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Current MIRIAD staff profiles, images, projects and research can be found on the ‘MMU Research > MIRIAD > Staff‘ page of the main Manchester Metropolitan University website.

This section of MIRIADONLINE  duplicates ‘Research News’ – the email newsletter of research news from MIRIAD – the Research Centre for Manchester School of Art and the Hollings Faculty (Apparel)- distributed by Prof. Steve Hawley, Associate Dean Research.

Please send research news to Steve Hawley – S.Hawley [at] mmu.ac.uk.


Following on from recent screenings such as Flatpack Festival in Birmingham, Synthetic Ecology (http://syntheticecology.org​) in Brighton and HOME in Manchester, One Square Mile by Chris Paul Daniels and Sam Meech is installed in this exhibition of work in the permanent collection at University of Salford: http://www.salford.ac.uk/events/event/2017/whats-in-store


Andrew Lacon (Art) has just received £14,190 for his curatorial project Recent Activity with artist Andrew Gillespie, to open a gallery space in Birmingham which will be 4 shows and 4 publications this year plus editions. The first show opens the end of April. He also has an exhibition ‘Fugazi’ opening at Division of Labour in London on the 6th April.

Dr Joan Ormrod (Media) has had a chapter published in an edited collection “Bodies in Wonder Woman of the 1990s: Good Girls Bad Girls and Macho Men”. Helford, E. R., Gray-Panesi, S., Carroll, S. and Howard, M. (eds) (November 2016)  The Woman Fantastic in Contemporary American Media Culture, Jackson: University of  Mississippi Press: 159-176.

Dr Alison Slater (Art) has received AHRC follow-on funding as Co-Investigator in collaboration with P-I Dr Rob Knifton (University of Leeds) and the Helen Storey Foundation. The full project award is £103,599 for the 18 month project. Life on the Outskirts will explore how small and medium sized creative enterprises use archives for public engagement, creative, commercial and pedagogic impact. The project will consider models to maximise the impact of archives using the collections of Helen Storey Foundation, encompassing her work in fashion, science, art and major public exhibitions, as a case study. Events for the project will take place in Leeds, Manchester and London and will feature knowledge exchange events between small creative archives, and workshops and mentoring sessions for students on making the most of their own archival collections. Other outputs from the project will include a networking symposium on archiving in the creative sector, a special edition journal, an exhibition, and a feasibility study into the future commercial potential of these collections.

Steve Hawley (Media) is presenting a special screening of rare and unseen films of Sheffield and South Yorkshire men sending filmed messages home from India and Burma at the end of WW2 at the Showroom Cinema Sheffield on 26th March. The films were screened at local cinemas in 1944-5 such as the Regent in Barkers Pool to wives and sweethearts back home as a way of increasing morale; a sort of one way Skype of their day, they are remarkable and moving documents. This is the latest part of an ongoing project concerned with personal and collective remembrance, with Marion Hewitt of the North West Film Archive. The screening will be covered by local TV and radio, and 130 relatives of the men on screen have been traced to view these films, the first time they have been seen in public since 1944.

Jackie Butler (Media)  starts as  Artist in Residence at DCA (Dundee Contemporary Arts Centre). The residency based in the Print Studio at DCA will focus on how contemporary technologies compliment and extend the production possibilities of traditional printmaking technology.
The residency begins in March and continues until August 2017.
SPE (Society for Photographic Education, USA) has invited her and two colleagues from Glasgow School of Art and Ravensbourne to co edit an article on The Family Ties Artists Network for the Spring 2017 edition of the publication Exposures. The journal was featured at the SPE National Conference  Family Values in Orlando, USA in March 2017
The Publication Photographic Dialogues invited her to contribute as a featured artist as part of a special edition on Moving Stills. Published by CMSW and Bristol Photography Research Group, University of the West of England, the special editions focuses on photographers making moving image films. The journal will be launched at the Watershed, Bristol in April)


10 artists have been selected to work in partnership with museums in the North of England, each creating a new piece of work in response to the museum and its collections. Of the 10 awards, four are for staff of the Manchester School of Art/MFI – Steve Dixon/Alison Welsh, Chara Lewis (Brass Art), Lynne Setterington and Magnus Quaife

The artists, who have been commissioned through the Meeting Point2 project, will work with venues ranging from a restored historic open-pan salt making site to an excavated monastic site dating back to the 12th century.

Artist – Museum
Matt Stokes – Hexham Old Gaol, Northumberland
Owl Project – Prescot Museum, Knowsley
Brass Art – Chetham’s Library, Manchester
David Appleyard – Norton Priory, Cheshire
Serena Partridge – Gawthorpe Textiles Collection, Lancashire
Magnus Quaife – Portland Basin Museum, Ashton-under-Lyne
Cartwright and Jordan – Experience Barnsley Museum & Discovery Centre
Lynn Setterington – Brontë Parsonage Museum, West Yorkshire
Stephen Dixon and Alison Welsh – Preston Park Museum, Stockton on Tees
Martin Hylton – Lion Salt Works, Cheshire


Congratulations to Dr Sian Bonnell, (Media) who has just been awarded a prestigious Summer Studio Residency at the British School at Rome from 1st – 30th August 2017.

Congratulations also to Professor Martyn Evans (Design) who has been invited to become a member of the AHRC Advisory Group for the Design Priority Area Leadership Fellow. This will be very useful as this advisory group will inform the AHRC’s priorities in design and shape future funding calls.

Dave Griffiths (Art) has recently recorded Radioactive Art with Ele Carpenter (Goldsmiths University) and presenter Gordon Young, at the Greycroft Stone Circle and Sellafield nuclear site, Cumbria, UK. The programme, scheduled to be broadcast on BBC Radio 4 at 11.30 2 March 2017, discusses contemporary artistic responses to deep-time geological burial of high-level nuclear waste. This follows from Dave’s microfilm project Deep Field [Unclear Zine] which responded to a geo-burial research laboratory at Mol, eastern Belgium, with a narrative translation of the site’s post-war origins, and present & future and material and political uncertainty. The artwork was commissioned by Arts Catalyst (London) and z33 House for Contemporary Art (Hasselt, Belgium), and is currently showing until 16 April in the exhibition Perpetual Uncertainty – Contemporary Art in the Nuclear Anthropocene, at Bildmuseet, Umea, Sweden. The exhibition, curated by Ele Carpenter, brings together artists from Europe, Japan, USA and Australia to investigate experiences of nuclear technology, radiation and the complex relationship between knowledge and deep time.

Griffiths also presented at Art & Radiation, a symposium on radiological inheritance, held at Bildmuseet in November 2016, along with artists Susan Schuppli, Thomson & Craighead, writers Peter C Van Wyck and John O’Brian, and philosophers from the Belgian and Swedish nuclear industries. The event was inspired by US artist James Acord’s roundtable built in his Hanford studio, which brought together environmentalists and nuclear industry bosses in 1999 to discuss the clean up of the Hanford site.

Professor Alice Kettle (Design) features in The Tweed Regional Gallery & Margaret Olley Art Centre (MOAC) exhibition Slipstitch, an Ararat Regional Art Gallery and NETS Victoria touring exhibition,
curated by Dr Belinda von Mergensen from Friday 3 March – Sunday 18 June 2017.

Slipstitch presents an Australian perspective on the contemporary uptake of embroidery by a new generation of artists. In recent years contemporary artists in Australia have embraced embroidery for its capacity for poignant and reflective narrative. The re-emergence of embroidery is part of a broader questioning of the hierarchy of materials that has gained momentum since the 1990s. . Slipstitch aims to introduce a contemporary audience to the capacity of embroidery for drawing and communication in this mode. The exhibition features recent work from Mae Finlayson, David Green, Lucas Grogan, Alice Kettle, Tim Moore, Silke Raetze, Demelza Sherwood, Matt Siwerski, Jane Theau, Sera Waters, Elyse Watkins and Ilka White.

Sutapa Biswas (Art) is in ‘ The Place Is Here’ that is currently showing at Nottingham Contemporary (UK). There will be an accompanying exhibition catalogue published soon for those who may be interested. The show opened on Friday 3rd Feb.

The Observer has done a double page colour review, mentioning her work https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2017/feb/05/the-place-is-here-review-nottingham-contemporary-1980s-britain-black-art-movement
The exhibition charts a very key moment in contemporary British art history and visual practices that relate to questions of modernism and aesthetics regarding identity, race, gender, class and sexuality. It also brings together some important and beautiful artworks from the Black British Art Movement of the 1980s.

Janine Goldsworthy (Media international support tutor)
Is in By Distance///Nearest in Rotterdam on Saturday 4th February 4-6pm
By Distance /// Nearest explores the physical and artistic distance of art objects their makers. The exhibition /// Nearest is the final exhibition of the project.
By Distance is an ongoing series of residencies, exhibitions and exchanges between Manchester, UK and Delft/Rotterdam in the Netherlands.
Exhibition opening: Saturday 4th February 2017 to 26th February,


Congratulations to Richard Page (Media) on his photo spread in today’s Guardian https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/gallery/2017/jan/31/richard-page-dialogue-of-the-dogs-spain-photography In his series Dialogue of the Dogs, photographer Richard Page hints at anxieties just beneath the surface in sunny landscapes of modern-day Spain. The series is on show at Francesca Maffeo Gallery, Leigh-on-Sea, until 25 February

Desdemona McCannon (Art) has edited two issues of ‘The Journal of Illustration’ this year- the current issue vol 3 issue 2 due out in the next couple of weeks.  Her article ‘The Jobbing Artist as Ethnographer: Documenting ‘Lore” appear in the Journal of Illustration, Volume 3, Number 1, 1 August 2016, pp. 107-128(22), and is  available here via intega. She co- organised this year’s ‘Illustration Research’ symposium with Edinburgh College of art in November, which drew together scholarship on the subject from an international field. The subject was ‘Shaping the View: Understanding Landscape through Illustration’. I showed my work in the exhibition and presented a  paper called ‘The Time Travelling Antiquarian: Illustrated Guide Books to North Wales,  from Pennant to Piper

Congratulations to Professor Martyn Evans (Design) who has been awarded a major AHRC project as Principal Investigator. The award total is £578,077 The project – DEVELOPING AN ACTION PLAN FOR THE STRATEGIC USE OF DESIGN IN THE UK – will develop an integrated action plan optimising the strategic use of design in the public and private sectors in the UK for maximum societal and economic benefit.

The 2-year funded project is in collaboration with Co-Is at PDR International Centre for Design & Research at Cardiff Metropolitan University who have an extensive track record of European level design policy development. Importantly, the UK Design Council are strategic project partners that will help to embed the project in the UK design innovation eco-system and support high-level policy discussions. The project findings are due to be launched at the Houses of Parliament in conjunction with the All-Parlimentary Design Innovation Group (APDIG) in 2018.

