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The University of Southampton
Archaeologies of Media and Technology Research group

Jane Birkin

Jane Birkin

Jane Birkin is an artist, designer and independent scholar. She is a research assistant and visiting lecturer at Winchester School of Art, University of Southampton, where she completed her practice-based PhD in May 2015 with a thesis entitled ‘Units of Description: Writing and Reading the “Archived” Photograph’, supervised by Professor Jussi Parikka. She also works on exhibitions in Archives and Manuscripts in the University of Southampton’s Special Collections, as exhibition designer and curator for the Special Collections Gallery and the Level 4 Gallery.

Taking the archive as the primary locus of her own work, she is specifically concerned with institutional description techniques that define and manage the photographic image. Birkin’s practice functions at the intersection of text and image, combining media culture and techniques of the archive, as well as contemporary discourse on art, photography and conceptual writing. She unfolds the term ‘archive’ by approaching images through information management, through the ‘grey literature’ of descriptions and lists. She has exhibited and performed nationally and internationally and published widely on the topic of archives. Her first book, Archive, Photography and the Language of Administration, is to be published in 2020.

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