Research leaders

Professor Kim Vincs

Director

Kim Vincs is a leading researcher in the creative arts, with six Australian Research Council grants, 50+ industry partnerships, and 30+ arts/science collaborations across motion capture, game development, robotics, haptics, app design, 3D stereoscopy, artificial intelligence, virtual reality, augmented reality, cognitive psychology, biomechanics, mathematics, architecture and exercise science. Vincs’s industry partnerships include national and International companies such as Autodesk, Motion Analysis, Act3animation, Iloura, Alt.vfx, Arts Access Victoria, Victorian Opera and Australian Dance Theatre.

She has commercial motion capture credits including the Cannes Silver Lion winning Nocturnal Migration. Kim integrates scientific, technological and artistic methodologies to deliver innovative research to digital and performing arts industries, companies and communities. Her work spans creative technology for performance, digital scenography, VR, AR and robotics applications for motion capture technology. She was a choreographer for 20 years, and created 21 digital technology artworks for the Melbourne Festival and White Night Melbourne. Recent works include The Crack Up, which premiered at the Merlyn Theatre, Coopers Malthouse, in October 2014; Multiverse, with Garry Stewart and Australian Dance Theatre and 3D digital scenography for the Victorian Opera’s production of The Flying Dutchman, 2015 and Four Saints in Three Acts, 2016. Her works have been shortlisted for Greenroom, Australian Dance and AEAF awards. The Flying Dutchman was a finalist in Unity’s 2015 Unite.

In 2017, she led an interdisciplinary and cross-institutional team with an ARC LIEF grant, establishing the Collaborative Embodied Movement Design Network. Vincs is an award-winning educator with expertise in collaborative, interdisciplinary curriculum design linking art, technology, science and humanities. She has two Carrick National Teaching Awards; a National Teaching Award, Arts and Humanities and Citation for Outstanding Contribution to Student Learning. Vincs joined the Department of Film and Animation at Swinburne in 2017 where she is a Research Director. Before joining Swinburne, she founded Deakin University’s Deakin Motion.Lab.

Professor Angela Ndalianis

Director

Angela Ndalianis is a Research Professor of Media and Entertainment. Her research focuses on entertainment culture, media technology history and how they mediate our experience of the world. Her expertise is in the transformative nature of media technologies and how they impact on embodiment, senses and perception. Her publications include Neo-Baroque Aesthetics and Contemporary Entertainment (2004), Science Fiction Experiences (2010), The Horror Sensorium: Media and the Senses (2012); and the edited books - The Contemporary Comic Book Superhero (2009); Neo-baroques: From Latin America to the Hollywood Blockbuster (co-edited, 2016), and Fans and Videogames: Histories, Fandom, Archives (co-edited, 2017).

She has been the recipient of seven ARC grants. Her three ARC Linkage grants (‘Superheroes: Creative Force, Cultural Zeitgeist and Transmedia Phenomenon’, 2016-19; ‘Play It Again: Creating a Playable History of Australasian Digital Games, for Industry, Community and Research Purposes’ 2011-15 and ‘Play It Again: Preserving Australian videogame history of the 1990s’, 2018-21) are in partnership with ACMI. Her ARC Discovery Grants were on theme park experiences, theme park cities, robots as science fiction and as reality, and the baroque/neo-baroque construction of space and sensory experiences in 17th Century Rome and 21st Century Las Vegas. She was a lead investigator on a Canadian Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council Grant examining transatlantic continuation of the baroque, 2007-15.

She is currently one of the researchers on a Danish/international collaboration – ‘Imagining the Impossible: The Fantastic as Media Entertainment and Play’ – which is funded by the Independent Research Fund of Denmark. She is working on three books: Batman: Myth and Superhero; Robots and Entertainment Culture ; and Experiencing Space: Sensory Encounters from Baroque Rome to Neo-Baroque Las Vegas (with Lisa Beaven) supported by an ARC Discovery Grant. She was the H.C.Andersen Institute/University of Southern Denmark Visiting Professor 2015-18, and Visiting Professor University of Venice IUAV, March-June 2018.

