Miriam Austin is an artist currently studying towards a practice-based DPhil in Fine Art at the Ruskin School of Art and Exeter College, University of Oxford. Her studies are funded by a Studentship from the AHRC Open-Oxford-Cambridge Doctoral Training Partnership.
Her DPhil research explores intersections between colonialism and ecological crisis in the context of (post) colonial Aoteroa New Zealand. Structured around an imagined dialogue with her great-great Grandmother, who was one of the early European settlers of NZ, the project explores the legacies of imperialism, seeking to establish a form of ancestral communion that explores questions about intimacy, inheritance and responsibility.
Considering the politically sensitive issues surrounding the appropriation and co-option of myths from non-Western cultures, the project aims to establish alternative grounds for understanding and representing kinship. Using sculpture, experimental writing and video, the work developed will trace narratives that cut against dominant approaches to landscape, environment and kinship found in patriarchal Western societies, seeking to reimagine the limits of the familial and expand them to include a network of human and non-human actors.
Austin holds an MA in Sculpture from the Royal College of Art, London, and a BA in Fine Art from the University of Brighton. She is a founding member of the collective SSEA. Recent exhibitions and performances include On the Heights, Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Wakefield; Feminstic Practices in Dialogue, ICA, London; A Sense of Things, Zabludowicz Collection, London; We all have a problem with representation, The Showroom, London; Andraste, (Solo Show), Alma Zevi Gallery, Venice, Italy; UNO, Allegra Projects, Switzerland; Andesite (Solo Show), Bosse and Baum, London; Future Primitive, Gossamer Fog, London.