Fionna Barber (Art) has organized Hunger Strikes and Hunger Striking: Irish Contexts. Irish World Heritage Centre Manchester, 25 January 2017. She screened and led the discussion of the film We Were There; the Women of Long Kesh and the Maze Prison (2014) made by Laura Aguiar for the Northern Ireland Prisons Memory Archive and in which she was a participant – she was an Open University tutor in Long Kesh / The Maze  at the end of the 1980s.  https://www.eventbrite.com/e/hunger-strikes-hunger-striking-irish-contexts-tickets-29247961440

Also the exhibition Con and Eva: Gendering Revolution which investigates the lives of two sisters, Constance Markievicz and Eva Gore-Booth, one an artist who became a  militant revolutionary  in Ireland in 1916 and the other a pacifist playwright, suffragist and trade union activist who spent a significant part of her life in Manchester

The link gives details of the launch event on 10 March as part of the celebrations of International Womens Day. https://www.iwhc.com/con-eva

Chris Daniels (Media)  undertook a residency at the Whitney’s Museum of Art in December as part of his Unravel project, now on the Whitney’s blog. http://whitney.org/Education/EducationBlog/Unravel

A direct link to the work is visible through this link: https://vimeo.com/195046273 Over the course of their residency, Unravel worked with families, teens, schools, and community groups to create a collaborative film inspired by the colors, patterns, shapes, and animated movements in the Dreamlands exhibition. Exploring the work of Jenny Perlin, Oskar Fischinger, and Stan VanDerBeek among others, Unravel and participants made connections between the exhibition and the process of drawing on 16mm film frame-by-frame.

Pete Woodbridge (Media) has had an essay film published as a chapter in a video book (long story, but its a book that is available on a Raspberry Pi !?!).  The Chapter is called ‘Control Societies’ and it is published by Mute and the Open Humanities press. ISBN: 978-1-906496-23-4 http://www.metamute.org/shop/openmute-press

In addition he has also had AHRC Collaborative Doctoral Funding to undertake a PhD looking at Mixed Reality Storytelling in the Smart City, looking at Augmented Reality and Sensor Based Locative media, started in September


Congratulations to Professor Steve Dixon (Design) who has been successful in his recent application to the AHRC Voices of War and Peace Community Fund, for Refugee Tales: viewing the Belgian refugee crisis of WW1 through the lens of contemporary experience. (£14,924)


Congratulations also to Professor Martyn Evans (Design), and Dr. Amanda Ravetz whose applications to be a Strategic Reviewer and reviewer in the AHRC Peer Review College have been successful.

And special congratulations as Amanda’s film Wonderland: The art of becoming human has also won the 2016 Arts and Humanities Research Council ‘Research in Film Awards’ Utopia Award

“This film was made as part of a research project about the utopianism of recovery,” says Amanda Ravetz. “The idea that recovery requires the daily renewal of hope. I do this by documenting artist Cristina Nunez’s use of self-portraiture with a group of people in longer term recovery, capturing their ambitions to ‘feel and be felt by other feeling people’.”

Made in documentary style, the film captures the creative process and relationships that play out during the course of the photography project..

The research project was led by Amanda in partnership with Mark Prest, founding director of PORe (Portraits of Recovery), along with members of GMRF and in2recovery, and funded by the AHRC through the Connected Communities programme

WATCH FILM HERE: Wonderland: the art of becoming human

Dr Beccy Kennedy (Art) has used a research accelerator grant from MMU to produce a conference paper on the DMZ which is now published and it is also a part-special edition based on a panel in Macao (co-edited with Ming Turner): – ‘Zones of Seeing: Artistic, touristic and digital Images of the DMZ, East Asian Journal of Popular Culture, ‘Volume 2, Number 2, 1 July 2016, pp. 287-303(17)

Also recently published is an article she wrote based on research from the Visualising Chinese Borders network. – ‘Border praxis: Negotiating and performing ‘Hong Kongeseness’ and ‘Taiwaneseness’ in contemporary, political ‘Chinese’ art practices, Journal of Contemporary Chinese Art, Volume 3, Numbers 1-2, 1 June 2016, pp. 111-129(19)

She has also been commissioned to write an essay on ‘Chineseness’ for the CFCCA’s 30th anniversary book: ‘What is Chineseness?’ And other rhetorical questions,’ in, (2016) 30 Years of Centre for Chinese Contemporary Art, Manchester: Centre for Contemporary Chinese Art, and was invited to give a keynote at Goldsmiths (on the day of Brexit!) “Border Ontologies: Geopolitical Transpositions,” [Keynote for Geopolitics session] ‘Borders/Frontiers: A Contemporary Interdisciplinary Exploration’, Goldsmiths.

Rosemary Shirley (Art) has been invited to share her research on the British landscape and everyday life at the University of Cambridge as part of the Centre for Research in Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities, lecture programme: Alchemical Landscapes http://www.crassh.cam.ac.uk/programmes/alchemical-landscape.

She has also received a grant from the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art to support the publication: Creating the Countryside, (co-edited with Verity Elson), which will accompany Rosemary’s curatorial project: Creating the Countryside 1600 – 2017 at Compton Verney, 18 March – 18 June 2017.

Sam Meech (Design) has  a show on at Rogue Project Space that is the result of collaboration with the local knitting factories at Crusader Mill


Clinton Cahill (Design) has a peer-reviewed  article published in the Journal of Illustration (intellect).  ‘Finnegan’s Wake: Readings Through Drawing’ is one of two paired articles in the journal discussing approaches to illustrating James Joyce’s last and most extraordinary  novel.  The other article is by the renowned illustrator John Vernon Lord, who has produced an illustrated Finnegans Wake for the Folio Society.  These contrasting practitioner perspectives are editorially contextualised by Sheena Calvert and Adrian Holme.


Clinton will be exhibiting work from his Finnegans Wake drawing project at MMU Special Collections Gallery 5th December 2016 to April 2017.  The exhibition will also include related items from the Anthony Burgess Foundation archive and from MMU special Collections.  The exhibition is endorsed by the James Joyce Centre in Dublin, for whom he continues to write a guest blog ‘Illuminating the Wake’. 

He has recently exhibited two 3×1 m. drawings in ink on photographic paper at the Red Gallery in Melbourne. ‘Refuge’ and ‘Outrig’ were his contributions to a group show ‘Ancient Waters:Trans-disciplinary Space’, 21 September – 8th October.   

The Manchester School of Art had a major presence at the recent Makeshift conference, where they were complimented by the Crafts Council at the end and were picked out in the summing up by Annie Warburton the Head of Research at the Council. This National Biennial event  at MOSI included a number of key staff at Manchester School of Art who were involved in  a variety of ways; in delivering forums and workshops at the conference, initiating and facilitating debate around a number of issues related to craft; involving sustainability, social innovation and health and wellbeing. 

Key MSA staff involved in the event: Prof Alice Kettle, Mark Beecroft (Textiles in Practice), David Grimshaw (MA Programme Leader), Lesley Raven (Fashion Art Direction Programme Leader), Kirsteen Aubrey (3D and E3 manager) http://www.craftscouncil.org.uk/what-we-do/makeshift 

The New Generation event hosted by MMU, with Design Manchester, Age-friendly Manchester, MCC and the Co-op has launched a forum of on-going discussion and a website newgendesign.org, which acts as a repository and network resource of expertise and research in generational design and age related issues.  Academic researchers, designers, artists, policy makers, students and other participants explored the challenges and opportunities in designing our city from Intergenerational perspectives. In meeting these challenges, we sought to identify new possibilities for Intergenerational collaboration, exploring how our city is reimagined, designed and inhabited by future communities.

The event asked how we think beyond our own generation and consider what it means to design social structures and places for living as communities and individuals in a world that is in constant change. Curated by Manchester School of Art, this launch event used design thinking as a catalyst for debate and brought together academic research from Manchester Metropolitan University, projects and policy leaders from Age-friendly Manchester (Manchester City Council), Design Manchester and external initiatives, to discuss how we generate ideas and form partnerships in order to create opportunities for intergenerational living.

Participants included Prof Richard Greene, Pro-vice Chancellor

Prof Malcolm Garrett, Director Design Manchester and

Clive Parkinson, Dr Amanda Ravetz, Dr Hannah Allan, Helen Felcey, Prof Alice Kettle, and Fabrizio Cocchiarella, from the Manchester School of Art,



A Dementia & Imagination paper co-authored by Clive Parkinson (Arts and Health), has been published in the British Medical Journal open. It’s a multi-disciplinary team effort and a rare thing for an arts research project to make it into a high esteem journal. This is one of a number of strategic outputs from D&I that will be delivered over the next 12 months. http://bmjopen.bmj.com/content/6/11/e011634.full?keytype=ref&ijkey=nypYbnuZVPLHrRa

Dr Sian Bonnell (Media) has an exhibition, Imagining Medicine ,currently on at the John Rylands Library until 22nd December. This is the result of a two year funded research project by Manchester University between Dr Cordelia Warr, Prof Anthony Freemont and Sian for Manchester City of Science. http://www.library.manchester.ac.uk/rylands/whats-on/exhibitions/imagining-medicine/. Her photographs take inspiration from illustrations of surgery from the 17th century; based on images in The John Rylands Library collections, these playful yet intriguing photographs make us again about medical illustration. In addition, a new publication on Food in Photography due to be published next spring by Aperture, New York, features her images as well as a book by Lucien Rothenstein (text) and herself (images/text) on Unexpected Surrealism (working title) to be published in 2017 by Redstone Press and Princeton.


Jacqueline Butler (Media) shows work in the the second stage of a group exhibition at Schaelpic Gallery in Cologne. The exhibition Obsolete and Discontinued is on from 7th November- 3rd February following Spain at the Revel-T Festival, Barcelona from 20May-5 June. http://www.schaelpic.de/Stilllegung/Obsolete-Discontinued/ The exhibition was devised and curated by Mike Crawford, Lighthouse Darkrooms, London who invited artists from an international network to create new works for this exhibition.

Steve Hawley (Media) is showing a new 30 minute experimental film, War Memorial, at the airspaceprojects gallery in Stoke. The film is based around the years long Calling Blighty project he is undertaking with rare films of British soldiers sending messages home from WW2.


The Channel 4 film – A Message Home- about his project (created also with Marion Hewitt of the North West Film Archive) is repeated on More4 tonight at 10.pm


Professor Martyn Evans (Design) has delivered a keynote at Click NL’s Drivefest in Eindhoven titled ‘Revitalisation By Design’. Click NL are the Dutch creative industries knowledge and innovation network, connecting inquisitive researchers to enterprising creative people. Drivefest included the launch of the Research Through Design funding programme which promotes research between industry and academic through design methods.

