Cultivating spaces for extraordinary artists

Aidan Moesby's Curatorial Residency

Aidan Moesby, a Newcastle based artist and curator, joined Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art (MIMA) in January 2020 as our second curatorial resident in DASH's innovative partnership programme to support the career development of Deaf and Disabled Curators.

Thresholds is a digital exhibition curated by Aidan Moesby that explores the impact of Covid-19 on relationships to home. The exhibition comprised of new films and photographs by artists Sonia Boué, Lindsay Duncanson and Catriona Gallagher, developed, in response to their experiences of 2020. It includes an essay by Jade French co-commissioned with Corridor8.

Visit the exhibition here.

This exhibition was organised as part of Aidan Moesby’s curatorial associateship with MIMA through their partnership programme with DASH, MAC and Wysing Arts Centre. This national partnership supports the development of Disabled curators.

An online panel discussion hosted by Disability Arts Online took place on 28 October.

Read more from MIMA curator, Elinor Morgan, on working with Aidan Moesby through the pandemic.

"This residency feels like a significant piece of my professional jigsaw and know I am very fortunate to be working and benefitting from MIMA’s Elinor Morgan and the teams’ expertise.”

Aidan Moesby
Aidan Moesby

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Week 1 : 14 Jan 2020 Welcome and conversations about the project and review of structure and aims – EM

That seems such a long time ago. 4 weeks in and wow!

There was the moment of angst, well, actually the tsunami of overwhelming anxiety at being the new boy in school who didn’t know anyone, wondering if I would find somewhere to ‘fit’.

MIMA knows how to host. Or the people at, who are, MIMA know how to host. I have been made welcome from the first moment, from my first awkward utterances at the first meeting of staff round the large office table of formal introductions – though I am so much better at those smaller or one to one interactions. I even got a lanyard – the ultimate signifier of ‘yep – you’re in – you’re one of us’

What a whirlwind! I am feasting on information, processes, practices, art chat, critical conversations – Tuesdays fill me up for the rest of the week. I know how incredibly fortunate and privileged I am to be in this position, to have an individually tailored program of professional development.

I am looking forward to developing a proposal of future activity, a presentation at a conference is already in the diary and there is the wider Dash - MIMA/Mac/Wysing network involvement. Who knows what else will unfurl into the future, it’s early days.

I am not a morning person and I am not saying I spring out of bed at 6am for the 7am commute but the prospect of another curatorial smorgasbord makes the current dark mornings a lot brighter

Aidan's art and curatorial work tends to explore relationships we have to the environments we inhabit, with particular focus on the dual crises of climate change and mental heath.

In early 2016, Aidan curated an exhibition in collaboration with DASH's Tu Fewn project at Llantarnam Grange Arts Centre as part of the "Maker to Curator" series.To learn more about this project, watch the Tu Fewn Symposium which offers an insight into the aims and direction of curatorial commissions for disabled artists and curators.

Moesby is working with the Middlesbrough Collection, the town’s public collection of modern and contemporary art and craft which is held at MIMA. This partnership is aiding MIMA's broader aim to connect people through creativity and change perceptions to promote inclusion.

"We are passionate about representing a range of voices and perspectives within MIMA’s programme and know that Aidan will bring a fresh angle on our work. We are excited about developing programmes with him through this open-ended residency."

Elinor Morgan, Senior Curator, MIMA