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Dr Rupert Ashmore

Senior Lecturer in Art and Design History/Programme Leader, Arts MRes

Department: Arts

Rupert Ashmore Lecturer In Art And Design History Northumbria University Newcastle

Rupert is an art and design historian whose research spans fine art, photography, film and digital communications media.



Present projects focus on the use of visual media to construct and disseminate narratives of cultural memory in northern British and European communities, and how the communal use of photography, film and internet media enrich spaces with meaning and value.

Rupert’s teaching experience encompasses practice, history and theory in art and design, media, and cultural studies. He completed his doctoral thesis in 2011, examining the filmic and photographic portrayal of the 2001 Foot and Mouth Disease epidemic and the collapse of the County Durham mining industry from the late 1970s.

Campus Address

Lipman Building

0191 2437187


PhD: Landscape and Crisis in Northern England: The Representation of Communal Trauma in Film and Photography (Northumbria University 2011)

MA Humanities Research (Northumbria University 2006)

BA (Hons) History of the Visual Arts in the Modern Period (Northumbria University 2004)

Research Themes and Scholarly Interests

My research interests encompass photography, time based media in the arts and internet-based social media. In particular they focus on the use of such media to construct and disseminate narratives of cultural memory within and beyond institutional frameworks, and to enrich spaces with cultural meaning and value.

I was a member of the AHRC funded inter-institutional research network Northern Peripheries, investigating the use of photographs on websites and social media pages in Shetland, to construct hybrid physical/virtual experiences of space, and how ideas of social, economic and cultural capital are revealed in amateur youth filmmaking networks. I am currently undertaking research for a monograph on historic and contemporary photography in Orkney and Shetland, combined with a wider research project investigating Scottish documentary photography c.1960-1990.

My teaching interests are focused on photography, the moving image and digital media in relation to art and design history and practice. I am the Programme Leader for the Arts MRes programme at Northumbria which brings together postgraduate researchers in Art and Design History and Theory, Film and Television Studies, Performance, and Fashion. I have provided postgraduate supervision for research projects in Fine Art, the history and theory of photography, Wartime advertising, and fashion theory.

Key Publications

“Shetland on YouTube: youth film in the Northern Isles”, in Holt, Y., Jones, W., Jones, D.M. (eds) (2018) Imagining Islands: Visual Culture and the Northern British Archipelago. London: Ashgate.

 “Translating Foot and Mouth: conveying trauma in landscape photography”, in Convery, I, Corsane, G & Davis, P (eds) (2014) Displaced Heritage: Responses to Disaster, Trauma and Loss. Woodbridge: Boydell Press.

“’Far Isn’t Far’: Shetland on the Internet” in Visual Studies, v.28.3 (October 2013)

“’Suddenly There Was Nothing’: Foot and Mouth, Communal Trauma and Landscape Photography” in Photographies, v. 6.2 (October 2013)

“The County with the Hole in the Middle” in Visual Culture in Britain, v.11.3 (November 2010)


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