The Studio for Transdisciplinary Arts Research (STAR) is an initiative of Professor Paul Thomas located in the Fine Arts area of University of New South Wales Faculty of Art and Design. STAR incorporates a conference series, symposiums, publications, workshops and various events.

Transdisciplinary Imaging Conferences

The transdisciplinary imaging conference was prefaced on the questions of what fine art was adding to the discourse of the image. The first Transdisciplinary Imaging Conference examined New Imaging: transdisciplinary strategies for art beyond the new media by focusing on the profound shift occurring in our understanding of postmodern media culture. Since the turn of the millennium the emphasis on mediation as technology and as opportunity for creative initiatives and for critique, has become increasingly normative and doctrinaire. The second conference looked at Interference as a strategy for art today as we’re saturated with images from all disciplines, whether it’s the creation of ‘beautiful visualisations’ for science, the torrent of images uploaded to social media services like Flickr, or the billions of queries made to vast visual data archives such as Google Images. These machinic interpretations of the visual and sensorial experience of the world are producing a new spectacle of media pollution. Machines are in many ways the new artists.

The third conference took place at the Pera Museum, Istanbul  26th – 28th June 2014

The fourth conference took place at Plymouth University, UK 1st – 3rd July 2016


STAR Education

Transdisciplinary Art Education works with the Leonardo Education and Arts Forum to explore new paradigms of teaching in relationship to questions being asked by science and technology.

Emerging technologies, social networking and a multi-layered world view call for a working model of transdisciplinary education in new curriculum for creative arts, design, and media education.  To address C21st challenges, fine art must explore transdisciplinary learning, teaching and assessment strategies synthesizing This project explores new knowledge creation situated across the transdisciplinary ‘art’/’science’/’technology’ divide and challenges traditional educational paradigms of segregated disciplinarity, increasingly subject to critical and creative contestation around ‘wicked problems’ involving ‘chance’, ‘discontinuity’ and ‘materiality’ (Foucault, 1976). The Project enables stakeholder (re)visioning of the role, activity and value of Art and Design Schools working at the intersection of Art, Science and Technology in a university context, disseminating case studies in new and innovative curriculum design and documentation to national and international Higher Education communities.


Paul Thomas