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Personal profile

Research interests

Vanessa is Senior Lecturer for BA Design for Digital Media, which is based at the University of Brighton's Edward Street campus. She has extensive graphic design experience within both marketing and publishing environments, creating and directing work for both print and moving image. She worked as an Art Editor for Dorling Kindersley and also ran her own design agency for over 10 years.

Her academic work takes a critical view of the language of common-place domestic objects and popular narratives, in particular fairy tales, which she explores primarily through embroidery, creative writing and book arts. Her research is underpinned by visual design-theory and process whilst embracing an intuitive and practice-based approach that facilitates self-authorship and her continuing exploration of narrative and sequence.

Vanessa originated the growing Women & Domesticity – What’s your Perspective collaborative arts project in 2014, which asks members of the public to embroider their domestic experiences upon a duster. It is regularly exhibited, transforming the duster from a cloth kept under the sink into a powerful collection of voices.  The growing collection of over 100 individual contributions has been exhibited in art spaces such as the De La Warr Pavilion in Bexhill-on-Sea and Ditchling Museum of Art & Craft; at academic symposiums and conferences at the Universities in Loughborough, Bedford, Brighton and the Geffreye Museum with Queen Mary University; and in Libraries, Colleges and other Art Spaces. Displays are usually accompanied by a practical workshop. 

Vanessa is also a PhD student in the School of Arts at the University of Brighton with a project of study entitled: Enticing and enacting visual domestic narratives by drawing with thread upon a duster: An autoethnographic study

Education/Academic qualification

Master, University of Brighton

Sep 2012Sep 2014

Award Date: 31 Aug 2014

Master, University of Suffolk

Sep 2009Jul 2011

Award Date: 1 Jul 2011

Bachelor, Anglia Polytechnic University

Sep 1997Jul 2000

Award Date: 1 Jul 2000

External positions

External Examiner, Cambridge Education Group - ONCAMPUS

Sep 2017Sep 2020

External Examiner, Ravensborne University London

Sep 2017Sep 2020


  • NX Arts in general
  • visual methods
  • NC Drawing Design Illustration
  • Drawing Research
  • N Visual arts (General) For photography, see TR
  • Textiles, Sculpture, Paper, Photography, Film
  • NE Print media
  • graphic design

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Research Output

Cinderella: The Ultimate Domestic Narrative

Marr, V., 2020, (Accepted/In press) Storytelling: Cultural and Creative Transformations of Cinderella. 1 ed. Cambridge Scholars Publishing

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceeding with ISSN or ISBNChapter

  • Open Access
  • Reclaiming the book of spells: storying the self as a for of resistance

    Moriarty, J. & Marr, V., Jan 2020, Autoethnographies from the Neoliberal Academy: Rewilding, writing and resistance in Higher Education . Moriarty, J. (ed.). Oxen: Routledge, p. 87-103

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceeding with ISSN or ISBNChapter

    The Domestic Academic

    Marr, V., 2020, (Accepted/In press) Storying the Self. Intellect

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceeding with ISSN or ISBNChapter

  • Creative Futures: Creative Methods Lab: Women & Domesticity What’s your Perspective?

    Marr, V., 9 Jan 2019.

    Research output: Contribution to conferenceOther