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Mr David Thomas

Programme Leader Fashion Design

School of Arts and Digital Industries

An active researcher and design consultant, focusing on the development and celebration of creativity via commercial outcomes

    David is an active researcher and design consultant who focus on the development of creativity via commercialisation.

    David Thomas teaches Fashion Design 

    Jill’s film awards include best documentary for My Private Life (2014) at Athens International Film & video Festival, USA in 2015; best feature documentary for Small Town Girl at the Filmdirecting4Women Film Festival, London, in 2010; best UK Documentary for Small Town Girl at the British Film Festival in Los Angeles, in 2009; Jury award for Fool's Gold at the Athens International Film and Video Festival, Ohio, USA in 2003 and best fiction film for her first fiction film, I'm in Heaven, 1990 at the Huesca Film Festival in Spain. Her films are in numerous international collections. 

    Jill’s filmThe Border Crossing(2011) is an exploration of the cinematic representation of subjectivity and autobiography through place, memory and identity. It won an award at the Athens International Film and Video Festival, USA. She was a jury member at the London Feminist Film Festival in 2012 and her most recent film My Private Life II (2015) is the second part in a trilogy of autobiographical films about the lasting effect of secrets on her Jewish family history. She is currently working on Journey to the South,a cinematic exploration of memory, history and subjectivity in a small village, Castellar, on the border of Italy near the French Riviera.


    Jill recently co-edited the book:  Truth, Dare or Promise: Art and Documentary Revisited   (2013) published by Cambridge Scholars. She was author of the chapter: The Border Crossing: Experiments in the Cinematic Representation of Memory

    With an international reach, including contributors who are both practitioners and theorists, the book maps out developments in art and documentary, covering themes that include explorations of personal experience and representations of the past, while examining interactive galleries and the cinematic space.  

    She is a member of the Editorial Board of Journal of Media Practice.


    My Private Life II – the second film in her trilogy, My Private Life. A split screen film reworking the narrative structure and footage in My Private Life as ‘found footage’. Video. 25 minutes. 2015

    My Private Life - An experimental autoethnographical documentary exploring memory and contested identity in her Jewish family. Video. 63 minutes. 2014.

    The Border Crossing - An experimental autobiographical documentary exploring place, memory and identity in the Basque country.  Video 47 minutes. 2011.

    Next Year In Lerin - Documentary about Macedonian children exiled from Greece since the civil war.  Video. 45 minutes. (2000) Updated 2010.

    Not Reconciled (Irreconciliados) - Rosa and Carlos, the voices of ghosts of young republicans from the Spanish civil war roam the ruins of Belchite in northern Spain. Video. 41 minutes. 2009

    Small Town Girl - A documentary shot over 5 years about 3 young girls growing up in Nelson and Frome, two small run-down towns in England. Video. 82 minutes. 2007.

    Lost in Gainesville - Hector was eight when his father brought him to Gainesville, in the heart of the American south. Olga was twelve when her father swam the Rio Grande with her on his back. Thomas was sixteen when his mother put him on a bus alone, with a bag of tacos for the 2000 mile journey. ‘Lost in Gainesville’ retraces their journey, as they tell their stories of growing up amongst lost hopes and dreams, in a town where work has dried up, where fascists march against them and where rich whites live out lives of faded glory.Video. 60 minutes. 2005.

    Spirits (experimental) - shot on an unspoilt coast of Greece using fragmented slow-motion close-ups and sound, an exploration of fear and violence when the parallel worlds of humans and insects collide.Video. 5 minutes. 2003.

    Fool’s Gold - Documentary about Myra who is part Cherokee. She works as a cleaner in the local hotel in Dahlonega Georgia where gold was discovered and the Cherokees were deported in ‘The Trail of Tears’. While others cash in on the gold heritage Myra struggles with poverty. Video. 55 minutes. 2002.

    Killing Time - Experimental drama - one woman and a boys’ isolation from city life. Video. 3 minutes. 2000.

    Assault - Drama - a woman is betrayed by her lover. 16mm. 11 minutes. 1996.

    Skin Deep - Documentary about the life of the director’s Jewish Romanian grandmother.16mm. 40 minutes. 1996.

    Secret Heart - Documentary about four young women with learning difficulties and their music.16mm. 25 minutes. 1994.

    Exiles - Documentary about three Jewish women refugees living in a Jewish old people’s home in North London.16mm. 45 minutes. 1991.

    I’m In Heaven - Drama about a Jewish woman estranged from her orthodox family.16mm. 30 minutes. 1989.

    Debacle - An experimental film exploring the conventions of narrative embodied in the ‘thriller’ genre.16mm. 40 minutes. 1976.

    Collections (selection)

    ·       University of Manitoba, Canada

    ·       Athens University, Greece

    ·       Sebina Open Library, Sardinia

    ·       Leeds University, UK

    ·       University of East London Library, UK

    ·       The Imperial War Museum, UK

    ·       The Runnymede Trust, UK

    ·       Alaska Museum of Film & Video, USA

    ·       The Naval War College, USA

    ·       Ohio State University, USA

    ·       University of South Florida Library, USA

    ·       University of Arizona, USA


    My Private Life: Honorable Mention for Documentary Feature - Athens International Film Festival, Ohio, USA. 2014 

    The Border Crossing: Award for Documentary Feature - Athens International Film Festival, Ohio, USA. 2012.

    Small Town Girl: Best Documentary Feature - Filmdirecting4Women Women's Film Festival, London. 2010.

