Associate Professor Sam Spurr
School of Architecture and Built Environment (Architecture)
Sam Spurr is an architectural theorist, critic and designer. Her current research on Mining Ideology and Coal Capitalism, examines the agency of architecture to make legible the complex forces at play in the age of the Anthropocene. Through this research Sam is exploring feminist theories of care and collective political subjectivity, ecological systems and indigenous cosmologies in the Australian context of Country.
Sam has focused her attention over the last five years on the agency of architecture and the need for disciplinary transformation in a rapidly changing contemporary world. This was the central focus for the 2016 Australian Institute of Architects National Conference, How Soon is Now? which she co-curated with Ben Hewett (Deputy Government Architect NSW) and Cameron Bruhn (Dean of Architecture, University of Queensland).
Sam is a co-founder of the collective group N, where the topic of conversation and its impact on art, architecture, and design has been unpicked and entangled through various modes that include exhibitions, symposia, studios, and projects. Her doctorate titled Performative Architectures completed in 2008 looked at how strategies from performance could be imported into digital design processes. This interest in performativity as an emergent and relational form of engagement continues today.
Sam has taught in Architecture, Design and Fine Arts faculties since 2001 and has been regularly invited as a guest critic, external examiner, doctoral assessor and curriculum reviewer.
She has had extensive international experience, completing her doctoral research with a DAAD scholarship in Berlin and presenting studios, workshops and exhibitions at international design and art biennales around the world.
- Doctor of Philosophy, University of New South Wales
- Architecture Design
- Architecture Theory
- Design Research
- Extraction/ Mining
- Integrated Strategic Design
- New Materialist Philosophy
- Performance Theory
Fields of Research
|330101||Architectural computing and visualisation methods||100|
|Title||Organisation / Department|
|Associate Professor||University of Newcastle
School of Architecture and Built Environment
|Dates||Title||Organisation / Department|
|15/6/2015 - 1/1/2019||Senior Lecturer||The University of New South Wales
Art and Design
|2/6/2008 - 1/1/2013||Senior Lecturer||University of Technology Sydney
Design, Architecture and the Built Environment
For publications that are currently unpublished or in-press, details are shown in italics.
Chapter (4 outputs)
|2020||Spurr S, Kairuz E, 'OPEN-CUT (DATA) MINING: Multi-scalar complexity and critical spatial practices', Critical Practices in Architecture: the Unexamined, Cambridge Scholars Publishing, Newcastle upon Tyne,UK (2020)|
|2020||Spurr S, 'Activism: Architecture and the Community', MMXX Two Decades of Architecture in Australia, Thames Hudson, 27 October 2020 (2020)|
|2018||Spurr S, 'Curating Architecture', The Routledge Companion to Criticality in Art, Architecture, and Design, Routledge, Oxon, Cambridge (2018)|
|Show 1 more chapter|
Journal article (5 outputs)
|2015||Spurr S, 'Problems of Scale and Translation A Design Project in 8 Acts', INFLEXIONS-A JOURNAL FOR RESEARCH CREATION, 274-278 (2015)|
|2013||Spurr S, Kwok E, 'Skywalking in Hong Kong: Disrupting flows in the consumerist wonderland', Revista Lusofona de Arquitectura e Educacao, 8-9 387-406 (2013)|
|2012||Filmer A, Hanh R, Gazzola P, Scott-Mitchell M, Spurr S, 'Re-viewing the PQ: Responses to the 2011 Prague Quadrennial of performance design and space', Australasian Drama Studies, 61 156-174 (2012)|
Spurr S, 'After the event: Speculative projects in the aftermath', Architectural Design, 80 50-57 (2010)
Working on speculative architectural projects in the aftermath of traumatic events requires both fearlessness and sensitivity on the part of the designer. Samantha Spurr describes... [more]
Working on speculative architectural projects in the aftermath of traumatic events requires both fearlessness and sensitivity on the part of the designer. Samantha Spurr describes how architecture studios organised by the University of Technology, Sydney, held in Shenzhen, Berlin and Beirut, have brought students into direct contact with these issues and fragile sites. © 2010 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Spurr S, 'Drawing the body in architecture', Architectural Theory Review, 14 322-332 (2009)
The assumed presence of the body in architecture has conventionally allowed for its absence in the architectural drawing, a reliance on the occasional smudge or representational s... [more]
The assumed presence of the body in architecture has conventionally allowed for its absence in the architectural drawing, a reliance on the occasional smudge or representational squiggle to denote people. Living bodies are an aspect that comes post-construction, that must "fit in" to what has been designed. Today architectural representation is immersed in rapid change and with the growth of computational drawing systems and virtual environments the question of the body is magnified. © 2009 Taylor & Francis.
|Show 2 more journal articles|
Conference (1 outputs)
|2018||Spurr S, Kairuz E, 'Open Cut (DATA) Mining; Multi-Scalar Complexity and Critical Spatial Practice', Critical Practice in an Age of Complexity, conference proceedings, Arizona (2018)|
Number of supervisions
|Commenced||Level of Study||Research Title||Program||Supervisor Type|
|2020||PhD||Mapping Perceptual Worlds: Looping Biosemiotic Enactivism and Neuroaesthetics||PhD (Architecture), College of Engineering, Science and Environment, The University of Newcastle||Principal Supervisor|
|2017||PhD||Holistic Building Information Modeling (HoBIM)||PhD (Architecture), College of Engineering, Science and Environment, The University of Newcastle||Principal Supervisor|