Latest blog posts/entries

Final year photojournalism student Rebecca Saunders featured in Horse magazine.

Posted on February 21, 2017 by

Final year photojournalism student Rebecca Saunders has had one of her final pieces of work ‘A horse with no name’ published in the March edition of Horse magazine.

Lisa Barnard features in Behind the Camera: Creative Techniques of 100 Great Photographers book

Posted on February 21, 2017 by

Lisa Barnard, Senior Lecturer in Documentary Photography at the University of South Wales, features in Paul Lowe’s Behind the Camera: Creative Techniques of 100 Great Photographers book.

Lowe notes in the book:

“Barnard combines images, video, text, and installations in her work to expand the vocabulary she uses to engage with the difficult ideas she tackles. She believes that her practice reflects a contemporary documentary stance, engaging with complex ideas visually, using a variety of different forms and strategies, including text and appropriated material. However she clearly demonstrates that form and content must work together, the ideas must be sound and deep as well as the images resonant. Barnard says that research is the most important aspect of her practice, and she always starts with reading and listening, The visual aesthetic should not feel like an afterthought, to make the work appear contemporary.” (Lowe, 2016, p. 88)

Celia Jackson features in a story about the 'Love Pontypool' family fun day in the South Wales Argus

Posted on February 21, 2017 by

Celia Jackson, Senior Lecturer in Photography at the University of South Wales, is mentioned in the South Wales Argus in a story on the ‘Love Pontypool’ family fun day, in which she encouraged visitors to try pinhole photography – a technique used in her latest exhibition.

For further details about her exhibition, please see the Free Press.

Photojournalism student Lorna Cabble featured on WalesOnline

Posted on February 21, 2017 by

Photojournalism student Lorna Cabble’s images are featured on WalesOnline in a story on the Get Home Safe project, which ensures people on nights out in Cardiff are looked after.

Paul Reas is included in a new major exhibition and book on Creating the Countryside

Posted on February 21, 2017 by

The work of Documentary Photography Course Leader Paul Reas is included in a new major exhibition and book exploring our relationship with the countryside.

‘Creating the Countryside’ Thomas Gainsborough to today will open at the Compton Verney gallery and will be published by Paul Holberton Publishing on the 17th of March.

Exhibition synopsis:
Compton Verney’s 2017 season opens with a major exhibition examining the rural idyll past and present.

In an increasingly urbanised world, the idea of the countryside as a restorative place of escape shapes the popular image of rural life and landscape. Creating the Countryside explores the roots of these associations and how they are reflected in the world around us.

Works by artists including John Constable, Thomas Gainsborough and George Stubbs are joined by pieces from artists including Grayson Perry, Mat Collishaw and others to present fresh perspectives on the notion of our ‘green and pleasant land’.

The exhibition is curated by Verity Elson, Compton Verney and Dr Rosemary Shirley, Manchester School of Art, Manchester Metropolitan University.

Book synopsis:

From High Art to propaganda, garden centres to air fresheners, contemporary art to computer games-a constellation of powerful images and ideas contribute to our understanding of the rural. This publication offers new ways of thinking about how the idea of the British countryside has been created, through the innovative integration of a wide range of art and visual cultures. These include classic landscapes by artists such as Claude, Constable and Turner, works of modern British art, and contemporary works by artists who present new perspectives on the rural idyll.

Glen Manby's new album was recommended as jazz album of the week in The Observer

Posted on February 21, 2017 by

Music lecturer Glen Manby (FCI)’s new album, Homecoming, was recommended as jazz album of the week in The Observer on Sunday.

The Glen Manby Quintet. Photograph: Glen Manby

OT news

Posted on February 21, 2017 by

Sally Scott-Roberts and Dr Catherine Purcell featured in this months OT news following their recent work funded by the Richard Benjamin Trust.

OTnews delivers a lively mix of news and policy, the latest professional developments, features and opinions, ensuring practitioners are kept up to date with the latest developments in the field.