Theme leader

Melanie Swalwell

Theme Leader

Melanie Swalwell is Professor of Digital Media Heritage. Her research centres on newer media with particular attention to media arts and digital games, as well as the intersections of these. Melanie has authored chapters and articles in both traditional and interactive formats, curated exhibitions and datasets, collected popular memories, and organised the preservation of digital artefacts. She is co-editor of The Pleasures of Computer Gaming: Essays on cultural history, theory and aesthetics (McFarland, 2008), and Fans and Videogames: Histories, fandom, archives (Routledge, 2017).

A former ARC Future Fellow, she is currently completing a monograph, Homebrew Gaming and the Beginnings of Vernacular Digitality (MIT Press) and editing another two collections, Game History and the Local, and Crafting, Hacking, Making. Her grant projects include: Archiving Australian Media Arts: Towards a method and national collection (ARC Linkage, 2019-21); Play It Again: Preserving Australian videogame history of the 1990s (ARC Linkage, 2019-21); Creative Micro-computing in Australia, 1976-1992 (ARC Future Fellowship 2014-18); Play It Again: Creating a Playable History of Australasian Digital Games, for Industry, Community and Research Purposes (ARC Linkage, 2012-14).

She has presented her research at many conferences nationally and internationally. Recent invited addresses and keynotes include: the Central and Eastern European Game Studies conference, CEEGS, Trnava, Slovak Republic, 2017; the Digital Games Research Association DiGRA, Melbourne 2017; the New Media Histories conference, Lodz, 2014; the First International Histories of Games conference, Montreal, 2013; the Australasian Interactive Entertainment Conference, Melbourne, 2013; and the inaugural Digital Nationz Expo, Auckland, 2013.

Development team

Our specialist in house development team supports creative practice research and development in immersive and interactive media. We are experts in all aspects of motion capture and AR, VR and MR development, providing end-to-end support – from ideation and prototype to finished product. If you can think it, we can do it.

Stephen Jeal

Lead Technical Artist

Stephen Jeal is a technical artist and teacher, specializing in 3D modelling, motion capture and visual effects for both film and games. With a knack for problem-solving and an eye for detail, Stephen is completely dedicated to creating the best possible content for every project.

Casey Dalbo

Technical Artist

Casey is a 3D artist and sessional tutor. She models and textures high-quality props and assets to build immersive virtual worlds. Casey enjoys experimenting with different art styles, tools and pipelines to give something different to every project. She is passionate about furthering team building and collaborative processes within the studio.

Casey Richardson

Technical Artist

Casey is a multidisciplinary artist and developer with a passion for character art and accessible gameplay. In his latest project Casey has been able to foster his leadership qualities, taking on project lead roles with the support of an amazing team. He firmly believes that good open communication, understanding and encouragement build a strong collaborative team.

Joshua Reason

Developer

Joshua is a software developer with a background in VR and Game development. He collaborates with artists to bring life to transformative media projects. In his down time, Joshua focuses on Pipeline development where he creates tools to ease the work of his fellow teammates.

Portrait photo of Adam Carr

Adam Carr

Developer

Adam is a multidisciplinary developer and artist with a passion for bringing technology to other creative mediums. His dream projects involve bringing social experiences to immersive virtual worlds through online networking. He is a mentor with great enthusiasm to see new developers grow, and enjoys building pipelines and bots for the convenience of the team.

Portrait photo of Jordan Cook-Irwin

Jordan Cook-Irwin

Developer

Jordan is a developer with a passion for virtual reality interactions and gameplay. An avid game jam enthusiast, Jordan loves fast prototyping and quick iterative game design with small teams. Jordan’s strong suit is working with complex mathematical problems and problem solving. He takes great pride in bringing solutions to the team.

Portrait of Irene Gironacci

Irene Gironacci

Project Manager

Irene Gironacci is a technical project manager, with a background in software engineering. She collaborates with an amazing team of artists, software developers and researchers to deliver fantastic extended reality projects. Irene is always keen to explore new research fields of interest and bring innovation to life.

