Deborah Gardner

Deborah Gardner


I am an artist, researcher and lecturer on the UG Art and Design programme. I am a member of LAND2, a network of artists/lecturers and research students with an interest in landscape/place-orientated art practice and a member of the Royal Society of Sculptors and the Yorkshire Sculptors Organisation. I studied Fine Art at Winchester School of Art ( Arts Foundation Course), Canterbury College of Art ( BA (Hons) Fine Art), and the University of Newcastle upon Tyne ( MFA degree).  

My specialism is sculpture pratice and 3d design and construction. My work is regularly exhibited in the UK and internationally, at galleries, museums, libraries, cemeteries, hospitals, regeneration sites and public art projects, such as science fairs.  Recent selected exhibitions of work include: Monument at the Musee des Beaux Artes, Calais, Interweave at the Leeds Biomedical Research Centre, Landscape and Uncertainty, Southampton Art Gallery, Conway Actants, Conway Hall, London, More in Common, APT gallery, London, Textures of Place, Galeria Strefa Erasmusa, Strzemiński Academy of Art Łódź, Texturen des Orten, Inselgalerie, Berlin, New Doggerland, Thamesside Galleries and Lumen Galleries, London.

Recent funded commissions and projects include: Art Council funded Yorkshire Year of the Textile commission and research at the Leeds Biomedical Centre,  Leeds Galleries and Museum Innovation Fund project, Leeds Discovery Centre, Arts Council funded residency, Conway Hall, London, Zoological Society of London funded Leeds Light Night Science and Art Platform, Disease and Cellularity event, Otley Science Fair, funded by the Biomedical Society and science and art collaboration funded by the Integrated Biological Imaging Network ( Kings College, London).


  • Programme Leader Art and Design
  • Art and Design Year in Industry rep
  • Art and Design Industry Advisory board rep

Research interests

The focus of my practice-led research is the transformative and generative processes of matter and sculpture process.

Most current research, directed through a series of art and science collaborations, tested to what extent artistic and scientific practice can inform one another. Visioning cellular structures and behaviours and a consideration of the processual in both laboratory and artistic practice have been the basis of my most recent art science collaborations, funded by the Zoological Society, London, the Integrated Biological Imaging Network (Kings College London) and the Biochemical Society.

Another strand of current research reappraises our ongoing, precarious relationship with plants and the environments we inhabit through sculptural modes of assembly and instability, which imagine plants in shifting environments, from the local to the alien. Research was guided by microscopy, botanical encoded structural principles and the consideration of adaptability, agency and mutability in sculptural form. A recent residency and site responsive intervention at Conway Hall aimed to make this institution with such a radical social and political history accessible for artistic response.

Site specific work considered ideas of collective agency and the research tested how contemporary art practice can generate complexity and interactivity, both disrupting a space and responding to the ethos of an institution.Elements of the original body of artworks were grouped in various interlinked themes/exhibitions, such as the group exhibition ‘More in Common’, which prompted multivalent considerations on the minutiae and magnitude of social, biological, and cultural  space and other contributing exhibitions which consistently tested the possibilities of relations within clusters, combinations and the aesthetic re- imagining inherent in adaptation and mutation. 

<h4>Research projects</h4> <p>Any research projects I'm currently working on will be listed below. Our list of all <a href="">research projects</a> allows you to view and search the full list of projects in the faculty.</p>


  • BA ( Hons) Fine Art
  • MFA Degree Fine Art

Professional memberships

  • Royal Society of Sculptors
  • LAND2 creative practice-led network
  • Yorkshire Sculptors Organisation

Student education

I am a lecturer and programme Leader for the UG Art and Design programme. I am also the year in industry tutor for the Art and Design programme and a representative for Art and Design on the Industry Advisory Board at the School of Design,

<h4>Postgraduate research opportunities</h4> <p>We welcome enquiries from motivated and qualified applicants from all around the world who are interested in PhD study. Our <a href="">research opportunities</a> allow you to search for projects and scholarships.</p>