Theo Humphries MA (RCA) FHEA

Screen-shot-2011-06-27-at-10.45.18-150x100.pngMA (RCA) FHEA
Senior Lecturer
t: +44 (0) 2920205688

Specialist Subject Areas

Theo works in an interdisciplinary, transdisciplinary manner. His academic interests concern humour in design; critical, adversarial, and tactical design; design fictions; and design philosophy.


Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, 2011.
MA Interaction Design, Royal College of Art, 2005.

BA (Hons) Design Futures, UWN, 2002.


Theo Humphries is a designer, artist, senior lecturer, and PhD student at Cardiff School of Art & Design.



Theo is currently conducting a PhD research project that scopes a new theory of malentanglement. Deviation from an expected order of things illuminates one’s tacit engagement with designed artefacts and the inhabited ‘designed world’. Malentanglement is proposed as a means to understand the role and place of humour in design, and as a means to account for the difficulties faced by design/designers when describing highly innovative artefacts or aesthetics to other parties – such as clients or the wider public. It therefore has an impact into understanding the role of humour in effective participatory and user-centred design practice.

Theo is a researcher in in CSAD’s Metatechnology Research Group and a contributing researcher to Transtechnology Research Group at Plymouth University.


Theo has previously been Subject Leader for Product Design at CSAD, and acting subject leader for ‘Constellation’ (CSAD’s history and theory of art and design subject).

Theo is a fellow of The Higher Education Academy.

Previously, Theo has led modules in MA, MFA, and MDes programmes, and in BA (Hons) Graphic Design, and BA (Hons) Illustration at CSAD. He has also taught Music Technology students, and Mobile, Game & Web Design students at CSAD.

Theo was course director for MA Design at University of Wales, Newport (Now the University of South Wales), and also taught into their Interactive Media programme.


Whilst an undergraduate, Theo co-founded 3eyes a design Consultancy with John Anthony Evans. Through 3eyes he has collaborated internationally with creative people, concentrating his skills, energy, and ‘caustic-edge’ design ethos into commercial work for clients such as Sony (Berlin), Mattel (Los Angeles), and Nokia (Helsinki). 3eyes is no longer trading, but an archive of some of their projects remains here,

Previous study

Theo graduated from the Royal College of Art in 2005 with a Masters in Interaction Design. Previous to this he studied Design Futures at the University of Wales, Newport (Now the University of South Wales), and graduated with a 1st class honours degree in 2002.

OpenUp Music

Theo is a founding trustee of OpenUp, a highly successful charitable company, based in Bristol, UK. OpenUp Music empowers young disabled musicians to build inclusive youth orchestras. They work with these young people to develop accessible musical instruments and repertoire, challenge expectations and raise aspirations. Since 2013 OpenUp have established the UK’s first six special school orchestras and in Autumn 2015 they launched the first disabled-led regional youth orchestra and aim to establish the first ever disabled-led national youth orchestra by 2018.

Principal publications, Exhibitions and Awards

HUMPHRIES, T. & THOMPSON S., 2011. A Hippocratic Intuition For Balance In Warburg’s Mnemosyne Atlas. In PUNT, M. & BLASSNIGG, M. (eds), 2011. The Transtechnology Reader 2011. Plymouth University.

You can read the full text here…

REISER, M. (ed.), 2011. The Mobile Audience: Media Art and Mobile Technologies. Amsterdam/New York: Radopi B.V. pp. 235. ISBN 13: 978-9042031272

SPRINGER (ed.), 2010. Functional Aesthetics: Visions in Fashion Technology. Springer Vienna Architecture. pp.163. ISBN 13: 978-3709103111

BUCQUOYE, M. E. & VAN DEN STORM (eds.), D., 2009. Forms for Pleasure (Design Today). Belgium: Stichting Kunstboek BVBA. ISBN 13: 978-9058562371

WONG, K. (ed.), 2007. [Art]ifact: Re-Recognizing the Essentials of Products. Hong Kong: Victionary. ISBN 13: 978-9889822866

KLANTEN, R. & HELLIGE, H (eds.), 2006. All Allure. Germany: Gestalten Verlag. ISBN 13: 978-3899551006

GIBBONS, J. & WINWOOD, K. (eds.), 2006. Hothaus Papers; Perspectives and paradigms in Media Arts. UK. ISBN 13: 978-1873352243

MARENKO, B. (ed.), 2005. DiY Survival, UK: Mute. ISBN 13: 978-0955066498


HUMPHRIES, T., 2012. ‘Intuition in the Context of Humour and Design’ for WIRAD Emerging Researchers Symposium. Cardiff Millennium Centre.