Portrait of Haydon Bakker

Haydon Bakker

Developer

Haydon is a technical designer with experience in games programming. Haydon brings unprecedented energy and enthusiasm to every project, liaisons with clients to help them find concrete requirements and amicable solutions, and uses his experience and knowledge of the industry to apply game principles to new and innovative ventures.

Stephen Jeal

Technical Director

Stephen Jeal is a Technical Artist and teacher, specializing in 3D modelling, motion capture and visual effects for both film and games. With a knack for problem-solving and an eye for detail, Stephen is completely dedicated to creating the best possible content for every project.

Casey Dalbo

Technical Artist

Casey is a 3D Artist and Instructor. She spends most of her time at the studio modelling and texturing high-quality props and assets to form immersive 3D worlds. Casey enjoys experimenting with different art styles and pipelines, as well as learning new tools to see if they can be useful for project workflows. 

Casey Richardson

Technical Artist

Casey Richardson is a Technical Artist, teacher and part-time hobbyist. His passion for 3d art, motion capture, games and film allow him to tackle tasks with fresh and new ideas. Casey is always striving to expand his skills, discover new workflows, and bring creativity to every project.

Joshua Reason

Programmer

Joshua is a software developer with a background in VR and Game development. He collaborates with artists to bring life to transformative media projects. In his down time, Joshua focuses on Pipeline development where he creates tools to ease the work of his fellow teammates.

Research team

The Centre for Transformative Media Technologies brings together over 20 researchers, artists and developers from the creative arts, humanities and social sciences. We work collaboratively across disciplinary and conceptual lines to understand and proactively advance the power of new media technologies to transform art, culture, industry and human experience.

César Albarrán-Torres

César is a lecturer in Media and Communication. His current research focuses on what he calls gamble-play media, hybrid platforms where gambling and digital interactive media intersect. Other research interests include film and television, as well as the negotiations between social media and politics in Mexico, particularly concerning the drug cartels. His book Digital Gambling: Theorizing Gamble-Play Media was published in April 2018. He is the former editor of Cine PREMIERE (Mexico) and the founding editor of www.cinepremiere.com.mx, the most widely read film website in the Spanish-speaking world.

Jessica Balanzategui

Jessica Balanzategui is a lecturer in Cinema and Screen Studies. Her research examines childhood and national identity in global film and television; the impact of technological and industrial change on screen genres and entertainment cultures; and vernacular storytelling and aesthetics in digital cultures. Jessica is the author of The Uncanny Child in Transnational Cinema (2018), founding editor of Amsterdam University Press’s book series, “Horror and Gothic Media Cultures”, and an editor of Refractory: A Journal of Entertainment Media.

Liam Burke

Liam Burke is the coordinator of the Cinema and Screen Studies Major. Liam has written and edited a number of books including Superhero Movies, Fan Phenomena: Batman, and The Comic Book Film Adaptation, and the co-edited collection The Superhero (in press, 2019). Liam is a chief investigator on the Superheroes research project with ACMI, which was responsible for Cleverman: The Exhibition and Superheroes: Realities Collide VR experience. Liam directed the documentary short film @HOME as part of the New Media, Ageing, and Migration.

Steven Conway

Steven Conway is senior lecturer in Games & Interactivity. He has presented on many aspects of play, philosophy, aesthetics and culture and has had a variety of articles published in journals such as Convergence, Eludamos, Game Studies, the Journal of Gaming & Virtual Worlds, the Sociology of Sport Journal and Westminster Papers in Communication & Culture. Steven is also co-editor of the first collection in academia on the relationship between policy and digital games, Video Game Policy: Production, Distribution and Consumption.

