Emelia Kerr Beale


Emelia Kerr Beale is a Glasgow-based artist. They work across drawing, sculpture and textile to process the complexities of illness holding discrepancies and contradictions together in tension, creating moments where discomfort, pleasure, anxiety, or joy may coexist and interact. Using motifs and text, they consider the ways in which imagination and repetition can be coping mechanisms. Kerr Beale often uses motifs, symbols and metaphors as methods of thinking about bodies without depicting bodies themselves. Their practice pushes for more expansive understandings of illness that reject neat categorisations and binaries. Kerr Beale’s research is rooted in queer theory and feminist disability studies, as well as lived and embodied experience. Kerr Beale’s most recent works use a speculative history of an oak tree as a metaphor for the systematic disregard for the self-advocacy of disabled and chronically ill people, through an installation of machine-knitted garments, video and print work. 

Kerr Beale graduated from Edinburgh College of Art in 2019. Recent exhibitions and projects include Platform, French Institute, Edinburgh, (2022); TH4Y, GENERATOR projects, Dundee (2020); Tonic Arts Life Under Lockdown commission for Western General Hospital in Edinburgh (2020); Bathing Nervous Limbs, Arusha Gallery, Edinburgh (2021); as if looking is knowing, Nomas* Projects, Dundee (2021); and Disability Arts Online and Attenborough Arts Centre visual artist support commission (2021). Recent residencies include The Bothy Project, Isle of Eigg (2019); The Royal Drawing School Artist Studios, Dumfries House, Cumnock (2019 and 2021); and Hospitalfield’s Graduate Programme, Arbroath (2021-2022).