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quantum physics articulated through art

Posted on: February 19th, 2015 by libby


The Cat is Alive

Space Program students from the RCA blur the edges of science and art in a project which started in Oxford University science labs and ends in The Crypt gallery with quantum interactions rendered in new physical, spatial, multisensory and experiential forms.

Exhibition 23-27 Feb 2015 • 12-7pm daily
Private View 24 Feb • 6-9pm
Crypt Gallery • Euston Road • NW1 2BA

viewing art online: the Mona Lisa experience

Posted on: January 25th, 2015 by libby


Mona Lisa Experience 1

We all know viewing art online is nothing like seeing it in the flesh.  Luckily living in London I have an almost limitless supply of exciting new shows and events to whet my appetite.  But for many people interested art outside the major cities, viewing works online is their first encounter with many pieces.  I know I've been shocked both pleasantly and unpleasantly when I've finally seen pieces in their skin - Jackson Pollock's drip paintings spring to mind.

What is this online experience of art like?  Often the pictures are of bad quality: colours are not faithfully represented and a sense of scale is practically non-existent.

Mona Lisa Experience 2

And there is a wider issue at hand.  In 2008, the art critic Robert Hughes made a TV show about the Mona Lisa curse: commercial artwork that is treated “as though it were a film star."  As the Mona Lisa was when it was taken to New York, "People came not to look at it, but to say that they’d seen it.”  The downside of this is ever increasing prices for on-trend art, effectively blocking out museums and other public galleries from investing in, and showing, these celebrated works.   This, therefore, cements the necessity for digital experiences of art even further.

Last week, I exhibited a new piece of work entitled 'The Mona Lisa Experience", which assesses the way we consume art online.  A large, projected image appears from the rear of a billowing plastic sheet.  Initially it is small number of browny, yellowy and greenish squares (or giant pixels!).  As the viewer approaches, the size of the pixels decreases and more enter the frame of the image.  Something starts to appear, but to complete the image, the observer must stand right in front the image.  The Mona Lisa reveals herself in all her supposed 'glory'......

Mona Lisa Experience 3

Mona Lisa Experience 4

Mona Lisa Experience 5

Mona Lisa Experience 5





january exhibitions

Posted on: January 16th, 2015 by libby


Point B

With Christmas (and my dissertation) now well out of the way, it's good to be back making art exhibiting again.  For you people stateside, I have a print in a group show of international artists at Point B work lodge on Nth 7th St in Williamsburg opening next Weds 21st Jan.  I spent an amazing month at Point B last summer, during which time I was tinkering with digital art and learning how to do some neat things with the Kinect.  The work lodge is closing soon so this is a great chance to look around (it's a fabulous space!) and to meet Mark and other Point B alumni.  I wish I could be there too!

Back in London, we have the Big Space show part IV next week at CSM KX.  Last year I exhibited The Markers in the same show and I'm really happy with how far my practice has come since then.  This time, I'll be presenting an interactive installation that questions how we view art digitally.  The Big Space show is opening on Weds 21st Jan and runs through to Friday 23rd Jan.



Some of my digital prints are part of the Made in Arts London Christmas Collection.  They're quite different to my previous work, so I want to tell you the little story behind them.

In the build up to my solo show Computation Cloud (above, November 2014), I was experimenting with virtual versions of the installation.  This involved making animated interactive 3D models of the piece, and pixellating appropriated images to provide a colour scheme for the octahedrons.  Since I was bringing the digital world to a physical setting, I really wanted to use bright colours to attract viewers towards the piece and also to have a painterly handmade quality to the elements.  In the end, my intuition led me to the following image as a basis for the elements in Computation Cloud.

Untitled (Ackerman deconstruct)

It is based upon a painting by Franz Ackermann - one of my favourite  painters - whose work has been described before by Daniel Birnbaum as "as random as those phantom particles whose position or speed may perhaps be known, but never both at once".  The image was pixellated using one of my original programs to give a digital aesthetic to the installation.  I see this pixellating process as quantising the work - in doing so, I'm deleting information about the state of the original art work, literally lowering its entropy.  And I love the result: blurry digital fragments of an already hyper reality lurk in amongst the triangles.  The image above was printed in an edition of just three and there is still one available (email me if you are interested!).

My prints available via Made in Arts London are an extension of this work.  I wanted to see how Computation Cloud would look when people were interacting with it.  So I programmed my app to randomly change some of these triangular pixels to white (as happened in the installation itself).  These are a few of the outcomes.  Each print is unique as the computer ensures no two are the same.

