Jill Bennett is Professor of Experimental Arts and founding Director of NIEA and has been Associate Dean Research, College of Fine Arts since 2006.
A writer and curator, she has published widely on visual culture, new media and transdisciplinary aesthetics. Her research is particularly focused on aesthetics (broadly understood as the analysis of sensori-affective perception and interaction) and its 'practical' deployment both in art/exhibitions and in social and scientific areas beyond traditional art practice. Her latest book is Practical Aesthetics: Events, Affects and Art After 9/11 (IB Tauris, Radical Art: Radical Aesthetics, 2012), for which she received the Sterling and Francine Clark Fellowship (Clark Institute, Massachusetts) in 2009 and an ARC Discovery Grant.
Her previous books include Empathic Vision (Stanford UP, 2005), a study of art and traumatic events and several monographs on new media art. In 2011 she published Living in the Anthropocene, an essay-monograph on the cultural aspects of Anthropocene, for Documenta13 (Kassel, 2012) and its 100 Notes series. She is currently working on a series of cross-disciplinary curatorial projects in this area.
Jill leads the Curating Cities ARC Linkage Project with the City of Sydney council, Object: Australian Centre for Design, University of Cincinnati and Carbon Arts. Growing out of the 2010 HotHouse symposium on art and ecology at the Sydney Opera House, Curating Cities develops experimental public art, promoting urban sustainability. In 2011 the project developed a series of curated exhibitions, workshops/conferences and school/student initiatives, including Curating Cities:Sydney-Copenhagen (Customs House, Sydney) launched by Lord Mayor of Sydney Clover Moore, the Lord Mayor of Copenhagen and the Crown Prince and Princess of Denmark. As part of this project, Jill is co-authoring (with Saskia Beudel) Imagining Sydney (UNSW Press); the video series Roadtrip and the Database of Eco-Public Art.
Through NIEA, Jill convenes regular international conferences. In 2012, these included Sense of Planet, which is the basis of a forthcoming book edited with Professor Douglas Kahn. Other book projects in production include Thinking in the World with Mary Zournazi. In addition to Curating Cities:Sydney-Copenhagen (2011), Jill's curated exhibitions include REAL Emergency (2009) and Prepossession (Sydney and Belfast, 2005).
Jill has been a member of the Australian research Council’s College of Experts (2010-2012), a member of ERA Evaluation Committee (2009), and a recipient of the VC’s award for Excellence in Postgraduate Supervision (2007). She previously founded the Centre for Contemporary Art and Politics at UNSW, and was COFA's inaugural Director of Postgraduate Research from 2002-2006.
Associate Professor Mari Velonaki has worked as an artist and researcher in the field of interactive installation art since 1995. Mari has created interactive installations that incorporate movement, speech, touch, breath, electrostatic charge, artificial vision and robotics. In 2003, Mari's practice expanded to robotics, when she initiated and led a major Australian Research Council art/science research project 'Fish-Bird: Autonomous Interactions in a Contemporary Arts Setting' in collaboration with robotics scientists at the Australian Centre for Field Robotics.
In 2006 Velonaki co-founded, with Dr David Rye, the Centre for Social Robotics, a centre dedicated to interdisciplinary research into human-robot interaction in spaces that incorporate the general public. In 2007, Mari was awarded an Australia Council for the Arts Visual Arts Fellowship and in 2009 she was awarded an ARC Queen Elizabeth II Fellowship.
Associate Professor Velonaki is the director of the recently established Creative Robotics Lab at NIEA. The Creative Robotics Lab will provide a cross-disciplinary research environment dedicated to understanding how humans can interact with mechanical and robotic devices within the context of experimental arts and social robotics.
Velonaki’s artworks have been exhibited worldwide, including: Victoria & Albert Museum, London; National Art Museum Beijing; Gyeonggi Museum of Modern Art, Korea; ZENDAI Museum of Modern Art, Shanghai; Wood Street Galleries, Pittsburgh; Millennium Museum - Beijing Biennale of Electronic Arts; Ars Electronica, Linz; Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art; Conde Duque Museum, Madrid; European Media Arts Festival, Osnabrück; Te Papa Tongarewa Museum of New Zealand; Arco, Madrid; Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney; Queensland Art Gallery/GOMA; Art Gallery of New South Wales; Ton-Build-Spektakel, Zurich; Aros Aarhus Museum of Modern Art, Denmark.