He is also Co-chairing the ‘Design Through Next Thinking’ track at the European Academy of Design (EAD) Conference in Rome in April 2017. Formed in 1994, this is the 12th EAD Conference which aims to improve European-wide research collaboration and dissemination and to promote the publication and dissemination of design research. He is visiting the Department of Estonian Native Crafts at Viljandi Culture Academy in the University of Tartu, Estonia to run a cross-department workshop looking at design strategies that revitalise culturally significant designs, products and practices. The workshop will test and develop work coming out of the AHRC funded Design Routes project and link to a future event and publication in Manchester in March 2017.

Brigitte Jurack (Art) is part of the team who have created the The Healthier Together project at MMU, who are hosting an exhibition of feedback from local community groups and users of Alexandra Park, soundscapes and photographs of the park. Together with playful speculations of what a Greater Manchester House of inter-national cultures might look like and the video ‘Why I stayed’ on loan from Touchstones, Rochdale at the Grosvenor Gallery, adjacent to the Holden Gallery, Grosvenor Building, Manchester School of Art. The cross faculty team of Brigitte, Dr. Claire Hamshire, and Dr. Gina Cavan provide a snapshot of the perceptions of four local community groups, art students, park-users and professionals from the Art Gallery and Museum sector. The interactive exhibition is open Monday-Friday from Monday 3 November – Friday 11 November from 10 am – 5 pm. With a special introduction to the exhibition and refreshments on Thursday 10 November from 5.30-7.30pm

Andrea Zapp (Media) has launched a commercial collaboration with the British Antarctic Survey (BAS/NERC) in Cambridge – the UK’s research effort on the frozen continent – in which science meets art and fashion. Andrea has designed a limited scarf collection for sale via BAS and AZ, that interprets photography of the southern lights, or Aurora Australis, at the Halley Research Station in Antarctica, one of nature’s most impressive night-time light spectacles. 5% of each scarf sale will be donated back to the Survey to support their ongoing natural environment study in Antarctica.

This collaboration will continue into 2017 with Andrea designing a high performance fabric windbreaker garment, which is inspired by early explorer uniforms and Inuit folklore garments. The fabric pattern will use scientific and environmental photography from the pole. Andrea’s designs will be exhibited in March 2017 in Cambridge to mark the opening of a new innovation centre at BAS. She is also in conversation with the British Antarctic Heritage Trust to design new accessories for the tourist shop at the Halley Research Station.

The AZ. spin-out has further been selected nationally to join a UK Fashion and Textile Mission to Tokyo from November 6 to 11, 2016, with an exhibition and trade fair in the British Embassy. Andrea will additionally visit fabric design labs in Tokyo to prepare future research into digital photography fabric combined with traditional Japanese printing methods as a new field of practice via collaborations with Kimono designers in Japan.



Ella McCartney (Art) was speaking as part of a panel discussion and showing new work for this year’s Bloomsbury festival:


Toby Heys (Media) , in collaboration with Professor Robert Saucier (Hexagram, Canada) has secured a Research and Creation grant from PARFAC (Canada) for their new research project ‘The Thing,’ which is based on the post WW2 history of sonic bugging.
He currently has a solo robotic sound exhibition ‘Radiabolus’ up at Neutral Ground in Regina, Canada and a video installation at Soil Media in Regina, and been invited to be part of the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) Peer Review Associate College, which means he gets to spend his nights reading more grant applications.
He has also just secured a book deal with US publisher Univocal for the book Unsound:Undead, which investigates how and why cultures throughout history have used sound, infrasound and ultrasound to connect with notions of otherworldliness. The 350-page book will be published in Autumn 2017.

Jacqueline Butler’s (Media)nTall Tales: women artists’ playful exploration of the human experience has opened at Glasgow Women’s Library
22 October – 21 December 2016
Tall Tales is a national touring programme bringing together the work of 17 international women artists who employ the playful use of storytelling techniques in the making of their work.
Artists include Rachel Goodyear (Manchester, UK), Oona Grimes (London, UK), Margarete Berger-Hamerschlag (b. Vienna, Austria 1902, died London, England 1958), Lila De Magalhaes (LA, USA), Laure Prouvost (London, UK), Ma Qiusha (Beijing, China), Lauren Sagar (Manchester, UK), Mirjam Somers (Rotterdam, NL), and Nina Yuen (New York, USA).

The LiFE ‘Living in Future Ecologies’ research group led by Fabrizio Cocciarella (Design) have published a book entitled Fruitful Futures: Imaging Pomona.
In this collaborative research project which presents creative responses to Pomona Island from students at Manchester School of Art, researchers from the School of Science and the Environment and European partners working alongside the LiFE group. These critical reflections for the Future City became part of a walk entitled Pomona Encounters for Manchester European City of Science in July. These multi-disciplinary interpretations have been collated into a creative compendium of paradoxical stories in collaboration with the Pomona community and publisher Gaia Project.


On the18th October the LiFE research group hosted a Salon event to launch the book and work from the 2 day Opiso City project with students from Manchester School of Art and ArtEz Institute for the Arts, Arnhem, Netherlands. Responses to Pomona Island were showcased linking with the New Generation: Design for Living Symposium at The Pilcrow Pub as part of Design Manchester.


Lynn Setterington (Design) has received a grant from HEFCE National Networks for Collaborative Outreach (NNCO) to work with Year 8 boys from Burnage Media Arts College, The Ahmed Iqbal Ullah Race Relations Resource Centre and youth workers from Manchester charity Reclaim on the stitch-based project Threads of Identity. Alison Slater (Visual Culture) and Lynn Setterington are presenting a joint paper Stories of Collaborative Making: Two Rochdale Quilts in Oct at the British Quilt Study Group

Elaine Simpson (Art) continues her British Art Show commission with an exhibition in Southampton, showing in Bargate Monument, where the whole space is dedicated to the commissioned Auditory Learning project. It closes 15th Jan 2017. In the culmination of the 18-month project, by Eileen and Ben White. the artists have worked with young people from a local youth group to vocalise sound that trigger archival audio fragments and beats from out-of-copyright vinyl records from 1962. The mesmerising film tracking this process transforms the Bargate Monument into a 1960s studio space.


Professor Martyn Evan’s (Design) application to be a college reviewer for the EPSRC (for design related proposals) has been successful. In line with EPSRC processes, he is initially appointed as an Associate College member and will the be ‘upgraded’ to a full member. This is a prestigious appointment that as well as aiding the EPSRC will also increase the School’s expertise in bidding processes,

Christiane Hitzemann (Media) has received a Scholarship in Teaching and Learning (SOTL) from the Center for Excellence in Learning and Teaching (CELT) for her research project “Mock MSA Screen Production”. The project will explore the possibilities of peer-to-peer teaching in an entrepreneurial, student lead production entity within the frame of the expanded curriculum of the filmmaking course. On the 5th of November she will also be chairing a public penal in the frame of “Berlin NOW” an art festival at HOME which focuses on contemporary German cinema / performance and cultural change in Berlin, along with Phil Collins, the Turner prize nominee, James King Curzon Artificial Eye, who has been involved in the independent film sector for almost 10 years, and Andrew Haydon the freelance theatre critic (FT, Guardian, Time Out).

Dr Joan Ormrod and Dr Dave Huxley (Media) presented at the the Cleveland Wonderwoman symposium. It ran 22-24 September and was organised by Professor Vera Camden and Valentino Zullo of Kent State University. Held in the Cleveland Public Library it had a big public impact with outward facing events for children such as comics workshops and a competition for best Wonder Woman costume. The speakers included a mix of academic (Peter Coogan, Carol Tilley and Joan), comics creators (Trina Robbins, Phil Jiminez, Camron Stewart, Genevieve Valentine), the daughter of Jerry Siegel (Superman’s creator) and the granddaughter of William Marston (Wonder Woman’s creator).

Laura Siegel, (Superman’s creator’s daughter) tripped on the pavement on her way in and was rescued by Wonder Woman – AKA Veranda L’Ni a very tall commanding cosplayer.


Jane McKeating and Professor Alice Kettle (Design) have co curated SIGNIFICANCE


Significance emerged from a conversation when the Gawthorpe curators visited Manchester School of Art. While Gawthorpe’s collection includes 30,000 pieces, compared to our more modest plan chest drawers full of graduate samples, it became apparent that we shared an understanding of the value of archives. We discussed their importance for students and makers as a resource of historical and contemporary examples which could inspire new work and set their own in context. By the end of the visit we established the project whichcould signify the value of working directly from artefacts. Also included Design staff Lynn Setterington , Nigel Hurlstone, Rachel kelley, Mark Beecroft and Kate Egan, with an essay Labyrinth of Time, by Visual Culture lecturer Uthra Rajgopal.



Dr Amanda Ravetz has achieved a two year Knowledge Transfer Partnership with the partner Axisweb , funded by the AHRC. She will be the academic supervisor on the project. The project is to develop a new-to-world validation system for socially-engaged artists (SE artists) that will champion their role and value in society, enhance engagement and underpin the transformation of Axisweb to a sustainable, self-financing agency through increased membership and other service offerings. This is the first KTP in the field of Art at MMU and we warmly congratulate her.

Professor Steve Dixon (Craft) and Johnny Magee’s (Media) The Re-Imagine India bid to ACE has been successful (for £49,000) – they are one of the main project partners and will ‘own’ the research REF-wise. The project involves two to three weeks field research in India in January and exhibitions following in India and UK.

Dr Annie Shaw (Design) has been invited by the High Commission in New Zealand for a UK-New Zealand mission on smart textiles which promises to lead to much interesting research.

Steve Hawley (Media) is the co-editor and has written a chapter and the introduction of a new book, Imaging the City: Art, Creative Practices and Media Speculations

Imaging the City brings together the work of designers, artists, dancers, and media specialists who cross the borders of design and artistic practices to investigate how we perceive the city; how we imagine it; how we experience it; and how we might better design it. Breaking disciplinary boundaries, editors Steve Hawley, Edward Clift, and Kevin O’Brien provocatively open up the field of urban analysis and thought to the perspectives of creative professionals from non-urban disciplines. With a cast of contributors from across the globe, Imaging the City offers international insight for engaging with—and forecasting the future for—our cities. Published September 15th 2016 by Intellect Ltd

He has also written an article in the latest issue of the Journal of Writing in Creative Practice, South Home Town, Film and the Imaginary City, about Southampton and it’s absence of myth.


Brigitte Jurack (Art) has curated a group exhibition at ArtHouse London, Döppelganger


Dr Jenna Ashton’s (Impact manager) Digital Women’s Archive North has moved from project status to registered C.I.C. social enterprise. Blurb:

Digital Women’s Archive North C.I.C. is an arts and heritage enterprise, delivering a programme of community-based projects and research relating to gender (culture, heritage, equality, social participation, wellbeing). [DWAN] unlocks women’s histories in archives and collects cultural memories. They use feminist curatorial practices (material and digital) to support women’s services in Manchester – encouraging women’s active citizenship and self-empowerment.

