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Isabel Lima

Artist Statement:

Isabel Lima is an artist and researcher based in the UK since 2001. Lima develops socially engaged works, which question the sense of belonging, identity, place and culture. Her own family history of displacement is the catalyst for her research. In her practice Lima develops collaborative and/or participatory works with different groups of people, namely refugees and asylum seekers. The outcomes of her projects usually take the form of video, performance, publication and installation.

In her current research, the artist is looking at ways of mapping and rendering visible the current refugee crisis in Europe and investigating the role and responsibilities of the artist as a mediator and image producer when engaging audiences with the issues of ethics, risk and precariousness.

Artist CV:

2010/2012 | Master of Fine Art, School of Arts and Cultures, Newcastle University, UK
2010 | Introduction to Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, Newcastle University, UK
2007/2010 | BA (Hons) Fine Art, Staffordshire University, UK
1998/2000 | Fine Art – Sculpture, Fine Arts Faculty, Lisbon University, Portugal
1995/1997 | Fine Art – Sculpture, HE School of Art & Design, Caldas-da-Rainha, Portugal



• Negation, Annual Conference of AHGBI, Northumbria University, UK


• Double Dutch, Lagos’ Cultural Centre, Lagos, Portugal


• Contact Zone, Atelier Real Gallery, Lisbon, Portugal

• Double Dutch, Globe Gallery, Newcastle, UK

• Ugo Forno, REcall project, Royal Norwegian Embassy, Berlin, Germany

• Breaking the Waves, Kick in the Eye, Lagos’ Cultural Centre, Lagos, Portugal / Forte do Beliche in Sagres, Portugal / Associação Recreativa e Cultural de Músicos in Faro, Portugal


• Kick in the Eye, Lagos’ Cultural Centre, Lagos, Portugal

• Double Dutch, Platforma Festival, Manchester Museum, UK

• Whitley Bay Film Festival Arthouses, Whitley Bay, UK

• Open Doors, Fórum Eugénio de Almeida, Évora, Portugal

• Schiume Festival, Forte Marghera, Venice, Italy

• Breaking the Waves, Kick in the Eye, LAR Gallery, Lagos, Portugal

• Returning to the Philosopher’s Table, Literary and Philosophical Society, Newcastle, UK

• Prologue, Gallery of Wonder, Hancock Museum, Newcastle, UK


• Set and Setting, Connecting Principle Research Forum, Newcastle, UK

• Contact Zone, International Slavery Museum, Liverpool, UK

• Recall DoW: A Jewish Story, Biennale Session, 13 Architecture Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy

• Arthouses, Whitley Bay, UK

• MFA Show, Hatton Gallery, Newcastle, UK

• Video Forum Film Screening, Star & Shadow cinema, Newcastle, UK

• ROOTS, Influx Contemporary Arts Gallery, Lisbon, Portugal

• ROOTS, LAC, Lagos, Portugal

• MFA, Interim show, Newcastle University, UK

• Creative Stuff in Public Places, OnSite Gallery, Newcastle, UK


• Subaltern, openDemocracy, The Drawers Gallery@ Haggerston, London, UK

• The Firestation Centre for Arts and Culture, Windsor, UK

• Social Justice, Islington Exhibits, SMM Academy, London, UK

• Amaze, Graduate Exhibition, Staffordshire University, Stoke-on-Trent, UK


• World Domination 6, Aichach, Bavaria, Germany

• World Domination 5, L.A.C, Lagos, Portugal

• Rebirth, University Hospital North Staffordshire, NHS, UK

• World Domination 4, Soup Gallery, London, UK


• Conjunction 08, Stoke-on-Trent Biennial, UK

• World Domination 3, Aichach, Bavaria, Germany

• World Domination 2, Potteries Shopping Centre, Shop’s front windows, Stoke-on-Trent, UK

• Intervention @ 5th Berlin Biennial, Neue Nationalgallery, Berlin, Germany

Residencies | Commissions

April 2016 | Contemporary Cultural Practice in Spain and Portugal, closing plenary speaker at Annual Conference for the Association of Hispanists of Great Britain and Ireland, Northumbria University

March 2016 | Arte Útil Artist Talk, artist talk at MIMA in Middlesbrough part of ‘The Uses of Art – The Legacy of 1848 and 1989’, a project by the European museums confederation L’Internationale.

