an accelerator programme from The Trampery and the Barbican for innovative artists working at the intersection of art and technology
Delivered in partnership with the British Council, National Theatre and Mutek festival, this six-month programme provides opportunities and support for artists including a range of showcase, mentoring and training opportunities within an environment in which research and discussion about this emergent field can take place and be shared.
Gif by Artist Sofia Niazi, 2017
Over 230 practitioners applied to the inaugural alt.barbican programme which invited a response to the theme of ‘the subversion of reality.’ Selected artists Dries Depoorter, Henry Driver, Jasmine Johnson, Ling Tan and Magz Hall submitted proposals for a broad range of projects including mobile apps, projection mapping, voice manipulation and wearable technology; exploring subjects as diverse as privacy and surveillance, body image, representations of gender and globalisation.
Image: Henry Driver, Videocube
The alt.barbican programme is made up of expert-led workshops on enterprise and learning and seminars on subjects including cultural entrepreneurship, networking and pitching. Other sessions offer advice on new models of fundraising, working internationally and audience development, led by the likes of Kickstarter, the British Council and Arts Council England respectively.
The cohort of selected artists have also taken part in a fully-funded trip to share work at MUTEK, the Montreal-based festival of electronic music and digital creativity.
Image: Ling Tan, Transformer. Photo credit: Umbrellium
alt.barbican marks the next stage in the ongoing partnership between The Trampery and the Barbican. In 2013, the first collaboration, Hack the Barbican, involved a takeover of the Barbican’s public spaces by a community of 300 people including artists, scientists, hackers and teachers.
The Barbican and The Trampery collaborated again in 2014 to create Fish Island Labs, a unique centre to kickstart the careers of emerging talent using technology to define new fields of creativity. Established as a key arts space in Hackney Wick, it led to Interfaces in 2015, a showcase of experimental work created by resident artists.
Interfaces Monthly is the Barbican and The Trampery’s monthly event where artists and designers present cutting edge work, offer insight into production strategies and digital techniques, and foster dialogue with the audience.
‘Nature Abstraction’ by Matteo Zamagni at Interfaces, 2015. Photo courtesy of the Barbican.
Ling Tan is a designer, maker and coder who trained as an architect and is interested in how people interact with the built environment and wearable technology. She was part of the Umbrellium team, known for their large-scale participatory events, who presented work at the Barbican in 2014 as part of Digital Revolution, a major exhibition that celebrated the transformation of the arts through digital technology.
Johnson primarily works with video as well as digitally generated imagery, binaural audio and installation to craft increasingly ambitious portraits of globally dispersed individuals.
Magz Hall explores the artistic potential of radio and its use outside of conventional settings.
Employing photography, film, digitally generated imagery, games design and sculpture, Henry’s work is concerned with the speed at which technology is developing, shaping and increasingly dominating our lives. He has exhibited both internationally including at Channels Video Art Festival in Melbourne and Ikono on Air Festival in Berlin, and at Tate Liverpool and Tate Britain.
A media artist with a background in electronics, whose work explores the internet’s place in society and the impact it has on the fields of privacy, identity and surveillance.
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