She has also been awarded an Arts Council R&D grant to start exploring new models for creative online curation. The project involves delivering a series of Hack-type events, bringing together 4 artists, 3 curators and archivists, 5 digital technologists, and 6 women’s community groups to explore new creative approaches for digitally curating collections and women’s cultural production. MadLab is a key partner in the project. They will be showcasing the outputs/ devising next steps during Wonder Women Fest 2017, and introducing the project at The National Archives DCDC2016 conference. https://dwarchivenorth.wordpress.com/

Jane Brake (Art) will be exhibiting Promising Home at the People’s History Museum, Manchester from the end of October 2016 to January 2017. The exhibition presents a selection of materials related to the promise of council housing and a particular estate in Salford, as it has been transformed by development over the last 12 years. The research questions the value systems that are applied to housing estates through a series of accompanied walks and employs a variety of strategies to investigate the visual culture of gentrification.

Promising Home (including a publication, exhibition prints and associated events) has received an award of £12, 869 from the Arts Council, Grants for the Arts. It is an Institute of Urban Dreaming project in collaboration with John van Aitken and others.

In November Jane will be artist in residence for Soundscapes Landscapes with Medea Electronique, Athens. http://medeaelectronique.com


Dr Joan Ormrod and Dr Dave Huxley (Media) put on this year’s successful International Conference of Graphic Novels and Comics with approximately sixty delegates from around the world including New Zealand, Europe, America, Canada and Latin America. Manchester Metropolitan University, 11-13th July 2016. (Joint collaboration between MMU Gothic Research Centre, Studies in Comics, Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics, University of Bournemouth, University of Dundee and MMU). The papers from the conference will be peer reviewed and published in Routledge’s Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics and Intellect’s Studies in Comics in the October 2017 issues. The Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics will be published six issues per year from 2017. They will also be appointing extra editorial staff including international staff to promote the journal globally.

Joan also organised a symposium with Katie Milestone from MMU Sociology in the Humanities in Public – Dolly Birds and Swinging Cities. Organised with Katie Milestone at MMU as part of the World component of the Humanities in Public Symposium featuring Pamela Church, Mel Gibson, Ewa Mazierska, amongst others, 18th May 2016.

They have been invited to speak at a Wonder Woman Symposium to be held at the Cleveland Library, 23rd September 2016 http://www.cleveland.com/metro/index.ssf/2016/07/wonder_women_and_other_wonderf.html


Nikhil Gomes  (Management Services)

‘Birthday Honours’ by ND (Nikhil) Gomes has been shortlisted for the inaugural Guardian / 4th Estate B4ME Short Story Prize, which is open to Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic writers living in the UK. Nikhil (pictured) studied Politics at Cambridge University before joining the MA in Creative Writing (Prose Fiction) at UEA.


A Channel 4 film on a project by Steve Hawley (Media) and Marion Hewitt (North West Film Archive) will be broadcast on Sunday 26th June at 8pm. Calling Blighty is a series of short films made in 1944-46 of individual servicemen and women in the Far East sending personal messages home to their family and friends. A Message Home is a project to try to find as many families and veterans as possible, to bring them together to show the films again, and to tell their stories. An event at HOME traced and reunited 75 families with rare films of their relatives. For the first time working class men were filmed using their Lancashire accents in an unscripted way long before the cinema verite movement of the 1950s.

Dani Child (Art) just published an article titled ‘Dematerialization, contracted labour and art fabrication: the deskilling of the artist in the age of late capitalism’ in Sculpture Journal, 24:3, online here (via institutional sub.): http://dx.doi.org/10.3828/sj.2015.24.3.5 .

Eileen Simpson (Art – in collaboration with Ben White) has created a new work for the FOUND exhibition, curated by Cornelia Parker, at Foundling Musueum, London (27th May – 4 Sep). A live event has also been commissioned for the show. http://foundlingmuseum.org.uk/events/found/

Clive Parkinson (Arts and Health) been asked to be the keynote for an important Australian conference, which has 1,500 delegates. This is a breakthrough moment for the research group as it’s a mainstream, government funded arts conference as opposed to a niche arts/health one. http://artlands.com.au

From May to July Lynn Setterington (Design)has been working on a project supported by the National Lottery through Arts Council England.

The Bangladeshi Women’s Memoir Project combines the skills and expertise of writer Dipali Das, a group of local Bangladeshi women and the Ahmed Iqbal Ullah Education Trust in Manchester Central Library. Lynn’s role is to work with the group to develop stitched-based responses related to the women’s lives, whilst Dipali has explored oral histories to create written and spoken narratives. The collaborative project, to mark thirty years since the death of Ahmed, culminates at a celebration event in late July at the performance space in the library.

Workshop BWMP June 2016

Lynn is also exhibiting in the Wit of the Stitch at Ruthin Craft Centre from 17th July til Sept 2016 and she will also be participating in the Nordic Study Circle in Orivesi, Finland from 24-31st July.

Sampler detail – Wit of the Stitch


Prof Felicity Colman (Media), Prof Alice Kettle (Design), and MIRIAD PhD student Sam Skinner all gave workshops to a group of curators, practitioners, museum workers, and practitioners on their research into technology, art, and materiality in arts practice using New Materialist methods at the TATE MODERN: New Materialism Training School, Research Genealogies and Material Practices, May 27-29, in conjunction with a number of other related events, curated by Felicity Colman and Tate research curator Dr Emily Pringle. http://www.tate.org.uk/about/projects/new-materialism-training-school-research-genealogies-and-material-practices

CJ O’Neill (Design) has recently completed a residency at Guldagergaard, International Ceramics Research Centre, Denmark, followed by a solo exhibition (Y)Our Stories at The Apple House Gallery, ICRC, Denmark which closes on 10 June, 2016.

Peter Woodbridge (Media) has been invited to be a plenary speaker at this years Journal of Media Practice/MeCCSA practice network symposium on post-screen culture and practice. The session he is in is around ‘Future Screens’. He will be talking about his film experiments involving augmented reality, virtual reality and integrated sensor systems,

Andrea Zapp (Media) is currently showcasing a selection of her fashion research and media inspired collections at Open Eye Gallery in Liverpool, including a public networking evening during the Biennial in September.  She has also been nominated for a New Designer Award in collaboration with Hello! Fashion Magazine.

In February/March Andrea showcased recent collections and research at Bunka Costume Gallery and Bunka Gakuen Fashion College in Tokyo, as part of an exchange programme with Hollings Faculty. It also included a presentation during a reception at the Ambassador’s residence in the UK embassy in Tokyo.

The Asia Triennial Manchester 2014 (ATM14) was a festival of visual culture that featured a series of powerful exhibitions, commissions, and creative interventions by artists who live in, work in or address issues surrounding Asia.

As part of the ATM14 international symposium held at the imperial War Museum North, a scholarly book entitled – Conflict and Compassion: A Paradox of Difference in Contemporary Asian Art was launched at HOME on 23rd May

The book is co edited by Alnoor Mitha (Art – Senior Research Fellow, Asian Cultures and ATM Artistic Director MMU) and Professor Bashir Makhoul (Deputy Vice Chancellor, Birmingham City University) has brought intellectual collaborations with several artists and curators forging new and lasting partnerships to flourish. The authors discuss the arts and contemporary artists who produce works that entail both innovation and allusion to conflict in the pan Asian world. The essays in the book demonstrate how conflict and compassion are ‘in’ these works – in markedly different (even antagonistic) ways; the forms and contents are bound up together, often in specific works that themselves contain antagonism of identity, identification, difference and meaning.

Professor Pavel Buchler (Art) has a new solo exhibition – ‘Never Had an Idea in My Life’ accompanied by a new monograph and two permanent public artworks at Tommy Simoens, Antwerp

13 May – 25 June, 2016

On the occasion of the exhibition ‘Never had an Idea in my Life’, Tommy Simoens, in collaboration with LUDION (Antwerp), is publishing the monograph Pavel Büchler: In Amongst the Ashes. This publication brings together a selection of over 120 works and projects by the artist, from 1973 to the present.

Together with the book launch, two new public art works by Büchler will be presented: for the first, Pavel Büchler commissioned a Latin translation of a passage from Karl Marx’s & Fredrich Engels’ The Communist Manifesto (1848). It will be typeset and printed on the Plantin Moretus Museum’s historical presses. This single copy, Factionis Communisticæ Præconium, 1562 will be added to the collection of the Hendrik Conscience Heritage Library by Iris Kockelberg, the Plantin Moretus Museum’s director.

The second public artwork is the site-specific intervention in Antwerp’s Royal Atheneum. Based in Antwerp’s diamond district, the school was founded in 1807 by Napoleon. Guided by principal Karin Heremans, the school has become renowned for the value it places on the arts in its pedagogical programme. Through collaborations with some of today’s most outstanding artists, it positively stimulates intercultural discourse and experimentation.

With For the time being, Pavel Büchler has arranged for a single diamond to be permanently installed at the Atheneum. The diamond will be embedded in a windowpane of the schools’ AthenA hall, but it will be worth slightly less than the window. Any attempt to get the diamond back out will destroy the window and overwrite the value added by the diamond. In economic terms, without an exchange value the diamond adds zero value, which leaves it to breathe and be on the terms Büchler would prefer: as art.



Alnoor Mitha (Art) is the lead curator for the Colombo Art Biennial, Sri Lanka, which takes place in November/December 2016, and includes architect Will Alsop and Turner Prizewinners Assemble, in collaboration with leading Dutch artist Madelon Vriesendorp.

Jennifer Richards (Apparel) has successfully presented a paper on “21st Century Subcultures” at Kingston University’s “Reflected Shadows” Conference in April. Further to this, she was invited by the University of Sheffield and the International Gothic Association to exhibit her practical responses to the “Reimagining the Gothic” Symposium and Creative Showcase in May.

Jacqueline Butler (Media) is in a touring show titled Tall Tales with 16 other artists- www.talltalestouring.com The tour began in London (at Tavistock Centre, Freud Museum and Swiss Cottage Library) and will open the second stage in July at Touchstones and Rochdale Library, ending in October at Glasgow Womens Library.


Congratulations to 

• Dr Amanda Ravetz, (Art) who has been awarded £14,930 from the AHRC for Wonderland, as part of the Connected Communities Festival 2016 a co-produced arts project in people affected by or in recovery from substance mis-use, working with artist Cristina Nunez and filmmaker Huw Wahl.http://cristinanunez.com/The festival theme is futures and utopias and this co-produced project brings experiential expertise of recovery together with artistic research methods, to show how the recovering person’s inner landscape and journey mirrors wider utopian impulses

• Clive Parkinson (Arts and Health) who prepared a small  bid to the Wellcome Foundation to fund a sound-art research project at Alder Hey hospital. The bid wasn’t successful but following a re-work (and his huge thanks to Germaine Loader for her previous help) and submission to the New South Wales Ministry for The Arts, Australian Arts and Culture Fund –  Australian sound artist, Vic McEwan has been awarded 85,000 dollars to deliver the project, of which there will be a proportion for MMU to cover his time and a research assistant. This is a great opportunity to work with very poorly children exploring both the damage that noise does in clinical settings, and the ways we might turn sounds into art.