Oct 2013 – Nov 2013 | Platforma Conference and Festival, Manchester University, Selected artist to present a paper at the conference and to exhibit work at the festival

Sept 2013 | REcall-DoW: Rome WWII ‘Stories & Places’, Research Project, Commissioned artist to conduct an international collaborative research project with architects and archaeologists aimed at the ‘presentation’ and ‘representation’ of difficult historical heritage of Second World War sites in Rome.

June 2013 | Kick in the Eye, Artist Residency, Commissioned artist, Laboratorio de Actividades Criativas, LAC, Lagos, Portugal

Sept 2012 | REcall-DoW: Venice WWII ‘Stories & Places’, International collaborative research project with architects and archaeologists aimed at conducting an interdisciplinary approach to the ‘presentation’ and ‘representation’ of difficult historical heritage of Second World War sites in Venice.

Oct 2011 – Nov 2011 | ROOTS, International Artist Residency, Commissioned artist, Laboratorio de Actividades Creativas, LAC, Lagos, Portugal

Feb 2011- June 2011 | CREATIVE STUFF IN PUBLIC PLACES – Commissioned Proposal, Newcastle City Council, Culture Lab, iLAB: Museum and Northern Architecture

Oct 2010 – Nov 2010 | ‘Home & Abroad’, International Artist Residency, Commissioned Artist – XEREM/Triangle Arts Trust, Sintra, Portugal

Sept 2010 | ‘INTERROGATION: West Bromwich’ – Commissioned Public Art Intervention, West Bromwich, UK

June 2010 – July 2010 | Art Commission, New Maternity Building, Midwifery Department, Delivery Suites, North Staffordshire University Hospital, NHS, Stoke-on-Trent, UK

Aug 2009 | World Domination Artist Residency, LAC, Laboratorio de Actividades Creativas, Lagos, Portugal

March 2009- June 2009 | Art Commission, New Maternity Building, Reception Area, North Staffordshire University Hospital, NHS, Stoke-on-Trent, UK

Nov 2008 – Dec 2008 | CONJUNCTION 08, Stoke-on-Trent Biennial, Commissioned Artist Stoke-on-Trent, UK

Selected Publications / Articles

(Publications and article featuring the artist’s different projects)

2014. Recall, European Conflict Archaeological Landscape Reappropriation. (eds.) Michela Bassanelli, Viviana Gravano, Giulia Grechi, Gennaro Postiglione. Milan, Politecnico di Milano. ISBN: 978-88-95194-41-7

2014. Este Corpo Que Me Ocupa. (eds.) Marta Lança, Candela Varas, Francisca Bagulho. Lisboa, Buala Associação Cultural. ISBN: 978-989-20-5276-2

Isabel Lima. 2014. Double Dutch: a game.

Isabel Lima, Martin Anderson and Rune Normann. 2013. Recall docs- A Jewish Story, Published by Politecnico di Milano, Dipartimento de Progettazione dell’Architettura

2012. Emergency Index 2011, documenting performance annually. (eds.) Yelena Gluzman, Matuei Yankelevich. New York, Ugly Duckling Presse. ISBN: 9781937027070

LAC. 2011. ROOTS. Lagos, LAC – Laboratório de Actividades Creativas. ISBN: 978-989-97422-1-5

Xerem. 2010. Home & Abroad: International Artists Workshop. Xerem- Associação Cultural, Lisboa. ISBN: 978-989-97183-0-2

Francis, Anna. 2010. Interrogation: Walsall (A Handbook), (ed.) Multistory. Longhouse Publications. ISBN: 9780956345714

Coulter-Smith, Graham. 2008. A Welcome Intervention: Isabel Lima @ 5th Berlin Biennial.