To read the full OT news article, click here.

USW welcomes Japanese trade mission

Posted on February 15, 2017 by

The Sustainable Environment Research Centre (SERC) at USW welcomed a trade mission from the Kansai region of Japan and the city of Osaka last week.

The visit was organised by the OCCI (Osaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry) and supported by the Japanese government METI (Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry) as well as the UK and Welsh Governments.

The purpose of the trade mission was to strengthen ties between the Kansai region and Wales and to establish business opportunities for hydrogen technology.

This is the second year that OCCI have visited the University’s Hydrogen Centre, this time with a much larger delegation, including senior leaders from the Japanese hydrogen and fuel cell industry such as Hitachi Zosen, Osaka Gas and the Iwatani Corporation. As well as presenting an overview of the University’s research in hydrogen and fuel cell technology, presentations were also given by two of the University’s key industrial collaborative partners, ITM Power and Tata Steel.

The opportunity was also taken to explore areas of potential collaboration between the University and Japanese academic and industrial organisations.

Photography lecturer Celia Jackson has her work on show at a new gallery in Pontypool.

Posted on February 15, 2017 by

The space— based at the former Plaid Cymru offices in two Portland Buildings, Commercial Street — launched with its first show Full Fathom Five by University of South Wales photography lecturer Celia Jackson.

The exhibition — which showcases a collection of seascapes taken with a pinhole camera — commemorate her father, who died swimming in the sea six years ago.

For further details, please see the Free Press.

USW student Katie Alcock featured on Pontypridd Observer

Posted on February 15, 2017 by

USW student Katie Alcock has designed the set for the Welsh National Opera’s touring production of Madam Butterfly. Today’s Pontypridd Observer covers the story. (Print, P3).

Multi-million-pound energy project gets underway

Posted on February 8, 2017 by

A multi-million project set to transform the UK energy sector and tackle some of the biggest challenges currently facing society is underway in Wales.

FLEXIS, the £24m project led by Cardiff University, is bringing together expertise from across Welsh universities to facilitate an affordable, sustainable, and socially acceptable transition to a low carbon future.

The work is being carried out by Cardiff University, Swansea University and the University of South Wales as principal sponsors. Aberystwyth and Bangor Universities and the British Geological Survey are also participating in the project.

The five-year EU-backed project will look to solve a diverse, complex and inter-dependent set of challenges, ranging from energy storage, to decarbonisation and fuel poverty.

The project will specifically look at how new, low-carbon energy sources can be integrated into the energy grid, and how the grid itself can cope with extreme flows of energy into the system in numerous places and at random times.

As part of the project a demonstration site has been identified in the Swansea Bay area, centred at the TATA Steel Works in Port Talbot, to act as a test bed for new ideas and to showcase the new technology and energy solutions being developed. Partners include TATA Steel, Swansea City Region and Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council.

Speaking ahead of a launch event at the Pierhead Building in Cardiff Bay, Professor Colin Riordan, Vice-Chancellor of Cardiff University, said: “FLEXIS will position Wales at the forefront of research and innovation as the energy sector adapts to meet the urgent need for climate change mitigation and energy security.

“The project will attract world-leading researchers to Welsh universities and pave the way for the development of new technologies and job creation in the energy sector, as well as enticing new companies to locate themselves here.

“This significant amount of EU funding shows how financial support from Europe is helping to propel the fundamental research that is being performed here in Wales.”

Professor Alan Guwy, Director of the Sustainable Environment Research Centre at the University of South Wales, said: “FLEXIS provides a fantastic opportunity for energy research and innovation in Wales, it brings together key researchers in the universities in Wales working together to address industry’s needs for cleaner energy production and use. The team at USW working on hydrogen energy believe that FLEXIS can help provide the integrated energy systems that are essential for migrating climate change and securing future energy needs.”

