Dr Simon Alexander Ingram

DocFA, MA, PGDip, Trans Cert, BFA


I teach at Elam in the Faculty of Creative Arts and Industries at The University of Auckland. I cycle to university from Mount Albert in Auckland where I live with my wife and two boys. My work is the development a painting practice that extends outside of the field of art and into the fields of robotics, data visualisation, radio astronomy and artificial life. I have undertaken many exhibition projects, the most notable being at Zentrum fur Kunst und Medientechnologie and Frankfurter Kunsterein in Germany, Kunstverein Medienturm in Austria, PS1 MoMA in New York and Artspace in Sydney.

Research | Current

My work exists in the situations and painted outcomes of a collaboration between the artist, an apparatus, and our life world. “Radio Painting Station”, Zentrum für Kunst und Medientechnologie (ZKM) 2017 is the culmination of a carefully staged set of projects that develop subjects active within painting by the modelling them through inventive technical means to communicate philosophical concerns to ask questions about what it is to be human today. Together, they form a research arc commencing in with DIY radio equipment and custom Lego painting robots and ending in the ZKM work: a 4.2m tall horn type antenna peering into the cosmos to receive signals interpreted and painted by fully engineered painting robot. My model of contemporary painting is radically extensible of constraints associated with the practice while still maintaining specific links to it. To take one example, if C20 artists Kazimir Malevich and Mark Rothko can be said to present the unpresentable, then I use radio astronomy techniques to paint invisible cosmic radio energy. I seek to rephrase the practice of abstraction and the production of abstract images as a contemporary one by developing Vilém Flusser’s notion of the “technical image”. This is the non-narrative composition arising in response to increased abstraction, big data and technical change in human culture. In Flusser’s telling, technical images are made from devices that can see what we can’t see, experience what we can’t experience, able to bring together invisible quanta, such as photons and electrons and bits/bytes of information as images.

Teaching | Current

Year 2 painting

Supervision of MFA and doctoral candidates

Postgraduate supervision

Doctoral supervisions:

Glenn Snow
Yolunda Hickman
Julian McKinnon
Sriwhana Spong


  • Best doctoral thesis award for the doctoral project entitled "Painting as a Machine." The University of Auckland, 2007


Programme leader MFA

Areas of expertise

  • Experimental painting
  • Early computer art
  • Machines
  • Radio devices
  • Data visualisation

Committees/Professional groups/Services

Post-graduate committee (Elam)

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

  • Ingram, S. Radio Painting Station [Various] Open Codes. ZKM - Center for Art and Media, Karlsruhe, Germany. 15/12/2017 - 14/1/2018
  • Ingram, S. A. Therely Bare: Redux. Clara M. Eagle Upper Gallery, University Galleries, Murray State University. Related URL.
  • Ingram, S. A. Random Walk GeometriesHebel 121, Basel, Switzerland. 13/6/2015 - 8/8/2015 Related URL.
  • Ingram, S. A. Paintings of the SunGow Langsford Gallery, Auckland, NZ. 29/4/2015 - 23/5/2015
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/32325
  • Ingram, S. A., Lundberg, P., & Martyn, R. Field recordings [Machine, Cardboard, Radio equipment] The Psychics Room, Christchurch, NZ. 21/2/2015 - 21/3/2015 Related URL.
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/38664
  • Ingram, S. A. Radio Painting Station [Galvinised steel sheet, cable, radio receiver, computer, solar panels, 6 volt batteries, robotic painting machine, 30 canvases] Kingsland, Auckland. 15/1/2014 - 31/12/2014 Related URL.
  • Barton, C. (Ed.) (2014). Simon Ingram: Painting machines 2005-2014. Bielefeld: Kerber Art. Pages: 152.
  • Ingram, S. Studio situation [Oil on plastic sheet, pine, masking tape, gaffer tape] As many structures as you can. The Dowse Art Museum, Lower Hutt, New Zealand. 12/11/2013 - 26/1/2014
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/39588

Contact details

Primary office location

Level 2, Room 208
New Zealand