David Silvera Tawil was born in Mexico City where he obtained his BE (1st Class) in Electronics and Telecommunications at the Universidad Iberoamericana (2002). He received a MEngStud (Hons) in Mechatronics (2007) and a PhD in artificial skin and human robot interaction (2012) from the Australian Centre of Field Robotics at The University of Sydney. Dr Silvera Tawil was awarded with the highest score for the BE in Electronics and Telecommunications degree in 2002, best student project at the EDN innovation awards in 2007, the Australian postgraduate award in 2008, best paper at the Australasian Conference of Robotics and Automation in 2009 and best presentation in The University of Sydney student conference in 2011. David is currently a Postdoctoral fellow at the Creative Robotics Lab at NIEA, The University of New South Wales. Dr Silvera Tawil's long-term research interests are in the area of human-robot interaction, humanoids and—in particular—social robotics. He aims for humans and robots to share the same physical space, interacting and communicating in similar, intuitive ways and working, helping and cooperating as peers to achieve both shared and independent goals. His current research David’s previous research involved interactive interfaces, remote laboratories for distance learning, artificial robotic ‘skin’ and touch interpretation in human-robot interaction.
Personal Website. https://www.sites.google.com/site/silveratawil/
Dennis Del Favero is an ARC Australian Professional Fellow at the College of Fine Arts and the Faculty of Engineering, Director of the iCinema Research Centre and Deputy-Director of the National Institute for Experimental Arts at UNSW, Visiting Professorial Fellow at ZKM, Germany, Visiting Professor at University IUAV of Venice, Italy and Visiting Senior Fellow at City University Hong Kong. He has held numerous solo exhibitions including at the Sprengel Museum Hannover, ViaFarini, Milan and Neue Galerie, Graz, and participated in major group exhibitions including Battle of the Nations War Memorial, Leipzig (joint project with Jenny Holzer), Biennial of Seville, and the International Film Festival Amsterdam. He is editor of the Digital Arts Edition published by Hatje Cantz, Germany and is currently a member of the Australian Research Council ERA panel for the Humanities and the Creative Arts and of the Australia Council Visual Arts Board. He also a Board member of the National Institute for Experimental Arts. He is currently engaged in interdisciplinary art and science research projects that aesthetically explore the dynamic relationship between human and non-human systems through the experimental reformulation of animal, atmospheric and landscape imaging using digital media, undertaken in collaboration with UNSW Centre for Autonomous Systems, Centre of Excellence in Climate System Science, SBS Online Television, Museum Victoria, ZKM Centre for Art and Media Germany, City University Hong Kong and the University of Pittsburgh.
Ian McArthur is a hybrid practitioner working in the domains of experimental and speculative multidisciplinary practice, transcultural collaboration, metadesign and education change. Ian has over 30 years professional experience as artist, designer and multimedia producer, sound artist and design educationalist. His recent collaborations with artist and design academic Brad Miller (2011 – 2012) have involved developing techniques that utilise granular and generative synthesis, mobile technologies, open source platforms and protocols including PureData (PD) and OpenSoundControl (OSC) to create experimental sonifications for responsive interactive media environments manifested in public art and exhibitions. To date Ian’s research has been supported by UNSW and DEEWR.
