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Artist Focus 14: Urban Projections

‘We love the multi-layered approach Rebecca and Pete have taken to combine art and technology–it’s new and innovative. We look forward to seeing how this series develops. Enjoy!’ Wooster Collective
Stylus is an adventure between modern mural painter Pete Barber and digital artist, Rebecca Smith. It explores progressive forms of combining projection mapping with hand crafted image. In a live performance, both elements evolve and interact, to create a canvas of movement, light and paint. Dubbed the ‘Living Mural’, the pairs unconventional approach has led to critical acclaim from both the street and digital art communities.
Burn Yard Live
Their most recent work burn Yard™ Live in Budapest, brought a new creative energy to discarded, obsolete objects and made them beautiful again, the artists collaborated to transform the space with graffiti, street art murals and digital projections. Set against their backdrop of artistic collision, the event itself showcased contributions from some of the world’s leading artists and creatives, including; Gerry Judah, Dilk, M-City, Avicii, 2 Shy, Kimi Räikkönen, Bázis, Saddo + Aitch, Suflo, Sergey and Kirill from Russia’s Zuk Club, Faker, Dezmond and Rune Glifberg.
Stylus 

Mixing paint and projection, Urban Projections, create a stunning and fascinating piece of ever changing art. Set against the backdrop of St. Benedicts Square they make the city of Lincoln their canvas, enticing audiences to question what they think they are seeing…
“Our intention for the Stylus piece at the Frequency Festival is to create a site specific installation that plays with ubiquitous propaganda imagery. The images will evolve over three days revealing layers of subtle detail and changes that distort the image and the audiences understanding of what’s being created. Under projection we will play with the perception of space and moving image confusing the viewer and creating a sense of wonder as audiences question what is real or painted and what is the projected image”
Urban Projections will be presenting Stylus as part of Frequency Out of Hours 24th-26 Oct 6pm till late.
For more information: Urban Projections at Freq 13
Tune in to Urban Projections news: wearestylus.com
Follow them: @Urb_Projections
Connect: /urban.projections

September 26, 2013 on Blog, News updates

Artist Focus 13: Jean Arbeu

‘When he isn’t hugging the stage in graceful rolls and protracted handstands, the choreography engages him in punchy rhythms and circular motions.’ The Times
Brazilian born choreographer and performer Jean Abreu choreographed his first work in 2003, and later that year was honoured with the Jerwood Choreography Award. Since then, his work has toured throughout the UK, Europe and Brazil including performances for London Dance Umbrella and the Southbank Centre.
He founded Jean Abreu Dance in 2009 and subsequently created Parallel Memories in collaboration with Brazilian choreographer Jorge Garcia, which premiered at the 2011 Edinburgh Festival Fringe and toured to Brazil.
In 2012 Jean collaborated with Director Topher Campbell on a Channel 4 film commission that was part of the Random Acts series curated by the Ballet Boyz. He also researched and developed a new work Blood for its premiere in May 2013, which will be showing at Frequency 13.
Blood
The challenge in making Blood has been to lose a fear of the technological revolution that is happening around us. Soon most of our interactions will involve a digital interface of some kind, and Blood brings these two worlds together. Human interface and technology.
A captivating multi-sensory experience that goes beyond dance – Jean Abreu’s new work is a celebration of the strange beauty of life. Microscopic images of bodily fluids created by Gilbert & George from 1996-1998 are magnified and animated by digital artists Mirko Arcese and Luca Biada into a fluid, organic environment that both responds to and is manipulated by Abreu in this intensely physical performance.
Blood is also the first time Gilbert & George have allowed their paintings to be used in performance.
Revolution represents change, a challenge to what comes before. Like the world is in motion and new things are to come.
 