Kay Cook

Kay Cook is an ARC Future Fellow and Associate Professor in the Department of Social Sciences. Her work explores how new and developing social policies such as welfare-to-work, child support and child care policies, transform relationships between individuals, families and the state. Her research has contributed to the development of the Australian Bureau of Statistics 2010 General Social Survey, the Australian Law Reform Commission inquiry into Family Violence and Commonwealth Law, and the Parliamentary Inquiry into the Child Support Program.
anne cranny-francis

Anne Cranny-Francis

Anne Cranny-Francis is a Professor and Adjunct Research Fellow at Swinburne University of Technology. Her research on the body has combined with the study of multimedia in extensive work on the relationship between individual subjects, sensory regimes, cultures and contemporary technologies, particularly touch-based (haptic) technologies. Her books include Popular Culture (1994), The Body in the Text (1995), Multimedia: Texts and Contexts (2005) and Technology and Touch: the Biopolitics of Emerging Technologies (2013).
Portrait of Samantha Edwards

Samantha Edwards-Vandenhoek

Samantha Edwards-Vandenhoek is a multi-award-winning community-based design researcher, digital media artist and educator. Partnering with art centres, museums and schools, Samantha’s research seeks to advance the role of place-based design, media and filmmaking practices in remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community development; fostering social well-being, knowledge transfer, intercultural collaboration and economic resilience. In 2019, she was the recipient of the highly prestigious International Good Design Award for Social Impact for ‘Our Journey’, an animated film made with the Melbourne Indigenous Transition School and Australia Chamber Orchestra. Funded by the Australian Government and developed in partnership with Indigenous designers, artists and community organisations, Samantha coordinates Marngo Designing Futures, an aspiration initiative that connects Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people with University through the world of culture-centred design and digital storytelling technologies - www.marngodesignfutures.com.au. Recognised for her contributions to teaching, service and research, Samantha has been awarded the 2011 Vice Chancellor's Award for Teaching Excellence, 2016 Vice Chancellors Award for Community Engagement and 2018 Vice Chancellor's Award for Reconciliation.
Portrait of Petra Gemeinboeck

Petra Gemeinboeck

Petra Gemeinboeck is an internationally recognised artist and researcher engaging questions of embodiment and agency in human-machine relations. Petra is an ARC Future Fellow (2021-2025) and leads the Human-Robot Experience (HRX) project, which expands human-robot interaction (HRI) through a relational-performative co-design framework. She also leads the FWF PEEK artistic research project ‘Dancing with the Nonhuman’ at the University of Applied Arts Vienna (2019-2022), and previously led the ARC Discovery Project ‘Performative Body-Mapping’ (2016-2019). Petra’s transdisciplinary research spans the experimental arts, performance, robotics, AI and new materialism and challenges the sociotechnical discourse around disruptive technologies including Virtual Reality, Surveillance and Social Robotics. Her artworks have been shown internationally, including at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) Chicago, US; National Art Museum China (Beijing, CN); NTT InterCommunication Center (Tokyo, JP); and Ars Electronica Center, AT. Petra also publishes widely on machine performance and new materialist approaches to human-robot interaction. She was lead editor of a special issue on Creative Robotics, The Fibreculture Journal (FCJ28, 2017), the first cross-disciplinary critical inquiry into dominant robotics practices. Petra was a Finalist in the National New Media Award 2012, Gallery of Modern Art (GOMA) Brisbane, and was awarded a number of international artist residencies, incl. at Ars Electronica Futurelab, AT. In 2015, she founded the Machine Movement Lab (MML) project, together with Rob Saunders (Leiden University, NL). Before joining Swinburne, Petra was a Senior Research Fellow at Falmouth University, UK (2018-2019), and Senior Lecturer at Art & Design, University of New South Wales (2009-2020), where she was Director of Postgraduate Research, and Deputy Director of the Creative Robotics Lab, National Institute for Experimental Arts (NIEA).

Michael McMahon

Michael McMahon is Professor in Film and Television. He is a screen content producer and founder and first Executive Chairman of Matchbox Pictures Pty Ltd. and has held a range of management and legal positions as well as board appointments including Screen Tasmania and Film Victoria. His film credits include Sadness, The Coming Back Out Again Ball, The Home Song Stories, Lou, Cut Snake and Ali’s Wedding. His television credits include Call Me Mum, Saved, The Slap and series 1 of Nowhere Boys. Michael was presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award by Screen Producers Australia in 2018.

