Research and Teaching

Whether developing new units that allow students to explore the latest findings, or integrating new discoveries into existing units, we pride ourselves on the value of research-led teaching in the curriculum. 

Major multi-year funded research projects on the history of colour film and on the broader technological histories of film production, led by Professor Sarah Street, are part of a prominent research strand which investigates the historical, artistic and material impacts of forms and technologies. 

“Studying colour films involves a range of approaches which the department is well-known for, analysing films in great textual depth for their aesthetic and stylistic attributes, and placing them within their historical or contemporary contexts,” says Professor Street, whose co-authored book, Chromatic Modernity: Colour, Cinema, and Media of the 1920s won the Katherine Singer Kovacs Book Award, presented by the Society for Cinema and Media Studies, in 2020. 

Dr Kristian Moen’s recent book, New York’s Animation Culture: Advertising, Art, Design, and Film 1939-1940 (2019), emerges from his European Research Council funded project and explores the thriving animation culture in midtown Manhattan, the World’s Fair, art galleries and cinemas during a vibrant period of artistic, commercial and industrial activity in New York City. The book examines a range of animated forms, including moving dioramas, illuminated billboards, industrial displays, gallery exhibitions, mobile murals, and shop windows. In his innovative microhistory of animation, Moen offers a fine-grained account of an animation culture that was seen as creating new media, expanding the cinema experience, giving expression to utopian dreams of modernity, and presenting dynamic visions of a kinetic future. 

Other examples of our research – from Dr Jacqueline Maingard’s and Dr Helen Piper’s work tracing the cultural memory of film and television audiences, to Dr Pete Falconer’s and Dr Alex Clayton’s analysis of the aesthetic qualities of films to Dr Jimmy Hay, Dr Nariman Massoumi and Dr Angela Piccini’s practice-as-research and collaborative practices – draw upon the same values of rigour and originality, developing new perspectives on the moving image as part of a larger academic and cultural conversation. Our Teaching Fellows, Dr Miguel Gaggiotti and Dr Valentina Ippolito, also bring their documentary practice-as-research and professional practices into the classroom. 

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