Dr Toby Heys (Media)has just been awarded €200,000 from Creative Europe to lead on Enlighten .  This 2-year project incorporates sound and light festivals in the UK and Italy as well as residencies for artists at MMU and Curated Place in Manchester, Fondazione Mondo Digitale in Rome, and i/o Labs in Stavanger (Norway).

Heys will also be presenting a sound performance and paper with AUDINT (alongside Dr Steve Goodman and Dr Eleni Ikoniadou) at the ‘Speeding and Braking: Navigating Acceleration’ conference at Goldsmiths from the 12th-15th May, 2016.

Steve Hawley (Media) has been awarded £5000 from Film Hub North (the BFI) to present Calling Blighty Sheffield at the Showroom Cinema and other cinemas in Yorkshire. A film about the project with Marion Hewitt of the North West Film Archive which re-presents rare film of WW2 soldiers talking from the far east to their relatives back home will be screened by Channel 4 in June as part of the Secret History series.

Alice Kettle (Craft) was included in the Daily Telegraph magazine in the How to Spend it section titled Uncommon Thread on Saturday 16th April. Her work has also been included in an exhibition in  Belgium titled Chemins Croises at the World Crafts Council

Eileen Simpson (Art) has newly commissioned work (including live performances) at Modern Art Oxford – opening as part of Kaleidoscope: A Moment of Grace (16th April – 10th June)https://www.modernartoxford.org.uk/event/kaleidoscope-moment-grace/. And British Art Show 8 in Edinburgh continues until 8th May.There is a new blog post interview on the BAS8 site here: http://britishartshow8.com/blog/interview-eileen-simpson-ben-white-1791

Jacqueline Butler (Media) has a Family Ties network screening in Spain as part of a collaboration with the festival directors. https://familytiesnetwork.wordpress.com/exhibitions/She had a  short film in the programme which screened on 18th February.

Chara Lewis (Art) as part of Brass Art has been accepted for the juried art show.ISEA2016 Hong Kong. Their artwork, entitled “Shadow Worlds | Writers’ Room : Freud’s House The Double Mirror (2015)” (id #500), has been


Warm congratulations to Professor Alice Kettle (Design), who has been awarded her Phd by publication. She is also the cover girl on Embroidery magazine with an article about her professorial role at the School of Art and is in the Financial Times this month in an article about the best art investments.


Congratulations also to Jacqueline Butler (Media) who has been appointed to the Executive Board of the Open Eye Gallery Liverpool. A very exciting time ahead as Open Eye has its 40th anniversary in 2017 with a full programme of events.

Dr. Magnus Quaife (Art) is initiating an early career research community for the School of Art, starting with a day with invited speakers from the University and then meeting once or twice a term for a couple of hours or maybe an afternoon to share projects and gain some advice from peers and more established researchers. Please contact Magnus for further details

Dr. Myna Trustram (Visual Culture)  has a piece (Dear Bereaved) in the current issue (winter 2015) of the literary journal, The Letters Page, which is a literary journal that uses written correspondence as its main form, and is published by the University of Nottingham School of English. http://www.theletterspage.ac.uk/letterspage/index.aspx

Prfoessor Pavel Buchler (Art) is currently in Generosity. The Art of Giving, a group exhibition with Willem de Rooij, Danh Vō, Joseph Kosuth, Pierre Huyghe, Edmund de Waal, Jaromir Novotný, Hiroshi Sugimoto, Klara Kristalová, Ernesto Neto, Matts Leiderstam, Martin Creed, Yoshihiro Suda, Lee Kit, Jiří Kovanda, Jim Lambie, Roman Ondák, Franz West, Prinz Gholam. Curated by Adam Budak 5 February – 3 July at

The National Gallery, Prague http://www.e-flux.com/announcements/spring-2016-exhibitions-2/

And Nothing Happens, Twice, a Group exhibition with Samuel Beckett, John Bock, Mel Brimfield, Broomberg & Chanarin, Common Culture (Ian Brown, David Campbell and Mark Durden), Steph Fletcher, Pat Flynn, Willum Geerts, Hilde Krohn Huse, Nathaniel Mellors, Sally O’Reilly, Hardeep Pandhal, Pierrick Sorin, Mladen Stilinovic, Bedwyr Williams. Curated by Clarissa Corfe 6 February – 4 June Harris Museum & Art Gallery, Preston http://www.harrismuseum.org.uk/exhibitions/1018-nothing-happens-twice

(Arts for Health) director, Clive Parkinson gave the opening address to the 7th Annual International Conference for Arts and Health at the National Gallery of New South Wales in December and gave the keynote at Arts Development UK’s annual seminar in Cardiff in January. With colleagues from MMU’s Dementia Research Group he presented the ongoing Dementia and Imagination Research Project at the Joint Dementia Research Showcase alongside the University of Salford & Manchester University on January 20th. As a guest of Oldham’s Director of Public Health, Alan Higgins, Arts for Health was invited to work with cultural, health, academic, civil service and third sector partners to explore how Arts & Health as a social movement, might play a significant role in the devolution agenda. In March 2016, The Arts & Health Research Group will be holding an event with partners involved in the devolution agenda to take some of these ideas forward alongside Manchester members of the North West Arts & Health Network and colleagues from the Manchester School of Art. Details will be available soon.

Things are developing for Eileen Simpson (Art) with her Open Music Archive commission with Ben White for the British Art Show. The Leeds leg of the tour attracted over 20,000 visitors in the first few weeks and included a live event and new commission in association with, and funded by Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival. The exhibition moves from Leeds to Edinburgh in February and she has secured more production funding, from the Hayward, for the work in Edinburgh – it will be a larger installation across eight turntables in the Rotunda at Talbot Rice Gallery (opens Feb 12th). Another film shoot is planned in the (old) John Hansard Gallery Southampton once the gallery vacate it in April. The final work will be installed in the new John Hansard Gallery in September 2016. In addition, she received an invitation from Cornelia Parker to make a new work for her curated show Found at the Foundling Museum (May 2016) and has secured a new commission at The Museum of Modern Art Oxford. Open Music Archive features as one of five commissioned works, as part of their 50 year celebrations (opening April 2016) http://tinyurl.com/MAO2016

Details of the mini research sabbaticals announced by the Dean in his new year newsletter are attached. Applications to adhlssresearchdegrees@mmu.ac.uk by 22nd Feb

MIRIAD research centre strategy. Some staff have been asking about the current research strategy, which can be seen in brief from the recent Centre report below,

  • Increase in four star outputs and external income through new senior research posts and strategic funding of existing staff projects.
  • Development of research and links in key regional agendas, fashion/textiles, digital media user experience, design for health and sustainable architecture.
  • Balanced research staffing across departments and interdisciplinary themes
  • Rebalancing of PGR supervision where staff changes require it and looking at the size of supervisory teams.
  • Increasing of external collaborative research income through seed funding and targets to achieve sector mean and beyond.
  • Maintenance of funded Phd studentships to encourage other applications/acceptances into PGR (Post graduate research) cohort.
  • Release of funding for Early Career Researchers, also to promote key research themes and Impact stories, (health, sustainability, digital, Asian Cultures), equal opportunities, and seed funding for external income projects.
  • Seed funding of staff to progress from 2* to 3* outputs and develop capacity. Appointment of critical friend from REF panel to accurately map progress.
  • Enabling of succession planning for research leadership for the REF 2020 and beyond and embedding of research leaders within departments.
  • Creating a truly research informed curriculum through connecting research to teaching.
  • Appointment of a new Design Professor – Martyn Evans,
  • Appointment of Faculty Enterprise Manager Caroline White to help with contract research bidding.
  • 5 year plans for all staff and implementation of the Workplanning strategy for research to allocate more time to productive researchers.
  • REF records embedded in the PDR process
  • Open access of all research linked to Symplectic
  • Mini sabbaticals for four star predicted projects.
  • Funded time to write external bids
  • Fashion Institute along with Hollings to maximise research in this area.


The Media research group is now being headed by Professor Felicity Colman, and the Future Technologies group by Dr. Toby Heys.

Professor Pavel Buchler (Art) is showing in The Problem of God, a Group show with, Eija-Liisa Ahtila, Francis Alÿs, Francis Bacon, Tacita Dean, Harun Farocki, Katharina Fritsch, Douglas Gordon, Gary Hill, Aernout Mik, Hermann Nitsch, Robert Rauschenberg, Ad Reinhardt, James Turrell, Bill Viola, and others.

Curated by Isabelle Malz from 26 September 2015 – 24 January 2016 at K21 Düsseldorf


 Dr. Amanda Ravetz has been invited to write an article about the validation research and  asked Jack Roberts and Lucy Wright (current PhD about relationships between artists and their dealersand post-doc, co-author of Axisweb research and now at Business school) to collaborate. The piece is here; http://1215today.com/debate/payment-in-a-diverse-landscape-beyond-the-gallery/

Chara Lewis (Art) and Brass Art & Roger Malbert were IN CONVERSATION  at The International 3

 on Thursday 29th October – The third in a current series of In conversation / Q&A events with artists whose exhibitions form part of the programme of activity at The International 3. The event also provided an opportunity for the launch of Brass Art’s new limited edition print series. SEAM 01, 02, & 03.  Roger Malbert is Head of Hayward Touring at the Southbank Centre, London.People: The Human Figure in Contemporary Art, published by Thames & Hudson, 2015.

Desdemona McCannon (Visual Culture) has been invited to give a paper at the launch of the North West Print Culture Research Network at Edge hill University called ‘A History of Everyday Things in England: Illustrators of mid 20th century Social History’ 

http://navsa.org/2015/10/02/event-north-west-print-culture-research-network-reading-victorian-periodical-illustration-10142015-10282015/ She also presented a similar paper  at the ‘Illustration Research’ symposium at Rhode Island School of Art and Design  She exhibits a selection of the ‘Women in Print’ chapbooks that she curates in the accompanying exhibition at RISD  ‘Little Pieces Big Ideas’. The volume 2 issue one of the  peer reviewed Journal of Illustration’ (of which she is principal editor) is also launched at the event in RISD.

Dani Child (Visual Culture) has guest edited the current issue of Anarchist Studies journal (23:2) as a result of the To Hell with Culture? Re-examining the commodification of culture in contemporary capitalism event in the School of Art last year,


  • To Hell with (the contemporary commodification of) Culture! Danielle Child and
  • To Hell with Architecture: An Architecture of Anarchism Michael Coates 

At the Holden Gallery in November were launched new books by Rosemary Shirley (Visual Culture), Rural Modernity, Everyday Life and Visual Culture, Ashgate Publishing, 2015

Rural Modernity, EverydayLifeandVisualCulture

 Through the lens of the everyday, this book explores ‘the countryside’ as an inhabited and practised realm with lived rhythms and routines. It relocates the topography of everyday life from its habitually urban focus, out into the English countryside..

