People PhD

Indranil Bhattacharya

Indranil is a screen studies scholar with extensive experience in teaching, research, and media production. A trained filmmaker, he holds apost-graduate diploma in filmmaking from the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) and a PhD in Cinema Studies from the University of Westminster, London, UK. He has taught cinema studies and media production at both undergraduate and postgraduate levelsin leading South Asian universities and film schools. He has been closely associated with curriculum development, research and academic administration during his teaching stint. He also writes articles on cinema for leading Indian web portals.

Before embarking on a full-time academic career, he has worked as a documentarian, a film and video editor, a producer in broadcast television, and briefly as an instruction designer. Indranil’s research interests include areas where technology and aesthetics intersect, notably sound in films and television, documentary films, theories of realism, creative media industry practices and their transformation in the digital age. His doctoral research explored the relationship between film sound technology and aesthetics in the ‘post-celluloid’, digital era.



Georgina Mind, Women and the Practice of Studio Portraiture in Britain 1888-1914: Politics, commerce and constructions of femininity

George Clark, Offerings for a ghost film: From fragmented work to cosmic assemblages (

monika jaeckel, agency is molecular: moved by being moved to moving or co-constitution in intra-active knowledge production (

mirko nikolic, minoritarian ecologies: performance before a more-than-human world

Côme Ledésert, I IS ANOTHER: The fabulative filmic collaboration with someone recovering from addiction

Gilbert Calleja, Ethnography and experimental non-fiction storytelling: relating the experiences of Maltese Fishermen (

Indranil Bhattacharya, The Digital Turn in Indian Film Sound: Ontologies and Aesthetics

Roz Mortimer, Ghosts, Imagination and Theatre: re-enacting the futural past through documentary film ( /

Estéfani Bouza, Taming Contingency : Photography at the Crossroads between Collections, Archives and Atlases

Sunil Gupta, “Queer Migrations” (

Paula Gortazar, Transitional Frames: From Normalisation to Democracy Czech and Slovak Art Photography (1968-1998) (

Nina Danino, Experimental Film – Catholic and Feminist Readings of my film 2010-2016 (

Silvia Angeli, Catholicism in Italian cinema in the age of ‘the new secularisation’ (1958-1978)

Ingrid Pollard, Home and Away: Home, Migrancy, and Belonging Through Landscape Photographic Practice (

Andreia Alves de Oliveira, The Politics of the Office: Space, Power, and Photography ( / riverboatsinnerthoughts)

This page is in development. Alumni are encouraged to contact to add or update their details.

Doctoral Programme

The CREAM doctoral programme hosts a thriving international community of doctoral researchers exploring issues in art and design, film, photography, moving image, ceramics, cultural studies, art and technology/science and music. It is a leading centre for PhD researchers wishing to pursue research through a creative practice-based enquiry.

Available to study either through a PhD standard route or as a PhD by Publication, students on the CREAM doctoral programme are actively involved as part of the wider CREAM research community, through their contributions to symposia, screenings, and editorial projects. The programme also initiates its own distinctive events and exhibitions, through the Hyphen collective, which hosts exhibitions and produce the Hyphen Journal, to present the diverse enquiries of current student cohorts, alongside alumni and doctoral students more widely. CREAM and Westminster School of Arts is part of the Techne AHRC Doctoral Training Partnership, offering annual studentship opportunities at CREAM.

CREAM/Dartington Node

We are pleased to announce a unique doctoral partnership between CREAM and the Dartington Trust, building on shared visions, methods and rigour in practice-based research excellence. Based in the doctoral research environment at the Dartington Trust, doctoral researchers will have access to the expertise and facilities of both centres. PhD supervisory teams are drawn from across the two research cultures at CREAM and Dartington. 


Dartington Trust is a centre for arts, ecology and social justice, based on a 1,200 acre estate near Totnes, Devon in southern England. The Dartington Hall estate has a long history stretching back to the 11th century Domesday Book and beyond. In the early 20th century, the estate was bought by Dorothy and Leonard Elmhirst who were significant patrons for many important modernist artists and progressive thinkers and educators. Visitors and residents included Rabindranath Tagore, Bertrand Russell, Michael Young, William Lescaze, Mary Wigman, Bernard Leach, Shoji Hamada, Yanagi Soetsu, Mark Tobey, Beatrix Ferrand, Elizabeth Peacock, Kurt Jooss, Michael Chekhov, Marianne de Trey, Merce Cunningham, Victoria Ocampo, Nirmala Patwardhan, John Cage, Igor Stravinsky and many more. Dartington was in dialogue with the Bauhaus and Black Mountain College and with other progressive education experiments.