You can read the full text here…

HUMPHRIES, T., 2009. An Exploration of Humour and its Potential to be Defined as a Technology at WIRAD’s 1st ‘National Symposium of Emerging Art & Design Researchers’.

You can read the full text here…


‘Chindogu: a Fray in the Fabric of Modernist Logic?’, DART. Coventry University, Coventry, UK. January 2014.

You can read the abstract here…

‘Intuition in the Context of Humour and Design’, Transtechnology Research Group. Plymouth University, UK. April 2012.

‘Intuition in the Context of Humour and Design’, WIRAD Emerging Researchers Symposium. Cardiff Millennium Centre, Cardiff, UK. March 2012.

‘Chindogu: Critical, Illustrative, Funny’ For Cardiff School of Art & Design’s 1st Illustration Symposium: ‘Alchemy, Redolence, and Enchantment’. Chapter Arts Centre, Cardiff, UK. November 2010.

‘Crapestry’. Public lecture, Chapter Arts Centre, Cardiff, UK. October 2010.


Crapestry in ‘Crapestry’. Front Magazine, issue #183, June 2013.

Crapestry in ‘Hottest Cross-Stitchers in the UK’ (text by Chalmers, J.), Cross Stitcher Magazine. Issue #253. June 2012.


Drollerphone2 exhibited in ‘Mind is the World Knowing Itself’ at ‘The Bonington Gallery’, Nottingham, UK. February-March, 2014.

Crapestries exhibited in ‘Crapestry 3’ at ‘Biblos’, Stokes Croft, Bristol, UK. August, 2013.

Crapestries exhibited in ThreeNine, Bristol. August, 2012.

Crapestries exhibited in ‘Three Tragedies’ for ‘WIRAD Grade’, CSAD. June, 2012

Crapestries exhibited in ‘Smoking Dogs’ at ‘Biblos’, Stokes Croft, Bristol, UK ( for details). May-June, 2012.

Crapestries exhibited in Niche, Bristol. April, 2012

Crapestries exhibited in ‘Stitching for Pleasure’, Birmingham NEC. March, 2012.

Crapestries exhibited in ‘The Stitch & Craft Show’, Kensington Olympia II, London. March, 2012.

Crapestries exhibited in ‘Crapestry 2’ at ‘Biblos’, Stokes Croft, Bristol, UK. February-March, 12.

Crapestries exhibited in ‘Crapestry’ at ‘Biblos’, Stokes Croft, Bristol, UK. November- December, 2011.

Lapjuicer exhibited in ‘Design in sex / sex in Design’ at The Museum of Sex, New York, USA. 2008. (Lapjuicer now part of the museum’s permanent collection).

LOCA exhibited as ‘LOCA: Set To Discoverable’, at, International Festival of Art and Mobile Media, Brazil, 2007.

LOCA exhibited as ‘LOCA: Set To Discoverable’, at ISEA 2006/ZeroOne, San Jose, California, USA, 2006. (For which the LOCA project was awarded an honorary mention at Ars Electronica 2008, a media art festival in Linz, Austria)

LOCA exhibited as ‘LOCA: 1.0′, in PixelAche 2005 at Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art, Helsinki, Finland, 2005

Lapjuicer exhibited in ‘Touch Me’, at The Victoria & Albert Museum, London, UK, 2005.

‘Feral London’ video exhibited at ‘Street Talk‘, Intel Research Berkeley, Berkeley, California, USA. July, 2004.

Interactive Installation for ‘TIE’ (Theatre in Education). The European Commission, Brussels, Belgium, 2001.

Two interactive installations for ‘Welsh Week’ 2001. The European Parliament, Brussels, Belgium, 2001 (with Peter Appleton and Dr. Stephen Thompson).