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Heaney's Cephalopod Alien (Study with a Quantum Computer) is now available to buy via Somerset House Shop.

The print uses the plurality and interconnectedness of quantum entanglement and superposition to highlight the boundary-less and formlessness of bodies.

Here's a bit more about the process: Heaney made a watercolour painting on really wet paper, so the paint behaved like waves and the colours interfered with each other, mirroring the blurry quantum reality. Once the painting had dried, Heaney scanned the image and ecoded it on qubits. The image in the print shows the form deconstructing and becoming quantum wavelike and scattered, as it was viewed through the lens of other quantum dimensions.

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Available to pre-order* Limited edition prints will be shipped from Thursday 3rd December, please allow up to 10 days for delivery post receipt of purchase. 

Artwork title: Cephalopod Alien (study with a quantum computer) 

Artwork year: 2019

Print description: A watercolour painting of a squid diffracted by entanglement in a quantum computer.  

Each edition is limited to 100, hand-numbered and accompanied by a signed letter of authenticity from the artist. 50% of all proceeds after production go directly to the artist, with the remaining 50% going to Somerset House Trust to support the Young Talent Fund.

Print size: A2: 420 x 594mm

Copyright: Libby Heaney

Artist Profile

A2 Giclée Prints | Hand-numbered archival reproduction on 255gsm Somerset Velvet pure cotton rag | Rolled in pH neutral, acid-free tissue paper | Packaged in 100mm diameter, 550mm length matt black tube.

Quantum Zeitgeist Interview

Posted on: October 27th, 2020 by libby

 

 

Libby was interviewed about her hybrid quantum and art practice by the online magazine Quantum Zeitgeist. You can read the interview here.

Quantum Zeitgeist aims to bring together different segments of the Quantum sector. The growing field of Quantum Computing has a range of skill-sets from Academic research to Applications. Quantum Zeitgeist brings all of these areas together, where readers can explore the latest Quantum technological developments all the way to the latest news from start-ups and market insights and trends.

 

Berlin Science Week with Light Art Space

Posted on: October 6th, 2020 by libby

 

What can quantum science teach us about the way we make sense of our world?

A talk with Berlin-based Light Art Space for Berlin Science Week.

Libby Heaney is a London-based artist, researcher and physicist whose practice connects quantum physics, machine learning and our environment through performance, Virtual Reality and participatory experience. She makes use of new technologies such as artificial intelligence to question the machine's forms of categorisation and expand technology beyond its predominant purpose. On the occasion of Berlin Science Week 2020, Heaney delivers a talk on the uses of quantum computing, its controversies and potential applications in society.

What are quantum computers and how do they depend on quantum physics? Why are corporations and governments interested in quantum computing? What can quantum science teach us about the way we make sense of our world? In what way can the discipline impact how we tell stories, build meaning and create art?

In this lecture, Heaney gives insight into quantum computing and the challenges it holds for the future of making art. Her talk is followed by discussions with philosopher Professor Jenann Ismael and quantum scientist Professor Vlatko Vedral. Together, they will explore the impact quantum physics can have on our day-to-day-reality when transposed from the micro to the macro world.

This talk conveys the core subject matter of a new work being developed by the artist and commissioned by Light Art Space (LAS), for which Heaney uses IBM’s cloud-based Q System One quantum computers. Art can acquire the tools to rupture causality by following the tenets of quantum science, which creates a space where entities – human, non-human, machine – relate, interfere and entangle.

Livestream
5 Nov 2020, 6 PM
Berlin Science Week 2020

Visions in the Nunnery performance

Posted on: September 13th, 2020 by libby

 

Ressurection (Top of the Bots) will be presented at Bow Art's Nunnery Gallery on 20th Oct 2020 (outdoors and socially distanced) as part of their biennial Visions in the Nunnery programme.

Resurrection (TOTB) is the second iteration of Libby's Top of the Bots: Karaoke Night participatory performance (Arts Council England funded). During the evening, audience members volunteer to sing and appear and move as the original musician on a screen via live AI algorithms. In between songs, the host Sammy James Britten playfully discusses ideas around power, desire, control and truth with the audience.

Established in 1999, Visions in the Nunnery is a renowned showcase of moving image, digital and performance art, selected from an international open call.

