The Temporal Image Research Open Laboratory (TTIRoL)


The highlighted theme of Media Archaeology and Cognition will establish an interface between theory and practice in a newly established Temporal Image Research Laboratory (TTIRoL)

The-dqpb-lab is located within the TTIRoL Lab

The TTIRoL Lab


Temporal Image Research Open Lab will be led by Transtechnology Research and provide an interface for the intersection of practice and theory. It will generate and respond to new topics and concerns as they emerge from the highlighted research theme of media archaeology and cognition.

This laboratory will have as its focus the cognitive processes of ‘image’ perception and their impact on the cultural construction of meaning. Through theory, creative practice and the restaging of psychological experiments it will connect current preoccupations in cognitive science and media archaeology with ideas of temporality in relation to change in processes of technological mediations and human cognition.

It finds its creative and intellectual leitmotif in an understanding of the ‘image’ in the fullest sense of multi-sensory perception (Bergson) and the pioneering work of Rudolf Arnheim, Bela Bálázs and in particular Hugo Munsterberg’s ‘psychotechnological’ experimental work at Harvard. Munsterberg in particular is important for this laboratory in as much as his late work The Photoplay: A Psychological Study (1916) is considered to be one of the formative theories in understanding the cognitive aspects of cinema (Andrew, 1976).

TTIRoL will bring together experts in the creative arts, experimental psychology, cognitive science, cognitive robotics, neuroscience and the humanities to collectively address some important questions and opportunities posed by research into technology and perception in the audio-visual arts.

The expectation is that by forging a fully integrated humanities and scientific core of expertise we will be able to develop innovative theoretical insights that will inform future research into the effective exploitation of new delivery platforms for creative works, entertainment, education, research, therapy and well-being.


The research context to this proposal is (i) the large scale three year project ‘Technology, Exchange and Flow’ (2010-2013) by Blassnigg and Punt into the correlation between some kinds of advertising and industrial film and particular genres of short films, (ii) projects currently underway as part of the Marie Curie funded Cognovo ITN, in particular projects 6, 10, 22, 23, 24, (iii) the established practice research in photography, publishing (including curation), and audio visual productions in the School of Art and Media, (iv) the work in experimental Music in the Interdisciplinary Centre for Computer Music Research (ICCMR) and (v) the published and practice research on instrumental reality, the history and philosophy of technology and science, film theory and history, since 2006 at Transtechnology Research into audio-visual media and cognition.

Developmental Plan 2014/15
The foundational project ofthe TTIRoL will be the reconstruction of some of the scientific apparatus that Munsterberg developed at Harvard (some of which remain in their archive). We will restage some of Munsterberg?s experiments as well as revisiting his findings and evaluate these in the context of relevant research in cognitive science today. We will also modify experimental design and devise new scientific experiments to examine particular aspects of the effects of digital images based on the theoretical frameworks above. On the basis of this we will invite, supervise and commission new productions that respond to, and are informed by, the research in the laboratory and exploit the affective potential of the temporal image.

Developmental Plan 2015/2016/17
The laboratory will form an interdisciplinary locus to support funding applications to Marie Curie for an ITN, a large grant application to AHRC, and a contributory component in EPSRC and Horizon 2020 and European Research Council Network Grants. This will drive toward the objective of a self-sustaining referential research resource identified with the University of Plymouth.

Media Archaeology and Cognition Research Theme

Call for funded project proposals

 As you may know part of the research development strategy of the Media Archaeology and Cognition highlighted research theme we have established a small laboratory in order to:

(i)    restage some early psychological experiments that were influential in understanding the effects of cinema on perception (and subsequently shaping film form and film theory)

(ii)    to develop new creative interventions that draw on the behaviours, findings and implications of the Munsterberg laboratory established in Harvard at the turn of the 20th century.

Details of this have been presented at the poster workshop and are detailed below.

Over the past three months Martyn Woodward and others have been developing an annotated bibliography and literature network to kick-start the project.

This can be found at:

TTIRoL Annotated Bibliography (internal access only)

At the moment this is password protected and we are happy to share it internally but ask that this page is not made public yet to protect intellectual property. It can also be consulted in hard copy in the lab PSQ B322.

We have now been able to establish a small laboratory in Portland Square in room B322 and. we are now in a position to invite, supervise and commission new productions that respond to and are informed by the research in the laboratory and exploit the affective potential of the temporal image building on the work by Hugo Munsterberg.

Initially we hope to be able to fund 6-10 projects up to a maximum of £500 per project.

Funding can pay for materials and RA support but not buy-out. There is no restriction on the disciplinary locus of the proposal but there must be a plan for dissemination that may not necessarily be part of the project but is ultimately consistent with the REF criteria.

There is no proforma for responding to the call but it should include the normal information for all funding (research question, research context, research methods).

This can be done by email to me ( and I am happy to discuss and develop plans with you.

There are no deadlines and all proposals will be considered by members of the steering group:

Dr. Martha Blassnigg, Prof. Sue Denham, Dr. Hannah Drayson, Prof. Roger Malina, Prof. Eduardo Miranda, Prof. dr. Michael Punt, Dr. W. Simpson.