Winchester School of Art

August Jordan Davis

BFA (Hons), MA (Distinction), PhD

Primary position:
Senior Research Fellow
Other positions:
Director of The Winchester Gallery, Acting Programme Leader, MA Contemporary Curation


The University of Southampton
Dr August Jordan Davis's photo

"The curator is a storyteller. Her art is to tell that story with and through and for others."

Before joining WSA in autumn 2011, Dr Davis taught at universities across the UK since 2000, including University of Northumbria, University of Liverpool, University of East London, and University for the Creative Arts (Farnham). Dr Davis helped establish the WSA research centre: Winchester Centre for Global Futures in Art Design & Media, launched in February 2012. Through her work with Global Futures, Dr Davis has been involved in the Glam! The Performance of Style exhibition and conference at Tate Liverpool (2013), the Otherwise Occupied collateral exhibition at the Venice Biennale (2013), as well continuing involvement with exhibitions, conferences, and public programming at the John Hansard Gallery.

Dr Davis presents her research internationally, including convening the session ‘Art and “the war on terror”: 10 years on’ at the College Art Association annual conference, held in New York City, February 2013. She also co-convened the session at the April 2014 Association of Art Historians’ annual conference (held in London at the RCA) entitled: ‘There’s No Place Like Home? Women-in-passage: “Home” and Migrations in Women’s Art since 1945’. Dr Davis writes widely about the work of artist Martha Rosler, examining feminist art and politics, as well as interrogating American foreign policy in relation to anti-war activist art practices.

Since 2012, Dr Davis has been Director of The Winchester Gallery. Working to showcase the talent at WSA, Dr Davis commissions and curates exhibitions with the staff, students, and alumni of the school, together with the larger networks of artists, designers and researchers around the world with whom they work. Conceived as a hub for the research at WSA, The Winchester Gallery’s programme is developed to explore innovative relationships between the role of the curator and that of those with whom she works to communicate various stories and stage different situations, both within and outside of the physical space of the gallery.

Recent curatorial projects Dr Davis has undertaken include The Laboratory of Dissent project with Chapel Arts Studios (Andover, Hampshire) Associate Artists programme. Dr Davis speaks about the practice of contemporary curation internationally, including at the Kochi –Muziris Biennale 2014 in Cochin, Kerala, India, and at Contemporary Istanbul 2015.


The University of Southampton's electronic library (e-prints)


Davis, August Jordan (2013) Aesthetics and relations of debate and history. Cultural Politics an International Journal (In Press).
Davis, August (2009) Review. Art & Today by Eleanor Heartney. The Art Book, 16, (4), 45-46.
Davis, August (2006) Passionate Signals. The Art Book, 13, (2), 42-43. (doi:10.1111/j.1467-8357.2006.00672.x).
Davis, August Jordan (2005) Decoys and Disruptions: Selected Writings, 1975-2001. The Art Book, 12, (2), 34-35. (doi:10.1111/j.1467-8357.2005.00533.x).
Davis, August (2002) Review of: The New Art History: An Introduction, by Jonathan Harris. Visual Culture in Britain, 3, (2), 143-148.


Davis, August and Harris, Jonathan (eds.) (2012) Bashir Makhoul, Alhoash, Jerusalem, Palestinian Art Court

Book Section

Davis, August (2012) Martha Rosler's fighting legions: semiotics of the kitchen (1975/2003) - performance and the (video) document. In, Harris, Jonathan (ed.) Dead History, Live Art? Spectacle, Subjectivity and Subversion in Visual Culture since the 1960s. Chicago Ridge, US, University of Chicago Press, 209-239. (Tate Liverpool Critical Forum).
Davis, August and Harris, Jonathan (2012) Re: Turn. In, Bashir Makhoul. Alhoash, Jerusalem, Palestinian Art Court , 14-38.

Conference or Workshop Item

Davis, August (2012) Star Wars, return of the '60s (or why Martha Rosler brought the war back home yet again). In, Association of Art Historians Annual Conference, Milton Keynes, GB, 29 - 31 Mar 2012.
Davis, August (2011) Martha Rosler's Reboot. In, Art / Institutions / As Research , Liverpool, UK,
Davis, August (2009) The political is personal: Martha Rosler's positions in the lifeworld. In, University of Liverpool 7th Annual Art History PhD Conference, Liverpool, UK,
Davis, August (2008) The visible suppressed: Martha Rosler and Max Ernst. In, University of Liverpool 6th Annual Art History PhD Conference, Liverpool, GB,
Davis, August (2007) The visible suppressed: Max Ernst and Martha Rosler. In, AHRC Surrealism Centre's 5th Annual PhD Symposium on Surrealism and its Legacies, London, UK,
Davis, August (2007) Spectres and Spectacle: the Visual Culture of Martha Rosler. Association of Art Historians Annual Conference, 2007, Belfast; Session convened by Jonathan Harris: "Globalisation and Art since 1945: Disciplinary Renewal or Transformation?", Belfast, GB,
Davis, August (2007) Martha Rosler as bibliophile. In, University of Liverpool, 5th Annual Art History PhD Conference, Liverpool, UK,
Davis, August (2006) Martha Rosler as anti-war artist: "If Not Now, When?". In, 4th Annual Art History PhD Conference, Liverpool, UK,
Davis, August (2005) A woman's work is never done: maintenance labour, maintenance art - Wilding, Ukeles and Rosler. In, Conception:Reception. Association of Art Historians Annual Conference , Bristol, UK,
Davis, August (2004) The visual culture of Martha Rosler. In, Edge of Reason (Research Forum) at TATE Liverpool, Liverpool, UK,
Davis, August (2004) In the place of the public - observations on Martha Rosler's spectacular critique. In, Association of Art Historians Annual Conference , Nottingham, GB, 01 - 03 Apr 2004.
Davis, August (2003) The question of the mass: Martha Rosler. In, University of Liverpool Annual Art History PhD Conference, Liverpool, UK,


Davis, August (2011) Bringing the war back home: Martha Rosler's anti-war photomontages (1967-2008). University of Liverpool, School of Architecture and Building Engineering, Doctoral Thesis .


Research Interests

Dr Davis’s research interests cut across modern and contemporary art and curation of North America and Western Europe, especially conceptual and post-conceptual practices from 1960 to the present. Her research specialisms include feminisms and globalisations; art and ‘the war on terror’; the art and activism of Martha Rosler; art historiography and critical theory; trends and innovations in curation; and American cultural, political, and social history.

Research project

Enter Ghost, Exit Ghost - Dormant

Exhibition by Bashir Makhoul in 2012 which raises questions about the kinds of spaces that have emerged in sites of conflict and in the urban margins of globalization


Dr August Jordan Davis
Winchester School of Art University of Southampton Park Avenue Winchester Hampshire SO23 8DL

Room Number: WSA/W1143

Telephone: (023) 8059 6932