Jock Given

Jock Given researches, writes and teaches about media and communications policy, business, law and history. His work has been published in Telecommunications Policy, Journal of Information Policy, Media and Communication, Business History, Media History, Australian Economic History Review, Historical Journal of Film Radio and Television and Historical Records of Australian Science. His radio documentaries the Crawfords and Television and Ernest Fisk and Wireless were broadcast by ABC Radio National's Hindsight program in 2014 and 2012. He is also a founding associate editor of International Journal of Digital Television (Intellect).

Daniel Golding

Daniel Golding is a Lecturer in Media and Communications and is interested in the intersection of media history, cinema, videogames, and music. He co-hosts a podcast about film music called Art of the Score, and his channel has achieved almost one million views. He was the Director of the Freeplay Independent Games Festival (2014-17), and his academic publications include Game Changers: From Minecraft to Misogyny, the Fight for the Future of Videogames (with Leena van Deventer, 2016), Star Wars After Lucas (2019) and he has published articles on VR, cinema, and videogame.

Karen Hughes

Karen Hughes is Associate Professor in Indigenous Studies and History. She is the recipient of the 70th Anniversary 2020 Fulbright Scholar Award in Honour of Jill Kerr Conway. Her project tells the story of Indigenous Australian WW2 brides in the USA. Karen’s research embraces the intersecting fields of history, anthropology and gender studies with a focus on Indigenous and minority histories in Australia and North America. She is currently completing a project with the Ngarrindjeri community of South Australia, to preserve significant photographic and other heritage in an accessible interactive record for members of the Stolen Generations and their descendants, supported by the Stolen Generations Community Repatriation fund, South Australian Government. Recognised for the quality and impact of her research in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander History, Karen has been awarded a 2019 and Research Impact Award (Swinburne), a 2010 Excellence in Teaching Award (Monash) and the 2012 Mary Bennet Award for Women’s History, among other achievements. Before entering academia Karen was an accomplished journalist and documentary filmmaker and she incorporates these attributes into her research and teaching.
Portrait of Mia Lindgren

Mia Lindgren

Mia Lindgren is Dean of Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities at Swinburne University of Technology. Her work explores aesthetics and production practices of long form audio storytelling, such as podcasts and radio documentary, in the intersection between health, journalism, and audio narratives. She is chief investigator on two ARC discovery and linkage grants, and two NHMRC projects. Her current ARC project takes a practice-based research approach to experimenting with audio technologies and storytelling devises in reporting of antimicrobial resistance (AMR), also known as superbugs. Mia is co-editor of Radio Journal: International Studies in Broadcast and Audio Media (Q1-ranked; Intellect, UK) and the Routledge Companion to Radio Studies (2021).

Flavia Marcello

Flavia comes to Swinburne after a varied teaching career at Deakin and Melbourne Universities and Temple University's Rome Campus. While living and working in Rome she developed her expertise on the city and its 2000 + years of history, particularly in the architecture and urban planning of the Italian Fascist period. Her areas of research include: exhibitions, architectural ephemera, spatial practice, architecture as an integral element of urban space, the political uses of the Classical tradition, manifestations of fascist and anti-fascist ideology in monuments and public space. She has just finished a biography of Italian architect Giuseppe Pagano. Most recently, she has been exploring the use of virtual reality as a method for architectural history. She also conducts action research in the role of design to improve health outcomes. Design studios are used to explore new paradigms for aged care, in particular for people with dementia.

John McCormick

John McCormick is a technology-based artist and researcher. He is Lecturer in Interactive Media at Swinburne teaching in the areas of Previsualization and Mixed Reality. His areas of interest include human-robot interaction, artificial intelligence, augmented, virtual and mixed realities, human movement and artificial neural networks. He has collaborated on works worldwide, including at peak festivals ISEA, ZERO1SJ, SIGGRAPH, Melbourne Festival, Venice Biennale, Siggraph Asia, Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) London, Ars Electronica and Art Science Museum Singapore.