The Dartington archive houses significant material on the modernist era at Dartington and is expanding to cover the experimental arts and education projects on the site from the 1960s through to the present with the work for example, of Mary Fulkerson, David Harding, David Williams, Bob Gilmore, Ric Allsopp, Emilyn Claid, Martin Shaw, Caroline Bergvall, and John Hall. 

Schumacher College was established in 1990 and its researchers and visitors have included Satish Kumar, James Lovelock, Brian Goodwin, Fritjof Capra, John Lane, Henri Bortoft, Stephan Harding, David Abrams, Lynn Margulis, Kate Raworth, Vandana Shiva, Rupert Sheldrake, Merlin Sheldrake, and its current Head, Pavel Cenkl. 

Dartington runs a programme of short courses and events in arts, crafts, ecology and wellbeing. Its arts programme includes films in the Barn Cinema, designed by Walter Gropius, and the renowned Dartington Music Summer School & Festival

Dartington Trust is an independent higher education provider with two colleges. Schumacher College offers masters and undergraduate programmes and is currently celebrating its 30th year. The new Dartington Arts School was established last year and is offering five postgraduate degrees in Poetics of Imagination, Arts and Place, Arts and Ecology, Cultural Production, and Reimagining Performance Practice. Dartington has a wealth of performance and art studios, a cinema, a pub, restaurants, cafes, a campsite, and visitor and student accommodation. The Dartington estate is boundaried by the River Dart, has a working farm, many small tenant organisations, woodlands, agroforestry experiments, a restored medieval deerpark, grows much of its own food, has its own water supply, and generates a substantial part of its energy with a solar field and biomass boilers. The survival of this medieval estate into the 21st century makes contemporary Dartington a kind of island or lab for prototyping ways of living for the future.


The research focus of contemporary Dartington is imagining, visioning, prototyping, and living ecological futures with a particular emphasis on food production, land use, and culture. Dartington researchers have expertise in a wide range of topics including arts practice-led research; animism; medieval literature; modernism; story and myth; arts, design and ecology; ecology and spirituality; Goethean science; regenerative economics, farming and food; social work with adults and children; social enterprise.


To discuss making a potential application, please make initial enquiries to Dr Tracey Warr, Head of Research and Dartington Arts School

The application process is managed through the University of Westminster, with further guidance provided here

When your proposal is ready you can apply via the University of Westminster PhD Application Portal, stipulating CREAM/Dartington Node on your application.

How to Apply

The CREAM Doctoral programme is part of the University of Westminster’s wider doctoral programme, hosting doctoral researchers across its schools and colleges in a broad range of subject areas, and with close links to its sister organisation, the Communication and Media Research institute (CAMRI) in the School of Media and Communication.

The University’s PhD programme is co-ordinated through Westminster’s Graduate School. The Graduate administers the running of the university doctoral programme and offers a Doctoral Research Development Programme of workshops and seminars to support it.

When thinking about applying to the CREAM doctoral programme, applicants may wish to contact the most appropriate CREAM researchers to support and supervise their research by consulting the profiles of CREAM Researchers under Film and Media, Music and Fashion, Photography and Art and Society. Before contacting a potential supervisor, applicants are advised to consult the online guidelines on how to write a research proposal, which will help to focus and structure their research proposal for consideration.

All applications are made online via UCAS. There are two start dates per year, in September and January. Applicants may apply at any time of year, however they are recommended to apply before 1 May for September or 31 August for January. 

When submitting an application, please note that CREAM research areas relate closely to the PhD research areas of Creative Media, Film, Music, Photography and Visual Arts outlined through the UCAS application portal. For general information on how to apply, modes of study, fees and funding please visit Research Degrees at Westminster.