Untitled 4

Untitled 2

Untitled 3

Untitled 1

I also have a few lovely animations of these images deconstructing over time and a time lapse of Computation Cloud itself, which I'll try to post very soon.

Happy Christmas folks x

work in the Lethaby Gallery with Made in Arts London

Posted on: November 18th, 2014 by libby


After the whirlwind that was three shows opening in three days last week, i'm very happy to take a step back and see my work presented in a new context, with other artists and designers from Made in Arts London at the Lethaby Gallery from this Thursday.
This will be my first show with MiAL and I've super excited to meet the other artists and see their work.  Hope to see you there for a glass of wine on Thursday evening.x


"Made in Arts London at The Lethaby Gallery

20th November - 1st December

Central Saint Martins, Granary Building, 1 Granary Square, London N1C 4AA

 Private View - Thursday 20th November 6pm - 8pm


Opening Times - Monday - Friday 10 - 6pm and Saturday 12 - 6pm
Made in Arts London is a not for profit enterprise that sells and promotes art and design by current students and recent graduates of University of the Arts London. MiAL offers the chance to support London's emerging talent and be the first to discover a new generation of creatives.

This exhibition at Central Saint Martin's Lethaby Gallery showcases a diverse range of UAL artists and designers who are are represented by Made in Arts London. All the pieces displayed in this exhibition are available for sale. When you buy from MiAL you are not only investing in and providing invaluable support for the art and design stars of the future, but making an investment for yourself. 

MiAL demonstrates the importance of promoting new, unique and exciting work coming from Europe’s largest specialist arts and design university. Made in Arts London is an initiative of SUARTS, the Students' Union of UAL."


The Markers

The Markers, 2014

november exhibitions

Posted on: November 10th, 2014 by libby


it's been a busy few months playing with motors and working with painted polyhedrons and this week i'm happy that my installation Computation Cloud is finished and ready to go.

the private view is on friday and the show will run for a week at the UAL High Holborn site.

computation cloud

if you can't make it down to Holborn for this, i have digital prints from the preparation of computation cloud in a group studio show at Elthorne studios in Archway this Wednesday running until Sunday and also in the post-graduate auction at Central St. Martin's Lethaby Gallery Tues- Thurs this week.  i'm lot number #43 and the auction takes place on Thursday evening.

black box

ackermann deconstruct

common keys to the creative process in art and science

Posted on: August 28th, 2014 by libby


Earlier this year The Journal of Wild Culture asked if I could write a piece about navigating the edge between art and science and after playing with a few ideas here are some new words thinking about a possible bridge between subject and some ruminations about how the link may also help to extend the New Aesthetic.  Follow the link to the article here.

One of the art works I talk about is this floor sculpture, below, by Tauba Auerbach.



Huzzah! I'm super happy to have my work feature in Made in Arts London summer collection.  Check out my profile (and a silly photo of me) here.

god's dice


some photos from last weeks performance

Posted on: June 24th, 2014 by libby


Last week I performed 'Up and Downloading the Memory' at the BA CCC degree show at Central St. Martin's.  It was first time I had experimented with performance and it was pretty interesting to play the roll of the art object, even though I chose a tough time throughout the show to do this (at the PV while everyone else was getting drunk!) and I allowed the performance to last for over two hours (until all the words in my mind had 'dried up'...).  It was fairly hard going.

While I didn't use my body as such, it was the interconnectivity between my voice and my laptop (google) that became the art object.  Since I am interested in interactive art in any case, being on the receiving end of the viewers attention helped me to understand how interactivity can be encouraged or disrupted.  For instance, it happened a few times that when I looked someone strongly in the eye and randomly uttered a dry line from the top hit page on Google in a meaningful way, the recipient felt uncomfortable and moved away.  On the other hand, when I was softer and perhaps more playful with the choice of words, I could engaged with the audience in a different, more intimate manner.  I'm hoping that I can use these findings to understand how I can more effectively engage the audience with interactive objects and installations.  Furthermore, I would like to try incorporating a performative element into interactive installations in the future to develop audience participation.

See this previous blog post, for more details about the concept behind 'Up and Downloading the Memory'.

Here are some photos from the show all credited to Viv Du.


Prof. Vlatko Vedral and I have previously worked together in academia, but we now pursue very different aspects of quantum physics.  We are both now exploring the possibilities in new territories forming between different areas of our practice - for Vlatko it is new territory is between quantum and classical  physics (the classical systems can even be biological ones),  for me it is the new territory between quantum physics and art.

In September, we will both be talking about our respective practices at an Ideas Matter Sphere event.  For more information and to book tickets, please follow this link.