Max Schleser

Max Schleser is Senior Lecturer in Film and Television, Co-Founder of the Mobile Innovation Network & Association and Screening Director of the International Mobile Innovation Screening & Festival. Max’s research expertise are Immersive Media with a focus on Cinematic VR and interactive filmmaking. His experimental films, moving-image arts, cinematic VR projects and community-engaged documentaries are screened at film festivals. exhibited in galleries and museums, and broadcast on TV and online. He conceptualised and conducted digital storytelling workshops for a number of city councils in Australia, New Zealand and the UK.
MINA: www.mina.pro
Max’s show-reel: www.schleser.nz | Behance

Simone Taffe

Simone Taffe is Professor in Communication Design. Simone worked as a graphic designer and design manager for over fifteen years, including managing the City of Melbourne’s design department. Simone was instrumental in establishing the Swinburne Design Factory, providing an international authentic learning platform for multi-disciplined student teams. Her students work with genuine clients and real-world design scenarios, including branding, websites, games and service designs, so that they are equipped to excel in the workplace. Simone's research is in co-design and end-user participation in the design process.

James Verdon

James Verdon is Head of Film and Animation. His creative practice spans video installation, moving image for theatre and performance, broadcast television, and experimental film. His current research examines the nexus between the real and screen-based representations of reality, particularly focussing on the technological mediation of this relationship. Verdon has exhibited screen-based work at numerous international venues including University of Southern California, Goethe-Institut in Berlin, and the Bangkok International Film Festival, and nationally at a wide range of venues including the National Gallery of Victoria, The Australian Centre for the Moving Image, Melbourne Museum, and The Australian Centre for Photography.

Cynde Moya

Dr Cynde Moya directs the Digital Heritage Lab in the Centre for Transformative Media Technologies. The Lab is a collection of working vintage computer hardware, software, games, and media art. The lab also has facilities to make disk images for use in emulators, and compare the emulated content to it running on the original equipment. This lab was originally set up by Dr Denise de Vries, and is managed by Prof Melanie Swalwell. We welcome collaborations with Swinburne teachers and students interested in learning more about hands-on vintage computing. Dr Moya is active with the Software Preservation Network, and was elected to serve on the 2021 Coordinating Committee. She also works with SPN’s affiliate projects, Emulation-as-a-Service (EaaS) and Emulation-as-a-Service Infrastructure (EAASI). She is a member of the Australian Computer Museum Society (ACMS) Collections and Cataloguing Subcommittee. Previously, she served as Librarian/Archivist, Collectons Manager, and then Manager of the Software Preservation Lab at Living Computers: Museum + Labs in Seattle, Washington.

Rob Saunders

Rob Saunders is Associate Professor in the Leiden Institute of Advanced Computer Science (LIACS). Saunders studied Artificial Intelligence at The University of Edinburgh and received his Ph.D. in Architecture from The University of Sydney. His research in Computational Creativity explores the role of intrinsic motivation, emergent languages and physical embodiment in the computational modelling of creative processes, creative individuals and creative societies. His collaborative robotic art practice provides a platform for knowledge mobilisation by materially engaging audiences in questions of machine creativity. He is a founding member of the Association of Computational Creativity.

Joshua Batty

Joshua Batty is a creative coder: artist and musician specialising in developing realtime interactive audiovisual environments. He co-founded the Rust creative coding framework nannou alongside his creative partner Mitchell Nordine with whom he runs MindBuffer. His work combines many disciplines to work at the intersection of art and technology including software development, music composition, sound design, interaction design, generative systems, lighting, visuals, industrial design, and robotics. He has performed/collaborated with artists such as Robert Henke, Playmodes, Augmentl, and Rob Clouth, and have performed at festivals such as Burning Man (Nevada), Resonate (Belgrade), and White Night (Melbourne).

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