Associate Professor Mitchel Whitelaw

Associate Professor, Design, School of Art & Design

My research spans practice and theory in the fields of digital design and culture; I work with data and computation as core materials in a creative research practice. I work with partners and collaborators on applied, practice-led research with public outcomes. My theoretical work draws on and contextualises this practice, as well as investigating emerging concepts and forms in digital art and design. Current themes in my research are:

Design for Digital Heritage and Humanities: The digitisation of cultural heritage is creating vast masses of valuable content, but traditional search-based interfaces do a poor job of representing this richness. Working with institutional partners, academic collaborators and students, I develop “generous interfaces”, working with cultural data to create inviting, explorable websites for cultural collections. I also develop speculative and poetic applications for digital heritage, reimagining and reanimating these archives for a contemporary context. Since 2010 this work has been funded by partners including the Asia Art Archive, Canberra Museum and Gallery, the State Library of Queensland, the State Library of New South Wales, the National Archives of Australia, and the National Gallery of Australia.

Data Aesthetics and Generative Systems: As designers and artists take up digital processes, they adapt and reconfigure data and computing for their own ends, generating new creative forms as well as questioning conventional notions of authorship, aesthetics, agency, and the work. This theme spans practical and theoretical investigations of digital art and design.

Digital Materiality: Though it sometimes pretends otherwise, digital culture is never immaterial. It occupies and transforms the material world, and art and design play a critical role in imagining and experimenting with the dialog between data and matter. From experimental fabrication to tangible data visualisation and speculative computing, this theme investigates digital materiality through practice-led, critical and theoretical projects.

Please visit my personal website at 

Search this site only

Updated:  2 August 2019/Responsible Officer:  CASS Marketing & Communications/Page Contact:  CASS Marketing & Communications