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Prof Christine Borland


Department: Arts

Through her research in laboratories, scientific and medical institutions, Christine Borland has rendered visible people and practices which are usually inaccessible to a general public.


In 1994 Christine Borland purchased a female, human skeleton as the starting point for her solo exhibition in Glasgow's Tramway From Life, since then her work has explored our physical and psychological sense of self in relation to society’s institutions; of science, medicine, museology and academia.

By introducing the imaginary to these arenas, her works engender a new aesthetic relationship with the subject matter and makes visible people and practices, usually inaccessible to a general public.

Borland’s career as an exhibiting artist spans the last the last 25 years; rising to prominence at the Aperto 45th Venice Biennale in 1993, Borland was nominated for the Turner Prize in 1997 and has subsequently exhibited in most of the art world’s most prestigious exhibitions. Works are held in museum collections nationally and internationally including Tate, London and Migros Museum, Zurich and several permanent works sited in the UK, at Whitworth Park, Manchester and in the grounds of Glasgow University.

Recent works and exhibitions include: Positive Pattern (2017) commissioned by the Institute for Human Transplantation, Newcastle; developed in close collaboration with staff and donor families, the group of sculptures explore the idea of making visible an unseen presence through representation, in positive form, of the negative voids inside 5 Barbara Hepworth sculptures. Editions of the work have subsequently been exhibited at SNGMA, Edinburgh (2017) Beaux Arts (ENSBA) in Paris, 2019 and at the Gulbenkian Museum, Lisbon (2020)

Recent collaborative projects with artist, Brody Condon are an on-going exploration of death and society, exhibitions include; Daughters of Decayed Tradesmen a large-scale sculpture sited in a semi-derelict 19th Century watchtower in the city’s New Calton Burial Ground for Edinburgh Arts Festival, 2013, Circles of Focus CCA Glasgow, 2015 & The Fall Experiment, Stroom Den Haag, 2017. The latter explore through practice-based research, whether body donation could be a means of artistic as well as scientific research.

Borland has recently completed 2 major commissions, which used collections and archives relating to WW1 as the basis for extensive research. At Glasgow Museums (in collaboration with 14/18NOW and the Art Fund) Borland developed a large-scale sculptural work, I Say Nothing that responded to the intangible histories reflected in collection objects. Installed in Kelvingrove Museum, the final work emerged from a series of participatory workshops that brought together artists, curators, conservators, students and academics, around the performative re-activation of items retrieved from storage. To the Power of Twelve at the 19th Century neo-Gothic mansion, Mount Stuart, similarly explored conflict-related objects to shape collective cultural memory and help recover hidden histories.

From 2012 – 2016 Borland was the first BALTIC (BxNU) Professor, initiating a new focus on cross-disciplinary research and practice with a series of collaborative events held at BALTIC and BALTIC 39 . Borland is a founder member of the research group The Cultural Negotiation of Science

Christine Borland

0191 2273412


1983 - 1987 BA (Hons) Glasgow School of Art

1987 - 1989 MA Fine Art, University of Ulster at Belfast

June 2016 - D.Litt, University of Glasgow

Research Themes and Scholarly Interests

Applications for doctoral supervision are welcome from students wishing to pursue practice-based research from across the spectrum of my expertise and interests, including;

Interdisciplinary and cross-disciplinary practices engaging with expert cultures across a broad spectrum of science and technology.

Practice-based research generated by negotiating access to objects/archives in the stores of museums and other collections (e.g. contested cultural objects and human remains)

Sculpture, installation, contextual, collaborative and performance related practice and the negotiation of regulatory and legal frameworks in relation to interdisciplinary practice.

Current/Recent Projects

Selected Solo Exhibitions, Projects & Commissions

* Denotes Publication


I Say Nothing, Glasgow Museums, Art Fund & 14 - 18 NOW WW1 Centenary Art Commission, Kelvingrove Art Gallery & Museum, Glasgow Scotland*

to The Power of Twelve, Mount Stuart, Bute, Scotland *

Wrong Right Hand, Patricia Fleming Projects, Glasgow


Common Groin, Timespan, Helmsdale, Scotland


Positive Pattern, Pittenweem Arts Festival, Pittenweem, Scotland

Circles of Focus; The Fall Experiment Stroom den Haag, Netherlands (with Brody Condon)


Circles of Focus, CCA, Glasgow (with Brody Condon)


Support Structure, (permanent public sculpture commission)

Whitworth Gallery, Manchester


Daughters of Decayed Tradesmen (with Brody Condon)*

Edinburgh Art Festival Commission, Edinburgh


Divine Imperfect, Pier Arts Centre, Orkney


Cast From Nature, Camden Arts Centre, London *


Cast From Nature, Glasgow Sculpture Studios, Glasgow

SimBodies & NoBodies Galeria Toni Tàpies, Barcelona

SimBaby Loop Video Fair, Hotel Barcelona, Barcelona


SimBodies & NoBodies, Ormeau Baths Gallery, Belfast

The Unknown Girl (Commission for permanent work) St Olaf Collage, Northfield, Minnesota USA

