Rowan Bell
MA Contemporary Curating

Rowan Bell is a curator who studied a BA in History of Art, graduating in 2014 and worked in the NHS until 2022, when he decided to undertake a masters in Contemporary Curating. Throughout the masters, Rowan has been involved in a variety of curatorial work which has enabled him to improve his practice, such as; working with MODAL Gallery (the gallery situated in the School of Digital Arts, MMU), working on an NHS based exhibition in MMU’s Poetry Library, VideoCity a roaming curatorial experiment and Pavement, the student led curatorial group. 

Rowan’s research focus was 'Digital Nature' . During the Covid-19 lockdown there was a re-negotiation of our relationships with technology and the natural world. These two subjects, nature and technology, are often seen as disparate subjects. However, with the unstoppable advancement of technology and its increasing ubiquity in every area of life, as well as the climate crisis, perhaps we need to recalculate our thinking via shifts in perception. Rowan’s research intended to uncover the theory behind the way art and curation can. Calling for an Interdisciplinary approach, this new curatorial theory uses a variety of technological/ digital media to create atmospheres. Gathering knowledge from philosophers such as Donna Harraway and Bruno Latour and using themes such as hybridity, the non-human and the rejection of the Cartesian view of nature as ‘out there’, the theory aims to reposition the audience into a critical mode of viewing, where they question our contemporary views on the subjects of art, technology and nature.