The show offers an informed overview of the provocative and quick-changing mediums of moving image and performance, with works selected from across the world. Over the years Visions has exhibited artists including Oreet Ashery, Tacita Dean, Ori Gersht, Dryden Goodwin, Susan Hiller, Mikhail Karikis, Tina Keane, Lawrence Lek, Uriel Orlow and Heather Phillipson, many at the very early stages of their careers.

Amplify Digital Arts Initiative

Posted on: September 2nd, 2020 by libby

 

Amplify Digital Arts Initiative new website is now live. Libby participated in the programme at Mutek Montreal in 2019 and was due to present her work with Amplify in Buenos Aires and at Somerset House in 2020 (cancelled due to Covid).

Libby's profile can be viewed here and the full list of supported artists here.

Amplify Digital Arts Initiative connects and empowers an active network of women-identifying artists and professionals working in the digital arts, sound and immersive storytelling sectors in Canada, Latin America and the UK.

Harnessing different cultures and experiences, AMPLIFY D.A.I fosters a platform for dialogue on gender equity and commits resources to career and capacity building activities, peer exchanges and opportunities for cohort participants to showcase their work in the context of dynamic, contemporary festivals, events and residencies.

AMPLIFY D.A.I is an initiative of the British Council in partnership with MUTEK Montréal, MUTEK Buenos Aires and Somerset House Studios in the UK. The programme is supported by Canada Council for the Arts and Fundación Williams.

 

Libby was awarded an ACE project grant to complete her on going project Figures in Limbo. Figures in Limbo arose from the research undertaken on the Space Art + Tech residency Jan - March 2020.

Figures in Limbo is a timely and important investigation into representations of bodies in machine learning/computer vision. By making connections to visible/neglected bodies in art history, the piece will highlights how cultural/historical biases are now being translated into code. The work looks at the current capitalist context of emerging technologies, comparing it to religious/enlightenment contexts of canonical artworks. The title refers to the central panel in Bosch’s triptych The Last Judgement.

Figures in Limbo takes the form of a partially playable film made in Unity, taking place across 3 scenes: The first shows visible bodies & talks about how biases in depictions of the body in machine learning are similar to those in western art history. The second scene, set in Limbo, examines both visible bodies & neglected ones. The third uses quantum computers to suggest a formless body beyond the illusions of representation.

The funding is to collaborate with musician Barney Kass on the sound track; to write a narrative using AI and surrealist method and to run a workshop discussing biases in AI datasets of bodies and 3D scanning bodies neglected from these datasets for inclusion in the work. The final piece will be presented in Ilford at Space Studios Gallery & on their website in 2021.

 

Real Time Constraints at Arebyte Gallery

Posted on: July 13th, 2020 by libby

 

Libby will be presenting her video work Elvis as part of Arebyte Gallery's Real Time Constraints online exhibition.

Taking the form of a browser plug-in, the exhibition reveals itself as a series of pop-ups where the works are disseminated over the duration of a typical working day, interrupting the screen to provide a ‘stopping cue’ from relentless scrolling, email notifications and other computer-centered, interface-driven work.  Real-Time Constraints presents itself as a benevolent invasion - the size, quantity, content and sound of the pop-ups have been decided upon by each artist to feed into the networked performance. The exhibition is experienced through a synchronised global approach where viewers encounter the same pop-ups at the same time no matter where they are, amplifying the exhibition’s disturbance of mundanity across every time zone.  

Real-Time Constraints makes its primary argument through a reconfiguration of the usually annoying and uninvited browser pop-up, turning what is typically a tool of the system (and its owners) into a user-centric 'stopping cue.' Stopping cues were most prevalent in the 20th Century as a way to signal the end of something, the space in between one activity and the next. Stopping cues imposed a choice for the viewer: do you want to continue watching/reading/listening, or do you want to do something else? They also make available the mental space one needs to digest what they've just experienced, enabling useful processing of information, and thus, satisfaction through action. 

 

There will be an online 'opening' on 23rd July when some of the artists will be present. Libby will also take part in a panel discussion on the 6th Aug when she and other artists will talk about the exhibition, about biases, surveillence and privacy in AI and also about how artist may influence the development of AI technologies.

arebyte Gallery is a London-based art organisation which supports the development of artists working across digital and emerging artforms. 

