Dr Helen Gorrill


Contemporary Art Practice, Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design

Portrait photo of Helen Gorrill
On this page





Matthew Building


Helen currently lectures in Critical and Contextual Studies for contemporary art practice at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design (DJCAD). She is the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion lead for DJCAD; and Director of In-Gear, a new initiative and forum for intersectional gender equality in the arts research.

Helen’s PhD thesis ‘The Gendered Economic and Symbolic Values in Contemporary British Painting’ was co-supervised by the Royal College of Art. Her first monograph Women Can’t Paint was published by Bloomsbury to great acclaim in 2020: Women Can’t Paint is held in the permanent research collections of the V&A, the Met (New York), MoMA (NY), Baltic, Tate Britain, the Museums Association, and many other international institutions. Women Can’t Paint is also in the Top 25 USA academic bestsellers for art and design (Library Journal 2021).

Helen is currently writing her second monograph for Bloomsbury: War Paint: the Undeclared Battle against Women Artists; and editing a new book on gender and art which will bring new perspectives to gender in visual culture. She has written on gender equality in the arts for The Guardian/Observer, and been interviewed for multiple publications on art and gender. As an academic she applies disruptive techniques to challenge stagnancy in gender equality, feminist methodologies and the visual arts.

Helen is the Athena SWAN Lead and Race Charter lead for the school. She is also the Data Lead and on the SAT for the University's 2021 Race Charter application. In addition, Helen is a member of DJCAD’s research committee and the ethics committee.

Helen welcomes applications from prospective PhD projects in the areas of visual arts (in)equalities, gender, intersectionality, feminisms (art and theory), gendered aesthetics, and contemporary painting theory. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch for an informal discussion.

Currently supervising

Doctoral candidate: Ms Cat Dunn
Intersectionality, Feminisms and Marginalised Groups through Curatorial Practice



Press Release

Cultural identity and how it relates to physical land is at the centre of one student’s Fine Art project accompanying hundreds of others in the University of Dundee’s Art, Design and Architecture Graduate Showcase 2021

Published on 1 June 2021