By 2020, over £20m of additional competitive research income is expected to be secured in Wales as a result of FLEXIS.

Psychology Plus Internship Prize Giving

Posted on February 8, 2017 by

We had our first Psychology Plus Associate Research Intern prize giving event last week, to celebrate the success of our first group of research interns.

Well done to Rebecca, Jenna, Lina, Andreea, Charlotte and Kristyna for completing the Associate Research Internship, and for producing very high quality standard work for some of Research Dyscovery’s ongoing and upcoming grant applications. Well done to Rachel Morris for completing a Research Internship with Hayley, and for doing excellent work in drafting a paper about cohesion and conflict in DCD.

Thank you all for your hard work! More photos on our Facebook page.

Rebecca receiving her certificate from Dr Catherine Purcell.

USW students on the News

Posted on February 6, 2017 by

Former USW student Jessica Davies has taken the photo for the front cover of the new book by the author of The Girl on the Train, Paula Hawkins – Wales Online, Wales on Sunday (P14).

Third year BA Photojournalism student Craig Redmond has a photo published in the latest edition of BBC Wildlife magazine. The image of a caged Golden Plover on an illegal trapping site was shot in Malta, where the birds are trapped in their hundreds.

Dr Ruth McElroy appeared on BBC Online , BBC Wales Today, BBC Radio Wales Good Evening and Newyddion

Posted on February 2, 2017 by

Dr Ruth McElroy,co-director of the Centre for Media and Culture in Small Nations, appeared on BBC Online, BBC Wales Today, BBC Radio Wales Good Evening and Newyddion yesterday to discuss a new report by the Welsh Assembly’s culture committee which looks at the broadcast media industry in Wales.

Photojournalism student Catherine Lothian featured on news website The Pool

Posted on January 31, 2017 by

Photojournalism student Catherine Lothian is featured on news website The Pool, focusing on her project which challenges BMI guidelines for women.

Update: DCD consensus meeting

Posted on January 31, 2017 by

Last Thursday Professor Amanda Kirby (University of South Wales) hosted, with the Movement Matters UK group, an invited UK DCD consensus meeting to update the consensus following on from the recent European Guidelines.

The day was a great success with many delegates attending to represent their organisation(s). Dr Catherine Purcell and Sally Scott-Roberts attended to represent University of South Wales and The Dyspraxia Foundation South East Wales Group. Senior Research Assistants Hayley Gibbon and Dr Amy Romijn helped with note taking and the general running of the day.

A second meeting has been scheduled to happen in several months, and new UK guidelines will be published later on in the year.

USW ballerina performs at Holocaust Memorial event

Posted on January 26, 2017 by

Krystal Lowe, an associate dance lecturer at the University of South Wales (USW), recently travelled to Cyprus to perform contemporary dance at an Holocaust Memorial event.

Krystal, 27, originally from Bermuda, now living in Newport, was invited to choreograph and perform two contemporary pieces to mark International Holocaust Remembrance Day.

The event is organised each year by the Embassy of Israel in collaboration with Nicosia Christian Center. This year 600 attended the event at the Strovolos Municipal Theatre.

A guest artist for Ballet Cymru, Krystal divides her time between dancing, choreography and teaching. She currently teaches dance technique to first year students on USW’s BSc (Hons) Dance degree. She wants to concentrate on her performing as much as possible for now, and then move her focus to more teaching in the future.

Krystal said, “It was an honour to be invited to Cyprus to perform my own choreography. The event as a whole was a touching tribute to those who lost their lives and those who lived through the Holocaust.

“I am really enjoying lecturing at the University, the new dance studios and facilities at the Cardiff campus are amazing and such a benefit to the students”.

USW works in collaboration with regional dance companies and theatres to prepare students for a professional career in contemporary dance. Dance students are predominantly based at the USW Cardiff campus.

