Julie Louise Bacon has developed and delivered arts programmes and commissions in directorship, curatorial and executive roles in art centres in England, Québec, Northern Ireland and Australia. This combines with her arts production in academic research roles and her extensive independent curatorial practice. Her arts research projects advance transdisciplinary, site-sensitive and socially-engaged approaches to the conditions of contemporary life. These result in exhibitions, individual artworks, public programmes, festivals, conferences and symposia that open up new aesthetic and critical experiences of place, time, technology and culture.
From 2012-2016, she was Artistic Director of Embassy for Water, the first Embassy for a shared physical entity, beyond the nation state. During this time, she developed Embassy projects for public spaces and arts organisations in the Middle East, Australia and Europe. In conjunction with the project, she worked as a Cultural Producer (2012-2015) on Leeuwarden’s bid to be named European Capital of Culture 2018 and participated in the final successful jury presentation.
Originally from the North East of England, she is currently a Lecturer at Edinburgh College of Art and an Adjunct Lecture at UNSW Art & Design. While based in Sydney at UNSW, she co-designed the Master of Curating and Cultural Leadership degree and lead teaching in studio art practice and art theory. This followed posts as Lecturer in Fine Art at the University of Kent (2012-14) and Research Associate ‘Art and It’s Locations’ at Interface: Centre for Research in Art, Design and Technologies (2005-08) in the University of Ulster, Belfast. Julie Louise has contributed to arts policy and programming through her extensive service on arts advisory boards and juries for municipalities, arts councils, arts organisations and higher education research centres in the UK, Canada and Australia, and undertaken consultancies on a number of public art projects.
Following her practice-based PhD (2006) exploring the role of performance and installation art methodologies in expanding curatorial approaches to museum collections and archives, she has published widely on contemporary art and cultural theory. She is currently editor of the anthology Arkive City 2.0: Tracing Time in the Network Ages (2024). This is a sequel to her anthology Arkive City (2008), which synthesized the research of the two-year AHRC research project Performing the Archive (2006-2008), completed at Interface.
Julie Louise heads the development of the arts-led, international research initiative The Habitat of Time (2018-). This explores shifts in our experience and understanding of time in an age of unstable globalisation and the Anthropocene. The project’s transdisciplinary research connects perspectives on the study of physical, social and mental aspects of time that are emerging in the sciences, arts and humanities. This project builds on the themes that she explored as Artistic Director of the international festival of sonic and visual arts Töne: A Meeting of Sound and Light (2014); Signal: Art and Network Technologies (2012), and the AHRC exhibition and conference series Performing the Archive (2006-2008). To date, she has advanced The Habitat of Time through collaborations as a Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Western Australia OzGRAV Research Centre in Perth (2019), a Fellow at the Foundation for Art and Creative Technology in Liverpool (2018), a guest curator at Casula Powerhouse, Sydney (2018), and Associate Curator at Arts Catalyst, Sheffield (2020-2021).
Julie Louise’s installation, performance and moving image practice explores the poetics and politics of the body, landscapes and collective histories, working with duration, site and archival research. She has exhibited extensively in an international context, including: Artspace Ideas Platform Sydney; Golden Thread Gallery Belfast; White Cube London; the CCA Tel Aviv; and Western Front Vancouver.