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Paul Heys

Paul Heys

Principal Lecturer, Graphic Design and Art and Design Employability Lead

Summary

My current research explores the theme of the ‘Designer as Archivist, Archivist as Designer’ and examines the relationships and potentiality of ordering and design systems. Interests centre on the development of archival systems as a means of manifesting the designer’s themes and creative strategies.

In addition to my research and teaching, I have a lifelong ambition to support the furtherance of graphic design education and endeavour to contribute to the discourse surrounding its futures. 

I am also a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. 

  • About

    I am currently a Principal Lecturer in Graphic Design. I have worked in the sector for over 12 years, contributing to international academic, pedagogical and discipline-specific research and practice. In 2012 I was awarded an MA in Graphic Design by the London College of Communication, for research on the utilisation of archives and collections within the field of graphic design. This research culminated in ‘GB-3184-SK/Kubrick-Index’, a major reference publication produced in conjunction with the Stanley Kubrick Films Archive, Warner Bros. and the Archive and Special Collections Centre, The University of the Arts London.

    Between 2008-2016 I held the position of author and designer at German graphic design studio Neubau Berlin, with whom I worked on project development, exhibition and publication outputs.

    My current research explores the theme of the ‘Designer as Archivist, Archivist as Designer’ and examines the relationships and potentiality of ordering and design systems. Interests centre on the development of archival systems as a means of manifesting the designer’s themes and creative strategies.

    In addition to my research and teaching, I have a lifelong ambition to support the furtherance of graphic design education and endeavour to contribute to the discourse surrounding its futures. I am also a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

    Specialist areas of interest

    On-going research centres on ‘Designer as Archivist, Archivist as Designer’; An exploration of relationships and potentiality between design and ordering systems, in the furtherance of developing archival, indexable systems as a means of manifesting the (graphic) designer’s motives and creative strategies.

    • Archiving graphic design practices
    • Strategies for archiving
    • Authorship and ownership
    • Researching as generating an archive
    • Systems design
    • Ordering and rule-based Graphic Design
    • Archival and collection systems research in Graphic Design
    • The book as ‘nootropic’ technology

  • Teaching

    Subject area

    Visual Communication

    Courses

    Graphic Design

    Modules

    Translation and Transmission (AF-2017/8)
    Graphic Design in Context (BF-2017/8)

  • Research

    Current research projects

    Ongoing Research
    Designer as Archivist, Archivist as Designer. How to build and design a collections management system.

    Essay
    Arcanist as Designer and Becoming the Archiving Machine. An Essay for the book, Order/ReOrder, Archives as Effervescent Bodies by Tom Finn

    Selected research projects

    Neubau Forst Catalogue

    Short
    ‘Neubau Forst Catalogue’ is a collection of detailed silhouettes of urban trees and separate tree sculptures. In years of manual work, using a method developed especially for this project, these details have been digitally removed from their original urban surroundings in Berlin. The materials are distinguished by their extent, outstanding quality of detail, and excellent resolution of the usual auto-traced digital tree library.

    Long
    Neubau Forst Catalogue is the 432-page print catalogue of a digital collection of tree silhouettes and sculptures seen at different seasons. Working by hand, the Neubau designers digitally removed the trees from their original Berlin surroundings and thereby crafted a body of visual material whose scope, outstanding quality of detail and excellent image resolution sets it clearly apart from conventional tree libraries compiled with auto-tracing tools. The trees, which were systematically photographed in summer and winter over several years, assume a timeless validity through Neubau's process of selection and are thus universally applicable for future visualizations. From the existing stand-alone tree objects, which can be placed against both dark and light backgrounds of all kinds, Neubau has furthermore derived individual "tree modules". These modules can be combined with the ready-to-use trees in an endless number of ways. Alongside detailed information about tree species, size, location, year of planting and file format, the catalogue contains also numerous impressive examples of how these images can be used. The corresponding Neubau Forst Archive, consisting of 683 individual elements, is the digital library of which architects, designers, graphic designers and illustrators have previously only dreamed. Each book contains an individual download code that guarantees you an exclusive discount of 25% on purchases from the data archive in the standard image (TIFF) and vector (EPS) format.

    Neubau Forst Catalogue, Neubau Berlin.
    Gandl, S. Ganz, B. Grünberger, C. P, Heys. D, Cottis. (2014), Neubau Berlin, Neubau Forst Catalogue, Zurich: Lars Müller Publishers. ISBN. 3037784350, 9783037784358

    Neubau Berlin, (2014), Neubau Forst, Storefront for Art & Architecture, New York, USA.

    Gandl, S. Ganz, B. Grünberger, C. Heys, P. (2014), Neubau Forst — Five Years in the Forest. Guest Lecture conducted from University of Huddersfield, Huddersfield, UK

    Gandl, S. Ganz, B. Grünberger, C. Heys, P. (2014), Neubau Forst — Five Years in the Forest. Guest Lecture conducted from Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester, UK
    Gandl, S. Ganz, B. Grünberger, C. Heys, P. (2014), Neubau Forst— Five Years in the Forest. Guest Lecture conducted from London College of Communication, University of Arts London, London, UK

    Archive of Nothingness (AON)

    AON (The Archive of Nothingness), which addresses the connections between histories of art and graphic design and the role, influence and ‘authority’ of archives, archivists, exhibitions and curators. It uses the medium of a Tumblr weblog which functions self-reflexively and critically, providing a vehicle for data collection while simultaneously as an ongoing and potentially infinite piece of ‘living’ research.

    Powell, Anna and Heys, Paul (2014) Introducing the Archive of Nothingness (AON) – a co-curated digital archive and live research project. Journal of Writing in Creative Practice, 7 (3). pp. 505-510. ISSN 17535190

    Collaborators and sponsors

  • Publications

    Journal articles

    Powell, A., & Heys, P. (2014). Introducing the Archive of Nothingness (AON) - A co-curated digital archive and live research project. Journal of Writing in Creative Practice, 7 (3), 505-510. http://doi.org/10.1386/jwcp.7.3.505_1

    Heys, P., Temple, N., Adkins, M., Bailey, R., Tibbetts, S., Briers, D., ... Gfader, V. (2014). The making of the Allure of the Archive - An index of assemblies by Art (&) Currency: Institute of Vanishing Principles and Spells, 2013-2014. Journal of Writing in Creative Practice, 7 (3), 511-516. http://doi.org/10.1386/jwcp.7.3.511_1

    Book chapters

    Finn, T., Hardingham, S., Heys, P., Hollings, K., Shaughnessy, A., & Triggs, T. (2017). Order/ReOrder: Archives as Effervescent Bodies. In Finn, T. (Ed.) Order/ReOrder: Archives as effervescent bodies. (pp. 11-21). London, UK: Regular practice: http://regularpractice.co.uk/projects/reorder

    Books

    Gandl, S., Grünberger, C., Ganz, B., Cottis, D., & Heys, P. (Eds.). (2014). Neubau Forst Catalogue. Zürich, Switzerland: Lars Müller Publishers. http://neubauforst.com/

    Gandl, S., Grünberger, C., Ganz, B., Cottis, D., & Heys, P. (Eds.). (2014). Neubau Forst Catalogue. Zürich, Switzerland: Lars Müller Publishers. http://neubauforst.com/

    Exhibitions

    Swann, D.M., & Heys, P. (2016). Absence-Presence: Kos. [Archive]. Sheffield Institute of Arts, Head Post office. http://www4.shu.ac.uk/mediacentre/exhibition-explores-realities-life-refugees

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