Dr Michael Day

Senior Lecturer

Digital, Tech, Innovation & Business

Dr. Michael Day is an artist, researcher, lecturer, and occasional curator. He is interested in the ways that digital technologies can structure experience, and produces artworks that explore relationships between technology and agency.

My practice is interdisciplinary and uses a range of media and technologies, including digital media, sound, installation, electronics and print. I have exhibited and screened work in venues across the UK, in Europe, and internationally, including the exhibitions Possession at Bangkok Cultural and Arts Centre (2013), Deadpan Exchange VIII at Casa Mauud, Mexico City (2014), and Sluice__2015 at Oxo Tower Wharf, London (2015). I’ve participated in the digital art festivals FutureEverything in Manchester (2010) and Piksel in Bergen (2009), and have undertaken artist’s residencies with Hull Time-based Arts (2005) and PVA Medialab (2009) in the UK, and with Lademoen Kunstnerverksteder (2011) in Trondheim, Norway.

My curatorial practice began with my participation in the Sheffield-based HAG (Host Artist’s Group), co-developing and producing HAG exhibitions and screening programmes for four years until February 2008. During this time, I worked on HAG projects including Host 4: Cinema, a screening and DVD of short video works, Host 6: Beauty, a print project for the Sheffield Pavilion 2007, premiered at the Venice Biennale and Documenta XII, and Host 8: Observatory for the Art Sheffield 08: Yes / No / Other Options* citywide event.

In 2014, I was awarded a Vice-Chancellor’s Bursary to undertake Ph.D. study. My doctoral research was concerned with experiences of distractibility that are seen as common accompaniments to the widespread adoption of digital communications technologies, and how certain types of internet art become complicit with the ideological stances of the platforms they exist on. Can compulsive engagement with digital media best be seen as ‘information overload’, or as a desirable retreat into enjoyable technological distraction? How might the way digital systems are understood – as data streams or cloud processes – impact on the way we attend to them, or how they algorithmically attend to us?

Professional memberships and activities

  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy
  • Sheffield Creative Guild

Academic qualifications

  • PhD, Artistic Research into Distraction, Agency and the Internet, Sheffield Hallam University, 2018
  • MA in Fine Art, with Distinction, Sheffield Hallam University, 2006
  • BA (Hons) Interactive Arts, Newport School of Art & Design, 1996

Research interests

I am predominantly a practice-based researcher, using artistic research methodologies to explore questions of agency in relation to digital technology. I supervise research projects that cover a wide range of artistic practices and discourses, but specialise in those that have a connection with online or digital art contexts.


I teach across a range of modules on the undergraduate Fine Art award, and contribute to postgraduate research supervision.

  • Understanding and Researching Contemporary Art
  • Studio Practice & Context 1
  • Project Development and Professional Practice
  • Writing and Curating Contemporary Art



Testing, Testing: Dialogue (Book, co-edited, ISBN 978-1-84387-402-7), 2016

Testing, Testing: Prologue (Book, co-edited, ISBN 978-1-84387-399-0), 2016

Airplane Mode, in The Good Reader (Book, ISBN 978-1-910551-51), 2015

In The City (Book, ISBN 978-0-99303-621-7), 2014

It Was Never Going To Be Straightforward (Book, ISBN 978-0-95649-521-1), 2013

CNCPTN (Journal, ISSN 2047-8739), 2011

Transmission: Host, Artwords Press (Book, ISBN: 978-1-906441-10-4), 2008

The Sheffield Pavilion 2007, Cornerhouse Publications (Book and DVD, ISBN: 978-1-899926-86-0), 2007

Awards & Commissions

Making Ways Research and Development Award, 2017

Invisible Layers, co-commissioned by Tinsley Art Project, 2015

Vice Chancellor’s PhD Scholarship, Sheffield Hallam University, 2014

Lightworks Animation Commission, 2012

Arts Council England Grants for the Arts Award, 2011

Staffordshire University I-ACT Research Award, 2011

British Council Grant, 2007

Staffordshire University Research Award, 2007

Emerging Artists Residency and Commission, Hull Time Based Arts, 2005

Selected Group Exhibitions

Computer Vision Art Gallery, International Conference on Computer Vision, Seoul, South Korea, Nov 2019

Title, formatted in sentence case (Not Title Case and NOT ALL CAPS), hints at an interesting issue and/or methodology, doesn’t spill onto a third line (ideally) and isn’t hot pink, Sheffield Institute of Arts, Sheffield, Jun 2018

Sensorium, Affect & Social Media Conference #3, University of East London, London, May 2017

TALKEX17, Rotherham Open Arts Renaissance, St Ann’s Building, Rotherham, Mar 2017

Testing, Testing, SIA Gallery, Sheffield, Aug 2016

Northern Light, SIA Gallery, Sheffield, Jul 2016

Concrete Utopia, Bloc Projects, Sheffield, Jun 2016

Sluice__2015, Oxo Tower Wharf, London, Oct 2015

London Art Book Fair, Whitechapel Gallery, London, Sep 2015

Terminus, The Scottish Queen, S1 Artspace, Sheffield, Jul 2015

Pages International Artists Book Fair, The Tetley, Leeds, Mar 2015

In The City, Hanover Project, Preston, Nov 2014

Sheffield Bazaar, Festival of the Mind, Castle House, Sheffield, Sep 2014

Possession (2), Lanchester Gallery Projects, Coventry, May 2014

Deadpan Exchange VIII, Casa Maauad, Mexico City, Mar 2014

in the UK for Quality Education

Sustainable Development Goal 4, Times Higher Education Impact Rankings 2023

for Career Prospects

Whatuni Student Choice Awards 2023

for Facilities

Whatuni Student Choice Awards 2023

for Social Inclusion

The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2023

of Research Impact is ‘Outstanding’ or ‘Very Considerable’

Research Excellence Framework 2021

of Research is “Internationally Excellent” or “World Leading”

Research Excellence Framework 2021

Four Star Rating

QS Star Ratings 2021