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Dr Amy Charlesworth

Profile summary

Professional biography

BA (Hons) Fine Art, Glasgow School of Art, MA History of Art, PhD History of Art (both University of Leeds)

I joined the Open University in January 2015 having previously taught at the University of Leeds, Loughborough University and the University of Bradford. Amy has also worked for a number of organisations in the arts and culture sector.

Research interests

My research interests include: the relationship between experimental film history and the moving image within 20th and 21st century art history, social justice movements with a focus on feminism(s), feminist art and the women's liberation movement. More broadly, my research is concerned with questions of representation: class, gender, race and sexuality and how this is mediated by lens-based imagery. 

Book chapters

'Whose Housework, Whose Artwork? The Voice of Domestic Workers’ co-written with Marissa Begonia, Feminist Art Activisms and Artivisms (Amsterdam: Valiz, 2020)

'Contemporary art: movement, migration and other histories', Art after empire: from colonialism to Globalisation, ed. Warren Carter, (Manchester: Manchester University Press; Open University, 2018)


A Charlesworth, 'Absence and Saturation in Chantal Akerman's De l'autre côté (From the Other Side)'  The Oxford Art Journal, 40/2, Spring 2017

A Charlesworth, 'From Representation to the Biopolitical? A Review of Gender, artWork and the global imperative: A materialist feminist critique by Angela Dimitrakaki, Historical Materialism, 25(4), 2017

A Charlesworth, 'The 1970s and Today' The Oxford Art Journal, Volume 39, Number 1, 2016

A Charlesworth, 'Caught between the factory and the home: re-visiting feminist ‘documentary’ aesthetics under globalized capital', Third Text Volume 29, Issue 1-2, 2015

A Charlesworth, 'Navigating spheres, shifts in emphasis: the documentary, the video essay and the social', Art & the Public Sphere, 3 (1), 2014, pp. 31-44

A Charlesworth, ‘”Warte Mal!” Construction and Consumption of Female Subjectivity after the Velvet Revolution’, Studia Politica: Romanian Political Science Review, Special Issue ‘Art and Politics’ Vol. X1, no. 4, December, 2011, pp. 621-631

Writing and curatorial work

'It's not personal, it's drag*: some thoughts on Kathryn Elkin's Queen, New Artist Focus, Lux (Artist Moving Image), February 2019

'Once more, or always? some reflections on women and work in film and video of the 1970s and 1980s', SITUATIONS, Fotomuseum, Winterhur, 2016

'Voice in Ursula Biemann's Performing the Border', Dissect journal, Issue 3, Autumn 2016

'On Reporting, the Documentary and the Aesthetic in Ursula Biemann and Angela Sanders’ Europlex’, Ibrazz: contemporary visual culture in North Africa and the Middle East, 2013

'Material Things: Paul Coldwell, Sculptures and Prints', exhibition catalogue, Gallery II, University of Bradford and Arts Council England, 2015, ISBN: 978-0-9931769-0-6

Exhibition Reviews

'Electronic Superhighway 2016–1966', The Whitechapel Gallery, London, 29 January– 15 May 2016, Art and the Public Sphere, 5:1, 2016

'All the Word's Futures: Looking back at the Venice Biennial', Red Pepper, Jan 2016

'How to Construct a Time Machine', MK Gallery, Milton Keynes, UK, Art and the Public Sphere, 3:2, 2016

Conference Papers

'Realism, Feminism and the Documentary Impulse', paper and co-panel convenor, Annual 12th Historical Materialism conference, Birkbeck, London, November 2015

'Unfinished Business: the persistence of the public-private relation in feminist art practice since the 1970s', House, Work, Artwork: Feminism and Art History's New Domesticities, University of Birmingham, UK, 3-4 July 2014

'Polyvocal Subjects: Female Voice in Artist’s Film and Video', Centre for Contemporary Art, Glasgow, June 2014

'Situating the Essay in the “Documentary” Turn of Artist’s Film and Video’, The Essay, Royal College of Art, May 2014

‘Picturing the Border in Contemporary Art Praxis post 1989’, Borderscapes, Loughborough University, October 2013

‘Between the Factory and the Home: Re/production in the 21st Century and the Labour Question for Contemporary Art’, Annual 9th Historical Materialism conference, Birkbeck, London, November 2012


Teaching interests

Amy is currently chair of our MA in Art History (A843 and A844). She is a contributing author to the third-year level A344 Art and its Global Histories and Subject Discipline Lead on our interdisciplinary level one module, A111 Discovering the Arts and Humanities. She has chaired  AA318 Art of the Twentieth Century. From 2016 - 2018 Amy was also part of the steering group for Open Arts Objects, short (open access) films with teaching support material dedicated to the objects of art history and the skills of visual analysis.

Students interested in modern and contemporary art history and theory; aesthetics and politics; visual culture; moving-image art; critical approaches to relational aesthetics; lens-based media: disability and art should contact Amy Charlesworth via email.

Impact and engagement

Since 2013 Amy has worked closely with the grass-roots national campaign group Justice 4 Domestic Workers (now The Voice of Domestic Workers) alongside partnerships with visual arts organisations, The Showroom (London) Pavilion (Leeds), artist Rehana Zaman and Leeds Animation Workshop (LAW). In 2016 the commissioned film, They Call Us Maids: The Domestic Workers' Story was shortlisted for the AHRC Research in Film Awards

External collaborations

External Examiner for Fine Art (BA Hons) (Art History component), Newcastle University, 2018 - 2021

Academic Reviewer for Leeds City College 2017 - 2019


On Absence and Saturation in Chantal Akerman's De l’autre côté (From the Other Side) (2017-08-31)
Charlesworth, Amy
Oxford Art Journal, 40(2) (pp. 287-305)

From Representation to the Biopolitical? A Review of Gender, artWork and the global imperative: A materialist feminist critique by Angela Dimitrakaki (2017)
Charlesworth, Amy
Historical Materialism, 25(4) (201 -214)

Voice in Ursual Biemann's Performing the Border (2017)
Charlesworth, Amy
Dissect(3) (pp. 277-291)

The 1970s and Today (2016-03-03)
Charlesworth, Amy
Oxford Art Journal, 39(1) (pp. 147-152)

Caught Between the Factory and the Home: Re-Visiting Feminist ‘Documentary’ Aesthetics under Globalised Capital (2015-07-13)
Charlesworth, Amy
Third Text, 29(1-2) (pp. 88-103)

Navigating spheres, shifts in emphasis: The documentary, the video essay and the social (2014-12-01)
Charlesworth, Amy
Art & the Public Sphere, 3(1) (pp. 31-44)

'Whose Housework, Whose Artwork? The Voice of Domestic Workers’ (2020-03-08)
Charlesworth, Amy and Begonia, Marissa
In: Deepwell, Katy ed. Feminist Art Activisms And Artivisms. Plural
ISBN : 9789492095725 | Publisher : Valiz | Published : Amsterdam