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About Dr Tracy Piper-Wright

With a background in Fine Art installation and video practice, Tracy joined the University of Chester in 2014 to teach on the BA Photography programme.  She takes an experimental approach to image making, often using outdated technologies, discarded materials and odd processes to create her work.  She is a keen advocate of daily creativity and has been taking a photo a day since 2011!


I teach on all levels of the BA Photography programme, leading modules in theory and practice, and contribute to the MA Fine Art and MA Design programmes.  I am interested in the relationship between contextual studies and creative practice in HE education, and in exploring ways in which students can engage effectively with the critical contexts of their subject.

As Deputy Head of Art and Design I work closely with colleagues in the seven undergraduate programmes in the department to develop initiatives for collaboration and cross-disciplinary working often involving external partners.  These initiatives are designed to support students’ sense of belonging and enhance their critical thinking and employability skills. I am responsible for student engagement and voice which entails working closely with student partners to develop good communication and feedback loops which enhance student satisfaction.

External Examiner & Advisory Roles

  • Sept 2020 – to date: FdA Contemporary Photographic Practices at UCEN Manchester, validated by Manchester Metropolitan University.
  • 8th May 2019: External Academic on Validation Panel for BA Hons Photography (University of Surrey award) Farnborough College of Technology, Hampshire UK
  • Jan 2012 – Sept 2014: External Examiner for BA Hons Fine Art at St Helens College


My research investigates the culture of photography, in particular its technological developments and everyday use.  In this context I repurpose old photographic media and technologies and explore the conventions of amateur photography through working with vernacular archives.  My current research project, In Pursuit of Error, is an ethnographic study of photographic ‘mistakes’ in the work of contemporary photographers and photography culture.  The project tests the conventions of photographic representation and what photography is or should be, and proposes an ‘aesthetics of chance’ as a valuable aspect of an embodied artistic practice.

From 2013-2015 I was Lead Researcher on Show and Tell, a Digital R&D Fund for the Arts research project funded by Nesta, Arts Council England and the AHRC. This collaborative research project explored how digital technology could be used to develop participation and engagement with the arts for a wider audience. 

I am the Research Coordinator for the School of Arts and Media at University of Chester and convene the Chester Centre for Research in Arts and Media (CCRAM) as part of this role.

My main focus is facilitating regular networking events for colleagues in Music, Performing Arts, Media and Art and Design disciplines and providing development opportunities for early career, emerging and new researchers in the School.

I am member of the Vitae Researcher Networks Working Group which supports the development and maintenance of researcher networks and communities in HEIs by sharing good practice and developing resources and initiatives.

Editorial positions and Peer review

I am on the Editorial Board of the academic journal MAI: Feminism and Visual Culture which was established in 2018.  MAI provides a free open-access publication forum for feminist scholars, writers, artists and activists who address visual culture at large.  The journal is supported by University of Gothenburg, Sweden and is registered in the Norwegian Register for Scientific Journals, Series and Publishers.

  • 2020: Invited Peer Reviewer for Rutten, E, Kelly, C, Kemper, J (eds) Imperfections: Studies in Mistakes, Flaws, and Failures, Bloomsbury, Thinking I Media series (series editors Pisters, P, Herzogenrath, B) – book proposal
  • 2018: Invited Peer reviewer for Special Issue of Fusion Journal (14): Intersections in Film and Media Studies
  • 2016: Invited Peer Reviewer for R. A. Earnshaw (2016) Research and Development in Art, Design and Creativity, Heidelberg, Springer International Publishing ISBN 978-3-319-33004-4
  • 2016 – to date: Peer Reviewer for The International Journal of the Image and The International Journal of Arts Theory and History.

Published Work

Chapters in edited books

Piper-Wright, T (2020) ‘Between Presence and Program: The Photographic Error as Counterculture’, in Earnshaw R.A. Liggett S. Excell P.S. and Thalmann D (eds) Technology, Design and the Arts –Opportunities and Challenges, Springer, Cham, Switzerland. pp.139-158 ISBN 978-3-030-42096-3

Piper-Wright, T (2017) ‘Using Mobile Technology to facilitate Engagement with the Arts for Children with Autism and their Families’, in Earnshaw, R (2017) Art, Design and Technology: Collaboration and Implementation, Heidelberg, Springer International Publishing pp.47-56 ISBN 978-3-319-58121-7

Piper-Wright, T (2013) ‘That’s the Story of My Life: Daily photography as a Reflexive Practice’, in Carson, J, Miller, R and Wilkie, T (eds) (2013) The Reflexive Photographer, Museums Etc, Edinburgh, pp.214-251 ISBN 9781907697944

Peer reviewed journal articles

Piper-Wright, T (2021, forthcoming) ‘A Trace of Actions Unseen: The Photographic Error as Photography ‘in performance’, Revista de História de Arte - Série W. No.9/2020 ISSN:2182-3294

Piper-Wright, T (2018) ‘Neither the One nor the Other: Photographic Errors - Subjectivity, Subversion and the In-Between, MAI: Feminism and Visual Culture, Issue 1, May 2018 ISSN: 2003-1671

Piper-Wright, T (2012) Review of The Routledge Companion to Research in the Art, Networks Issue 18, ADM-HEA July 2012. Read the review here

Piper-Wright, T (2010) ‘Embracing Uncertainty’, Review of the Annual Conference 2010, CHArt Newsletter. Visit the Chart website here

