Researcher

Keywords

Fields of Research (FoR)

Design history, theory and criticism, European history (excl. British, classical Greek and Roman), Cultural studies, Visual cultures

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Biography

I am a historian, and at the centre of my research is the cultural history of Eastern Europe. More broadly, I am interested in the relationship between design and political narratives, industrial exhibitions, and design diplomacy in the 20th and 21st centuries.

I joined UNSW in 2019 to develop a comprehensive programme in design history and theory. Since then, I have been lecturing and convening a range of courses in history and theory for...view more

I am a historian, and at the centre of my research is the cultural history of Eastern Europe. More broadly, I am interested in the relationship between design and political narratives, industrial exhibitions, and design diplomacy in the 20th and 21st centuries.

I joined UNSW in 2019 to develop a comprehensive programme in design history and theory. Since then, I have been lecturing and convening a range of courses in history and theory for BA and MA students. I am a co-convenor of the Design and Humanities Work in Progress Seminar (with Livia Lazzaro-Rezende). Previously I worked as an Associate Lecturer at the University of the Arts, the University of Hertfordshire, and as a Visiting Lecturer at the Royal College of Art, London. 

My current book project, tentatively titled Socialist by design. Statecraft, industry, and the national style in Cold War Poland, argues that industrial exhibitions and trade fairs were powerful tools that the state employed to present itself vis-a-vis other countries as a socialist yet distinctly unique country. It expands on my doctoral project (University of Oxford, 2019), which examined the role of design, craft and architecture in imagining ‘modern Poland’ in the three post-war decades.

My new project Coal Nations and Carbon Cultures continues this investigation into the political potential of industrial exhibitions, placing coal at the forefront of this inquiry. By examining the complex relationship between natural resources, industrial products and national identity, the project seeks to explain longstanding reliance on this increasingly problematic material resource.


My Grants

UNSW The Associate Dean of Research Philanthropic grant, 2021 UNSW Faculty Research Grant, 2019 Design History Society research and conference grants, 2018, 2016, 2015 and 2012 Arts and Humanities Research Council grant for the doctoral research, 2015–17 Student Travel and Research (STAR) Grants, St Antony’s College, 2018 and 2016 The Centre for East European Language-Based Area Studies Internship grant, the National Museum, Warsaw, 2015 Oxford Noble Foundation scholarship, 2014 Polish Culture around the World grant, The Adam Mickiewicz Institute, 2014 and 2012 Polish Ministry of Culture and National Heritage Scholarship, 2012


My Qualifications

University of Oxford, DPhil History, 2019

Kingston University & Design Museum, MA Curating Contemporary Design, 2010

University of Łódź, Poland, MA History of Art, 2008

Associate Fellow of The Higher Education Academy (UK), 2017


My Research Supervision


Supervision keywords


Areas of supervision

I am available for supervision and welcome applications from BA(Hons), MA and PhD candidates interested in design history, theory and criticism; Cold War culture; history of Eastern Europe; exhibitions histories and museum studies.  

 


Currently supervising

Julie Gai Oliver, ‘Colonial jewellery displayed in museums and galleries in NSW, Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania: the nature of the jewellery and the methods of display. The correlation between museum collections and colonial jewellery narratives.’ PhD Art, Design and Media, Part-Time, since February 2022. Joint supervision with Dr Zoë Veness.


My Engagement

My scholarly interest in design diplomacy has developed in parallel to my curatorial practice. Over the last fifteen years, I collaborated on exhibition projects and public programming with design industry partners, governmental bodies and cultural institutions. I developed thematic exhibitions and temporary displays for the London Design Festival, Milan Design Week, Istanbul Design Week and Victoria and Albert Museum, London. In 2018 I curated Back to Front: Polish Exhibitions on Show, an exhibition for the Triennale Design Museum in Milan that recontextualised historical material to make it relevant for contemporary audiences. You can read more about my curatorial outputs in the Publication section on the right.

 


My Teaching

National Design Histories, BA DDES1200

Global Design Discourses, BA DDES1201

Positions in Design, BA DDES2200

Making of Design Culture, BA DDES3200

Design History and theory, MA SAHT9143

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Location

UNSW Art &Design
Arts, Design & Architecture
Office F218F
Paddington Campus
Crn Oxford Street & Greens Road
Sydney NSW 2021