Ms Katy Macleod

School: School of Art and Architecture
Position: Reader


Katy Macleod ran Critical Studies, Fine Art at Exeter School of Art, University of Plymouth, from 1990-2007. From 1996–2000, she undertook research into 'student and supervisor experience of doctorates in Fine Art' and subsequently researched into doctoral submissions with Lin Holdridge, 2001-2003, (AHRB funded 2002-2003). Related publications include Macleod, K & Holdridge, L (Eds) (2005) Thinking Through Art reflections on art as research Routledge and 'Writing and the PhD in Fine Art' in Biggs, M & Karlsson, H(Eds) (2010) The Routledge Companion to Research in the Arts. Katy has extensive experience of examining in the UK at both undergraduate and graduate levels. She has started a third research investigation into PhDs in Fine Art. Recent research funded by Kingston University conducted in collaboration with Dr Neil Chapman, (PhD, "Protowork as Art's Expanded Writing Practice", University of Reading, 2010), was published in The Journal of Visual Art Practice, Vol. 13 Issue 2 June 2014.

Related links

Research expertise

Research in Fine Art Education, particularly ways of writing which develop expository and imaginative vitality in relation to the practices of Art. Over the last two decades research has focused on developing a body of critical writing on doctoral research projects in Fine Art. This research has two main areas of focus: the first expands knowledge of the complexity of artists' research methods; the second, which overlaps, develops understanding of the ways in which writing extends the intellectual and imaginative reach of art research.

Funded research projects include student and supervisor experience of MPhil and PhD research and investigation into PhD submissions (AHRC, 2000-2001) and latterly on artists' research practices and how these might contribute to university research environments (2009–2012).

Publications include: Macleod, K & Holdridge, L. 'Thinking Through Art reflections on art as research', Routledge, 2006 & 2007; Macleod, K & Holdridge, L. 'Writing and the PhD' in Biggs, M & Karlsson, H. 'The Routledge Companion to Research in the Arts', 2011.

Recent research has concentrated on artists' research methods during doctoral research: Macleod, K & Chapman, C 'The Journal of Visual Art Practice', Vol. 13 Issue 2 June 2014; also, research for keynote paper 'Theory: Practice', Cambridge School of Art Doctoral Research Symposium, July, 2016, (publication, 2017). Collaborative research projects led by Volker Eichelmann in CARC are ongoing (2014, 2015 and 2016).

Teaching areas & responsibilities

PhD supervision in Fine Art
PhD Research Training Programme, Fine Art

Research supervision
MPhil 'The Re-Positions of an Art Practice', Lawson-Smith, M, 1998
MPhil 'A Question of Influence', Austin, F, 2001
PhD 'Painting Silence', Clucas, G, 2001
PhD 'The Experience of Illustration', Jones, R, 2005
PhD 'Lefebvre and the Lived Space', Hawkins, P, 2006
PhD 'Rethinking absence: Art practice and the critical metaphysics of Jacques Derrida and Jacques Lacan', Roulstone, K, 2006
PhD 'Fragments From a Future Archive', Thompson, M, 2011
PhD 'The Performing Body in the Event of Writing: Lad Broke, Camp & Furnace, Liverpool, April 2012', Greenwood, M, 2012

Professional activity

  • 2012Examining, Royal College of Art, PhD
  • 2011University of Wales Institute, Cardiff
  • 2010Examining, University of Plymouth, PhD
  • 2008Examining, The Glasgow School of Art, PhD
  • 2008Examining, University of Dundee, PhD
  • 2008Internal Examining, Kingston University, PhD
  • 2007 - 2008Examining, UG & MA level, MA by Project, London Metropolitan University
  • 2007Examining, Royal College of Art, MPhil
  • 2006 - 2008Examining, UG & MA level, MRes Creative Practices, The Glasgow School of Art
  • 2006 - 2007Examining, Middlesex University, PhD
  • 2006University of Wales Institute, Cardiff, PhD
  • 2005Examining, University of Plymouth, PhD
  • 2005Examining, Dartington College of Arts, PhD
  • 2005Examining, University Institute of Technology, Dublin, MPhil
  • 2005Examining, Wimbledon College of Art, PhD
  • 2003Examining, Wimbledon College of Art, PhD
  • 2003 - 2004Examining, Royal College of Art, MPhil
  • 2002 - 2003Examining, Falmouth College of Arts, MPhil
  • 2001Examining, University Institute of East Anglia, PhD
  • 1999 - 2003Examining, UG & MA level, BA(Hons) Fine Art, Central St Martins, UAL
  • 1995 - 1998Examining, UG & MA level, BA(Hons) Fine Art, Southampton Institute
  • 1990 - 1996Examining, UG & MA level, BA(Hons) Fine Art, History & Theory, University of the West of England
  • 1990 - 1996Examining, UG & MA level, BA(Hons) Art & Design in Social Context, University of the West of England
  • 1985 - 1988Examining, UG & MA level, Diploma in Art & Design with Special Reference to Art & Technology
  • 1985 - 1988Examining, UG & MA level, Diploma in Museum Studies, Institute of Education, London University
  • 1985 - 1988Examining, UG & MA level, Diploma in Craft & Design Education

