Projects per year
Julian Knowles is an academic specialising in the creative applications of new and emerging technologies. His research spans the fields of media arts, music, sound design and experimental media.
His academic career began in 1994 when was appointed on the foundation staff to establish a new degree at the University of Western Sydney. In this role Julian established a highly successful major in sound technologies and a new cross disciplinary Bachelor of Electronic Arts program, both of which produced many leading Australian practitioners. Within a period of 8 years he was appointed to the position of Head of the School of Contemporary Arts, leading a cluster of Music, Theatre, Dance and Visual Arts. This began a period of service in senior academic leadership positions that has spanned 16 years.
In 2005 he was appointed to the position of Professor of Music and Head, School of Music and Drama at the University of Wollongong where he was chair of the Faculty Academic Board and a founding member of the Sonic Arts Research Network. In 2007 he took up his position of Professor and Portfolio Director - Art and Design, Music, Dance (Head of School) in the Creative Industries Faculty at Queensland University of Technology where he was responsible for the strategic leadership of a school with 40 FTE staff. As a member of the Creative Industries Faculty Executive, he was also a member of the Strategic Research Leadership Group that included representation from the ARC Centre for Excellence in Creative Industries.
Alongside this role, he became an integral member of the leadership team for the 2010 Co-Operative Research Centre (CRC) in Arts and Entertainment Futures bid. This $40m bid, led by QUT and chaired by Michael Lynch CBE AM, brought together more than 30 industry partners (including the ABC, Sydney Opera House, the Australia Council for the Arts, Brisbane Festival, Queensland Performing Arts Centre, Circa) reached formal interview stage and remains the only arts based bid to progress to the final stages of selection of a CRC round. Julian was named as the research leader for the ‘Form and Content Innovation’ program and also as Interim Chief Executive Officer. He played a key role in securing partner contributions and in conceptualising the research programs.
In 2011, he took up a strategic research development role as Research Leader: Creative Arts and Writing in the Creative Industries Faculty at QUT. In this role he steered the faculty’s ERA submission in the 19 Codes and established a new 18 member research cluster- the Creative Practices Research Group across Visual Arts, Media Arts, Design, Music and Theatre.
In 2013, he was appointed to the position of Professor of Music and Media in the Faculty of Arts at Macquarie University, where he co-established the Creative Ecologies Lab Research Group and took up the role as leader for FOR Code 19. In 2015 he was appointed to the role of Associate Dean (International) in the Faculty of Arts.
Julian’s sustained program of practice-based research demonstrates a long-standing, high-level engagement with technologically-mediated sound practices and the relationships between audio-visual media. This has resulted in the creation of more than 50 innovative works that have been disseminated by high profile record labels, broadcasters and art institutions internationally. In the course of his career Julian has worked with many of Australia’s best-known sound artists and has been a member of the Australian electro-environmental audio group Social Interiors since the mid 1990s. As a solo artist, Julian’s music and audio/visual works have been presented at events and venues such as the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Experimental Intermedia in New York City, What is Music?, Australian Perspecta, Liquid Architecture, the Melbourne International Film Festival and the Sydney Opera House.
His creative research outputs have international reach and he is an acknowledged expert in practice-led research. His work is published and available internationally via a number of record labels and has received numerous reviews in both the national and international press. His work receives frequent broadcasts internationally and he has been invited to perform live to air for ABC Radio, BBC Radio and many other specialist radio programs. He has been a frequent recipient of competitive grants from the Australia Council for the Arts, the Arts NSW/Create NSW and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, including composer commissions, residencies, development, performance, international touring, and innovative projects grants.
From 2007-2013, Julian was Chair of Q Music, the peak body for the music industry in Queensland. As part of that role, he provided expert advice to, and participated in, a range of music export initiatives for the Queensland Government. Under his tenure, he led the organisation through a tripling of its turnover and its emergence as a flagship organisation for the Queensland Government. From 2003-2007, Julian was appointed by the Minister for the Arts to the Music Board of the Australia Council for the Arts. Significant past directorships include the Sydney Olympic Park Arts Development Advisory Panel and the Australian Network for Art and Technology. Since 2013, Julian has been Chair of MusicNSW, the peak body for the music industry in NSW.
Julian is a frequent keynote speaker and panel chair on issues relating to innovation in sound and music. In recent years, Julian has delivered the following keynote addresses at significant festivals, conferences and public lecture series ‘Circa 1979/Signal to Noise’, Sydney Festival 2010; ‘Sustainability in the Sound Arts in Australia’, Liquid Architecture 10, Sydney, 2009; ‘Music in Universities in the 21st Century: A Manifesto’, Music. Sound. Design Symposium, University of Technology Sydney 2008; ‘On-Air’, Vital Signs: Creative Practice and New Media Now Conference, RMIT, Australian Centre for Moving Image, Melbourne 2005; and ‘Aural Cinema and Laptop Pop: New Compositional Intentions’, ANU Centre for New Media Arts Public Lecture Series, National Museum of Australia, Canberra 2005.
Music, Doctor of Creative Arts, University of Technology Sydney
Music, Bachelor of Arts (Hons Class 1), University of Sydney
Chair, Music NSW, Music NSW1 Mar 2013 → …
Chair, Q Music10 Mar 2007 → 15 Jan 2013
Professor, Portfolio Director, Queensland University of Technology20 Jan 2007 → 20 Jan 2013
Professor and Head, School of Music and Drama, University of Wollongong1 Dec 2004 → 19 Jan 2007
Associate Professor and Head, School of Contemporary Arts, University of Western Sydney24 Jan 1994 → 30 Nov 2004
Research Output per year