Latest News

Britbot at Edinburgh TV Festival

Posted on: August 21st, 2018 by libby


Sky Arts Art 50 commission, Britbot is a netbased chatbot exploring British identity. It speaks to people about 'Britishness' and learns from what they say.

Britbot was exhibited at Edinburgh TV Festival this August.

"The Edinburgh TV Festival is the biggest and most prestigious media event in the UK. We bring together all parts of the television and digital world to celebrate creativity, diversity and inspirational talent in our field, and to debate the major issues facing us as an industry."


Britbot is a net based artwork by Libby Heaney, commissioned by Sky Arts Art 50. It consists of an AI dialogue system that chats to you about Britishness.

The system has rule based and generative components. The generative parts are trained on a 100+Mbs of text related to the topics in the British citizenship test. Born biased by design, Britbot highlights biases in both algorithms and attempts to quantify things like collective (national) identity. As Britbot speaks to people over the next 6 months it will gradually learn from what they say, becoming a wider algorithmic representation of so-called Britishness today.

In June, Britbot was presented at Sheffield International Documentary Festival with Sky Arts in Cutlers Hall.

The Festival includes film screenings, interactive and virtual reality exhibitions, talks & sessions, unmissable live events, and its own awards.

It has become the UK's biggest documentary festival and the third largest in the world. The BBC have called it "one of the leading showcases of documentary films".

Britbot was also presented at CogX Festival of AI, London.

The Festival of All Things AI, Blockchain and Emerging Technology.  In its inaugural year itself, CogX 2017 made a mark in the Artificial Intelligence domain by hosting a string of events that celebrated it.

Pic credit (1,3) Luba Elliot


In 2016 "net based" has been launched as a new prize in Switzerland, which aims to draw attention to the Internet as a platform for artistic activities and to make innovative web-based projects or projects inspired by the Internet accessible to a broader public; at the same time, it aims to raise the visibility of the Swiss scene in this genre, and promote international exchange.

Ten projects made it into the shortlist for the "net based - prize for net based art" 2018. The official prize of CHF 10’000.- is awarded by an international jury and will be officially announced at the award ceremony on May 26 2018, 6pm, at HeK.

Aside from the Jury-awarded main prize, it is possible to choose your own favourite project for the CHF 500.- audience award.

Lady Chatterley’s Tinderbot is the unlikely cross between the explicit 1928 novel Lady Chatterley’s Lover by D.H. Lawrence and the application for sexual encounters Tinder. The artist Libby Heaney has programmed a bot to converse with Tinder users by sending them excerpts of the novel, soliciting responses, surprising and scintillating questions, thus confusing the protocols that dictate communication via such an app. A selection of the resultant exchanges is presented on a touchscreen and as a book.

Beyond the encounter between two different expressions of seduction, the one an expression of amour and the other a more compulsive form, this work questions the relation to the other in this unique realm that is the game of seduction, whether human or bot.


Quantum Fake at Science Gallery Dublin

Posted on: March 3rd, 2018 by libby


Libby's new virtual reality artwork has been commissioned by the Science Gallery Dublin as part of their Fake exhibition.

Science Gallery Dublin is a world first — a venue where today's white-hot scientific issues are thrashed out.  A place where science and art collide.  Since opening in 2008, nearly 3 million people have visited the Science Gallery Dublin — ranking it among the top ten free cultural attractions in Ireland.

About Quantum Fake:

In an age of ubiquitous digital reproduction, is there any way to safeguard information so it cannot be copied? Quantum Fake is a virtual reality experience inspired by the concepts underpinning quantum cryptography. At the atomic scale, deep in the realm of quantum mechanics, any information that is unknown (to a person or to a light ray, for instance) is forever secret and cannot be copied. The artwork casts this logic over the gallery, as some viewers encounter a world where our usual perceptions of time, space and form are transformed.

The work will be exhibited at the Science Gallery until June 2018.

Photo credit Science Gallery Dublin.

How a Tinderbot reminds us of human connection

Posted on: February 14th, 2018 by libby


The Science Gallery in Dublin have written about Lady Chatterley's Tinderbot this Valentine's Day.  The artwork featured in their 2017 exhibition Humans Need Not Apply , which asked 'Can we prosper in a world in which robots and artificial intelligence can do every job we have today?'

Science Gallery Dublin is a world first — a venue where today's white-hot scientific issues are thrashed out. A place where science and art collide.

Performance with Art with Heart at The Lowry

Posted on: January 15th, 2018 by libby


Selected chapters from Lady Chatterley's Tinderbot were performed by Libby Heaney and Art with Heart's Sarah Emmott at The Lowry as part of their humansbeingdigital exhibition, which features Heaney's piece.  The artwork features conversations between an automated Tinderbot posing as characters of Lady Chatterley's Lover and other users of the Tinder dating app.  A video of the event was streamed live on Facebook and is available here.

Photo credit: Nathan Chandler

BBC News and Radio 4 interview

Posted on: November 17th, 2017 by libby


Libby discussed her artwork Lady Chatterley's Tinderbot with the BBC last week as The Lowry exhibition humansbeingdigital featuring the work opens to the public until 25th Feb '18.

A short interview with Libby was also played on the 6pm news on BBC Radio 4, 16th Nov - you can listen here from around 25mins.


Libby Heaney's Lady Chatterley's Tinderbot makes its UK debut at The Lowry, Salford in their forthcoming exhibition humansbeingdigital.

humansbeingdigital draws on an international selection of artworks that bring us to the touch-point between human beings and being digital. Felix Luque Sanchez, Max Dovey and Libby Heaney use humorous aspects of modern communication in their works which involve emails, Instagram and Tinder respectively. The artworks look at ideas about identity, relationships, independence and the absurd side of technology.

The Lowry is a registered charity committed to using visual and performing arts to enrich people’s lives. We 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.

The exhibition will take place Sat 18 Nov - Sun 25 Feb and features nine artists exploring new perspectives on life, emotion and relationships via digital technologies.

Sky Arts 50 commission

Posted on: October 26th, 2017 by libby


Libby has been awarded a commission for a new artwork by Sky Arts 50.

Sky Arts launched Art 50 to invite artists of all kinds, from all walks of life, from all artistic genres, to create a piece of work which says something important about what it will mean to be British after we leave the European Union.

What will Britain look like, feel like, be like to live in, when we are no longer members of the European Union? The outcome of the Brexit referendum has stimulated a widespread debate about our national identity, with many people looking to express how they feel about our nation as we approach a future outside the EU.

Sky Arts are working with our partner organisations; the Barbican, Sage Gateshead and BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art. They will be hosting a festival featuring a selection of the Art 50 commissions as well as being on the judging panel.

Membrane presented at London Design Festival with Space10

Posted on: October 3rd, 2017 by libby


Libby presented a new interactive VR artwork 'Membrane' with Space10 at their pop-up as part of London Design Festival exploring Spaces of Tomorrow.  She also gave a talk about her practice in the evening.

How do materials and textures affect our experience and understanding of space? How do materials change the perception of a space when the substance of that space is ever-changing from solid to fluid? How will materials evolve our spaces in the future?

In order to respond to the theme, Spaces of Tomorrow, Membrane uses a quantum games engine to explore spaces that come into being depending on the movement of the user.  As a user moves the controller through a translucent membrane, their behaviour causes a new delocalised space to emerge.