Dr Barbara Leon

Dr Barbara Leon
Dr Barbara Leon

Dr Barbara Leon

BA (Hons), MA, MSc, PhD, AFHEA





Graduated with a BA (Hons) and MA in History of Art (University of Oviedo) in 2012, and a further MSc in Research Methods in Humanities (UNED), I finished my Ph.D. in History of Art (University of Oviedo) in 2020.

I came to the University of Aberdeen as a Visiting Student in 2016 to the Centre for Modern Thought in February 2016, and then to the Film & Visual Culture Department in January 2017. Later that year, in September I joined the Language, Literature, Music Film & Visual Culture School as a Teaching Assistant in Film and Visual Culture. In 2018, I also started working with the Spanish and Latin American Studies Department. I became a Teaching Fellow in Spanish & Latin American Studies and in Film & Visual Culture in September 2021. In September 2022, I moved to a Lecturer position in Film & Visual Culture.


  • PhD History of Art 
    2020 - University of Oviedo 
    Thesis: The study of the city through photography: from Surrealism to Postmodernism
  • MA Art and Social Practice 
    2022 - University of the Highlands and Islands 
  • MSc Research Methods in History, History of Art and Geography 
    2014 - UNED 
  • BA (Hons) & MA History of Art 
    2012 - University of Oviedo 

Memberships and Affiliations

Internal Memberships


Deputy Race Equality Champion - School of Languages, Literature, Music, Film and Visual Culture (2021-)

External Memberships

Grant Applications Reviewer Scottish Universities Insight Institute

Peer reviewer  RevistArq Revista de Arquitectura de la Universidad de Costa Rica | ISSN 2215-275X

Peer reviewer  Estoa. Revista de la Facultad de Arquitectura y Urbanismo. Universidad de Cuenca (Ecuador). e-ISSN: 1390-9274

Peer reviewer Res Mobilis. Revista internacional de investigación en mobiliario y objetos decorativos. Universidad de Oviedo. ISSN 2255-2057

Latest Publications

View My Publications

Prizes and Awards


 Award for 'The most useful improvement' Ministry of Innovation, Education and Science (Spanish Government) - 2014


Research Overview


My lines of research correspond to Identities in Postmodern and Contemporary Visual and Popular Culture. I also explore the representations of cultural identities through popular culture images in wider media and visual culture, such as the Eurovision Song Contest and Music Videos

Research Areas

Film and Visual Culture

Spanish and Latin American Studies

Research Specialisms

  • Visual Communication
  • Film Studies
  • Urban Studies
  • History of Art
  • Spanish Society and Culture

Our research specialisms are based on the Higher Education Classification of Subjects (HECoS) which is HESA open data, published under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International licence.

Current Research


I currently focus on Visual Culture, Cultural Identities, and Urban and Media representations. I am exploring the sense of belonging and the relationship between the individual and its representation from the perspective of cultural identities.

I’m working on the representation of cultural identities through media and film narratives. I look at Music Videos and also at other global events such as the Eurovision Song Contest. I am currently developing an analysis of Bad Bunny's music videos as a representation of Puerto Rican Identities

Another research interest is 20th Century Cultural Identities in Spain, looking at different modes of Visual Culture, such as Film, Advertising, Architecture, Paintings, TV, and other sociocultural events. 

Past Research


Previous research has been focused on the aesthetics o the Surrealist movement alongside the photography produced by this group of artists, with special attention to the artist Man Ray. As a result of my MSc, I produced a dissertation titled The surreal erotic image through the photography of Man Ray. 

The use of photography as a method to study Art History and Visual Culture has been key to my current and previous research. Furthermore, my Ph.D. was entitled The study of the city through photography: From Surrealism to Postmodernism.

Knowledge Exchange


(For conferences and symposiums, please see publications)

- Identity and Myth of the Spanish Folklorica in Art and Visual Culture. Art History Research Seminar, University of Aberdeen, 25th of January 2023.

- Spanishness versus Tourism: Identities and representations in Visual Culture. Centre for Modern Languages Research Seminar, University of Aberdeen, 8th February 2023

- Methods of Research and the Masterpiece: from History of Art to Visual Culture. 17th October 2018. University of Aberdeen

- Coordinator of the Seminar "Restoration and sculpted bodies. how our perception has changed over time". 10th October 2018. University of Aberdeen

- Amnesiac Spaces and Ephemeral Aesthetics: Postmodern Cities. (Film and Visual Culture Research Seminar Series, University of Aberdeen) 15th March



University of Oviedo (Spain)

University of Groningen (The Netherlands)



 Supervision of dissertations in:

BA (Hons) Spanish and Latin American Studies (2020-2021)

MSc Creative and Cultural Communication (2019- 2020)


Funding and Grants


Conference Travel Grant - University of Oviedo, 2015

EU Fund Postindustrial Development - University Access (Fees and Support) 2007-2012

EU Fund Postindustrial Development - English Language Studies in England (Fees, Accommodation, and Support)  2009-2012



Teaching Responsibilities



Coordination Fall 2022/2023

SP30SD, SP40SD From Cultural Dictatorship to Almodovar Sexualities: Gender Narratives in Spanish Cinema

SP40A5 Spanish Language 7

PD50C2 Critical Skills


Teaching Fall 2022/2023

FS1008 Introduction to Visual Culture

FS4002: Dissertation in Film and Visual Culture

SP30SD/SP40SD From Cultural Dictatorship to Almodovar Sexualities: Gender Narratives in Spanish Cinema

SP40A5 Spanish Language 7

SP2026 Spanish 4

PD50C2 Critical Skills

SX1022 Arts for a More Sustainable Planet




Non-course Teaching Responsibilities


Film & Visual Culture

Library Rep

Spanish and Latin American Studies Department

Library/bookstore Rep

Incoming Erasmus Coordinator

Website Coordinator



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Books and Reports

Chapters in Books, Reports and Conference Proceedings

Contributions to Conferences

Contributions to Journals