And Simon Faulkner (Visual Culture) & David Reeb, Between States, Black Dog Publishing, 2015


Between States addresses relationships between aesthetics and politics through the exploration of different locations and political conditions. The book focuses on the complex geography of Israel/Palestine, where borders and the nature of political statehood remain unresolved.

Steve Gartside’s  (Art) curated exhibition in the Holden gallery Model Behaviour was featured in The Guardian Guide in November – this keeps up a quietly impressive track record…Also, the show is reviewed in the December edition of Art Monthly – the first time in recent years the Holden programme has been featured in an international paper publication.

Professor Felicity Colman  (Media) co-ran The Annual New Materialism 2015 Conference – New Materialist Politics and Economies of Knowledge, was held at the University of Maribor, Slovenia, October 2-4, funded by her COST  Network Grant Action on New Materialism: Networking European Scholarship on ‘How Matter Comes to Matter http://www.cost.eu/domains_actions/isch/Actions/IS1307

Paul Booth (Media) and  Fabrizio Cocchiarella (Design) have a journal article that has just been published in the International Journal of Art and Design Education. The article discusses pedagogy on the unit and reports very favourably on staff and student experiences of Unit X. It works well as a way to promote the innovative teaching and development we have in the faculty to international colleagues.


Felicity also published an article and a book chapter this past month:

  “Dromospheric Generation: The Things That We Have Learned Are No Longer Enough,” in a special issues of the Duke University Press Journal, Cultural Politics, on The Squared Horizon: Frames and Trajectories of Paul Virilio


 2015 “Digital Biopolitics: the Image of Life” In Resisting Biopolitics: Philosophical, Political and Performative Strategies. S. Wilmer and A. Žukauskait?  (eds.). London & New York: Routledge.

Top &
Bottom of It.
Mechanism for a Future Reference

Is a new installation at Matts Gallery of site-specific work by David Osbaldeston (Art). The work is made for, and built into the existing architecture of the Matt’s Gallery office, and includes screen prints, intaglio etchings, and sculpture assembled from a combination of new and existing material within the office and the context it serves.

 Central to this and occupying the entire length of the office floor is a fixed railing system upon which effortlessly glides the Mechanism For Future Reference: a tall idiosyncratic wooden-built structure, designed as a moveable sculpture and operational machine.

The exhibition comes with a specially prepared ebook.


Inflection Sandwich by David Osbaldeston 
With texts by Will Holder, John Russell and Jonathan P Watts
Published by Onomatopee, OMP84
Price £20


Stephen Dixon (Craft) has been awarded an AHRC community engagement award of £15,000 for The Lost Boys: remembering the boy soldiers of the First World War through ceramics.

At the outbreak of World War 1, the legal age limit for armed service overseas in the British Army was 19 years, yet by the end of the war an estimated 250,000 underage soldiers between the ages of 14 and 18 had seen active service.

This interdisciplinary research project in association with The Clay Foundation, Stoke-on-Trent will engage young people as both researchers and makers, working alongside researchers at Manchester Metropolitan University, to raise public awareness of the contribution made by underage soldiers in the Great War.

The project will build upon current academic and practice-led research into the social history and legacy of the Great War at MMU and will focus on the geographical location of Staffordshire, with its historical connections to the ceramics industry, to explore the commemorative potential of ceramics. Interim project outcomes will be exhibited in the Holden Side Gallery at MMU (November 5-11, 2015) to accompany the AHRC Voices of War and Peace conference Being Young During World War One (November 6-7, 2015).


Brigitte Jurack (Fine Art) is presenting work at the new much anticipated exhibition Localism, Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art (mima). Localism’ is an ambitious project telling the story of art in Middlesbrough from its beginnings in 1829 to now. It takes a radical approach to exhibition making, inviting the public to help write the narrative with workshops that grow the show, adding to it as we go, thus creating an encyclopaedic family tree of creativity on Teesside. Exhibition will continue until Feb.2016.


She has also gained Arts Council England R+D support for her international artists’ residency programme at her studio in Birkenhead. For Translating the street  three bi-lingual artists will be guests in (international) independent small scale businesses and developing new work at Alternator studios and subsequent launch in March 2016.  Project partners include FACT, TATE Liverpool and the Bluecoat.


Joe McCullagh (Design) has been invited to speak and take part in a World Design Congress Eeum: Design Connects, International Design Congress 2015

‘the world’s largest event for the design industry…’

He will be speaking about the subject of Communication Design and Design education. http://www.2015idc.org/

Eeum: Design Connects, International Design Congress 2015 is the world’s largest event for the design industry hosted by the Korea Craft & Design Foundation and Gwangju city

He also designed a poster for the congress

Joe_ McCullagh_rn_300px

The Arts & Health Research Group and members of faculty staff welcomed guests from Lithuania, Finland and Japan for a conference in the Manchester School of Art on the 7th October. 2020+– Arts, Society & Public Health brought together researchers and practitioners from the expanding field of arts/health to explore international collaborations in a time of austerity. Chaired by director of Arts for Health, Clive Parkinson, the day had input from a diverse range of participants including the former British Ambassador to Lithuania, Arts Promotion Centre, Finland and a mix of artists, medical doctors and public health specialists from Japan and across the UK. In practical terms the event has fed into on-going strategic dialogue with public health and cultural leaders involved in the devolution of health and social care across Greater Manchester, which places arts and health as a social movement, at the heart of this conversation.

Toby Heys (Media) has been awarded a £15K grant from Arts Council England for his sound and light installation project called HadroScan with Curated Place at the Manchester Library in December 2015.


* As AUDINT, he currently has a sound/video/print solo exhibition called Delphic Panaceas at Artcite Gallery in Windsor, Canada – http://www.artcite.ca and has released the first of a trilogy of limited edition cassette/object boxsets on the Reel Torque/Boomkat label. The release is named – The Magdalena Parker archive and can be found at – https://boomkat.com/products/reel-torque-volume-16

* An article/interview on his work on the 3D printing graphene project has recently been published in print and online versions of TCT magazine. The digital copy can be found at –


* He has confirmed his appearance at Moogfest 16 in North Carolina, USA and will be presenting an installation, workshop and panel appearance with composer Ben Frost – http://www.moogfest.com/

* In conjunction with Jacqui Butler, Dave Penny, and Chris Daniels he is curating the exhibition Compression Culture for the Benzie Building. They are currently seeking video/sound/photography work for the exhibition, so please get in touch if interested.


The new School of Art research pages are now live and can be viewed at:


My thanks to Neil Ashdown for all his hard and creative work and also the research group leaders.

The university is working on a common template for the research centre web pages which should be live soon.


I’m pleased to say that Professor John Hyatt (Art) will be resuming as Director of MIRIAD from tomorrow, 1st October, and we warmly welcome him back.

Steve Dixon (Design, Craft) RESONATE,
British Ceramics Biennial, Stoke-on-Trent, 25th September to 8th November 2015.


A multi-media installation bringing together ceramics, sound and public participation to commemorate the soldiers of the North Staffordshire Regiment in the Great War.

The Spode factory exhibition space is physically dominated by a monumental clay head by Stephen Dixon. Made using 2 tons of red earthenware clay,  the sculpture is based on the Victory Medal of 1919. However, the classical form of the original winged victory figure is challenged by the industrial aesthetic of the supporting structure, which adopts the functionalism and brutal materiality of trench architecture. The installation space is further animated by a complementary sound sculpture by Johnny Magee, which dramatically orchestrates the familiar and incidental sounds, poignant songs and popular music of the period.

Visitors are encouraged to contribute to the project by attaching ceramic flowers to the supporting structure of the artwork. They are also invited to attach their own personal family tributes, and to document their individual stories of WWI as part of the installation.


Congratulations to Alnoor Mitha  (Art) for his award of the Knowledge Exchange Project Award for the Asia Triennial Manchester (ATM14),
in partnership with the Centre for Enterprise (Professor Lynn Martin).

And to runner up Lynn Setterington for her project: Embroidery and social and cultural wellbeing


Congratulations also to Joe McCullagh and Jane McFadyen  (Design) who have been selected as the winner of the International Award for Excellence for the Design Principles and Practices Collection.

Their article, “Design Collaborations: The Good, the Bad, and the Unthinkable,” was selected for the award from among the ten highest-ranked papers emerging from the peer review process.

They have been invited to attend the Tenth International Conference on Design Principles and Practices, which will be held Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in February 2016.

And yet more congratulations to Felicity Colman (Media) for her book Film Theory: Creating a Cinematic Grammar (2014) http://cup.columbia.edu/book/film-theory/9780231169738 which has been nominated for the 2015 Katherine Singer Kovács Book Award from the Society for Cinema and Media Studies, US.

Felicity also organized and ran the conference “New Forms for a Philosophy of Film: creative and political methodologies” at the Manchester School of Art, the proceedings of which will be published in the online journal AV: Journal of Creative and Practical Philosophy that she co-edits with Dr David Deamer. The event included speakers from the United States, Sweden, and Australia, and researchers from the Manchester School of Art – Dave Griffiths, Helen List, and Steve Hawley.

She gave two keynote papers in July; one titled “Digital Gestell: Feminist materialist approaches to durational matters” at the Material Environments: Sensing Time and Matter in Digital and Visual Culture University of Greenwich, London, England 24 July 2015; the other titled “The Dirty Digital: the matter of obsolescence” for DRECK ein Apparat, Uferstudios, Berlin, Germany, 2 July 2015. Felicity presented her current research in two further papers, one titled: The Materialist Ethics of the Filmic Space” for the Space and Place in European Cinema 2015: 7th European Cinema Research Forum Annual Conference at the Huston School of Film & Digital Media | National University of Ireland, Galway. 7th July; the other titled “A Feminist Egg: #BWOselfie” for the  Daughters of Chaos: Discipline, Practice, a Life , 8th Deleuze Studies International Conference, School of Architecture KTH (Royal Institute of Technology) Stockholm, Sweden, 1st July 2015.

Chara Lewis (Art) exhibited as Brass Art: Shadow Worlds | Writers’ Rooms: Freud’s House in September  at International 3.


image credit: Brass Art: Shadow Worlds | Writers’Rooms – Freud’s House video still

Rachel Kelly  (Design) is exhibiting at W is for Wallpaper- The best contemporary wallpaper design at Ruthin Craft Centre 25 Sept – 22 November 2015

I will be exhibiting new work which explores sustainable approaches to wallcovering design and materials exhibiting a new ‘cut out’ wallpaper which can be applied as a paper wall sticker or as a paper length directly to a wall surface; the paper backing has a pre-applied water release adhesive .

