorial Universe, Galleria Uno + Uno, Milan
Panoramica, Gallery Oldham, Oldham, UK
‘Manipulated Memory Tasting Booth’, Science Museum, London
'Green Flash', Eattopia, Taiwan International Video Art Exhibition, Taipei, Taiwan

‘Senscape Scotland’, Vauxhall Collective Award, Idea Generation Gallery, London
Sh Contemporary, Shanghai, China
‘Memory Tasting Unit’, No Soul for Sale, Tate Modern, London
SWAB, Barcelona, Spain
‘Green Flash’, Film/Video/Performance, Wimbledon Space, London
MiArt, Milan, Italy
'Designated Status', Home and Abroad Portugal, Triangle Arts Trust, Sintra, Portugal
‘Green Flash’ and ‘Manipulated Memory Tasting Booth’, Hotpot, Fife Contemporary, St Andrews, Scotland
Contemporary Chinese, Dazed and Confused, London

'The Eyes See More than the Heart Knows', Peckham Space, London
‘The Grand Tour’, Solo exhibition, Galerie Alberta Pane, Paris
'Senscape Scotland', Vauxhall Collective Award, UK
'Terroir and the Pathetic Fallacy', ‘The Grand Tour’, Artsway, New Forest (with publication)
'Moravia Memoryscape', El Centro Cultural de Moravia, Medellin, Colombia
500/1000, Artissima 09, Turin, Italy
SLICK, Le 104 Centre Quatre, Paris
‘Senscape Scotland’, Vauxhall Collective Award, Idea Generation, London
New London School, Galerie Schuster, Berlin
'Cockaigne', 5x5 Castelló 09, Espai d’art contemporani de Castelló, Spain
'Sensus Shoreditch', Creative Mapping, Iniva, London
Vilnius Art Fair, Vilnius
British Subjects: Identity and Self-Fashioning, 1966-2009, Neuberger Museum of Art, New York
‘Green Flash’, At Your Service, David Roberts Foundation, London
‘Cockaigne’ and ‘Manipulated Memory Tasting Booth’, Pot Luck, Art Circuit Touring Exhibition, New Art Gallery Walsall, Aberystwyth Art Centre, PM Gallery, Southampton City Art Gallery, UK
S x S dans R, La Générale en Manufacture Sèvres, Paris
The Peckham Experiment, Camberwell Space, London
'Cockaigne', Finger Buffet, Travelling Gallery, Various, Scotland
Arts Council Scotland and Ricefield Residency, Scotland, UK

‘Folliescape’, La Villette, Paris
‘Stellar Dentrite’, Tatton Park Biennial, Manchester
'Sensus Shoreditch', inIVA, London
‘The Land of Peach Blossom’, Graves Gallery, Sheffield
‘Atlantis’, ‘The Grand Tour’, Arts Co, London
‘Glocal Panorama’, ‘The Grand Tour’, Cittadellarte – Fondazione Pistoletto, Biella, Italy
‘Veduta Romantica’, ‘The Grand Tour’, Midlands Art Centre, Birmingham
Landscape, School of Landscape Versailles/La Villette, Paris
The Future Can Wait, Truman Brewery, London
Love Difference Pastries, Love Difference, Cittadellarte – Fondazione Pistoletto, Italy
‘Cockaigne’, Utopia, Fundación Municipal de Cultura, Valladolid, Spain
Fantastic, Fake and Found, Potteries Museum and Art Gallery, Stoke-on-Trent
SLICK, 104, Paris
The Golden Record, Collective Gallery, Edinburgh, Scotland
Group Exhibition, Moatti-Riviere House, Moscow
‘Thames Town’, Contemporary Chinoiserie, Collyer Bristow Gallery, London
'Cockaigne', Utopia, PhotoEspana, Museu Berardo, Centro Cultural do Belem, Lisbon
'Cockaigne', Government Art Fund Exhibition, British Ambassador's Residence, Paris
Cantilever, Collyer Bristow Gallery, London Festival of Architecture, London
Living Together, Iniva/British Council, Tbilisi, Georgia
Ville de Paris Residency, Cite Internationale des Arts de Paris, Paris, France

'Journey to the Centre of the Earth' 'Cockaigne', Art on the Underground, London
El Puente Residency, Macroproyecto de Moravia, Medellin, Colombia
'Parasympathetic', COAST International Residency, A Foundation, Liverpool, UK
‘Conversations’, Tate Britain, London
‘Different Worlds’, National Portrait Gallery, London
'Cockaigne': Chinese Arts Centre, Manchester; Focal Point Gallery, Southend-on-Sea, UK; Opera North, Leeds; Globe Gallery, Newcastle, UK
'A Mushroom Out of Its Mycelium', San Salvario Mon Amour, Turin
Thy Neighbour’s Ox, Space Station Sixty-Five, London
The Third Paradise, Cittadellarte - Fondazione Pistoletto, Venice Biennale, Italy
Be Ready Heart, For Parting, New Endeavour, Great Eastern Hotel, London
Entente Cordiale, Ecole des Beaux Arts, Paris
‘Memory Tasting Unit’, SPACE/Bow Festival, London
‘Vista’, The Garden of Earthly Delights, Brockwell Park, London
‘Sensus Leeds’, Shift, Emerged, Leeds, UK
'Product of…’, Flypitch, Brixton Market, London
Pause, Gallery Los 29 Enchufes, Madrid, Spain
‘Hirsute’, Hair the Show, Tablet Gallery, Tabernacle, London
European Forum for Emerging Creation, Pépinières, Neumünster Abbey, Luxembourg Complete Control, Contemporary Art Projects, London
Labyrinth, Teatro de los Sentidos / Creative Partnerships, UK
Die Green, Live Pretty, Arts Co, and Pia Getty, London
‘Atlantis’, Second Life, Portman Gallery, London
ARTfutures, London
Sensory Material, Bonhams Contemporary, London
Blurring the Neatline, Embassy Gallery, Edinburgh, Scotland
‘Adonia’, The Mothership Collective, South London Gallery, London

‘A Mushroom out of its Mycelium’, Cittadellarte - Fondazione Pistoletto, Italy
Thy Neighbour’s Ox, Space Station Sixty-Five, London
The Third Paradise, Cittadellarte - Fondazione Pistoletto, Venice Biennale, Italy
Be Ready Heart, For Parting, New Endeavour, Great Eastern Hotel, London
Entente Cordiale, Ecole des Beaux Arts, Paris
‘Memory Tasting Unit’, SPACE/Bow Festival, London
‘Vista’, The Garden of Earthly Delights, Brockwell Park, London
‘Sensus Leeds’, Shift, Emerged, Leeds, UK
‘Product of...’, Flypitch, Brixton Market, London
Pause, Gallery Los 29 Enchufes, Madrid, Spain
‘Hirsute’, Hair the Show, Tablet Gallery, Tabernacle, London
‘Dambusters’, GPS Gaming Dam Square, Netherlands New Media Institute, Amsterdam