Professor Alan Murray

Job title
Deputy Vice-Chancellor Academic
Email
alan.murray@falmouth.ac.uk
Telephone
01326 259220 Ext: 259250

Alan studied Fine Art at Chelsea School of Art and completed his Masters at De Ateliers in the Netherlands. He has worked at a number of Universities, notably The Design Academy Eindhoven where he was director of the Funlab and the Technical University Eindhoven where he was design director and developed a new faculty of Industrial Design. Most recently, he has worked for Edinburgh College of Art at the University of Edinburgh where he was deputy principal, head of the School of Design and co-director for the £3.65 million research centre in Design Informatics which he was jointly responsible for. He brings a wealth of international experience gained working with leading art and design Institutes around the world.

His innovative research is institutionally strategic and collaborative and has been widely disseminated through international exhibition, conference and knowledge transfer. Recent exhibitions include; the Angle Gallery; C//Back up (2013) Amsterdam, Mixing Business with Pleasure (2013); exhibition and symposium at Rom8, Bergen and Synthetic Biology; Where Organic Meets Digital, a performance as part of the Edinburgh International Festival (2013). With Dr James Auger (RCA) and Jimmy Loizeau (Goldsmiths), Alan is developing Robjects; a complex network of people, products, pets, services, spaces and interactions. He is lead academic on a Knowledge Transfer Partnership developing Innovation in Community Analytics. From 1997-2007 he developed a guide-to-squash which was both an innovative model of online interaction and a piece of performance art. His interests include instruction manuals and guides; cross-disciplinary collaborative research; Intelligent products, systems and services; synthetic biology; international partnerships; strategic review; course design, validation and development; development of academic frameworks and regulations; academic quality assurance.

Qualifications

YearQualificationAwarding body
1985
BA (Hons), Fine Art (Painting)
Chelsea School of Art
1987
Postgraduate
De Ateliers, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Membership of external committees

External Examiner: Sandberg Institute, Amsterdam

Research interests

Research interests and expertise

Strategically my research has developed unique externally funded foci through a vision of innovative cross-disciplinary research clusters. This has been supported by my own collaborations that aim to develop research alongside scientists and engineers to ensure art and design are positively positioned within important research conversations. My research explores user-centred methodologies for the way designers and artists should be immersed in a subject to understand and be able to translate and communicate ‘complex information’. My research has been institutionally strategic, promoted effective inter-disciplinary collaboration and widely disseminated through international exhibition and conference.

Strategic - PI - Scottish Academy of Fashion (SAF) funded by SFC £220,000 18 months (2010). Co-led Textile Innovation Centre (TIC) bid to final round of SFC Innovation Centre call (2011-13). As Co-Director for the Centre of Design Informatics I co-wrote the funding proposal for the centre. Scottish Funding award, £1m over 2 years (2011). 

Collaborative - Synthetic Biology; Where Organic Meets Digital was a collaborative performance as part of the Edinburgh International Festival (2013). Delivered Designing Sustainability paper at Society for Social Studies of Science and European Association for the Study of Science and Technology conference – Copenhagen (2012). Explored cross-disciplinary Designing Behaviour discourse.

Exhibition and Conference - National Design Centre, Singapore, Robjects exhibition and workshop, Crafting Narrative: Storytelling Through Objects And Making, Pitzhanger Manor Gallery, Ealing (London), Robjects - Real Prediction Machines, Group show. The Angle Gallery, Amsterdam (2013) developed a four-project-series of exhibitions. Project 2, (C//Back up) exhibits artists who ‘turned their back’ on the conventional ways of exhibiting and have sought alternative platforms and contexts. Mixing Business with Pleasure (2013) is an exhibition and symposium at Rom8, Bergen Academy of Art and Design, Norway. Hybrid Artistic Research paper accepted at Critique 2013 conference – Adelaide, Australia (2013). Published Paper Designing Behaviours in Design Education at Designing Design Education in India conference (DDEI) – Pune, India (2013).

Earlier research: Guide to the Game of Squash - (www.guide-to-squash.org - now no longer active). From 1997 -2007 my research reflected my immersion in design practice and education with experiential models of interaction being developed and disseminated in public arenas. The guide-to-squash is not only a very successful and innovative model of interaction in the then emerging internet domain, it has developed important research themes including the ‘obsessive amateur’, ‘the motivated user’ and ‘experiential design’ that I have been asked to reflect upon in a keynote capacity.

