Pathography

Exhibition of Photography by Cass Senior Lecturer Spencer Rowell
Date: 13/04/15

The Foyer Gallery at The Cass is showing work by Cass Lecturer, Photographer and PhD student Spencer Rowell.

Spencer Rowell is a senior lecturer in photography here at The Cass, and an alumnus of our MA Photography Course. Together with David George and Fiona Yaron Field he established and continues to run the Uncertain States Collective

About Pathography

I have a face, but a face is not what I am. Behind it lies a mind, which you do not see but which looks out on you. This face, which you see but I do not, is a medium I own to express something of what I am

(Bell 2000)


Representations of identity where, through the use of photographic self-portraiture, one might explore psychological states has an established history. With a desire for self-discovery an attempt is made to engage in communication with oneself

…because he is in many ways a stranger to himself, he is susceptible to seeing himself in an image that, until now, has been fabricated by other people or other facts (Roustang 1996).


The photograph as object that is addressed is not the real person, as perhaps a representation seen as a reflection in a mirror:

…but instead the “Other” of his dreams, his fantasies, his imaginings (Roustang ibid.). 

Practice - the making and re-making - offers an opportunity for (re)construction and engagement in dialogue outside oneself, where one considers alternative perspectives. This technique of visual autobiography in a world of therapeutic language is a form of personal pathography.


Psychoanalysis also concerns itself with the revealing of alternative possibilities of oneself; it is through dialogue that an authentic voice might be revealed. Freud introduced the concept of pathography in 1910 suggesting that a psychoanalytic study of an artist’s work could provide a valuable insight into the nature of its creator. An artist might implicitly have a sense of what is communicated, but can this tacit knowledge be revealed as the work is refined in practice and be seen as a therapeutic tool: a form of photo-therapy?

Spencer will be discussing his PhD research project at a conference to held at Central St. Martins titled:‘ 21st Century Photography: art, philosophy, techniques’ on 5th & 6th June 2015.

News details

Dates April 13 - May 15 2015
Opening Hours Mon-Fri 9AM-7PM, Sat 10.30AM-5PM
Venue The Cass Foyer Gallery, London Metropolitan University, Central House

You might also like:

Arts Emergency Response Centre

13th April- 2nd May 2015

mmersive exhibition in run up to General election in collaboration with arts charity ARTS EMERGENCY, curated by Bob and Roberta Smith

MA Photography

Cass Fine Art

This exciting, practice-based course is a unique opportunity to gain advanced skills and develop a body of self-generated projects with expert guidance

BA Photography

Cass Fine Art

Step into a stimulating, challenging and creative photography course located in the heart of the arts and media centre in London

Spencer Rowell

Cass Photography

Teaches BA (Hons) Fine Art, Graphic Design & Illustration (Photography), PhD Candidate

Recent news from The Cass

Great Dryer design wows at London Design Festival

Furniture and Product Design graduate, Mandie Beuzeval, has had a great success at the 2017 London Design Festival with her 'Great Dryer'.

Fine Art Alumnus presents solo exhibition at Beers London

A Cass Fine Art alumnus presents a solo exhibition, called Real Reality, at Beers London.

Cass alumna wins Goldsmiths’ Fair New Design Award

Jewellery Design graduate wins a prestigious award at the Goldsmiths’ Fair 2017.

Theatre Arts senior lecturer exhibits in Venice

Senior lecturer, Dr Jacek Ludwig Scarso, exhibited Precarious Balance / Equilibrio Precario at ArteSpazioTempo in Venice.

The Cass has landed

School celebrates it's coming together with series of exhibition and events attended by hundreds.

The Broken Pastoral

New solo exhibition of night photography by The Cass alumnus David George.

Entrer: Five architectures in Belgium

The Cass hosts an immersive exhibition exploring the diversity of Belgian architecture.

Cass Starters at SCP

A group of graduates from The Cass, who took part in the successful Cass Starters project, will be exhibiting with SCP as part of the London Design Festival.

Jaykoe Exhibits

Artist Jaykoe , an alumnus of MA Fine Art at The Cass has two imminent exhibitions

Instructions For Humans

13 September – 16 December 2017

The Cass alumna takes part in new exhibition exploring the relationship between humans and machines.

The Cass at Calcutta: a home for creativity

We take a look at the new facilities opening to students at The Cass as the School completes its move to Calcutta House.

Regular Practice

Graphic design studio, Regular Practice, will be collaborating with Cass Visual Communications as research partners.

Destruction Chamber Ltd

Cass alumna's start up promises entertainment and stress relief - through wanton destruction

So Fresh and So Clean

Cass MA by Project student exhibits at international exhibition of ethical metalworkers

Cass alumna wins Elle Decoration Textile Design award

Vicky Cowin wins Elle Decoration British Design Award for her exquisite woven wall hangings.