To celebrate International Women’s Day, we’ve been talking to some of the inspirational female professors at LJMU about their journeys so far, as well as hearing their thoughts on what it means to be a woman in the workplace in the 21st century.
Joasia is a Professor of Exhibition Research and Head of Art and Design at LJMU’s School of Art and Design. In addition to this, she teaches Fine Art, Art History and Exhibition Studies at the University, as well as being an integral part of the Faculty's Institute of Art and Technology steering management panel. She also takes an active role in research, taking on significant responsibilities within the field of curating and helping to develop and manage research throughout the School.
She caught up with us to discuss her career so far and the importance of historical female role models.
“My journey to becoming a professor began when I completed my Curating degree at university in London. I then went on to do a PhD in Fine Art. After various career moves that took me to locations such as Denmark and Germany, I ultimately took on the role of Head of Art and Design at LJMU. It’s been a great experience so far that has allowed me to gain further management experience within the education sector, while also being able to indulge my passion for all things art-related.”
When it comes to the women who inspire her, Joasia looks back through history to pick out her most influential role models in light of International Women’s Day.
“I’m mostly inspired by the outstanding contributions women have made throughout history. I take a strong interest in women who were involved in my own research field and those who helped to shape technological development too. One inspirational female that really springs to mind for me is Ada Lovelace, who in the 19th century created what would become the first computer algorithm and software for Charles Babbage’s universal computer, ‘Analytical Engine’. Other female computer programmers and women curators have also been hugely inspirational to me – especially those who curated the very first technology exhibitions. I also have to thank my mother too, who developed a wonderful 40-year long career as a teacher and passed on to me her incredible passion for education, her curiosity and her unwavering work ethic.”
“This is why I believe International Women’s Day is particularly important. It’s the perfect time to celebrate wonderful women and draw attention to their outstanding contributions to the world.”
“My own professional career has been undoubtedly shaped by inspirational women who have helped me along the way. Without them, I doubt I’d be where I am today.”
Joasia also believes that in order for women to fulfill their potential, they must first be inspired by their teachers and mentors.
“As a teacher myself, I believe that sharing your passion with your students and offering them all of the support you can are the two main ingredients needed to help them succeed. For me, the whole point of being a role model is providing as many opportunities as you can to others and sharing your knowledge openly.”
If you’re inspired by Joasia and want a career in the art world, take a look at the courses on offer at the School of Art and Design.
Find out more about the origins of International Women’s Day and take a look at the other features in this series on Meet the Professors.