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Stories of Cloth


The Artists - Paula Keenan

Photo of Paula Keenan

Paula Keenan

Artists Statement


The work I have produced over the last 10 years has always focused on people and the stories they have to tell about their lives. Part of my love of photography is the excitement of meeting new people and the sharing of new cultures and experiences. Stories of Cloth is an excellent example of what my work is about. It has been both enlightening and inspiring.

Working with different groups of women from different cultural backgrounds, we explored their individual experiences of birth, marriage and death. Each week Lesley and I would meet our groups and discuss issues affecting all of us. We would share stories together, which would prompt new discussions. When we embarked on the project, we did not envisage the depth of the discussions we would be part of.

Oppression, female circumcision, and escaping one country for a better life in another were just the tip of the iceberg in our discussion workshops. For myself this project has been a chance to celebrate with people their heritage and treasured memories.

As a photographer I feel it is important for me to continue this type of work and share people's experiences and stories.

Artist Overview

  • Based in Manchester, a documentary and portrait photographer and video artist. Photographing people, their lives, and the stories that they tell.
  • Paula has continually exhibited over the last 10 years at venues including Open Eye Gallery, Liverpool, the Armouries, Leeds, the Lowry Centre, Salford and Cornerhouse Manchester.
  • Other example work; a powerful photographic exhibition at Imperial War Museum North that looked at the impact of gun conflict on a group of mothers in the North of England.

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