Helen Pynor gained a BSc (Hons) in Biology at Macquarie University majoring in cellular and molecular biology, a BVA at Sydney College of the Arts, The University of Sydney majoring in photography, sculpture and installation, and a PhD at Sydney College of the Arts, The University of Sydney. In her doctoral thesis, she sought the reconciliation of materialist understandings of the human body with understandings of the body as a culturally-constructed entity, a theme she continues to explore.
Pynor’s practice has included exhibitions, residencies and public art commissions in Australia, Europe and Asia. She has been the recipient of a number of prestigious national awards in Australia such as the 2009 RBS Emerging Artist Award and the 2008 Josephine Ulrick and Win Schubert Photography Award, and has recently been awarded a number of Australia Council for the Arts grants. Her work is held in public and corporate collections in Australia as well as private collections in Europe, Asia and Australia. Pynor is currently undertaking a major project exploring organ transplantation in collaboration with artist Peta Clancy.
Pynor draws extensively from the writings of scientists as well as philosophers of biology, in addition to working with scientists in both collaborative and consultative roles. Her practice is integrally tied to a questioning of the philosophical and material status of human and non-human organisms.
view and download the press release for Helen's 'Breath' exhibition