Research centre and group affiliations

Sustainable Design

Research topics

Designing Behaviour
Robjects

Research outputs

Publications and research outputs

Article

Murray, Alan (2014) Designing Design Education for India 13th March to 15th March 2013 Pune, India Conference Proceedings Inda Design Council. CONFERENCE PROCEEDINGS - Designing Design Education for India, 2013 Pune, India, -. pp. 636-645. ISSN -
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Book

Murray, Alan, Auger, James, Loizeau, Jimmy and Ramamoorthy, Subramanian (2014) Robjects Real Prediction Machines. The University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh. ISBN 978-1-904443-60-5
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Exhibition

Murray, Alan, Auger, James, Loizeau, Jimmy and Ramamoorthy, Subramanian (2015) Exhibition, Workshop and Forum at National Design Centre, Singapore. [Exhibition]
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Murray, Alan, Auger, James, Loizeau, Jimmy and Ramamoorthy, Subramanian (2014) Crafting Narrative: Storytelling Through Objects And Making, Crafts Council Pitzhanger Manor Gallery, Ealing (London). 10 September to 19 October 2014. [Exhibition]
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Murray, Alan (2013) Rom8 Gallery, Bergen - Exhibition - 'Mixing Business and Pleasure' a retrospective of artistic practice - Lecture - 'Hybrid Artistic Research'. [Exhibition]
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Murray, Alan (2013) Angle Gallery - You said yesterday - tomorrow Maurice van Bakel, Weteringschans 207a 1017 XG Amsterdam, The Netherlands Group Show. [Exhibition]
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Events

YearDescription
2015

National Design Centre, Singapore
‘Robjects’ (Murray, AugerLoizeau). Exhibition, forum and workshop

2014

Crafting Narrative – Crafts Council
‘Robjects’ (Murray, AugerLoizeau). Crafting Narrative explores how contemporary designers and makers use objects as mediums to tell stories. Crafting Narrative is a Crafts Council Touring Exhibition, guest curated by Onkar Kular. Opening Venue: Pitzhanger Manor, London

2013

‘International Arts Presidents Network briefing’
3 day meeting in Beijing with Presidents from: Central Academy of Fine Arts (CAFA), School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Iceland Academy of the Arts, Maryland Institute of the Arts, Oslo National Academy of the Arts, University of the Arts - Chelsea, Ravensbourne, Emily Carr University of Art & Design, California Institute of the Arts, California College of the Arts, College of Fine Arts University of New South Wales, Design Academy Eindhoven, School of Culture and Creative Expressions Delhi, Royal College of Art, China Academy of Arts

2013

‘Mixing Business with Pleasure’
is an exhibition and symposium at Rom8, Bergen Academy of Art and Design, Norway. The symposium and publication explore aspects of hybrid activity alongside a solo-exhibition of Murray's artwork.

2013

Synthetic Biology; Where Organic Meets Digital
was a performance as part of the Edinburgh International Festival. Murray, Prof Elfick and Dr Stokes describe what Synthetic Biology is and how we might meld the linear and highly granular process of scientific inquiry with the iterative and highly generative process of design and art.

2013

The Angle Gallery, Amsterdam
developed a four-project-series of exhibitions. Project 2, (C//Back up) exhibits artists who ‘turned their back’ on the conventional ways of exhibiting and have sought alternative platforms and contexts.

2013

20th International Fashion Forum 2013
Shanghai International Fashion Cultural Festival. Speaker

2012

19th International Fashion Forum 2012
Shanghai International Fashion Cultural Festival. Speaker

Externally funded research grants information

Year startingYear endingProject titleFunderValueCollaboratorsHESA Category
2013
2014
Knowledge Transfer Partnership
Innovate UK (formerly the Technology Strategy Board)
£49,375

Maximiser

2011
2013
Design Informatics
Scottish Funding Council
£1,006
2009
2011
Scottish Academy of Fashion
Scottish Funding Council - Horizon Fund
£220,000

Research students

Previous student supervision

  1. Lore Said – PhD – Collapsibility, 2nd Supervisor – Completion date 2014-15 - stopped as moved to Falmouth University
  2. Bahareh Jalalzadeh Moghadam Shahri – PhD - Ludic Design, 2nd Supervisor – submitted, viva with minor changes - 2015
  3. Ian Sharman – PhD - Visual Design Education, 2nd Supervisor – Completion date 2016

Teaching

Areas of teaching

Fine Art
Industrial Design
Product Design

Courses taught

1996-97 - Full-time permanent lecturer, Fine Art, University of Salford. Visiting Lecturer at Jan Van Eyck Akademie (Maastricht - Postgraduate), KIAD Canterbury (now University for the Creative Arts) and Chelsea School of Art (Postgraduate)
1997-99 - Coordinator of ‘Man & Leisure’, Design Academy Eindhoven, Netherlands. Teaching Undergraduate Design students.
1999-04 - Head of department ‘Play’, Faculty of Industrial Design, Technische Universiteit Eindhoven, Netherlands. Teaching Undergraduate Design-Engineer students.
2004 - Director of the ‘Funlab’ (postgraduate), Design Academy Eindhoven, Netherlands. Teaching Postgraduate Design students.
2004-2008 - Director of Design, Faculty of Industrial Design, Technische Universiteit Eindhoven, Teaching Postgraduate Design students
2008 - Head of the School of Design, Edinburgh College of Art, University of Edinburgh. Teaching Undergraduate and Postgraduate students in the School of Design and the School of Art
2013 - Co-Director Design Informatics, Leading and teaching PGT course in ‘Design for Informatics’

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