Huiying Kerr

Hui-Ying Kerr

Lecturer/Senior Lecturer

School of Architecture Design and the Built Environment

Staff Group(s)
Academic Division Product Design

Role

As a senior lecturer in product design Hui-Ying teaches both practice and theory to product design undergraduates. She is also module leader for Design Studies 2 across the BA Furniture and Product Design, BA Product Design, and BSc Product Design courses at second year level, and teaches on the final year dissertation module across the BA Product Design and Furniture and Product Design courses.

Career overview

From a background in product design, Hui-Ying moved into design history via critical theory, and taught in the departments of Product Design and Fashion at Nottingham Trent University between 2007 – 2010. Specialising in the consumer cultures of Japan of the late 1980s and its economic bubble, Hui-Ying undertook her AHRC-sponsored PhD in History of Design at the Royal College of Art and the Victoria and Albert Museum. During this time, she has been an AHRC-IPS sponsored Visiting Researcher at the National Museum of Ethnology in Osaka, Japan, and has since presented her research at exhibitions, talks and conferences, including Bonington Gallery, The Japan Foundation, the AHRC, University of Arts London, Canterbury University, the University of Brighton, and the Tate Research Centre: Asia.

  • Royal College of Art, Victoria and Albert Museum, History of Design; AHRC CDA Doctoral Candidate (2010 – 2017)
  • National Museum of Ethnology (Minpaku), Osaka, Japan; Visiting Researcher (2012)
  • Nottingham Trent University, Fashion; Senior Lecturer (2009 – 2010)
  • Nottingham Trent University; Research Assistant (2009)
  • Nottingham Trent University, Product Design; Visiting Lecturer (2007 – 2009)
  • University of Nottingham, MA Architecture and Critical Theory (2006 – 2007)
  • Proludic Ltd., Nottingham; Playground Designer (2005 – 2006)
  • Nottingham Trent University, Product Design; BSc (hons) Product Design (2001 – 2005)
  • Wright Design Ltd., Cambridge; Product Designer (2004)
  • Cambridge University Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology; Curatorial Assistant (2004)

Research areas

While Hui-Ying’s research has focused on the analysis of lifestyle and design magazines of Japan in the late 1980s, she is chiefly interested in how economic booms and theories of consumption intersect and impact lifestyle and design developments, and how the tensions where the local meet the international affect the creation of imagined communities and the re-positioning of previously peripheral narratives. These can be more concretely broken down into (but are not limited to) the following themes:

  • Cultural impact of economic bubbles on consumer and material cultures
  • Globalisation, transnationalism, and internationalisation
  • Postmodernity and postmodern/poststructuralist thought
  • Gender
  • Lifestyles and subcultures
  • Work and leisure cultures
  • Interdisciplinary methods
  • Global design history
  • Intersectionality of encounters of the local with the international
  • Peripheral narratives
  • East Asian modernity

External activity

Imagining the International: Repositioning Peripheral Narratives in Global Design Histories; International Conference: College Art Association (CAA) 106th Annual Conference 2018, Los Angeles; Design History Society Affiliated Society Panel with the College Art Association; Panel Chair and Organiser; 21st – 24th Feb 2018

Transnational Cities; International Conference: Tate Research Centre: Asia (TRC Asia); Chelsea College of Arts, Transnational Art, Identity, Nation (TrAIN) Research Centre, University of Arts London (UAL); Participant and Winner of TRC: Asia Travel Grant; 28th – 30th Sept 2017

Sponsors and collaborators

Grants and Awards

  • Tate Research Centre: Asia, Travel Grant (2017)
  • Nottingham Trent Student Union (NTSU) Outstanding Teaching Awards 2016 – 2017; Winner: Outstanding Teaching Staff; Architecture, Design, Built Environment (ADBE) Category (2017)
  • Design History Society, College Art Association (CAA) Membership and Conference Fees Grant (2017)
  • Royal College of Art Research Student Conference Travel Grant (2013)
  • Arts and Humanities Research Council International Placement Scheme (AHRC IPS) with the National Institute of Humanities Japan (NIHU), Visiting Researcher Travel Grant (2012)
  • Arts and Humanities Research Council Collaborative Doctoral Award (AHRC CDA) (2010 – 2013)

