Prof. David Harradine, BA, MA, PHD

Job title

Professor of Interdisciplinary Practice


I am a practicing artist who works in a range of forms – performance, film, installation, books and digital art. I’m co-artistic director of Fevered Sleep, an independent arts producing company based in London. My work is research led, participatory, and cross-disciplinary. It appears in very diverse places, in the UK and beyond, from theatres, galleries and cinemas, to beaches, parks, schools and the spaces of everyday life: in people’s homes, on phones, online. I collaborate with artists, producers, scientists, academics, medical practitioners, adults, children, professionals and non-professionals, as research partners, co-creators, performers, thinkers, writers and participants.

I grew up in rural West Yorkshire, and first moved to London to read Biochemistry at King’s, before taking a step sideways to complete a BA in Performing Arts at Middlesex. My MA (at Sussex) was in English Literature, with a specialism in queer theory and politics, and my PhD (which was written, and undertaken at Queen Mary, University of London) explored the relationships between time, death and performance. My current practice is still rooted in these diverse experiences. Much of it explores the connections between the human and more-than-human worlds, and how deeply identity develops in relation to place (a preoccupation I can trace back to a childhood immersed in an agricultural landscape undergoing tremendous industrialisation and change). Science and scientific phenomena have been catalysts for a series of projects (a direct line from those days in the lab at King’s), and these have focused on subjects as diverse as inter-species empathy, ageing, the theory of biophilia, particle physics and X-ray crystallography.

Before working at Central, I had taught at the universities of Middlesex and Winchester, where I also held an AHRC fellowship in the creative and performing arts from 2005 – 2008. I’ve given talks and keynotes, run workshops and facilitated debates in a range of professional and academic settings, in the UK, Peru, Australia, Taiwan and Canada.

As Professor of Interdisciplinary Practice at Central, I build bridges between academic research and professional practice, and as co-artistic director of Fevered Sleep I make art through processes of research. For me, there is no distinction between doing research and making art.


Research Degrees (PhD)

Areas of Expertise

  • Arts practice in relation to environment, place, weather and climate
  • Participatory and applied performance
  • Contemporary dramaturgies
  • Collaborative approaches to touring
  • Children’s cultural rights, art for children, creativity in primary education
  • Performance documentation
  • Experimental approaches to writing
  • Performance and photography

PhD Supervision

  • Environmental art and performance
  • Performance for children
  • Participatory practices 
  • Art/science collaboration

Key Publications

2015. Future Play: A resource for anyone making, touring or presenting performance for children, co-edited with Sophie Eustace, Claire Lee (London: Fevered Sleep)

2010. Invisible Things: Documentation from a devising process, co-written with Synne K Behrndt (London: Fevered Sleep & the University of Winchester) (second edition 2019)


Since co-founding Fevered Sleep in 1996, I have created over 30 projects with the company, spanning performance, film, installation, books and digital art. Alongside this work with Fevered Sleep, I have made a number of independent projects, which have had a particular focus on light, climate and landscape. I work as a director, choreographer and designer of performance; as a film maker (writing, designing, directing, editing); and as a creator of installations and photographic events. I have created a number of printed artworks, books and pamphlets that sit alongside live projects; and have developed digital art ranging from iPhone apps to podcasts and miniature film installations to interactive online texts.

Selected projects:

2018. Co-artistic director, This Grief Thing, a series of temporary shops and associated public events in Preston, Middlesbrough, Manchester and Nottingham

2017. Co-artistic director, Sheep Pig Goat for Wellcome Collection, London

2016 -date. Co-artistic director, choreographer, designer, sound designer, Men & Girls Dance, Quarterhouse Folkestone; Lawrence Batley Theatre Huddersfield; Dance4 Nottingham; The Lowry Salford; Southeast Dance Brighton; The Place London; Tate Britain London; Skånes Dansteater Malmö, Sweden

2016. Director, An Infinite Line: Merseyside, Merseyside Dance Initiative, The Light Cinema, The Atkinson

2014. Director, editor, sound design, It’s the Skin You’re Living In, iPhone app

2013. Co-artistic director, Above Me The Wide Blue Sky, Young Vic Theatre, Warwick Arts Centre, Lancaster Arts

2012. Writer, music, Bodypods: Bone, commissioned by Fuel

2012. Director, editor, sound design, It’s the Skin You’re Living In, online and broadcast film and multi-screen film installation, Science Museum London, Young Vic Theatre, Rivington Place, Northern Stage, Forest Fringe, Lancaster Arts, The Place

2011. Choreographer, photography, design, Stilled, Wellcome Collection, Southbank Centre, Wales Millennium Centre, Warwick Arts Centre, Lancaster Arts, Siobhan Davies Dance

2011. Designer, film-maker, Song Field, Latitude Festival, RSC

2011. Artist in residence, University of Brighton Department of Media Studies

2011. Co-director, editor, Still Life With Dog, online and broadcast film, Sadler’s Wells, Gallery Elena Schkukina, Rivington Place

2010. Designer, director, The Weather Factory, National Theatre Wales

2010. Co-artistic director, On Ageing, Young Vic Theatre

Register of Interest

Nothing to declare.