Dr Kate Aspinall, who practices under the name Theo, lives and works in London. She divides her time between two distinct, yet inevitably enmeshed, professional activities: art production and art history. Her art practice includes intricate pencil work, experimental mixed media drawing, painting, and sculpture. Recent pieces involve expressionist bodies which explore the phenomenon that we call ‘self’ and how it can be porous as it expands and contracts along the boundaries of our relationships. Grounded in feminist critiques of the contained, rational individual, this visual approach also challenges the long-held distinction between ephemera and presentation pieces.

Recent residencies and projects include: ‘To Tame a Bubble, a Homo Bulla Project’, originally a fellowship and grant from the Institute for Advanced Study, Central European University, Budapest/Vienna (2022, cancelled due to Covid) and ‘Blueprints for an Emergent Personality’, a Vertigo Starts Residency in collaboration with the Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona (2018-2019). At this moment Theo is working on ‘Elastic Skins’, a project that has grown from her ‘Motherhood’ and ‘Wrestlers’ series, where multi-figure compositions stretch and strain against membranes of care, which are both suffocating and life-enforcing. The women entwined within scrabble, claw, pull, and push as if to tear a shared womb in half or to fruitlessly reassemble one.


2020 Artistic Fellowship, Institute for Advanced Study, Central European University, Budapest/Vienna
2018-2019 Art Residency from Vertigo Starts for placement in Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona, Spain
2017 Grant for Royal Drawing School, London
2010-2013 Art School Departmental Doctoral Award (full scholarship, stipend), University of East Anglia
2008 Art Fellowship and grant from the Rocky Mountain Women’s Institute Denver, US
2004 Tessa Trethowan Bursary for Dissertation Research, University of St Andrews


2013, doctorate from University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK
2009, masters from Courtauld Institute of Art, London, UK
2005, bachelors from University of St Andrews, St Andrews, UK


2018/19 Vertigo showcase, IRCAM and The Centre Pompidou, Paris, France (Group)
2018 Jerwood Drawing Prize Exhibition, London (Group)
2017 ‘Drawn Together’, Mercer Chance Gallery, London (Group)
2016 Alumnae Show, Dana Hall Gallery, Wellesley, MA, US (Group)
2016 ‘The Other Side’, Monsoon Collective, Tucson, AZ, US (Group)
2013 ‘The Space Between Moments’, Loughton Art Centre with the Big Draw, London (Solo)
2008 ‘Anatomy & Process’, Vertigo Artspace, Denver, CO, US (Joint)
2008 ‘Lines, Lineage, and Lore’, Rocky Mountain Women’s Institute, Denver, CO, US (Group)
2006 ‘The Thing with Feathers’, Pirate Contemporary Art Gallery, Denver, CO, US (Joint) 2004 ‘Is Intimate Space Birds Fly Through?’, Byre Gallery, St. Andrews, Scotland (Solo)


2013 – present Artist producing humanist-critical works: including mixed media, large drawings, and paintings
2013 – present Independent scholar, producing publications from original research
2018 – present Lecturer, Courtauld Institute of Art, Public Programmes and Summer School
2018-2021 Adjunct Lecturer, Yale University in London, Courtauld Institute of Art2018-2022 Accredited lecturer for the Arts Society, a UK-wide organisation
2013 – 2018 Consultant, Roy Lichtenstein Foundation Catalogue Raisonné Project, London and New York City
2015 – 2016 Conceived and ran Topolski Studio’s popular Historical Materials-Life Drawing series
2009 – 2012 Lead organiser of the Feliks Topolski Archive Project
2008-2009 Prints and Drawings Room Assistant Curator and Researcher, Courtauld Gallery, London


2010-2013 PhD, University of East Anglia, ‘Attitudes to Drawing in Britain, 1918-1964’
2008-2009 MA, Courtauld Institute of Art, University of London, Distinction on Dissertation
2001-2005 BA/MA (Hons), University of St Andrews, History of Art, 1st Class


Nationality: British and American, born in Boston, US
Languages: English (mother tongue), reading comprehension in German and French, basic Polish
Services: Elected chair of Freelance and Independents Group for Association for Art History (AAH), representing the interests of freelance art workers on the governing board (2015 – 2018) Co-founder of the Modern and Contemporary British Art Discussion Group, London (now the Early Career Researchers Network at the Paul Mellon Centre, London) (2009 – 2013)

Brochure: Theo-Aspinall-Brochure
CV: Theo_Aspinall_Kate_CV_2022


Email: <aspinallkate3@gmail.com>
Instagram: @by_t_h_e_o
Foundwork Profile

In another brain space I produce art history:
Website: kateaspinall.com
Twitter: @katelaspinall