Tune in to Jean’s news: http://www.jeanabreudance.com/
At Frequency: http://freq17.wpengine.com/frequency-2013/jean-abreu
Follow him: @jeanabreu

Follow his Tumblr account: jeanabreuBLOOD.tumblr.com
Watch a trailer: http://vimeo.com/user2982395
 

September 24, 2013 on Blog, News updates

Artist Focus 12: Brian House

Brian House is a media artist whose work traverses alternative geographies, experimental music, and a critical data practice. By constructing embodied, participatory systems, he seeks to negotiate between algorithms and the rhythms of everyday life. He is currently a doctoral student at Brown University in the Music and the Modern Culture and Media departments and teaches in the Digital + Mesdia program at RISD.
Quotidian Record
Quotidian record is a vinyl record made from recoding the artist’s location date over an entire year.
Every place, city, country the artist visited were record using GPS on a phone and then assigned a musical note.
Each rotation of the record represents a day and night in the artist’s life, a 24 hour period.
There are 365 rotations on the record, the entire year lasts 11 minutes.
The sounds suggest that our daily rituals and travels have an inner rhythm. Might these daily rhythms create a new kind of portrait of an individual?
Joyride
Joyride shows us the path of a stolen iPhone over 5 days. By utilising the application OpenPaths, the artist was able to track Sue’s phone and even locate the house of the thief. Brian then used this data coupled with images from Google Earth to recreate the phone’s journey.
The artist, working like a detective had to piece together the most likely path the phone would have taken between the regular intervals of its GPS signal using Google directions to help join the dots. The jolted video stems from the way in which Google earth only shows us images from set intervals along a pathway.
If our phones are sending out signals constantly, we can use home computers to track a stolen phone and recreate its journey. We must consider how much other date is being collected about our movements, just as this work represents the journey of a stolen phone, it could have easily been the phone in your pocket. Where are we now and more importantly who knows?
Brian House presents us with on one level the artwork, but also the subtext of how much do we really want to share? How much control do we have, if any, over our date and in turn our privacy?
Revolution is a return to form, new voices for first principles, it is the body in the data, the sound in the network, the hack that reveals the truth.
 
Tune in to Brian’s news: http://brianhouse.net
Follow him: @h0use
More videos here: http://vimeo.com/brianhouse

