Dawn Cole is an artist and independent curator who works from her studio in Birchington, Kent. Dawn graduated from the University of Kent in 2005 with a BA (Hons) Fine Art.
Since 2007 Dawn’s practice has focused on working from the archive of First World War nurse, Clarice Spratling. The small family archive contains Clarice’s diary and photographs, both relating to her time serving in France, a handwritten notebook containing knitted and crochet lace patterns and many other personal documents. Often using pattern and text, her multi-layered and often complex works develop from a period of extensive research and experimentation. Much of Dawn’s work manifests itself in the form of print, however, the techniques she uses are as important as the idea and form an intrinsic part of the overall concept behind her work. Recent projects relating to this archive include ‘Reading Between the Lines, The King’s Shilling’ , the performance ‘The Silence of Knitting’ and the latest project ‘Resting Place’; a collaborative touring project with Platform-7, Roanna Mitchell and Harmergeddon.
Dawn exhibits widely and has participated in exhibitions in Portugal, Japan, France, USA and throughout the UK. Her work is held in the V&A permanent print collection, the Scarborough Museum and Art gallery print collection and in private collections in the UK, USA and China.
At the International Print Biennale 2011 Dawn was awarded the V&A Print Prize and in January 2013 was shortlisted for and was a finalist for the prestigious Arts Foundation Fellowship Award: Printmaking
Dawn has completed 3 public art commissions for the University of Kent, Kent and Canterbury Hospital and Ashford Town Partnership and was lead artist in 2006 at Ashford Visual Arts and Architecture Festival working with art students from the UK, France and Germany to produce a collaborative work.
In 2009 Dawn founded ‘Pushing Print’, an arts organisation based in Margate dedicated to Printmaking. Dawn developed this organisation in collaboration with businesses and artists based in Margate Old Town.
As a curator, Dawn uses her research skills and interest in archives and has curated/co-curated two projects for the Dreamland Trust, Margate, ‘I wish I could see my little willy‘ in 2011 and ‘Walpole Champneys and the Lost Dreamland Mural‘ in 2013.
Dawn is a visiting lecturer at Christchurch University, Canterbury and has also lectured at University of Southampton, University of Kent and has been selected to perform and present at several conferences throughout the UK.