Ian has held leadership roles in vocational and higher education in Australia, China and South East Asia. From 2001 - 2003 Ian was Program Director of Graphic Design, La Salle DHU International Design College (now Raffles Design Institute) at Donghua University, Shanghai, China. In 2003 he initiated The Collabor8 Project (C8) with Annie Morrad, artist photographer and Senior Lecturer, Lincoln School of Art and Design, Faculty of Art Architecture and Design University of Lincoln to foster online collaboration between design education programs in China and Australia/UK. This initiative has lead to a decade of developing culturally adaptive pedagogies using online, social and responsive technologies to create collaborative experimental spaces where shared visions for as yet unimagined futures can be created. The most recent iteration of C8 have been PorosityC8 e-Scape a blended studio based collaboration with Porosity Studio and Donghua University, Shanghai in 2009, and Rare Earth: Hacking the City a collaboration with Brad Miller and Professor Richard Goodwin at Bridge 8, Shanghai 2011.
Previously Ian was Head Teacher of Design at Hunter Institute of Technology, Newcastle, Australia (1994 - 2001). In 2000 Ian received the NSW Education Minister's Award for Excellence in Teaching. He holds a Master of Design (Middlesex University, UK) and two education degrees (UTS, Sydney). Between 2003 - 2006 Ian was Head of Arts & Media at Kingscliff and Murwillumbah campuses of North Coast Institute of TAFE (NCI).
Ian is a PhD candidate in the School of Media Arts at COFA.
Professor Ross Rudesch Harley is the Head of School of Media Studies, the Deputy Director and a Board Member of the National Institute for Experimental Arts. He is an artist, writer, and educator in the field of new media and popular culture. His work crosses the bounds of media art practice, cinema, music, design, and architecture. His video and sound work has been presented at the Pompidou Centre in Paris, New York MoMA, Ars Electronica in Austria, and at the Sydney Opera House.
Douglas Kahn is Professor of Media and Innovation at the National Institute of Experimental Arts (NIEA), the University of New South Wales. Until recently, he was Professor in Science and Technology Studies, and Founding Director of Technocultural Studies at the University of California, Davis.
Kahn is a historian and theorist of the media arts with concentrations in sound, electromagnetism, and natural media. He is author of Earth Sound Earth Signal: Energies and Earth Magnitude in the Arts (University of California Press, 2012); Mainframe Experimentalism (University of California Press, 2012); Noise, Water, Meat: A History of Sound in the Arts (MIT Press); editor of Wireless Imagination: Sound, Radio and the Avant-garde (MIT Press); and Source: Music of the Avant-garde, 1966-1973 (University of California Press).
Paula Dawson is one of the world's leading holographers. Through her art, she explores new dimensions of visuality, which combine digital and optical realities in new and profound ways.
Dawson began with a specialisation in conceptual art at RMIT University and Melbourne State College. Her interest in light and temporality lead to the construction of small holograms. In 1978 she took up a residency at Laboratoire de Physique Generale et d’ Optique in Besancon, France where her first major holographic work There’s No Place Like Home was made in collaboration with Nicole Aebischer, Bernard Carquille and Claudine Bainier. A series of large-scale hologram installations technically authored by Dawson followed, including Eidola Suite (1985) and To Absent Friends (1988).
She joined the College of Fine Arts UNSW in 1990, from where she gained her doctorate in 2000. In 1994 she was selected to receive a four year Australian Artist Creative Fellowship, an initiative of then Prime Minister Paul Keating. This was partly spent at the Media Lab MIT, under supervision of Stephen Benton, the inventor of the rainbow hologram and at the MIT Center for Advanced Visual Studies in Cambridge, Mass. Dawson is the only Australian artist to have been made a Fellow of the Centre of Advanced Visual Studies at MIT. Her recent project Homeland at MIT uses Tactical Digital Holograms technologies (originally designed for military applications).
Dawson has a remarkable record of innovation. She was the first to record a hologram of architectural-scale interiors with a continuous-wave laser; the first to record holograms of real, full-scale (life-sized) domestic objects, e.g. an entire household backyard (including car and above-ground swimming pool) without laboratory-controlled vibration isolation and using continuous wave lasers; the first to incorporate a pulsed hologram portrait in a double exposure as an identifiable element; and she pioneered a technique, hand embossing from a holographic shim, for integrating a hologram into a bronze-casting. Dawson has led three Australian Research Council funded Discovery projects. Currently Dawson is collaborating with Masa Takatsuka, Hiroshi Yoshikawa, and Brian Rogers to develop new software, Holoshop, which enables the subtle nuances of user’s three-dimensional gestures to be recorded with the sensitivity associated with traditional materials e.g. pencils and paper with a haptic device. This year she will oversee the establishment of the NIEA Holography Lab.