Air Heads (Commission for permanent work) Norwich Castle Museum (& touring)


Preserves, The Collection, Lincoln *

With Practice, Newlyn Art Gallery, Cornwall *

SimMan, Public Project, Kunstlerhaus Bregenz, Bregenz


Selected Preserves, Galeria Toni Tàpies, Barcelona

Preserves, Fruitmarket Gallery, Edinburgh *


Repeat Pattern, Dick Institute Museum, Kilmarnock


Conservatory, Centre for Contemporary Art of South Australia, Adelaide; Anna Schwarz Gallery, Melbourne

Simulated Patient, Lisson Gallery, London


An Hospital, Mount Stuart, Bute

Take All the Time you Need, Dunkers Kulturhus, Helsingborg


Christine Borland, Contemporary Art Museum, Houston *

To be Set and Sown in The Garden, Permanent Sculpture Commission, Glasgow University, Glasgow

Christine Borland Survey, Presentation of projects, Kunstverein Munich, Munich

Significant Notes, Aarhus Kunstforening af 1847, Aarhus *

Dragon Doll, Glasgow Print Studio, Glasgow


Nephila-Mania, Fabric Workshop & Museum, Philadelphia

Christine Borland, Art Gallery of York University, Toronto; Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston *

Hoxa Sound, “The Constant Moment” Site Specific Project, Orkney

Christine Borland, Lisson Gallery, London

Fallen Spirits, Anna Schwartz Gallery, Australia


Spirit Collection, Sean Kelly Gallery, New York

Treasury of Human Inheritance, Galeria Toni Tàpies, Barcelona

New Commissions, Royal Armouries, Leeds *

Christine Borland, Galerie cent 8, Paris


Christine Borland, Museum für Gegenwartskunst, Zürich *

Foundation Serralves, Porto

What makes for the fullness and perfection of life, for beauty and happiness, is good. What makes for death, disease, imperfection, suffering is bad, Dundee Contemporary Arts, Dundee *

Christine Borland, Galerie Eigen + Art, Berlin


Christine Borland, De Appel, Amsterdam; Fundação Serralves, Lisbon, Portugal; Museum für Gegenwartskunst, Zürich *

Conservatory, Galerie cent 8, Paris

L’homme double, Århus Kunstmuseum, Aarhus *


Turner Prize Exhibition, Tate Gallery, London *

Christine Borland, Galerie d’Eole, Frac Languedoc-Roussillon, Montpellier *

Christine Borland, Lisson Gallery, London

The Dead Teach the Living, Skulpturen Projekte III, Münster *


Second Class Male, Second Class Female, Sean Kelly Gallery, New York

From Life, Kunstwerke, Berlin *

Christine Borland, Galerie Eigen + Art, Leipzig

To Dust We Will Return (Part of Sawn-Off), Gallery Enkehuset, Stockholm *


Inside Pocket, The British Council Gallery, Prague


From Life, Tramway, Glasgow *


Selected Group Exhibitions


Women Power Protest, Birmingham Museums & Art Gallery


Strange Foreign Bodies, Hunterian Gallery, Glasgow University

NoW 3 Scotland Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art (Modern 1) Edinburgh, Scotland


Transparency, Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool Museums. England


Devil’s in the Making GOMA, Glasgow, Scotland

Nightfall. Gothic imagination since Frankenstein, Musée d'art et d'histoire, Geneva

The Scottish Endarkenment: Art and Unreason 1945 to the Present, The Dovecot Gallery, Edinburgh, Scotland

Transparency, Yorkshire Sculpture Park, England

That Which Remains, Mount Stuart, Isle of Bute, Scotland


Forensics, The Anatomy of Crime, The Wellcome Collection, London


Below Another Sky, Aberdeen City Art Gallery, Inverness Art Gallery, Glasgow Print Studio (forthcoming British Council exhibition touring to Commonwealth countries, 2016)*

Biometric, Media Gallery, Vancouver, Canada

Generation, 25 Years of Contemporary Art in Scotland *

Dick Institute Kilmarnock, MacLaurin Art Gallery, Ayr, Mayfield House, Dumfries, Scottish National Galleries, Edinburgh, City Art Centre, Edinburgh

Urban Suburban, City Art Centre, Edinburgh



Key Publications

Borland, Christine (2018), I Say Nothing, Glasgow Museums

ISBN 9781908638281

Borland, Christine (2018), to The Power of Twelve, Mount Stuart Trust

ISBN 978  0 9567 262 – 0 9

Bradley, Fiona, ed. (2006), Christine Borland Preserves, The Fruitmarket Gallery

ISBN 0 780947 912192

Borland, Christine (2001), Progressive Disorder, Co-published by Book Works with Dundee Contemporary Arts

ISBN 978 1 870699 53 2

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