    Not Reconciled: Special Mention - Granada Festival of Film, Spain. 2010

    Small Town Girl: Best UK Documentary British Film Festival, Los Angeles. 2009 Nominated best UK Documentary Swansea Bay Film Festival. 2008.

    Fool’s Gold: Jury award, Athens International Film & Video Festival, Athens, Ohio, USA 2003; Audience Award Best American Folk Film, Dahlonega International Film Festival, Georgia, USA. 2003. Audience Award Best Documentary Feature, Downstream International Film Festival, Georgia, USA. 2002.

    Co-editor and author of Truth, Dare or Promise: Art and Documentary Revisited, with McLaughlin, C., and Pearce, G., 2013, Cambridge Scholars.

    Chapter author: The Border Crossing: Experiments in the Cinematic Representation of Memory in Daniels, J., McLaughlin, C., and Pearce, G., eds. Truth, Dare or Promise: Art and Documentary Revisited, 2013   Cambridge Scholars

    Journal of Media Practice – Report on Visible Evidence XVII in Istanbul, Turkey. 2011

    Journal of Media Practice – Report on Visible Evidence IV in Bochum, Germany. 2008.

    Permanent Revolution. - Film Review of – ‘4 months, 3 weeks, 2 days’. 2008.

    Article on ‘Cinema Action’ for the Encyclopedia of the Documentary Film –editor Ian Aitken, Routledge. 2006

    Article on ‘Sheffield Film Coop’ for the Encyclopedia of the Documentary Film – editor Ian Aitken, Routledge 2006.

    ‘Anthropology Today’ April 2002 . Review of the Taiwan Ethnographic Film Festival held in 2001. 2002.

    Conference Presentations

    AHRC Commons at York University. Presentation of Film practice in Film Zone and Paper on practice and theory in the Academy in Debate Zone.

    Journal of Media Practice/MeCCSA Practice Symposium, University of South Bank, London: Future Screens. Paper: Blurred Boundaries: Remediation of Found Footage in Experimental Documentary Filmmaking. 2016.

    MeCCSA annual conference at Christchurch, Christchurch, University of Canterbury - Paper: Fluid Boundaries and the Democratization of Screening Spaces. 2016

    Symposium at University of Brighton, Autoethnography: Learning from Stories. Paper: My Private Life: Autoethnography in the Experimental Autobiographical Documentary Film. 2015.

    Visible Evidence Documentary Conference XX – Stockholm, Sweden. Paper: ‘Experiential Communities of Memory:  strategies in mediating witness testimony in history and national identity’, and  co-organisor of workshop: ‘Art and Documentary’. 2013.

     MeCCSA – University of Bedfordshire. Paper: ‘The Cinematic Representation of Memory in the Autobiographical Documentary’& Screening of The Border Crossing. 2012.

    Visible Evidence Documentary Conference XIX – Australian National University, Canberra, Australia. Paper: ‘Trauma and Silence: strategies of mediating trauma and silence in the aftermath of civil war'. 2012

    Parallax Views – Moving Image Research Centre, University of East London. Paper: ‘Experiential Communities of Memory:  strategies in mediating witness testimony in history and national identity’. 2012.

    UEL Research & Knowledge Exchange Conference, University of East London.Paper: ‘The Cinematic Representation of Memory in the Autobiographical Documentary’ . 2012.

    Interrogating Trauma in the Humanities, University of Lincoln. Paper: ‘Trauma and Silence: strategies of mediating trauma and silence in the aftermath of civil war’.2012 - Doc Now Documentary Conference, Birkbeck College, University of London. Paper: ‘Trauma and Silence: strategies of mediating trauma and silence in the aftermath of civil war’.2012.

    Memory and Screens Conference, Birkbeck College, University of London. Paper and Screening: The Border Crossing. 2012.

    Crossroads in Cultural Studies, Paris, France. Paper: ‘Problems of the Cinematic Representation of the Self in the Autobiographical Documentary.’ 2012.

    Film and Media Conference - Birkbeck College, University of London. Paper on 'Autobiography in Documentary Films'. 2011.

    Visible Evidence Documentary Conference, New York. Paper on 'Autobiography in  Documentary Films'. 2011.

    Conference on Memory and Gender - Birkbeck College, University of London. Paper and presentation of 'Not Reconciled'. 2010.

    Visible Evidence Documentary Conference, Istanbul.  Paper on 'Minitorian Discourse in the Age of the Internet'. 2010.

    Conference on Memory and Forgetting, Kent University. Paper on ‘Memory and Forgetting in Belchite, Aragon, Northern Spain.’ 2008.

    Visible Evidence Conference, Lincoln University, UK. Paper on ‘Longitudinal Documentary.’ 2008.

    MeCCSA, Cardiff University – paper on ‘Identity and Place’. 2008.

    ‘Macedonia-Macedonias’: Changing Contexts in the Changing Balkans. The Centre for South-East European Studies, School of Slavonic and East. Screening of Next Year in Lerin.

    European Studies, University College London; Presentation on ‘Macedonian Child Refugees during the Greek Civil War’ 2002.

    Intersecting Times: "The Work of Memory In South Eastern Europe, Swansea, Wales. Presentation and Screening of ‘Next Year in Lerin’. 2001.

    Association for the Study of Nationalities, World Convention, New York, USA Presentation and Screening of ‘Next Year in Lerin’. 2001


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    Film Programme

    MA Film MS7534 Thesis

    MA Film MS7505 Narrative Cinemas

    BA Film

    3rd Year Film Thesis MS6201

    2nd Year Film, History, Memory MS5203

    1st Year Cinematics 1