DS11 Storytelling and Place: Digital Storytelling Festival Call For Papers

Posted on January 25, 2017 by

We are delighted to announce that the George Ewart Evans Centre for Storytelling Annual Symposium and DS Festival are continuing their successful collaboration to again put together a two day symposium exploring storytelling in all its varied forms. This follows our successful Storytelling and Justice symposium held in 2016.

This year the theme is Storytelling and Place. Storytelling can help us understand our identity and relationship to the places we inhabit, be these geographic or psychological. In our current times, when national identity is constantly being negotiated and renegotiated, as Europe is reshaped in the wakes of the ’Brexit’ vote and as Twitter is rebirthed as an instrument of goverment, the stories we tell about ourselves and our places can serve to guide us and inform our relationship to the world and each other. In an era which has been described as ‘post-truth’ and where news stories draw their cultural capital as much from their ‘clickworthiness’ as their veracity story and place has become on the most-urgent issues of our time.

We aim to inspire, encourage and showcase exciting projects across a wide spectrum of digital storytelling activity which focuses on place. The two day event takes place on Friday 21st and Saturday 22nd April 2017 in The Atrium, University of South Wales, Adam St, Cardiff, CF24 2FN.

Keynote speaker: Dr Jamie Tehrani (Durham University).

Once upon a time – but when? Searching for the origins of Indo-European folktales

Researchers since the Brothers Grimm have speculated about the origins of folktales shared by different cultures around the world. However, as primarily oral art forms, there is precious little literary evidence to locate the source and spread of these stories. I will describe a novel approach to this problem that draws on methods from evolutionary biology, showing how they can be used to trace lineages of narrative inheritance and reconstruct ancient tale corpora in Indo-European tale traditions.

Dr Tehrani’s research focuses on how culture evolves as it gets transmitted from person to person and from generation to generation. He is interested in understanding what makes some things catch on, others die out, and how these processes shape patterns of cultural diversity within and across populations. His current work focuses mainly on the transmission of popular narratives, such as traditional folktales, urban legends and modern day conspiracy theories. The conference will also feature a panel discussion with leading Welsh writers, performances of stories and provocations by prominent thinkers in the field of story and place.

We are now seeking contributions to the symposium which deal specifically with Digital Storytelling and Place and the role of the digital in the post-truth era, contributions can either be in the form of short 20 minute papers or presentations of work. We would like to provide an opportunity to our wide range of attendees i.e. practitioners, researchers, community workers, youth workers and students to present either an academic paper, propose a panel, run a workshop session or chair a small discussion/seminar group. Sessions selected from the call for papers will be presented on Friday 21st April 2017. Each paper will be allocated 20 minutes (15 minute paper plus 15 minutes for questions).

If you would like to contribute please submit an abstract of no more than 300 words by Tuesday 28th February 2017. Please send completed abstracts to Emily Underwood-Lee (

We will notify the successful contributors by 10th March 2017.

Dr Russell Roberts appeared on BBC Wales Today

Posted on January 25, 2017 by

Dr Russell Roberts, Reader in Flim, Photography and Digital Media, and photography students at USW’s Cardiff Campus, appeared on BBC Wales Today last Friday as part of a feature about the first photo of the White House, which was taken by Welsh emigrant John Plumbe.

PhD student Gareth Bonello appeared on BBC Radio Cymru

Posted on January 23, 2017 by

Gareth Bonello, a musician and PhD student at the Centre for Media and Culture in Small Nations appeared on BBC Radio Cymru on Thursday January 12. Gareth discussed his PhD, which is a part of the Welsh and Khasi Cultural Dialogues research project.

Beti George yn sgwrsio gyda’r canwr a’r cyfansoddwr Gareth Bonello am deithio’r byd yn perfformio, a’i ddoethuriaeth ar y berthynas ddiwylliannol rhwng Cymru a Bryniau Casia yng ngogledd-ddwyrain India.

Nongsawlia-Sohra Presbyterian Church, Meghalaya. Photograph: Dr Aparna Sharma