September 23, 2013 on Blog, News updates

#RiseoftheSocialPlatforms

Before I start this blog, I’d just like to clarify a couple of things:
•I love social media
•I am however writing this as a pessimist
•I am aware of the irony of complaining about social media and then promptly advertising this blog post on Twitter.
Social Technology has advanced far beyond our expectations, it has invaded the vast majority of our everyday activities becoming a regular tool for communication. Facebook can be regarded as the dominant social medium, since it started in 2004 it has gained 1.16 billion users, roughly 16% of the planets population. A study conducted in association with Bournemouth University called The World Unplugged found that students that gave up technology for a certain period experienced withdrawal symptoms similar to that of a drug or alcohol addict. We are encouraged to upload everything on to the interest, photos, occupation, education, what we had to eat last night, it is worrying how transparent our lives have become.
On the other hand social technology has given us the incredible opportunity to experience other peoples lives and cultures around the world from the comfort of our own homes, we have unprecedented access to celebrities personal lives through Twitter and Instagram. It enables us to keep in touch with people living far away and because of this the act of leaving home is starting to become less of a worry . By using various social mediums families are contained with a “virtual household” which is capable of keeping members instantly connected over vast distances. Therefore it can be argued that due to new social mediums, families are more likely to maintain close relationships throughout their lives.
So, social media is great by the sounds of it, who can argue with the simple fact that it brings people closer and helping us to understand new and exciting cultures. But I believe that there is a darker side to this glorious social revolution. Social mediums are simultaneously bringing the world together and driving it apart. It contains us in a social bubble, privatising all our interaction methods, forcing us to always communicate through a membrane, for example a mobile phone or a laptop. Ultimately this could cause the decline of face to face interaction.
Most social activities have been privatised with the arrival of various technologies. When the Walkman was invented in 1979 it allowed a music collection to become portable. More importantly, that the user was the only person that could listen to the music. The act of enjoying music went from something that was often shared between multiple people, in an open environment to a private indulgence, a method in which an individual could escape.
Fast forward to 2001 and the explosion of the iPod in to popular culture and you do not have to look to far to see people in the streets with headphones plugged in to their heads. I am not claiming to be a saint, free from all social sins, as I write this I have music plugged in to the drown out the general noise of the public. Two earphones in is becoming the universal sign for “please do not talk to me, I am not interested”
As an architect in training, I am very passionate about spaces, places and people. I have made a habit of studying the decline of the public realm. Urban design could be an integral response to the change in interaction methods between humans as it represents the physical side of communication, one that is no longer the priority when it comes to creating and maintaining social ties. If we can create spaces that integrate technology with the motive of encouraging people to venture out from behind their screens and interact with each other, then, like computer software, we should update public spaces across the globe.
Through my studies I have discovered some scholars that believe that priority of Western public spaces was to beautify the urban environment, with visual order being of greatest importance, so, although methods of interaction are changing, the public areas in which we used to communicate were never designed in the first place to accommodate the public as a priority. This could set the scene for an overhaul of social spaces in urban areas.
In the modern age the streets have become the hunting ground for the shopper, stalking the jungle that is the modern high streets. You could argue that shopping is the last form of social activity. I feel that there needs to be a rethink of public spaces, one that incorporates new methods of interaction. Our current spaces are outdated, unused and will fall in to ruin if something does not change. I have seen people freak out of the realisation that their phone is running out of battery. So why not create a public square with it’s own power source? In a perfect world, you could harness the kinetic energy of people walking across the square to power this refueling station. Add in a free wi-fi hotspot and some flexible street furniture and you’ve got a public space that people can use as a resting place, charge themselves and their phones and venture on. Of course this idea is expensive but if a space is well designed then higher quality interaction will occur in it. Therefore people will be more likely to reuse the space. If you were to encase this space with shops (predictable I know) and the result is a space that contributes to it’s energy consumption, encourages people to spend money and raises the cities social status.
The need to understand and include social mediums in public spaces is urgent, because they are going from strength to strength with no sign of slowing down. The simple truth is that we cannot escape from the revolution we are currently experiencing. The golden age of social technology will only continue to gain momentum. The main challenge that designers face when confronting the modern style of interaction through social networking is that there is a lack of theoretical knowledge to truly understand how this shift in interaction methods is affecting us. This means that the reorganising of public spaces is faltering. Until we can acknowledge that social platforms have changed the way we interact, our public spaces will lay dormant. If we accept the fact that social technologies are challenging the preset ways we interact with and try to work with the new mediums, in both professional work and design contexts, public spaces will emerge as areas in cities that fully harness the flow of human movement. Virtual and physical occupants will be able to converse with each other to create a rich engaging tapestry of human interaction. The social revolution has already begun, architects and planners cannot afford to wait much longer until they react.
Please feel free to give me your thoughts and feelings on this subject, I am planning to base my Masters thesis on social technology and the design of public space so the more feedback I get the better.

September 22, 2013 on Blog, News updates

Touch presents…

A big one for us, we’re really excited to announce we will be bringing Touch presents… Chris Watson and Hildur Guðnadóttir, Anna von Hausswolff, and The Eternal Chord to Lincoln Cathedral.
After the success of Spire at Lincoln Cathedral at Frequency 2011, this is going to be something truly special.
Tickets will be available from us, on this very site, from October 1st. At only £5 (£3 students/concessions/under-16s) for world renowned artists, it’s a bit of a no-brainer really.
More event details, and info on the artists here.

September 22, 2013 on News, News updates

New site

As you have likely noticed, because you’re here, we have a new website. Unless you never saw our old website, in which case, this is just our website. Welcome.
We hope you like it. We’ve added in new scheduling software, to make it easier for you to see what’s happening, plan which events you want to see, and integrate into your social networks to see who else is attending.

