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Ms Ellie Doney
Institute of Making
Malet Place, UCL
Ms Ellie Doney profile picture
  • Makespace Technician
  • Engineering Science Faculty Office
  • Faculty of Engineering Science

A materials and making enthusiast, with a focus on edible materials and experimental cross-disciplinary research. I am engaged in facilitating hands-on inquiry that is fun, sensory, and inclusive. Trained in materials skills in an art and craft context, I have spent my professional life as a maker and fabricator, artist educator and workshop facilitator, and public art project manager. 

I joined the Institute of Making as a researcher and writer, and then as Makespace Manager, before beginning my PhD with the Slade School of Fine Art and Institute of Making.

I am early career research lead at the UCL Food, Metabolism & Society research domain.

Research Groups
Research Themes
Research Summary
Alongside my work as a technician facilitating hands-on research at the Institute of Making, I am currently writing up a practice-based PhD:

Materials Research Kitchen: food workshops as transdisciplinary materials research method.

Keywords: materials, making, food, cooking, arts-based-action-research, extended cognition, co-production, transdisciplinarity, embodiment, metaphor, empathy

Food and its transformation is the central method and metaphor that sustains the art research practice from which this thesis is formed. Through cooking and eating together, I propose an original way to conduct research about the ecological relationships between humans and materials.

The primary aims of the thesis are to demonstrate how using food as a method and metaphor can deepen embodied knowledge into human-material intra-action. It also aims to broaden research culture to include more voices, perspectives, and knowledge practices. This collaborative practice involves listening to materials, encouraging gut feelings, empathy, and care for other matter.

Through this, I hope to build a network for cross-disciplinary research through food.


Kieren Reed (Slade)

Sharon Morris (Slade)

Mark Miodownik (Institute of Making, Engineering)

Lilah Fowler (Slade)

The work takes place at the Slade School of Fine Art and Institute of Making, UCL, and at various London community gardens and food growing projects. It is funded through a collaborative award with home appliance company BEKO PLC, with whom I have worked closely towards our collaborative aims.

Teaching Summary
I am an occasional lecturer and PGTA, teaching research through making at UCL Medical School, and the Slade School of Fine Art. I guide and facilitate materials and making practice research as a technician at the Institute of Making.
27-FEB-2023 Makespace Technician Institute of Making Bloomsbury/Stratford UCL, United Kingdom
15-OCT-2012 – 01-SEP-2017 Makespace Manager Institute of Making UCL, United Kingdom
Academic Background
  MA Ceramics & Glass Royal College of Art
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