Visiting Artist’s Talk – Connor Shields

For this week's Visiting Artist's Talk we welcome Leeds based artist Connor Shields.

Connor Shields’ work is an enquiry into the nature of maleness through the use of dichotomous materials such as steel, knitted wool and fabrics. These materials act as signifiers of traditional binary associations with gender and working-class industries.

Originating from Middlesbrough and graduating from Leeds Arts University in 2018, Shields draws on his Northern heritage and fuses it with timely concerns regarding male identity. He does so in a way that avoids common tropes of gender political art; favouring ambiguity over-prescription. Defying assumptions of strength and vulnerability and possessing a sense of sensitivity and lyricism, his work invites meditative contemplation.

Connor recently completed an MA in Fine Art at the University of Leeds in September 2023 and is one of several artists embarking on a twelve-month AA2A placement in the School of Fine Art, History of Art and Cultural Studies.

“In a short space of time Shields has created a body of work which resonates deeply in our current socio-political climate with depth which requires unpacking.” – Afterview.

About the Visiting Artists’ Talks series

The Visiting Artist’s Talk (VAT) series hosts talks by an exciting range of arts practitioners from around the world every Monday afternoon from 2 to 4pm during teaching weeks.

All of our talks are compulsory for our Fine Art students but are also open to anyone else who would like to join us.

For more information, please email Anna Douglas.

Directions to the Conference Auditorium

See the campus map.


Connor Shields at Leeds Artists Show 2023. Photo by Andy Lord.