“I am interested in how removing material creates negative patterns reflects the way in which layers of old wallpaper can be peeled and revealed to create new patterns”.

She has also been commissioned by Ruthin Craft Centre to design a permanent vinyl window decoration for the Education space at the Centre.



Jane Brake (Art) and colleagues will present ongoing work from their investigation into the changing Chinese megacity, focusing on the site of Guangzhou’s historic Industrial Road. IUD Temporary Research Space: The Industrial Road Project.

Centre for Chinese Contemporary Art

The Temporary Research Space is a public forum for sharing work in progress.

Participants are invited to view video, photographs, archive materials and discuss what is lost and gained in the transformation of world cities everywhere.

Using Guangzhou’s historic Industrial Road as a case study, the project investigates the transformation of everyday life and landscapes in the Chinese megacity.

The Industrial Road Project is a collaboration between the Institute of Urban Dreaming (IUD), Salford UK & Dr Du, Guangdong University of Foreign Studies (GDUFS), Guangzhou China.

Eileen Simpson’s (Art) work Struggle in Jerash will be shown as part of Moving Image Contours: Points for a Surrounding Movement, the inaugural exhibition of Tabakalera, San San Sebastián. 11th September 2015 – 3rd January 201


Mary Oliver (Media) is included in The Performing Subject in the Space of Technology: Through the Virtual, Towards the Real Palgrave Macmillan 2015


‘The Performing Subject in the Space of Technology challenges perceived notions of ‘virtual’ and ‘real’ in a collection of fascinating essays. It explores the ubiquity of technology in both academia and professional practice, emphasising the experience of body/ technology encounters.’ – Sita Popat, University of Leeds, UK

Edited by Matthew CauseyEmma MeehanNéill O’Dwyer


Congratulations and welcome to newly arrived Professor from Lancaster University Dr Martyn Evans (Design) who has been successful with a ESRC/AHRC/CASS (Chinese Academy of Social Sciences) bid for International Centre Partnerships. The funding of £80, 000 will fund 3×1 week reciprocal trips between academics in China and the UK. It’s a 3 year project, on which he is Co-I, and links and extends the current AHRC project for which he is Principal Investigator (between Lancaster, Leeds and soon to be MMU) and links to the recent AHRC bid submitted with Prof Walker at Lancaster. It is hoped it will lead to broader research links between UK and China.

Steve Hawley’s (Media) film South Home Town is being premiered at the New York Independent Film Festival next month https://www.nycindieff.com/film/south-home-town


Meanwhile his project with Marion Hewitt and the North west Film Archive A Message Home , has its website launched on VJ Day to trace relatives of 600 servicemen filmed in the Far East in WW2. A recreation of the 1940s film screenings will be held at HOME in November. http://www.nwfa.mmu.ac.uk/blighty/index.php

Alice Kettle, A Map to the Future, embroidery with cotton, rayon and metallic thread on cotton duck, 8m x 3m.  A “unique and monumental work of art” commissioned by Lloyd’s Register, connecting the worlds of applied and fine art, will be officially unveiled by Princess Anna at the  Global Technology Centre in Southampton on 17th October.


Mike Eden (Design) has a piece of his featured on the front cover of Digital Handmade : Craftsmanship and the New Industrial Revolution, by Lucy Johnston.


Gavin MacDonald (Media) was an invited respondent to an article in the journal Global Discourse dealing with Bruno Latour’s ideas in relation to digital mapping (Hind, Sam, and Sybille Lammes. 2015. “Digital mapping as double-tap: cartographic modes, calculations and failures.”). Gavin’s response, “Touching at a Distance: A Response to Hind and Lammes”, was published in July. http://www.tandfonline.com/eprint/hyVZBQ4CPf6vgbm5xpWh/full

– In July Gavin MacDonald also delivered a paper on temporality and geomedia at the conference Material Environments: Sensing Time and Matter in Digital and Visual Culture, held at The University of Greenwich, London.


Amanda Ravetz presented a new exhibition at
Ambika P3, University of Westminster, 35 Marylebone Road, London NW1 5LS
From 9th of July, 2015
An inflatable cinema will be built at Ambika P3 as part of a film and installation project about the radical group ‘Action Space’ and their ideas surrounding play, education and the arts. The inflatable will be touring around the UK during the filmmaking process.


Brigitte Jurack (Art) gave a paper at the international ceramic festival in Aberystwyth.

Rosemary Shirley’s (Visual Culture) monograph has been published, titled Rural Modernity Everyday Life and Visual Culture.
Through the lens of the everyday, this book explores ‘the countryside’ as an inhabited and practised realm with lived rhythms and routines. It relocates the topography of everyday life from its habitually urban focus, out into the English countryside. The rural is often portrayed as existing outside of modernity, or as its passive victim. Here, the rural is recast as an active and complex site of modernity, a shift which contributes alternative ways of thinking the rural and a new perspective on the everyday.

Pavel Buchler (Art) has a current exhibition in Zurich – Now and Again”


Simon Faulkner, (Visual Culture) Jane Webb, (Design) Laura Guy and Stephanie Boydell have organised an exhibition in MMU Special Collections Gallery entitled We Want People Who Can Draw: Instruction and Dissent in the British Art School. This exhibition will run until 31 July 2015. The exhibition entails posters, pamphlets, magazines, documents, photographs, and films relating to moments of dissent within British art schools between the 1960s and the 1980s. See the following link for the exhibition text: http://www.specialcollections.mmu.ac.uk/files/wewantpeople_guide.pdf

He also organised a one-day workshop entitled ‘The Death of Thatcher on Social Media’ on the 30th June at the University of Sheffield as part of the ESRC funded Transformative Research project ‘Picturing the Social’ (for which Simon and Jim Aulich are co-investigators).

The artist/writer’s book that he has co-authored with the Israeli artist and activist David Reeb will be published by Black Dog Publishing in July. This book deals with issues of geography and representation in Israel/Palestine and more generally with relationships between aesthetics and politics. See the following link: http://blackdogonline.com/photography/between-states.html

Dave Huxley and Joan Ormrod (Media) organised and presented papers at the Sorbonne, Paris, for the International Conference of Graphic Novels and Comics:
David Huxley: A Voyage through a Collector’s Brain – 22nd June
Joan Ormrod: Mapping the Post-Colonial Enterprise of Trillium: Space, Time, Language – 23rd June

Louise Adkins (Design) will be exhibiting and presenting a joint paper (A Violent Aesthetic: The Image beyond Representation) with K.A Adkins at the 6th International Conference of the Image at University of California at Berkeley,USA in October 2016 funded by the Arts Council & British Council.

Alnoor Mitha (Media) been appointed as Equality & Diversity Champion for Manchester Art School.
If anyone has a particular issue concerning the above they can contact him directly.

Dani Child (Visual Culture) has participated in a King’s College London workshop – Gender Recalled: Memory, Resilience & the Arts.
She was also “in conversation” with Mel Evans (author of Artwash: Big Oil & the Arts) at The Whitworth on Thursday (25th June).

A link to an AN article about Chara Lewis (Art) and Brass Art’s exhibition at freud’s House on the Uncanny is below.

Jon Hannan (Design) is being interviewed for the August issue of CA Korea, the biggest design magazine in Korea, which is distantly related to Computer Arts UK.
http://cakorea.com/. The Football Museum have already given the green light to the next phase of the project, which is a more ambitious documentary that will look at football and technology (from a design perspective).Press below



Design Week feature

Vorm Platform (NL equiv of Design Week)

Etapes (French equiv of Design Week)

IdN Magazine (one of biggest Asian design platforms, based in Hong Kong)


Charting A Map to the Future, by Alice Kettle (Design) June 2015

A unique and monumental work of art, commissioned by Lloyd’s Register, connecting the worlds of applied and fine art, symbols of past and present with traditional processes and modern technologies.

Lloyd’s Register celebrates the installation of major new work of art at its Global Technology Centre in Southampton. Charting A Map to the Future by Alice Kettle is an 8 metre x 3 metre embroidery that marries as a means of ‘painting with thread’ the craft of free machine embroidery with contemporary, digital stitching . This acts as a mirror to Lloyd’s Register’s journey from being the original classification society in a pre-industrial age, to today’s multi-stranded, global technology driven business, owned by one of Britain’s biggest charities.

The embroidery is a unique, magnificent image of the world which incorporates LR iconography along the currents of the oceans and nestling on the land at the edges of the seas, Over the year it has taken to conceive and create, Alice has crafted a monumental, richly detailed and layered work of art.



Alnoor Mitha (Art) has been nominated for the North West’s fifty most Original Thinkers, along with Friedrich Engels, John Lennon and Eric Morecambe. You can vote for him here http://fifty.mbs.ac.uk/#!/original-thinkers.

He has also been invited by the Colombo Art Biennial (CAB) to curate the next Colombo Biennial during November/December 2016 in Colombo, Sri Lanka, and is jointly curating the Brazil exhibition with Sarah Perks as part of the Olympics Games Cultural Programme during 2016. His publication – Conflict and Compassion in partnership with Birmingham university, will be published in Spring 2016.

Jon Hannan (Design) has written an article for the Guardian on a MIRIAD funded project. Along with Dan Byrne of Spiel Magazine he has curated the Commentary Project, an art exhibition that opens in Berlin this week before the Champions League final. The collection features football flags designed by artists from around the world. http://www.theguardian.com/football/spiel-magazine/2015/jun/03/commentary-project-football-visual-culture-flags-berlin-champions-league-final?

A number of staff from the School of Art exhibited as part of the book art group ‘Mcollective’ at BABE15, Arnolfini, Bristol April 2015 –Where Sylvia Waltering’s (Media) ‘Book for Twitchers’ A pop –up printed book and Joan Beadle’s (Art) ‘Frenos et Frusta’ A boxed book with fabric samples were purchased for the permanent collection held at Winchester School of Art.


Jackie Butler (Media) will be exhibiting recent work and presenting conference papers this May-July 2015 based on her current PhD research and practice (currently studying PhD at Glasgow School of Art). The focus is a series of work titled: On White Island (Kvitøya). this research considers what constitutes photography in the 21st Century, combining pre-photography principles (e.g. the illusion of the waxwork or shadow play of Phantasmagoria Shows) with traditional and new print technologies. Responding to The Andre Archive, a collection of photographs and letters from 19th Century Artic Expedition, held in the Photography Archive at NMM, White Island is the results of an activation of photographic archives through artist interventions. The work does not attempt to document but remake landscape. Recreating place as the work shifts to abstraction the viewer is prompted to consider what landscape this becomes: another kind of landscape, landscape as ‘other’?