Following in the long tradition of artists experimentation with new technologies, arebyte Gallery has led a pioneering programme since 2013, to much acclaim. From web-based work to multimedia installations including Virtual and Augmented Reality, Artificial Intelligence, Computer Generated Images and 3D printing, the gallery commissions new works from emerging, as well as more established artists. The gallery supports multiple voices in digital cultures across the UK and internationally to bring innovative perspectives to art through new technologies.

 

 

Hervisions at LUX have commissioned Libby for a new site-specifc artwork performed on LUX's Instagram Stories.

touch is response-ability, tuuch os rispunsabilitreaeaeaea is a site-specific interactive animation, where the participants’ touch controls the movement of the frames. Using Instagram stories as a medium Libby Heaney presents two durational performances that invite viewers to activate the animation through the action of touch. Each performance will last for 24 hours on LUX Instagram.

The first and last stills in each performance were created by Heaney based on extensive research into representations of the body in computer vision and artificial intelligence and parallels in art history, highlighting the biases in which bodies are seen and neglected in both. The subsequent frames in the animation were generated by passing the initial frame through a quantum computer, which through entangled pixels, fragments and inverts the image.

In every frame the body from the initial image always exists but the quantum computer enables us to see it from alternative, multiple perspectives – boundary-less and form-less. The stills are watched with a computer vision algorithm – Open-Pose – which loses track of the body as it is released from its encoded shackles.

touch is response-ability, tuuch os rispunsabilitreaeaeaea is part of HERVISIONS’ evolving curatorial digital initiative OUT of TOUCH. Through a constellation of femme-focused dialogues, OUT of TOUCH probes ways in which screen-based dialogues remediate the lack of touching in the absence of physical connection.

LUX is an international arts agency that supports and promotes artists’ moving image practices and the ideas that surround them. The only organisation of its kind in the UK, LUX  represents the country’s only significant collection of artists’ film and video, and is the largest distributor of such work in Europe. LUX works with a large number of major institutions including museums, galleries, festivals and educational establishments, as well as directly with the public and artists.

HERVISIONS is a femme-focussed curatorial agency facilitating online and offline experiences and collaborations with partners to research and produce innovative commissions, exhibitions and events with a strong focus on the intersection of art, technology and culture. Previous exhibitions and partners include, Art Night, Tate Modern, Tate Britain, arebyte Gallery,-D x Chanel, Adidas, Selfridges, Boiler Room, LN-CC, BFI, Gossamer Fog, The London College of Fashion, isthisit?, Mira Festival, LOOM Festival and Google Arts and Culture.

Arts Council Emergency Response Fund Recipient

Posted on: May 26th, 2020 by libby

 

Libby was a recipient of the Arts Council England Emergency Response Grant. This is intended to provide financial support for artists, creative and freelancers during the early stages of the Covid-19 lockdown in the UK.

For the grant,  Libby will continue researching the creative potential of quantum computers (IBM) to explore important questions around human identity and surveillance capitalism. This will extend her work with AI to a new domain and the outcomes will be presented in a number of exhibitions next year.

Arts Council England are the national development agency for creativity and culture. By 2030 they want England to be a country in which the creativity of each of us is valued and given the chance to flourish and where everyone of us has access to a remarkable range of high quality cultural experiences.

 

Fleabag and Lady Chatterley’s Tinderbot by The Lowry

Posted on: May 14th, 2020 by libby

 

Libby's artwork, Lady Chatterley's Tinderbot, is an example of how modern dating can become entangled with old institutions, blogs The Lowry.

Lady Chatterley's Tinderbot explores love in a post-digital age by bringing together humans and non-humans and pre- and post-digital love machines, namely the literary novel and Tinder.

The installation features around 800 anonymized Tinder conversations of both men and women, where Bernie.ai, "your personal matchmaker A.I. who understands your "type", and finds them on your favorite dating networks" has conversed with members of the public using dialogue from Lady Chatterley's Lover following its own sentiment analysis and facial recognition algorithms. The conversations probe how human relationships are mediated through digital technologies.

In a series of posts that explore art and ideas around the theme of the famous TV and theatre show Fleabag, the team at The Lowry draw on Lady Chatterley's Tinderbot as a parallel way of questioning modern single life and dating (in Fleabag Waller-Bridge collides with the church).

The full article is available here.

The Lowry is commited visual and performing arts to enrich people’s lives. They present audiences with a diverse programme of theatre, opera, musicals, dance, music, comedy and visual art as well as events and activities to expand the horizons of audiences and artists alike.