Browse/search for people

Dr Angela Piccini

Dr Angela Piccini

Dr Angela Piccini
BA (UBC), MA (Sheffield), PhD(Sheffield)

Reader in Screen Media

Office R6.92
The Richmond Building,
105 Queens Road, Bristol BS8 1LN
(See a map)

+44 (0) 117 331 8776


KEYWORDS: practice-as-research / film & video archives / documentary film & TV / artist film / place & space / media archaeology / archaeologies of the recent past / community-university collaboration / material culture / heritage media 

Throughout my career, my research and teaching have focused on the moving image and its intersections with place, space and materiality. Specifically, I investigate the ways in which moving images produce, rather than simply represent, experiences of place, space and contested communities. I have a particular interest in archaeology on and of screen media, including factual television, the circulation of heritage on urban screens during mega-events and archival film as archaeological record.

My research focus has been developed through interdisciplinary, collaborative research that links academic practices with the practices of industry, community and the public sector. I co-directed the MA in Archaeology for Screen Media (2002-12), which was an industrial partnership with Channel 4's Time Team series. Graduates of that programme now work across the broadcasting and creative industries and in the third and public sectors. My early digital humanities and eScience work on semantic web and grid technologies informed a number of archive projects that have visualised networks of practice and image-based collections, including Professor Robert Bickers' Visualising China and Professor Simon Jones's Into the Future, on which I was a Co-Investigator. 

I am currently involved in Productive Margins (PI, Morag McDermont, School of Law). I am Deputy PI on this 5-year programme that aims to connect communities in Bristol and South Wales to co-produce new forms of engagement in decision-making across politics, policy and the arts. It is a collaboration between research teams in the University of Bristol and Cardiff University with expertise in law, arts, humanities and the social sciences, and community organisations and social enterprises in Bristol and post-industrial South Wales. In June 2014, I was awarded an additional £47,000 to support the programme's participation in the Cardiff Connected Communities Showcase. From October 2014-May 2015, I was acting PI on the project. @ProductiveMgns


Selected past projects


Know your Bristol on the Move (PI Prof Robert Bickers, Historical Studies). This AHRC Digital Transformations project is a follow-on project from Know your Bristol. The project aims to enable people to explore, research and co-create Bristol history, heritage and culture using digital tools. As a Co-Investigator, I lead Work Package 4: Exploring Models of Community Co-production. @knowyourbristol

University of Local Knowledge (PI: Mike Fraser, Computer Science) was an RCUK Digital Economy 'Research in the Wild' collaboration between University of Bristol, Knowle West Media Centre, The University of the West of England, Arnolfini, BBC and the National Centre for the Coordination of Public Engagement. The project emerges out of an initial collaboration between US artist Suzanne Lacy, Knowle West Media Centre, BBC and Arnolfini. The University of Local Knowledge brings together KWMC and the Knowle West community with a team of academics, artists and educators to study the deployment and use of technologies and techniques to develop knowledge collaboratively in order to enhance our understanding of the relationships between physical and digital communities.

The AHRC-funded Into the Future: Sustainable Access to the National Review of Live Art Digital Archive (PI: Prof Simon Jones; CIs: Paul Clarke and Angela Piccini; RA: Amanda Egbe) preserves the digitised National Review of Live Art archive using the Performing Arts Documentation System (PADS) and the Semantic Tools for Arts Research System (STARS) to enable public participation in the production of user-generated metadata, interactivity and the curation of performance documents (including video) across the whole range of the Theatre Collection. Rethinking ways of delivering and processing the archived information using these web technologies generates new forms of understanding, both of the documents and records themselves, but also of the methodologies for online use of other kinds of archival materials.

The AHRC-funded Connected Communities project Know Your Bristol (PI: Prof Robert Bickers) was a partnership between University of Bristol, Bristol City Council and a number of community groups. The project is hosting a series of free public events about local community heritage. Each event has allowed people to explore the local history and culture through the eyes of the community. My role has been to focus on people's home movies as they provide information about Bristol's changing built environment. The project works with Peter Insole and Bristol City Council's Planning Department to develop further the Know Your Place web tool.

In 2009 and 2013, I was Visiting Scholar at University of British Columbia, located in the Centre for Cinema Studies and the Anthropology Department.

From 2007-09 I collaborated with Bristol's Institute for Learning and Research Technology and Watershed Media Centre on the JISC-funded STARS (Semantic Web Tools for Screen Arts Research) project.

From 2006-08 I was principal investigator on an AHRC Landscape and Environment Network (with UWE and University of Aberystwyth) exploring transdisciplinary and mixed-mode research approaches to site, with a specific focus on the performative processes of emptying.

Current research students

Laura Aish is undertaking a practice-based PhD, following the successful completion of her MPhil (2016). She is working on video archive, experimental film and place in Taunton (2nd supervisor, Nariman Massoumi)

Greg Bond is a PhD student in Geography, attached to the Productive Margins project. His project concerns arts practices and public spaces and is located with Coexist. I am on his supervisory committee.

Will Finch is a PhD student in Music. I co-supervise his project with Guido Heldt. His PhD project explores music in the award-winning BBC documentary series Arena - the means by which Arena constructs ideas about music, and the uses the series itself makes of music.

Vesna Lukic is a DEAS Scholar, undertaking a practice-based PhD, co-supervised with Prof Tim Cole (Historical Studies) on the WW2 Kladovo Transport along the Danube.

Molly Niu's PhD research is concerned with remediation and the affordances of transnational digital compositing as it impacts on editing and post-production processes in both industry-facing and independent film. This is co-supervised by Dr Charlotte Crofts, UWE.

Past research students

Greg Bailey'sViews and Soundings: Marking Boundaries for Archaeological Practice (passed Oct 2017) is a practice-based PhD, based in Archaeology & Anthropology and in Film. It develops Greg's research from his MA in Archaeology for Screen Media to investigate how different media practices produce contemporary archaeologies. Greg is concerned with the means by which archaeologists can effectively, creatively and critically communicate the urgent political and social relevance of archaeology in contemporary culture through the moving image.

Sy Taffel was awarded his PhD in 2013, in systems-based and ecological theories in the understanding of digital media forms. His research discusses the materiality of networked media, ecological blogs and the performativity of software. Sy's research was co-supervised by Professor Jon Dovey, Director of REACT, UWE.

Yuyu Zhang was awarded an MPhil in 2016 for her practice-based work on expanded cinema. 


I was awarded a BA in English / Art History (1990) from University of British Columbia and an MA (1993, Distinction) from University of Sheffield. My PhD (2001, Celtic Constructs: Heritage Media, Archaeological Knowledge and the Politics of Consumption in 1990s Britain, supervised by Professor Mike Parker Pearson, Sheffield) focused on an anthropological account of archaeological heritage media, including documentary film & TV, museum display, open air sites as performance spaces. I was a Research Assistant (1995‐97) in Geography at Swansea on 'The Social Construction of Heritage and its Meanings in Modern Wales'. I then worked in the public heritage sector in the area of print media and photography (1997‐2001, Cadw: Welsh Historic Monuments), before returning to academia. I have spent the past 13 years working in Bristol, first as a Research Associate on 'Practice as Research in Performance and Screen' (2001-05) and then as an RCUK Academic Fellow on the University Research Theme 'Performativity, Place, Space' before moving on to my current post.



Department of Film and Television

Academics by department

Selected publications

Read more >

Recent publications

View complete publications list in the University of Bristol publications system


Edit this profile If you are Dr Angela Piccini, you can edit this page. Login required.

PDF versionDownload PDF