Yasmin Hales (MPhil) completed a BA (Hons) in Social Anthropology and an MA in the History of South Asian Art and Architecture at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) London University. Her professional experience has developed as a gallery educator and lecturer in Classical Indian miniature painting and contemporary Indian tribal art collections at the Victoria and Albert museum https://www.vam.ac.uk/collections/south-asia. Yasmin’s interest in the social use of space, architecture and indigenous tribal art was consolidated through ethnographic fieldwork in Northern India and latterly an interdisciplinary PhD scholarship research degree in the Anthropology of Architecture at Oxford Brookes University and UCL. She has taught Social Anthropology at Birkbeck, London University and Faculty of Interior Spatial design at LCC, University of Arts. Yasmin is currently a Short Course Associate lecture in Social Anthropology at Goldsmiths, London University, and City Lit Adult Education in addition to offering professional consultancy and private tuition.
Yasmin is the recipient of several research grants and awards from the South Asian Studies Society, Charles Wallace India Trust Scholarship at the Victoria and Albert Museum and the Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (Intach) for her doctorate research on the “Talking Streets: The Experience and Expression of Space and Place in Tamil Nadu, South India”. Her ethnographic analysis is based on the study of Tamil vernacular architecture, the use of space, Kolam floor designs and intangible cultural heritage within Pondicherry, South India. Inspired by her academic research Yasmin curated a community arts and photographic exhibition at the Harrow Arts Centre in 2016 and 2017, entitled “Talking Streets: The Meaning and Making of Kolam Floor Designs in Pondicherry, Tamil Nadu, South India” . This was complemented by adult and family educational workshops on ‘why different cultures decorate their walls and floors?’
In addition to her role as an academic lecturer, Yasmin runs various creative art workshops in relation to her Talking Streets project. In January 2018 she delivered a 2 day Talking Streets cultural art residency at Great Arts, Shoreditch, East London. http://magazine.greatart.co.uk/2018/01/09/free-store-events-talking-streets/ . In November 2018 she delivered a public gallery talk on the cultural beliefs and way of life of the Nuba Wrestlers of Kordofan, Southern Sudan produced by the highly acclaimed Magnum photographer George Rodger. http://www.davidhillgallery.net/exhibitions . Yasmin recently assisted as a freelance educator at the ‘Another India’ Exhibition (2017) at Cambridge Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology https://www.cam.ac.uk/research/news/another-india-exhibition-gives-voice-to-indias-most-marginalised-communities as a Film Ambassador for the Royal Anthropology Institute https://raifilm.org.uk/.
In June 2021 Yasmin has launched an educational platform entitled ‘Anthropology for All’. Here she runs a range of Anthropology Short Courses, a Summer school, one day and evening workshops on a range of Anthropological topics and themes. Please click below to register or further details. https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/anthropology-of-space-place-and-the-cultural-landscape-summer-course-tickets-162579079403?utm-campaign=social&utm-content=attendeeshare&utm-medium=discovery&utm-term=listing&utm-source=cp&aff=escb
In August 2021 Yasmin joined UCL as one of the ethnographic researchers for VR Ethnographic Museum and the Sound team at the UCL (MAL) Media Anthropology Lab. This is an experimental online digital platform for UCL researchers and local Brazilian communities to curate and preserve their material culture, the indigenous art and artefacts in an ‘Oga Pysy’, a ceremonial house. The ceremonial houses are traditionally constructed by tribal community masons according to indigenous cosmological frameworks where rites and rituals are performed. However, in the context of local Brazilian conflicts and religious intolerance, this has resulted in two of the Oga Pysy houses being violently destroyed due to arson attacks – resulting in a tragic loss of indigenous architectural heritage and a breakdown in community identity. This research project is run in collaboration with the Endangered Material Knowledge Programme at the British Museum.