Keynote/Invited Speaker

Piper-Wright, T (2019) ‘Another way of (not) knowing: The Photographic Error as Disruptive Visual Practice’, presented at Photography and the Method of Art, an International invited panel taking place during the Uses of Aesthetics Conference, Karlstad University Sweden 12th – 14th September 2019

Published conference contributions

Piper-Wright, T (2016) ‘The Intermittent Image’ in Essay Book of the Post Screen: International Festival of Art, New Media and Cybercultures, CIEBA-FBAUL and Edições Universitárias Lusófonas, pp76-85 ISBN 978-989-8771-56-8

Other refereed and/or non- published conference contributions

Piper-Wright, T (2018) ‘A Trace of Actions Unseen: The Photographic Error as Photography ‘in performance’ presented at Times and Movements of the Image, International Conference 15-16 November 2018 ESAD.CR, Caldas da Rainha & Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, Universidade NOVA de Lisboa, Lisbon, Portugal

Piper-Wright, T (2018) ‘Living Images: The Photographic Error as Embodied Knowledge’ presented at Creative Image: Ways of Seeing, Representing and Reshaping Reality, First International Conference of the Visual Research Network, 26-27 September 2018, Manchester University, UK

Piper-Wright, T (2018) ‘The value of uncertainty: The photographic error as embodied knowledge’ presented at Helsinki Photomedia – Reconsidering The “Post-Truth Condition”: Epistemologies Of The Photographic Image, 26-28 March 2018, Aalto University, Helsinki, Finland

Piper-Wright, T (2016) ‘The Intermittent Image’ presented at Post-Screen: International Festival of Art, New Media and Cybercultures, 17-18 November 2016, Faculty of Fine Arts, University of Lisbon, Lisbon Portugal

Piper-Wright, T (2015) ‘In Pursuit of Error’ presented at Carbon Meets Silicon: Arts Expo of theInternet Technologies and Applications Conference, 8-11 September 2015, Oriel Sycharth, Glyndwr University

Piper-Wright, T (2012) ‘Narrative aesthetic’ as a new model for considering time in relation to public art practice’ paper presented at ‘Duration: Temporality in Public Art Practice’ Intersections Conference, 29-31 March 2012 Culture Lab, Newcastle University

Piper-Wright, T (2010) ‘Life after Death: The relevance of digital technologies for entry into the ‘canon’ of temporary, ephemeral and non-gallery sited art works’, paper presented at Technology and the Death of Art History’, The Computers and the History of Art (CHArt) Annual Conference, 10th – 11th November 2010, British Computer Society, London

Piper-Wright, T (2009) ‘Transitions and limens: the fugitive object of temporary outdoor installation art’ paper presented at Media, Communication and Cultural Studies Association, (MeCCSA) Postgraduate Network Annual Conference, 8th – 9th July, 2009 Bangor University

Other publications

Piper-Wright, T (2018) ‘In Pursuit of Error’, Propeller #1 Mancha Jan 2018

Piper-Wright, T) (2017) ‘The Sierra Street View Club’, Source: The Photographic Review, Issue 90, Summer 2017 pp.68

Piper-Wright, T (2016) ‘Travelling the Imaginary Landscape’, catalogue essay for the exhibition Death Returned Her to Rags, by Alexe Dilworth, shown at Gallery Fzkke, Euskirchen nr Cologne, Germany 08 July – 21 August 2016

Bright, R., Logan, C., Piper-Wright, T (2015) Circus Starr: App for Autistic Audiences - Research and Development Report, London: Nesta

Piper-Wright, T (2012) ‘Decoding the Digital Universe’ in Koodi-Code, HESA Inprint, Issue 20, September 2012, pp.18-21

Piper-Wright, T (2010) ‘And Counting 3pm’, Hap Hazard’, ‘White Umbrellas’ in Hazard MMX: Reaction, curated by Critical Writing Collective, writers responding to live art during Hazard MMX a one day performance festival curated by Hab and Greenroom, 17th July 2010, Manchester.


2020 Nice to see you, to see you nice, CASC Gallery, Chester 

2017 Reality Removed, World of Glass, St Helens

2017 Aide-Memoire - Everyday Aesthetics: Visual Conversations, Pop-up exhibition space, Chester

2015 Carbon Meets Silicon, Oriel Sycharth, Wrexham

2015 Pilgrimage Film Screening, St Asaph Cathedral, St Asaph, Wales

2013 ‘I think I’ve been here before’, Photographic series shown during Helfa Gelf, School of Art & Design, Glyndwr University

2012 Play Serious, PARCNW Research into Practice Symposium, 2022NQ, Manchester,

2012 Redacted’, Photographic installations shown at Helfa Gelf, School of Art & Design, Glyndwr University

2012 F/ocal Length, Artists film and video exhibition, Oriel Sycharth, Wrexham

2011 Drawing Connections, Drawing exhibition, Siena Art Institute, Siena, Italy

2008 ‘Where are you going, Where have you been?’ participatory public art project for Roam the Rows, commissioned by Chester Performs, Chester

2008 Equilibrium, site specific installation project in Wales and Scottish Highlands, for Inside Out, Llanarmon D.C. Wales


  • Professional Development Course for External Examiners, Advance HE 2020
  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy 2014
  • PhD, ‘Artefact, Situation, Encounter: Towards a New Aesthetics of Temporary Outdoor Installation Art.', University of Wales 2011
  • PGCE PCET, Shrewsbury College of Arts & Technology 2006
  • BA Hons Fine Art, North Wales School of Art & Design, Wrexham 2005
  • BA Hons English & Philosophy University of Hull 1995