Membership and Collaborations

  • The Design History Society
  • Postcolonial Studies Centre, Research Group; Nottingham Trent University

Publications

Kerr, H., (2017), Hanako Magazine and the Internationalised Women of the Japanese Bubble Economy; International Conference: Transnational Cities; Tate Research Centre: Asia (TRC Asia); Chelsea College of Arts, Transnational Art, Identity, Nation (TrAIN) Research Centre, University of Arts London (UAL); Workshop Presentation of Research

Kerr, H., (2017), Envisioning the Bubble: Creating and Consuming Lifestyles through Magazines in the Culture of the Japanese Bubble Economy (1986-1991); Exhibition: Postgraduate Degree Show 2017; History of Design, Royal College of Art; Poster Presentation

Kerr, H., (2017). Conference Review, Modern Living in Asia, 1945 - 1990; Internationalising Design History Research, University of Brighton; Blogpost

Kerr, H., (2017), The Well-Travelled Woman: Hanako Magazine and the Internationalised Women of the Japanese Bubble Economy; International Conference: Modern Living in Asia, 1945 – 1990; Internationalising Design History Research Group, University of Brighton; Conference Paper

Kerr, H., (2017), Materialising Knowledge: Design Studies for All!; Conference: Success for All: Advancing Inclusive Curricula and Pedagogies, Trent Institute for Learning and Teaching (TILT), Nottingham Trent University; Conference Paper

Kerr, H., (2016), What is kawaii – and why did the world fall for the ‘cult of cute’?; The Conversation; Online Article

Kerr, H., (2016), Bubble Dreams and Bubble Living: Magazines and Consumer Lifestyles of the Japanese Economic Bubble (1986 – 1991); Exhibition Workshop: Mould Map 6 Saturday Special 15/10/16, Terraformers; Bonington Gallery, Nottingham; Workshop Paper

Kerr, H., (2016), Magazines of the Japanese Bubble Economy; Exhibition: Mould Map 6 – Terraformers; Bonington Gallery, Nottingham; Exhibition Display of Research Archive

Kerr, H., (2014), Consuming leisure, consuming lifestyle: Women’s access to the Bubble through the lifestyle magazine, Hanako, in the Japanese Bubble Economy (1986-1991); Workshop: Japan Foundation / BAJS Postgraduate Workshop; Japan Foundation, London; Workshop Paper

Kerr, H., (2013), Design in the Japanese Bubble Economy (1986-1991); AHRC Research Showcase: Arts and Humanities Research Council International Placement Scheme (AHRC IPS), Early Career International Fellowship Showcase; University of Westminster, London; AHRC Invited Speaker

Kerr, H., (2013), Consuming Nostalgia in the Japanese Bubble Economy (1986-1991); International Conference: Nostalgias: Visualising Longing, Canterbury Christ Church University; University of Arts London (UAL), Margate, Kent; Conference Paper

Kerr, H., (2012), Researching the Japanese Bubble Economy (1986-1991); AHRC Research Showcase: Arts and Humanities Research Council International Placement Scheme (AHRC IPS) Showcase; University of Leeds, Leeds; AHRC Invited Speaker

Press expertise

  • Design History
  • Design
  • Japan
  • 1980s Japan
  • East Asia
  • Chinese Culture
  • Chinese Diaspora
  • Economic Bubbles (Culture)
  • Consumer Culture
  • Lifestyles
  • Mass Cultures
  • Subcultures
  • Work Cultures
  • Leisure Cultures
  • Globalisation
  • Internationalisation
  • Transnationalism
  • Postmodernity
  • Gender
  • Interdisciplinarity
  • Intersectionality
  • Peripherality