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Donald Rodney – Autoicon: Discussing the digital body

Join curator Ian Sergeant and Professor Mike Phillips as they discuss and unpack Donald Rodney’s Autoicon

(Image credit:

This talk will be facilitated by Sylvia Theuri

What does it mean for an artist to represent themselves visually in the digital space? How can Rodney’s work speak to contemporary experiences of navigating digital spaces? Can we read Autoicon as a digital site of resistance?

This talk will be an online only event, and it will take place through Microsoft Teams. Attendees will receive a link to join the session.

Free | Book online in advance


Ian Sergeant 

Ian has an MA in Contemporary Curatorial Practice from the School of Art, Birmingham City University. He is currently a Midlands 3 Cities AHRC funded PhD researcher at Birmingham City University. His practice-based research is titled Visual Representations and Cultural (Re) Constructions of Black British Masculinities in 21st Century Birmingham.

In his capacity as a freelance curator, recent exhibitions include, Reimaging Donald Rodney at Vivid Projects (2016). The exhibition explored the digital embodiment and rich legacy of the late Black British artist Donald Rodney. Forthcoming curated exhibitions include Donald Rodney at the Celine Gallery, Glasgow in 2021 and Cut & Mix: Representations of Black British Masculine Identities, at New Art Exchange, Nottingham in 2021

He is a member of New Art West Midlands Executive Advisory Group and Film Hub Midlands Advisory Group. He is a director of performing and visual arts organisation Kalaboration, Vivid Projects a non-profit company supporting media arts practice and artist led exhibition space Ort Gallery.


Mike Phillips 

Mike Phillips is Professor of Interdisciplinary Arts at University of Plymouth, and the Director of Research at, an Open Research Lab for playful experimentation with creative technology.

His R&D orbits a portfolio of projects that explore the ubiquity of data ‘harvested’ from an instrumentalised world and its potential as a material for revealing things that lie outside our normal frames of reference - things so far away, so close, so massive, so small and so ad infinitum. For more information see the i-DAT web site at:

His entanglement with Donald Rodney dates back to 1984 where they shared a studio at the Slade School of Art, and continued through several of Rodney’s works, such as Visceral Canker (, Paslms ( and Donald Rodney: Autoicon ( which is included in the Thirteen Ways of Looking at the Herbert.


Thirteen Ways of Looking is an exhibition curated by Dr Sylvia Theuri.

A New Art West Midlands and International Curators Forum Curatorial Residency in partnership with and hosted by Herbert Art Gallery & Museum, in association with Coventry Biennial.