For further enquiries or queries about the CREAM Doctoral Programme please contact Lucy Reynolds, CREAM PhD Co-ordinator:


For further information about the CREAM doctoral programme contact:

Lucy Reynolds, CREAM PhD programme director
Westminster School of Arts,

Staff advisors to the CREAM PhD research areas are:
Creative Media/P052451 – Dr. Michael Maziere and Dr. Uriel Orlow
Film/P052455 –Professor May Adadol Ingawanij and Dr. Michael Goddard
Music/P052451 –Professor Shirley Thompson and Dr. Kirsten Hermes
Photography/P052459 – Professor David Bate and Dr. Eugenie Shinkle
Visual Art/P052463 – Professor Clare Twomey and Dr. Lucy Reynolds

People PhD

Stav Bee

I am a visual artist, conceiving and manifesting an interdisciplinary body of work, that I have been developing and evolving, since I completed my MA in Photography. Spoken word, Live Art, Installation, Video and Sound. My current practice combines all of these elements, which have been incorporated and synthetically established for a multimedia presentation. Utilising my existing skills in conceiving and making performance/ video/ sound pieces is the starting point of my research.

My work is placed at the junctions of visual art and performance, and deals with the on-going theme of (sexual) identity, love, the politics of the female gaze, the aesthetics of beauty, obsession and transformation, nature and evolution. The linear progress of my body of work (from sketches to sound) has shaped my direction and focus. As I progress in the making of the work, I will go back in time for a future exhibition: analogue media is re-introduced for the expression and authentic validation (typewriters, Polaroid, 35mm and 120mm film and slides).

PhD Researchers
People PhD

John van Aitken

John van Aitken is a cultural worker exploring urban gentrification through the dynamics of creative destruction. His current practice-based PhD is centred on the transformation of Salford’s landscapes through housing-led redevelopment. It explores how expanded photographic practices can visualise new ways to open up debate about the consequences of such changes. Co-founder of the Institute of Urban Dreaming with Jane Brake (MMU), their recent publication explores the use of atmospheres and sensory spaces in the marketing of new vertical apartments (Being vertical: staging the vertical subject on the Manchester Salford border). He currently works as a Principal Lecturer at the University of Central Lancashire.

PhD Researchers

A screening of Not Reconciled and Breathing Still by Jill Daniels

Tuesday 21 January 2020, 17.00–20.00

Not Reconciled (2009, 40 min) tells the history of Belchite in Spain, ruined in a 3-week battle during the Spanish Civil War and left deliberately in ruins by Franco to symbolise his victory. There was no Truth Commission at the end of the Francoist era, no purge of the army or police and no assessment of the crimes of the regime. The film reflects on the continuing presence of the Civil War and the existence of mass graves, through the creation of the ghosts of Republican and Nationalist fighters, filming of the inhabitants of the rebuilt town and extensive shots of the ruined town.

Breathing Still (2018, 8 min) is part activist, part essay film, a compelling portrait of Berlin as the right wing nationalist party the AfD wins members in Parliament for the first time. Weaving together voice-over, stills, archive and found footage, a flaneuse following the footsteps of the Marxist revolutionary Rosa Luxemburg, who was assassinated by the Freikorps fascists nearly a century ago, explores Berlin’s streets and memorials to Luxemburg and the Jews who once lived there.

Dr Jill Daniels is an experimental documentary filmmaker based in London. Her films explore themes of exile and memory, identity and place and, more recently, autobiography. She has been making films for over twenty-five years. Her films have been shown through the world and she has won numerous international awards. She teaches filmmaking at the University of East London. Her book Memory, Place and Autobiography: Experiments in Documentary Filmmaking was published in 2019 by Cambridge Scholars Publishing.

Hyphen Journal is an open-access, interdisciplinary platform for critical thinking on the diverse practices of research, published at the University of Westminster.

Subject, memory and place: Jill Daniels in conversation with Matthias Kispert can be found in Hyphen Journal, Issue 2.

In Process: An Exhibition of Media and Arts Doctoral Research

Thursday 10 December 2015 – Friday 8 January 2016

The CREAM doctoral programme derives much of its character from a generosity that refuses easy distinctions between theory and practice, and that acknowledges that art and design is a heterogeneous and interdisciplinary field comprised of many modalities, thematics and material approaches. Reflecting this, this first CREAM Doctoral exhibition includes work by students whose primary mode of investigation occurs through practice (artists, filmmakers, designers), and those who explore theoretical or historical avenues but who wish to use this opportunity to examine ideas through making. This exhibition reflects on our belief that art-making in general and research-based enquiries in particular, are fundamentally about experimentation, creative problem setting and solving, and an openness to different voices, ideas, processes and cultures.