Shows include The SFG Photography Open
22- 31st May 2015, Glasgow, Scotland
The exhibition features nine photographers chosen by representatives of Six Foot Gallery along with our partners, Street Level Photoworks and Menzies Hotel Glasgow. ACTINIC Festival http://www.alternativephotographyscotland.org/#!actinic/cihc
26 june-26 July 2015, Edinburgh, Scotland INCUBARTE 7
18-21st June 2015, Valencia, Spain and conferences Rethinking Early Photography
and 21st Century Photography: Art, Philosophy, Technique


Gavin MacDonald (FMS) has recently been an invited speaker at an interdisciplinary workshop run by the School of History, Classics and Archaeology at Newcastle University dealing with traces of movement and landscape, speaking alongside archaeologists, artists, anthropologists and human geographers. (“Notes on the anti-punctualist attitude” at the workshop Exploring the Moving Subject, Newcastle University McCord Centre for Historic and Cultural Landscape, 19 March 2015).

In May Gavin is delivering a paper at a conference at Karlstad University, Sweden (“Fear and hope under Apollo’s eye: art and attitudes to geomedia” at Geomedia 2015: Spaces and Mobilities in Mediatized Worlds, Karlstad University, Karlstad, Sweden).

Steve Dixon (Craft) and Johnny Magee’s (Media) installation of a new neon piece for a WW1 touring show

Toby Heys (Media) has an upcoming installation in the Duveens gallery of Tate Britain based on the Martial Hauntology book and vinyl recorded and written with Steve Goodman. The Installation is called Delusions of the Living Dead and consists of a 12 subwoofer / Hypersonic Sound System installation, multiple video projections, and a screening of AUDINT work at 7.30pm with a panel consisting of Robin Mackay, Eleni Ikoniadou, Steve Goodman and Toby Heys discussing the work. In September AUDINT has been invited to work with the TATE collection and produce a 30-minute soundtrack based on one or more of the works. Other upcoming installations include a solo show at PHI center in Montreal as part of the Mutek Festival, which will include multiple screenings, panels at McGill University and artist presentations, and a solo show at Artcite in Windsor,

Dr Myna Trustram’s (visual culture) text about loss, Each Day at a Time, has been made into a bi-lingual sound piece broadcast on Finnish Radio on Good Friday, 3 April 2015 http://areena.yle.fi/radio/2644172 . She will present an associated text at a conference, The Art of Bereavement, at the University of the Creative Arts, Farnham on 15 May.

Mike Eden (Craft) is working with the British Ceramics Biennial to curate a section on 3D printing. 3D Systems in Boston, [who are developing the ceramic 3D printer] are keen to take part and have offered to bring a machine over for the Biennial.

he recently

He recently showed new work at TEFAF in Maastricht, regarded as the most prestigious Arts and Antiques fair in the world. He also recently showed work in the Pushkin Museum, Moscow and the Onassis Cultural Centre in Athens. Two pieces have recently been acquired by the Mint Museum, Charlotte, North Carolina.

He is finishing a body of work for a solo exhibition at the Holburne Museum in Bath to open in November.

Congratulations to Brigitte Jurack (Art) who has been selected for the MMU Future RKE Leaders programme. The programme is designed in such a way that participants receive comprehensive development support in the first year and ongoing development support in the second year, through a range of sessions delivered by both internal and external experts.

Brigitte has also been selected from 440 submissions to exhibit as part of ‘Sculpture by the sea’ in Aarhus, Denmark, 5 June – 5 July 2015. She is travelling to Aarhus to install the work ‘The explorers have gone to tea’ and to meet the patrons HRH Crown Prince Frederik and HRH Crown Princess Mary. She has also been invited back to deliver a series of lectures and workshops in mid-June.


Eileen Simpson (Art) has been commissioned by curators Anna Colin and Lydia Yee with Hayward Touring to make a new project and artwork for British Art Show 8 – which runs from October 2015 and until the end of 2016

The British Art Show is a five yearly survey of contemporary British Art with a large audience. British Art Show 7 attracted over 420,000 visitors in its tour to four cities in 2010 and 2011.

British Art Show 8 show opens in October 2015 in Leeds, and tours to Edinburgh, Norwich and Southampton. The exhibition is the biggest touring exhibition of contemporary art in the UK art calendar and has a wide impact and international significance in the field of art.The commission is working on developing a new work in collaboration with Artist Ben White, and the research project will build on previous work as part of Open Music Archive.

School of Art alumni Ryan Gander and Linder will also exhibit.

Alice Kettle (Design) has a review of her work in Collect in the Journal of Modern Craft online by Dr Stephen Knott http://journalofmoderncraft.com/forums

David Brittain (Media) has been invited to speak at the forthcoming 6th Annual International Conference on Visual and Performing Arts, in Athens on the topic of ‘Field theory in the Neoliberal Cultural Industries’. The paper extends David’s research into artists and archives. He leads an MA Option of the same name. He is currently working with the archive of the International Anthony Burgess Foundation in a collaboration between MA Art & Design students and students at the Manchester School of Writing to produce a publication for iPad.

Pavel Buchler (Art) opens his new exhibition Honest Work, at the Ikon Gallery Birmingham this week. “Ikon presents the most comprehensive UK exhibition to date by Pavel Büchler. Born in Prague in 1952 and based in this country since the 1980s, Büchler is renowned as an influential teacher and figure in the international art scene.

Büchler’s exhibition at Ikon involves a wide range of media including text, found objects, obsolete technologies and appropriated digital material, characteristically combining philosophical scepticism with a smart sense of humour that draws attention to the fundamentally strange nature of everyday life.” http://ikon-gallery.org/event/pavel-buchler/

Joan Beadle (Media) and Dave Huxley (Media) are both organisers and presenters at the Sixth International Graphic Novel and Comics Conference / Ninth International Bande Dessinée Society Conference, the Sorbonne, Paris, Monday 22nd – Saturday 27th June 2015

Felicity Colman (Media) is presenting a public lecture on 11 May 2015 titled:” Digital Feminicity : Activating a new materialist philosophy of technology for research and practice” at the Zacheta National Gallery of Art in Warsaw, Poland

https://www.facebook.com/events/1425271961115697/ and then a day of teaching seminars on research methodologies of new materialism, at University of Warsaw.

This follows on from research work presented at the 5th New Materialism Conference on Gender, Politics, and the Digital at the Open University of Catalanya in September 2014, where Felicity was a keynote, the results of which are published here: http://journals.uoc.edu/index.php/artnodes/article/view/n14-colman

An April 2015 presentation on new materialist methods at a Special Session of the Association of Art Historians, AAH2015 University of East Anglia, Norwich , organised by MIRIAD PhD student, Tilo Reifenstein on ‘An Art(istic) Historian: Art History and Its Relation to Art Practice and Artistic Research’.

Dr Beccy Kennedy (visual culture) was Principal Investigator for an international AHRC research network award last year and has a research lab (2 of 5) at Castlefield Gallery coming up in May. She was also invited to present this research at the conference on “Chineseness” and Contemporary art in Lisbon 2015.


Joan Ormrod’s (media) edited collection on time travel is published June/July this year. http://www.mcfarlandbooks.com/book-2.php?id=978-0-7864-7807-1

Steve Hawley (media) has gained a £5000 award from the Film Audience network along with the North West Film Archive to develop a series of film events and a single screen film based around unique films from the second world war. 25 of the Calling Blighty films which were made to let servicemen in the Far East talk directly to their relations in cinemas around Manchester, are in the NWFA collection, by far the largest geographical group of the 50 or so remaining from 300 made. The film events will involve tracing relatives of the servicemen (and two women) and inviting them to special curated screenings.

Dave Griffiths (art) has a Book chapter for a forthcoming conference proceedings Archive/Image (2015), edited by Ioana Macrea-Toma & Oksana Sarkisova, published by Open Society Archivum, CEU Budapest.

In addition he has been commissioned by the Centre for Archaeology, Staffordshire University to produce a new microfilm artwork in response to forensic excavations of a Nazi gas-chamber site. The group exhibition Finding Treblinka will tour the Museum of Struggle and Martyrdom, Treblinka; Museum of the History of Polish Jews, Warsaw; and Imperial War Museum, London, August-November 2015. Funded by Rothschild Foundation.

Lynn Setterington (craft) is part of Rural Crafts Re -imagined starting next month http://www.highlightsnorth.co.uk

Rosemary Shirley (visual culture) has been awarded a Henry Moore Institute Research Fellowship.  She will spend four weeks working with the Henry Moore Institute’s extensive archive, library and sculpture collection. They provide a flat the fellows stay in, and small stipend.
Her research project is “Quick Perspectives on the Future: Rural Modernity and British Sculpture 1930s – 1960s” – she will be investigating the relationship between sculptural practices and structures of rural modernity like pylons, radio masts and motorways.

Stephen Dixon (craft) and Johnny Magee (media) have created new work from reflections  on the Great War through artworks inspired by Staffordshire collections – objects, photographs and documents relating to the First World War from archive and museum collections in Staffordshire.
The exhibition – Resonance – at the Museum of Cannock Chase, continues until 26 April 2015 and will then tour Staffordshire until March 2016.


Alice Kettle  (craft) produced a body of work, and also collaborated with Amanda Ravetz (art) and  Kirsteen Aubrey (craft) to explore Enchantment using textiles, glass and film at VAS:T 2015, at the Royal Scottish Academy Edinburgh, part of the Visual Arts Scotland group exhibition last month. The Glasgow Herald discussed the work on Sat Feb 7th, commenting on Aubrey and Ravetz working “closely with her(Alice) to create a poetic and beautiful immersive work featuring tapestry, glasswork and film”.
http://www.heraldscotland.com/arts-ents/visual/transformation-is-the-key-to-visual-arts-scotland-exhibition.117754826 and  http://www.visualartsscotland.org/?p=1633
In addition the  exhibition has gained a five star review from the Scotsman’s Duncan Macmillan. Her three large needlepoint panels, partly based on Poussin’s A Dance to the Music of Time, were described as vivid and beautiful.
Alice’s work was also picked as one of the top 12 of the art lover’s perfect Christmas presents by Nancy Durrant in the Times in December.

Clive Parkinson  (art and design for health) launched the results of a project last month, which revealed that engaging with the arts and culture generally has a positive long-term effect on health and wellbeing.
Research undertaken by Dr. Rebecca Gordon-Nesbitt has uncovered evidence, stretching back a number of decades, which shows a significant association between engaging with the arts and longer lives better lived.
Under the auspices of the Cultural Value Project – initiated by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, the UK’s main academic funder in the field – Dr. Gordon-Nesbitt has compiled an evidence base comprised of fifteen longitudinal studies.
These international studies collectively suggest that attending high-quality cultural events has a beneficial impact upon a range of chronic diseases over time. This includes cancer, heart disease, dementia and obesity, with an inevitable knock-on effect upon life expectancy. The implication for future research and development is huge.

John Hyatt (art) is exhibiting new paintings at the Torrance Art Museum ,Los Angeles opening next week. His exhibition John Hyatt: My Brush with Angels will run from March 28th through May 14th, 2015.