September 22, 2013 on News, News updates

Artist Focus 11: Juneau Projects

Juneau Projects was formed in Birmingham in 2001 by Philip Duckworth and Ben Sadler. Their work features painting, sculpture, installation, animation, sound, music and participatory elements. They are particularly interested in the rapidly increasing speed of technological development, and its associated obsolescence.
Chapel of the Infocalypse
Juneau Projects’ new installation imagines how society’s attitude towards technology might change following some form of global disaster. Once familiar objects become a focus for worship, the scientific explanations of their functions being replaced by ideas of mysticism and magic.
Juneau Projects have been fascinated for a number of years now by the phenomenon of Cargo Cults (indigenous societies forming religious beliefs, following contact with more technologically advanced colonizing societies, in the hope of gaining material wealth) and the way in which technology completely revolutionizes the societies involved.
This new work is an attempt to imagine how situations akin to Cargo Cults might arise following some form of information apocalypse.
Evolution and revolution
‘Revolution for us is about change. We are constantly considering what we do and, if it is not working (for us at least), we change it. Change maintains our interest in our work and our practice develops through a balance of evolution and revolution.’ Juneau Projects
Tune in to their news : www.juneauprojects.co.uk
Twitter: @juneauprojects
YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/juneauprojects
 

September 21, 2013 on Blog, News updates

Artist Focus 10: Impossible

As well as working at the interface between participatory and digital arts and mixing the technological with the lyrical, Impossible also produces a wide range of projects combining participatory events, new technologies and installation to involve and intrigue people from many different backgrounds.
This partnership between Chris Squire and Charlott Diefenthal is based near Huddersfield in West Yorkshire, and both of them believe that the arts can represent familiar aspects of people’s lives in new ways, and that it does not need to be just for the elite. Their projects offer fresh perspectives in events that range from large scale visual poetry to intriguing involvement through a creative conjunction of context-aware new practice and active participation.
Lightweight
Lightweight is a magical and mesmerizing participatory projection installation. It is highly accessible and engages the audiences in a unique and thoroughly enjoyable experience that is open to everyone.
Lightweight is an elegant 4m inflatable orb that looks dead simple. But it is also the hiding place for complex electronic, sonic and optical equipment developed to create seemingly mysterious and effortless effects.
Of all the modes it can present, the simple passing of clouds – reduced to tones of blue and white and matched with music spilling from seven hidden speakers – are some of the most entrancing and visually pleasing.
But equally the joy participants find in discovering themselves within live animations spinning around the full 360 degree screen is a wonderful moment that Lightweight can offer.
Having audiences and passers-by able to witness their own image mapped into the artwork in this way offers the chance for the public to move the border between the author and the receiver and to configure the relationship between our body and the civic space we share.
It raises issues of democracy, public space, being together and being individual. How being in a space can make a difference to it, perhaps even how we create public space.
More than this it asks how an idea be both tolerant to individuality and also to collectivity, without polarising them. This is ‘Lightweight’.
Revolvere
The word Revolution comes from the Latin ‘revolvere’ and was first applied to the regular and repetitive motion of the planets by astronomers like Copernicus in his seminal work ‘On the Revolutions of Celestial Bodies’. This used provable natural order to displace the earth from the centre of the universe.
However by the sixteenth-century the word had passed into the vocabulary of astrologers who claimed to predict the future from the study of the heavens. They began to use “revolution” to mean unforeseen events determined by the conjunction of planets involving forces beyond human control.
So the original scientific meaning of regularity and order came to mean the very opposite – sudden and unpredictable events in human affairs.
Impossible is therefore interested in the revolution that technology can offer to public engagement in artwork. They are also concerned with the notion of revolution where things come back around but in a new context, so that people now see things anew or in a new light and have it mean something fresh.
‘It raises issues of democracy, public space, being together and being individual. It leads us to question how being in a space can make a difference to it. How do we create public space? And what does the word “public” even mean today?’ Impossible

