Carolyn McKay

visual art | criminal justice

© Copyright Carolyn McKay 2017

Carolyn is a visual artist, researcher and academic who lectures in Criminal Law and Procedure at the University of Sydney Law School. She holds degrees in Commerce/Law (UNSW), MSA and MVA (Sydney College of the Arts), and PhD (Sydney Law School). Her research focuses on technologies in justice, particularly the impact of video link technologies on prisoners, as well punishment and incarceration, surveillance and visual criminology.


Currently, Carolyn is writing a research monograph The Pixelated Prisoner: Prison video links, court 'appearance' and the justice matrix to be published by Routledge.

In 2018 Carolyn is curating justiceINjustice: crime on the margins for The Lock-Up – a collaborative project between 7 Australian artists and 3 lawyers.


Carolyn’s creative practice encompasses digital video and audio, photomedia and painting. Research and artworks both revolve around audio visual technologies in prisons and courts; courthouse obsolescence; visual representations of criminality; convict tattoo designs; convict bio-data descriptions; and surveillance technologies.



The recipient of many awards, Carolyn has also been selected for residencies at The Lock-Up in Newcastle 2009 and Bundanon 2005.


Australian public collections include Blacktown City Council, Bundanon Trust, Mosman Art Gallery, The Lock-Up Cultural Centre and Waverley Council. Carolyn's work has been reproduced on the covers of Law Text Culture, Volume 14 Law's Theatrical Presence. Overseas public collections: the unbound A Book About Death collection (group show in New York) has been acquired by MoMA New York, the LA County Museum of Art Research Library, Los Angeles and The Tabernacle MoMA Wales. The Um Libro Sobre a Morte and TROY ART works have become part of the permanent collection of Museo Brasileiro da Escultura, Sao Paulo Brazil.