Personal profile


As the first university professor of Transdisciplinary Studies Coles is drawn to the emergent interface between art, design and architecture.

This interface is explored through the written word in the multiple-volume book series The Transdisciplinary Studio. Volume 1 was released in Spring 2012 by Sternberg Press, Berlin, and focused on Olafur Eliasson, Jorge Pardo, Konstantin Grcic and Åbäke. Volume 2 is currently at the pre-production stage.

With the founding of EP in 2013 Coles pursued the transdisciplinary at an editorial level. EP is the first critically underpinned series of publications that fluidly moves between art, design, and architecture. The series creates a discursive platform between popular magazines (“single play”) and academic journals (“long play”) by introducing the notion of the “extended play” into publishing: with thematically edited pocket books as median. EP1 ‘The Italian Avant-Garde: 1968-1976’ was released in 2013 and received strong reviews in the mainstream press (New York Times, Times Literary Supplement), specialist arts press (Domus, Icon) and academic journals (Journal of Design History, Design and Culture) alike (see Esteem). EP2 ‘Design Fiction’ was published in 2016, and EP3 ‘Post-Craft’ is to be released in 2017.

Research Expertise and Interests

Coles’ investigation into the dynamic relationship between disciplines in the arts commenced more than a decade ago with the book DesignArt released by Tate Publishing in 2005. This was followed by the critical anthology Design and Art (MIT Press/Whitechapel, 2007). Both books triggered exhibitions and conferences on the subject of “designart,” with Coles being widely acknowledged as leading research into this new field. The catalogues and published proceedings from these exhibitions and conferences all heavily cite the author and led to designart becoming a growing area of practice and academic research (see Esteem).

Research Degree Supervision

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  • Dynamic Inter-Disciplinary Relationship

Fingerprint Fingerprint is based on mining the text of the person's scientific documents to create an index of weighted terms, which defines the key subjects of each individual researcher.

Art Arts & Humanities
Designer Arts & Humanities
History Arts & Humanities
Fiction Arts & Humanities
The Beatles Arts & Humanities
Vilém Flusser Arts & Humanities
Umberto Eco Arts & Humanities
Theorists Arts & Humanities

Research Output 2014 2016

Design Fiction: EP Vol. 2

Coles, A. (ed.) Dec 2016 Berlin: Sternberg Press. 170 p. (EP)

Research output: Book/ReportBook

Vilém Flusser
Umberto Eco

Interview: Umberto Eco

Coles, A. Dec 2016 Design Fiction: EP Vol. 2 . Coles, A. (ed.). Berlin: Sternberg Press, Vol. 2, (Design Fiction; vol. 2)

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

The Art/Architecture Ping-Pong

Coles, A. 11 Apr 2016 Unspoken Places: Studio Olafur Eliasson. London: Thames & Hudson, p. 128-131 4 p.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

The Complete Designers' Lights II

Coles, A., Doze, P., Krzentowski, D., Rubini, C., Krzentowski, C. (ed.) & Krzentowski, D. (ed.) 2014 Zurich, Switzerland: JRP Ringier. 637 p.

Research output: Book/ReportBook


Activities 2017 2017

  • 1 Invited talk

Design,​ ​Archives​ ​and​ ​Genealogy

Coles, A. (Speaker), Dyer, J. (Speaker)
21 Oct 2017

Activity: Invited talk