Tune in to Impossible’s news: www.impossible.org.uk
Follow them: @ImpossibleArts
For videos about their work: http://bit.ly/165gj54

September 20, 2013 on Blog, News updates

Artist Focus 9: Jon Rafman

Montreal born artist, filmmaker and essayist, Jon Rafman, has exhibited in many places such as Tokyo, Rome and London, and his work has been featured in several magazines and newspapers.
The effects of digital media on everyday experience, individual consciousness, and social and cultural memory that are inspired by the rich contradiction that technology presents are at the centre of Jon Rafman’s work.
9 eyes
Jon Rafman takes images directly from Google Street View and represents them to us in large scale photographic prints. By carefully choosing images which are captured by the automatic ‘9 eyes’ of the Google Street View car, he shows us that the automatic, robotic way of capturing the world tells us more than Google may have imagined.
Aiming to give us an impartial view of ‘how’ a place looks, the Google project to photograph the globe actually tells us far more. The camera shooting without human interference loses any moral or social interaction with the subject. At the same time providing us with images that reference every type of photography. The automatic eyes capture everything from street violence to beautiful romantic landscapes.
The styles of the photos produced range from news-like images through documentary and street photography to wildlife and landscape. By presenting these images, Rafman nudges us to question not only the role of photography in our lives today, what we choose to share and what we do not, who owns our image but also the entire history of photography itself.
The Internet allows us to view the world in new and serendipitous ways and Rafman shows us that this new media is also allowing us to view the world afresh, explore and reconnect with the sublime and romantic notions of finding yourself in a new landscape.
‘This very way of recording our world, this tension between the gaze of an automated camera and a human who seeks meaning, reflects our modern experience. As social beings we want to matter and we want to matter to someone, we want to count and we want be counted.’ Jon Rafman
His project 9 eyes: http://9-eyes.com/
Tune in to Jon’s news: http://jonrafman.com
Follow him on Twitter and Instagram: @jonrafman

September 19, 2013 on Blog, News updates

Artist Focus 8: WIFE

WIFE can only be seen in the dark. WIFE works well with others. WIFE likes to play. Visually, WIFE is bold. Physically, WIFE is daring. Dreams are her driving force. She is metamorphosis.
WIFE are a collective of three choreographers and dancers Jasmine Albuquerque, Kristen Leahy, and Nina McNeely who also work as teachers, editors and animators. Based in LA, WIFE have been thriving in the underbelly of L.A. subculture, and we are pleased to welcome them to Frequency 13 to make their UK debut.
Describing themselves as ‘A Trinity of Illusory Performance Makers’ WIFE mix animation, projection mapping to create visceral, sensory performances, defying classification. They find their inspiration from myth, folklore, archetypes and the subtleties of everyday human behaviour.
The Grey Ones
The Grey Ones premiered in 2011 in California with a performance creating the ultimate visual experience that will leave your senses tingling, and your thoughts drifting through the myriad of images that are created on stage.
Inspired by ancient myth, organic matter, decay, and transcendence, The Grey Ones explores the use of projection mapping on moving bodies, and statuesque and saintly gestures to tell a story of the beginning of time. It explores the idea of ascension, of human beings need to rise beyond the ordinary through light, movement and animation.
‘Re-enter the trance of childhood when a moving light can be the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen…’ Swoon Magazine
Revolution
For WIFE revolution means ‘cycles, circles, celestial bodies revolving in space’. The Grey Ones brings revolutionary concepts together with revolutionary technology. Take a look at the trailer, and experience for yourself, what is in store with WIFE at Frequency 13.
If you like WIFE we reccommend seeing Jean Arbeu and Impossible.
 
