Areas of Expertise (6)
Arts Representation for Disabilities
Professor Simon McKeown is a Professor in the Institute of Modern Art (MIMA) in the School of Arts and Design at Teesside University. He is a specialist in the creative and digital arts and in animation. As a digital artist Simon‘s work has connected with audiences of millions across the globe. His major work Motion Disabled was showcased at the Smithsonian in Washington D.C. and later synchronised worldwide on UN International Day of Persons with Disabilities, in 20 countries and 25 locations (including at the UN in New York).
Simon’s early career was in 3D animation for film and television and as a Head of Post-Production for a TV company. He has also led creative teams in the gaming industry and led the artwork teams for some of the most successful computer games. Specialising in large scale outdoor performative and digital works, he collaborated on Prometheus Awakes in 2012 following an invitation from Bradley Hemmings, Co-Artistic Director of the 2012 Paralympics opening ceremony. In 2015 he closed the centre of Cork in Ireland to present an ingeniously presented and disability led massive outdoor event entitled Cork Ignite as the prime event of Culture Night Ireland. His interest in heritage has connected with 30 million people across the globe, working with BBC Four, Channel Four and the World Service.
Simon was awarded his PhD in 2019 with his thesis entitled A Digital Response to the Cultural Representation of Disability, Teesside University. He is also a member of the Arts and Humanities Research Council Peer Review College and member of the External Advisory Group on Equality Diversity and Inclusion to the UK Governments UK Research and Innovation (UKRI). Separately he is an academic member of the Steering Group for the Diversity in Antarctic Science Initiative (DiASI) - an initiative of the British Antarctic Survey (BAS) and The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO). Simon is deafened and has Osteogenesis Imperfecta (Brittle Bones) and has had around 140 breaks in his lifetime.
Media Mentions (1)
Would YOU bring deceased family members back to ‘virtual’ life? Scientist claims we could soon build a 'synthetic person’ through social media
Daily Mail online
Now, one academic says that this could be possible within 50 years – at least in the virtual sense. Simon McKeown says people could soon be kept alive forever as avatars that can interact with relatives.