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Professor Jill Bennett
Jill Bennett is Professor of Experimental Arts and founding Director of NIEA, and formerly Associate Dean Research, UNSW Art & Design, 2006–2016. 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.
In 2014 Jill curated Amnesia Lab at UNSW – an exhibition and "live lab" bringing together artists and cognitive neuropsychologists researching memory loss. With Volker Kuchelmeister she has led the development of the 3D immersive Amnesia Atlas, a media installation designed to investigate processes of memory retrieval. She is committed to investigating and enabling the intersection of art and science, and to developing new forms of experimental collaboration. As NIEA Director she has overseen the founding of a suite of labs dedicated to this goal.
Jill's recent books include 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; and Curating Sydney (UNSW Press, 2014; with Saskia Beudel), the outcome of an ARC Linkage Grant. Her previous books include Empathic Vision (Stanford UP, 2005), a study of art and trauma, and several monographs on new media art.
In 2011, Bennett published Living in the Anthropocene—an essay-monograph on the necessity of reorganising disciplines in the face of an unprecendented environmental challenge--for Documenta13 (Kassel, 2012) and its 100 Notes series. She currently leads the Curating Cities ARC Linkage Project with the City of Sydney, which focuses on public art and sustainability. As part of this project, Bennett led the development of the Database of Eco-Public Art and curated Curating Cities: Sydney-Copenhagen (2011).
With Dr Mary Zournazi, Prof Bennett is series editor of Thinking in the World (Bloomsbury), a series that investigates the experience of cognition in real world situations from philosophical, scientific and aesthetic perspectives.
Bennett has been a member of the Australian Research Council’s College of Experts (2010-2012), a member of the ERA Evaluation Committee (2009), and a recipient of the UNSW Vice Challencor's award for Excellence in Postgraduate Supervision (2007). She previously founded the Centre for Contemporary Art and Politics (CCAP) at UNSW (now known as Contemporary Culture, Art & Politics) and was the faculty’s inaugural Director of Postgraduate Research from 2002-2006.
Director, Contemporary Culture, Art & Politics (CCAP)
Associate Dean of Research, College of Fine Arts, UNSW