WIFE will be making their UK premiere at Frequency 13
 
Grey ones trailer: http://vimeo.com/57843146
For more information: http://bit.ly/14XL8pC
Tune in at: www.wifewifewife.com
Trailers at: http://bit.ly/15CSiLD
Follow: @WIFEPROJECTIONS

September 18, 2013 on Blog, News updates

Venue Focus 2: St. Mary’s Guildhall

St. Mary’s Guildhall, located on High Street, has survived eight centuries of use and disuse, with many alterations to the building taking place over this great span of time. Original features are still on display throughout, despite these alterations and the many uses the building has been put to over the years.
There are almost 1000 years of history to discover from its royal beginnings to today. The highlight being the Roman Fosse Way, a Roman road in England that linked Exeter to Lincoln, which is visible underneath the floor at the front of the building, running parallel to High Street.
The Lincoln Civic Trust now occupies the building and is adamant to continue preserving buildings and monuments of historic or artistic value and places of natural beauty. To get involved and encourage the work of the city’s artists and craftsmen, a form of application for membership of the Trust may be obtained by email at lincolncivictrust@btinternet.com and on their website.
St Mary’s Historical Facts
• Most of the essential original components of the building have survived through time, providing a unique example of secular Norman architecture.
• St Mary’s was possibly the property of Henry II who might have constructed it for the crown-wearing ceremonies of Christmas 1157.
• St Mary’s also used to be a Royal cellar in which the King’s wines were kept for use early in the thirteenth century.
• It then became a Guildhall until 1547 where several important meetings such as the Court of the Kings Bench took place.
• Bluecoat School took over the lease in 1614 until 1623 during when major alterations took place, the main one being the reduction of the upper storey walls’ height by 3 metres and the creation of a new roof.
• The building was purchased by City of Lincoln Council in 1938, but continued in commercial use as Lucas’s builders’ depot until 1981, when it was leased by the Lincoln Civic Trust.
It is possible to arrange tours at request with the Lincoln Civic Trust. They can be contacted directly by phoning them at this number: (01522) 546422 or by email at: lincolncivictrust@btinternet.com.

September 17, 2013 on Blog, News updates

Artist Focus 7: Paolo Cirio

Working around the idea of manipulation of information’s power, Paolo Cirio is a media artist known for his controversial and innovative artworks.
The Turin born artist defines his works as sculptural performances of the power of information. He is particularly interested in how specific arrangements of information influence the creation and perception of political, cultural and economic reality, as well as personal emotional states, interpersonal relationships and instinctive human behaviour.
 
Previous works
Paolo Cirio focused on a lot different projects, and here are some interesting key facts about a few of them:

He issued and spread thousands of illicit VISA credit cards, counterfeiting virtual money in order to introduce wealth redistribution through a new monetary policy.
He stole one million profiles from Facebook and republished them on a mock dating website. Several mainstream media covered related legal threats.
He stole data from Twitter and rated the political affiliation of one million Americans to raise awareness about citizen profiling.

Street Ghosts
Life-sized pictures of people found on Google’s Street View are printed and posted at the same spot where they were taken by the Google’s camera. The posters are printed in colour on thin paper, cut along the outline, and then affixed on the walls of public buildings at the precise spot on the wall where they appear in Google’s Street View.
Street Ghosts reveals the aesthetic, biopolitical, tactical and legal issues. The artwork becomes a performance, re-contextualizing not only ready-made informational material, but also a conflict. Ghostly human bodies appear as casualties of the info-war in the city, a transitory record of collateral damage from the battle between corporations, governments, civilians and algorithms.
‘I [create works of art] by seeing art as a means to grab attention and to inform critically, invent utopias and provoke subversive acts through visual and emotional sensational impact.’ Paolo Cirio
 
‘Street Ghosts’ is part of the Where are we now? exhibition opening 14th September at The Collection.
 
For more information: http://streetghosts.net
Tune in to Paolo’s news: www.paolocirio.net
Follow him: @paolocirio
Connect: http://www.facebook.com/paolo.cirio.5
For more videos about his work: http://bit.ly/17FuRSE

September 17, 2013 on Blog, News updates