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Social Work

Tina Keane

England & Co., London

Tina Keane, In Our Hands Greenham, Protect Our Babies, 1982-84. Courtesy: the artist and England & Co., London

Tina Keane, In Our Hands Greenham, Protect Our Babies, 1982-84. Courtesy: the artist and England & Co., London

Tina Keane, a forerunner of multimedia art in the UK, has worked with film, video, digital media and performance. A founding figure in the womens’ art movement, her work is primarily about ‘identity and play’, and reflects her feminist perspective and explorations of political concerns, gender roles and sexuality.  

Key works encompass feminist and political concerns:

Faded Wallpaper (1988), a film concerned with visual perception, madness and a woman’s search for identity, is presented on a TV column - alternate screens create illusions of repetition with patterned wallpaper mirroring the woman’s situation: hauntingly undefined, only vaguely visible. In Our Hands, Greenham (1982-84), a video about women’s struggle against nuclear weapons, celebrates Greenham Common peace camp. Images of women protestors are filtered through outlines of hands against the wire-fenced perimeter of the US military base. SHE and MALE ORDER, are neon signs from Keane’s pioneering multimedia performance installation SHE (1978).

Tina Keane (born 1940) studied fine art and film-making in London, moving from painting to producing light shows in the late 1960s. In the 1970s, she was active in The Women Artists’ Group, and womens’ film distribution group, Circles. She was a Research Fellow, and Lecturer in Film and Video (1982-2012) at Central Saint Martins College of Art & Design, London. Keane has exhibited internationally, and in 2018, Tate acquired her film Faded Wallpaper.