Photo: Thierry Bal

About me

The unknown—in its scientific, metaphysical, and historical varieties—is central to my investigations as an artist. I’m interested in the dividing line between what is accepted as the legitimate expression of culture and civilized existence, and what falls outside of it, is excluded, expelled or repressed.

My work blurs document and narrative in an exploration of how knowledge, perception, and culture intertwine the rational with the obscure. By tracing marginalized practices, obscure phenomena, and esoteric forms of knowledge through film installations, drawings, writing and photographs, I address the legacy of transgressive means for understanding the unseen and the unknown.

Short bio

Karen Russo (b. 1974) is an artist living and working in London.

She has exhibited in such venues as the Barbican; Hayward Gallery Project Space; V&A Museum; Tate Modern; Delfina; Towner Eastbourne; Paradise Row Gallery, London; Busan biennial; Montevideo, Amsterdam; Grosse Kunstschau Museum, Worpswede; Haus der Kulturen Der Welt: HKW, Berlin; Krefeld Museum; Arquebuse Gallery, Geneva; the Israel Museum, Jerusalem and Tel Aviv Museum of Art.

Recent awards and grants include: Jarman Award nominee (2023), Swedenborg Festival (2021), Oberhausen Film Festival (2020), Elephant Trust (2019), Staff Stiftung (2019), Established Film & Video Artist (2018), Outset Contemporary Art Fund (2018), Arts Council England (2016), Artis Contemporary (2015), Ostrovsky Family Fund for Experimental Cinema (2015), Arts Council International Development Fund (2015), Cinema South Festival (2014), the Minister of Culture prize (2012), Outset Contemporary Art Fund (2010), British Council (2010), Arts Council England (2009), Jerusalem Film Festival (2007) and Givon Prize, Tel-Aviv Museum, (2002).