In October 2018 Lara took up the new role of Curator of Contemporary Art at the Royal Albert Memorial Museum in Exeter where she curates, commissions and programmes contemporary art inspired by RAMM’s rich and varied collections. Previously she was an independent art curator working closely with artists on new commissions and leading participatory art projects. In 2017 she co-curated the exhibition Offshore: Artists Explore the Sea at the Ferens Art Gallery and Hull Maritime Museum for Hull City of Culture with art and environment charity Invisible Dust. Offshore included work by Tacita Dean, Tania Kovats and John Akomfrah as well as new commissions by Phil Coy, Mariele Neudecker, Bik van der Pol and Martin Parr. She also commissioned and curated new work by Gayle Chong Kwan and Laura Wilson for Arts Council England’s Ambitions for Excellence ‘Surroundings’ project in the Humber Region on themes of food sustainability.
l’ve been busy in Hull Uk City of Culture working on a number of projects and exhibitions including co-curating ‘Offshore: artists explore the sea’ with Invisible Dust, displayed at Hull Maritime Museum and the Ferens Art Gallery. This exhibition examined the many ways that the sea has shaped our culture, imaginations and our physical existence through 35 artworks in a range of media by artists including Bik van der Pol, John Akomfrah, Mariele Neudecker, Tacita Dean, Phil Coy and Adam Chodzko. Ten new commissions were produced specially for Offshore including works developed in conversation with leading marine scientists.
I also co-curated SKIN at the Ferens Art Gallery, interpreting a selection of Lucian Freud paintings and led the education project 2778 Miles: an international art project between Freetown and Hull. At York Art Gallery l curated the unique exhibition ‘York Symphony: Marinella Senatore’ with York Museums Trust. Marinella Senatore is the internationally-renowned contemporary Italian artist whose participatory art projects and exhibitions have engaged with communities in Paris for the Pompidou Centre and in Queens, New York. I’ve just completed curating and commissioning work by Gayle Chong Kwan and Laura Wilson for the Humber Museums Partnership and Invisible Dust on themes of sustainability and food heritage.
Much of my work is concerned with the environment and how our behaviour effects it. I set-up Sea Swim, a Cultural Olympiad project, in 2011 and through a range of artworks, poetry and exhibitions around the UK have explored how swimming in the sea is a creative act, encouraging swimmers to be more imaginative. In 2016 l curated the arts council funded touring exhibition ‘Sea Swim: Head Above Water’ which launched at Peninsula Arts Gallery in Plymouth in July 2016 before touring to Folkestone and then Scarborough earlier this year. ‘Head Above Water’ included works by Dorothy Cross, Heinrich & Palmer, and Simon Pope. Sea Swim leads education projects for pupils and students working closely with marine biologists to explore the health of our oceans. Until September a Research Associate at the University of York and work closely with Universities and academics on a range of projects. In 2014 and and 2015 l set-up and co-directed York Curiouser: a city-wide Art and education project that commissioned 10 new artworks to encourage residents and visitors to explore this historic city in new ways. I also teach undergraduates on a range of art courses.
In 2017 she curated ‘York Symphony: Marinella Senatore’ and from 2014-18 she was a Research Associate in the Department of Archaeology at the University of York, leading cross-disciplinary seminars and workshops; she now works closely with University of Exeter supporting their contemporary art programmes.