Curatorial Advisors

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Gina Czarnecki

Artist

Now based in Liverpool, Gina was born in Immingham to a Polish father and an English mother. After studying painting at Wimbledon School of Art, her career began in the 1980s making animated films engaging with the visceral, psychological and biological body.

Often in collaboration with musicians, programmers and scientists, Gina’s art is realised in a diverse and, often unconventional, media, including installations, sculpture, video and site-specific works. A recent project, ‘The Wasted Works’, described loosely as participatory sculptures, transformed body matter and biomedical procedures into familiar, every-day objects such as chairs, chandeliers and children’s toys. A key piece in this series is ‘Palaces’ a crystal resin structure embedded with donated milk teeth.

“The idea for ‘Palaces’ really started with my daughter, Saskia, returning from school at seven years old and demanding: “Just tell me the truth: is the Tooth Fairy real?” The transition between understanding what’s magical and what’s true is abrupt and seems to coincide with losing our milk teeth.”

This project, sparked Gina’s involvement in the MOUTHY season.

As well as several solo exhibitions, Gina has participated in numerous group exhibitions including Lumiere (2013). She has been awarded a Creative Scotland Award (2002) Fleck Fellowship Banff (2004) Best Australian/New Zealand Dance Film (2005) and numerous other prizes.

Find out more about Gina’s work ▸

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Saoirse O’Toole

Researcher and Clinical Teacher, Dental Institute, King’s College London

Saoirse wanted to be a dentist since the age of 12. After qualifying from Dublin Dental University Hospital at Trinity College Dublin, Saoirse spent five happy years in general dental practice before starting her PhD at King’s College London. Her PhD is looking at how acids in the diet affect the teeth. She is also researching if the information a health professional provides can bring about a behaviour change.

When Saoirse started at King’s College London she had no idea about the breadth of research and the exciting developments happening in the Dental Institute. Saoirse found being part of the MOUTHY season to be a great opportunity to demonstrate to non-dentists what’s going on in their mouths. She particularly enjoyed the various projects fascinated by spit and how one project looked at altering their mouths for different purposes.  

“I’ve been looking at mouths since I was 19 and I’m constantly surprised at what other people think about their mouths and what they find exciting or weird!”

Find out more about the Dental Institute at King’s College London ▸

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Abigail Tucker

Professor of Development and Evolution, King’s College London

Prof. Tucker manages a research lab in the Department of Craniofacial Development and Stem Cell Biology at King’s College London focusing on the embryonic development of the face, particularly the jaw, teeth, glands and middle ear. These structures are all linked during development and are integral parts of the mouth and how we eat (jaw, teeth, salivary glands) or are physically connected to the mouth (middle ear via the Eustachian tube).  Her research is very much based in the world of the forming mouth.

Prof Tucker’s lab is also investigating how evolution shapes our faces and mouths and how research into embryonic development can be utilised to understand the mechanisms behind evolutionary change. 

As a member of the MOUTHY curatorial team Prof Tucker has enjoyed discussing aspects of the mouth that do not come up during her normal day in the lab. 

“I have been specifically working on a few projects as an advisor, which has provided a great way to look at the mouth from different perspectives: the mouth as a method of communication, the mouth as an object of beauty, the mouth as a gateway into the body. I recently spent some time looking at animal skulls with a team from the RCA with a plan for visitors to MOUTHY to literally get into the mouth of other animals. I am really looking forward to finding out how it all is going to work out.”

Find out more about Prof Tucker’s work ▸

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Daniel Glaser

Director, Science Gallery London

Dr Glaser is a neuroscientist who has worked for many years promoting public engagement with science. Prior to becoming Director of Science Gallery London, he was Head of Engaging Science at the Wellcome Trust. He writes a weekly column for The Observer and was a Man Booker judge in 2014.

“As Joshua Ferris puts it in To Rise Again at a Decent Hour, “the mouth is a weird place.” I’ve always been fascinated by speech and how we make ourselves understood. As a neuroscientist I’m intrigued by how looking at lips changes what we hear – the McGurk effect. As someone who has been explaining science to non-experts all my life, the power of words to conjure worlds is intoxicating. I’ve always been more comfortable speaking than writing and often have a weird disembodied sense as images seem to form themselves in my mouth rather than my brain.

Being a curator on MOUTHY I’ve been blown away by the creativity and boldness of the projects we encounter. Whether it’s through our growing links with the Dental Institute at King’s College London, or through the multi-facetted responses to the open call, my narrow view of the orifice has been opened wide!”