Ms Louise Adkins


My practice predominately features performance, text, drawing and film. The work investigates the relationship between cultural and historic narrative. It is concerned with recent histories and collective memory and the documentation of momentous events. I often works with collections, archives, libraries and heritage sites and am interested in the performative possibilities of these sites and histories and the narrative potential inherent in re-visioning them. 

I have exhibited nationally and internationally including, 'Notes for a Performance - (Re) Visioning a Smokey Meeting', The Tetley Leeds and Temple Bar Gallery Dublin, ‘Follow’ FACT, Liverpool, 'Between - Material Balance’, Corner House (HOME) Manchester, ‘Pressure Point: Between Tracks’, Badhaus, St Gallen, Switzerland, 'Seamless, The Digital in Design’ Museum of Architecture & Design, Ljubljana Slovenia and ‘The Pursuit of Happiness’, Arsenal Gallery, Poland to name a few. In 2016 I was awarded the Amanda Burton scholarship from the University of Leeds to work on a practice based research project titled: ‘Between Art and Re enactment - historical representation, the actual and the possible’ in the School of Fine Art, Art History and Cultural Studies.

Research interests

The aim of the research is to present a new understanding of the relationship between performative art practice, heritage archives and the cultural institution. My research practice looks at how artists can work with heritage sites and archives; expanding received histories and readings of the past to consider how histories are concealed and how these collective narratives can be presented in an affective and embodied manner.

Practice research and final thesis titled,On Memory, Smoke, Mist and Fog’ - Performance (Re) visioning, Remembrance and Reclamation' critically evaluates a series of research residencies (September 2017 to August 2019) resulting in performance re-visioning that apply smoke, fog and mist as a material metaphor of memory and the past. All three residences worked with heritage sites and archives: ‘Notes for a Performance – (Re) Visioning a Ritual’ partnered with the Portico Library collection MCR, ‘Notes for a Performance – (Re) Visioning a Smoky Meeting’ at the Tetley gallery, its in-house archive and West Yorkshire Archive Services and ‘Notes for a Performance – Weather Permitting’ commissioned by Art Gene and with Barrow Archive Services.  These performances acted as a starting-point for wider reflection on collective memory and its relationship to material and performative tropes of the past evident in cinema.