Educational and professional qualifications

  • 1992MEd The Creative Arts in Education University of Exeter
  • 1972PGCE History of Art University of Brighton
  • 1971BA(Hons) History of Art & English University of Leeds

Conferences & events

Research Project Leader
University of Plymouth funded research projects: History, Theory & Practice 1994–5;

Documentation of Artists' Work 1995-6; Qualitative Postgraduate Research in Art & Design 1999–2000;

Student and Supervisor experience of practice-based higher degree research and doctoral submissions in Fine Art 1996–2002

AHRC funded research
Methodological Models of Good Practice in Creative Practice Research Degrees 2002-2003

Conferences organised at the University of Plymouth
'The Relationship of Making to Writing: history, theory and practice', University of Plymouth & Partner Institutions (Critical Studies Working Group), 1998

Special Issue journal publication, POINT 7 Spring/Summer, 1999 'The Enactment of Thinking: creative practice research degrees', 2001

Special Issue journal publication, Journal of Visual Art Practice, Vol 2 Issue 2&3, 2002

Macleod, K & Holdridge, L 'The Doctorate in Fine Art: The importance of exemplars to the culture', International Journal of Art & Design Education, 23.2, 2004 pps 155-168

'Practice and Theory: related objects of thinking', Miles, M (Ed), 'New Practices, New Pedagogies', Routledge, 2005

Macleod, K & Holdridge, L 'The Enactment of Thinking' Special Issue, On-Site/In-Sight, Theoros III, Journal of Visual Art Practice, Vol. 4.2, 2005

Macleod, K & Holdridge, L 'Doctoral Art Practice in the UK', Bologna Handbook, European League of the Institutes of the Arts, (ELIA), 2004

Macleod, K & Holdridge, L 'Theory/Practice; a relationship in the making', European Journal of Arts Education, Vol III, Issue 2&3, 2001

Macleod, K Commissioned Foreword, 'In/Theory', Loughborough and de Montfort Universities, 2007

Macleod, K 'What would falsify an art practice? Research degrees in Fine Art', Swift, J (Ed) Broadside 5, University of Central Birmingham, 2000

Keynote Papers

University of Dundee, 'A Singular Encounter with Art Theorisation, A Speculation Concerning Art/Writing in the Context of Doctoral Research'

University for the Creative Arts, Process. Perception. Phenomena, Research Student Conference, 14 March, 2012, 'Art Research: the PhD in Fine Art as a site of contingent and contiguous relations'


Advisory work:
AHRC funded Research Review: Practice-Led Research in Art, Design and Architecture, 2005–2006
Development of postgraduate research cultures: Royal College of Art and University of Dundee
PhD research training, University of Plymouth

Research groups & programmes

Research supervision

External research supervision

  • ---- - 1998M, Lawson-Smith MPhil, The Re-Positions of an Art Practice
    'School of Fine Art, University of Plymouth
  • ---- - 2001F, Austin MPhil, A Question of Influence
    School of Fine Art, University of Plymouth
  • ---- - 2001G, Clucas PhD, Painting Silence
    School of Fine Art, University of Plymouth
  • ---- - 2005R, Jones PhD, The Experience of Illustration
    School of Fine Art, University of Plymouth
  • ---- - 2006P, Hawkins PhD, Lefebvre and the Lived Space
    School of Fine Art, University of Plymouth
  • ---- - 2006K, Roulstone PhD, Rethinking absence: art practice and the crit
    School of Fine Art, University of Plymouth
'Writing and the PhD in Fine Art' in Biggs, M & Karlsson, H(Eds) (2010) The Routledge Companion to Research in the Arts
Katy Mcleod
Excerpt from notes for a sound piece derived from research interviews 2010, 'we are publication', CARC, 2014/15