Dawson's technical prowess, articulate imagination and passion for exploratory research continue to push horizons of spatial and temporal understanding.
Anna Munster has been at COFA since February 2001 on a full-time tenured basis. She is an active researcher with a sole published book Materializing New Media, Dartmouth College Press: Hanover, NH, 2006. She has held two ARC Discovery research grants in new media and art: 'The Body-Machine Interface in New Media Art from 1984 to the Present, 2003–5' and 'Dynmaic Media: Innovative social and artistic uses of dynamic media in Australia, Britain, Canada and Scandinavia since 1990'. This latter project has a publicly accessible online database, profiling innovation and research by artists, theorists and media producers.
Anna regularly collaborates artistically with Michele Barker in the School of Media Arts, COFA. Barker and Munster are working on a large-scale multi-channel interactive work, HocusPocus, which explores the relations between perception, magic and the brain. They have been awarded a New Work Grant, 2010, from the Australia Council for the Arts to realise this work. Recent collaborative projects include: Duchenne’s smile (2-channel DV installation, 2009), The Love Machine II (photomedia installation, 2008–1¬0), Struck (3-channel DV installation, 2007).
Anna is currently writing a new book on networks and experience, provisionally titled: An Aesthesia of Networks. This explores new expressions of networks beyond the ‘link-node’ image and new understandings of experience that account for the complexity of contemporary assemblages between humans and nonhuman technics.
Current students/topics supervised:
- John Tonkin (PhD, practice-based) Embedded Agents: How Code Found its Body (commenced 2010)
- Danny Ford (PhD, practice-based) Cassette Project: The Potential Role of the Artist in Relational, Performative and Collaborative Strategies in the Contemporary Context of Music, Performance, Reproduction and Distribution. (commenced 2010)
- Anna Raupach (PhD, practice-based) Invisible Ink: How new media technologies are shaping our communicative behaviour in contemporary culture. (commenced 2010)
- Grant Corbishley (PhD, practice-based) Stewardship: an ethical aesthetic response to an uncertain and unsustainable future in local communities (commenced 2009)
- Peter Charuk (PhD, practice-based) Glacial Lux:is an immersive interactive video installation (commenced 2007)
- Eugenia Raskopoulos (PhD, practice-based, part time) Language and the body as ready-mades in video art and photomedia (commenced 2006)
Dr Paul Thomas, is the Head of Painting at the College of Fine Art, University of New South Wales. Paul is the co-chair of the Transdisciplinary Image Conference 2010. In 2000 Paul instigated and was the founding Director of the Biennale of Electronic Arts Perth 2002, 2004. Paul has been working in the area of electronic arts since 1981 when he co-founded the group Media-Space. Media-Space was part of the first global link up with artists connected to ARTEX. From 1981-1986 the group was involved in a number of collaborative exhibitions and was instrumental in the establishment a substantial body of research. Paul’s current research project ‘Nanoessence’ explores the space between life and death at a nano level. The project is part of an ongoing collaboration with the Nanochemistry Research Institute, Curtin University of Technology and SymbioticA at the University of Western Australia. The previous project ‘Midas’ was researching at a nano level the transition phase between skin and gold. Paul has recently completed working on an intelligent architecture public art project for the Curtin Mineral and Chemistry Research Precinct. Paul is a practicing electronic artist whose work has exhibited internationally and can be seen on his website Visiblespace.
Paul has been working towards developing sustainable research in the areas of convergence between science, industry and the Fine arts in Western Australia. Some of these objectives he has managed to secure through the instigation of the Biennale of Electronic Arts Perth. Paul now believes he could use his knowledge and experience in exploring the intersection between art, science and culture to assist with key research strategies at the College of Fine Art, University of New South Wales.