I started my full time PHD in January, has been a bit of a slow start because I’m still working full time, my contract finishes in 7 weeks. I’m looking at the social shaping of technology, social tech, Radical Software and Radical Networks.
I’m currently writing my research proposal for my PHD. I hadn’t planned on doing one, but my stint at Megacorp gave me more than enough fire in the head to write a thesis. I’ve been busy preparing for a couple of shows, and I’m happily settled back in the UK for a while.
I just spent the last 4 months working for one of the largest tech companies in the world. It was a truly alienating and depressing experience. I signed a million NDA’s so can’t talk too much about it – other than it was working on Natural Language Processing. On the plus side, I learnt some cool things about AI, on the negative, being in a super monitored pressured and monitored environment was pretty dehumanizing. Being inside one of the biggest machine entities has really made me question the pervasiveness of algorithmic thinking, particularly the lack of awareness of algorithmic interference in our daily lives.
The promise is better living through technology, but my overall impression of the reality is the illusion of choice in a coded environment to direct/control human behaviour.
Anyway, I’m free from the tyranny of Megacorp, and bursting at the seems with ideas for new work. I’m living in a rural seaside town in Ireland and taking the time to draw things out.
As always, I’m pushing my own boundaries in terms of making and this is equally exciting and nauseating. Sometimes, I look at the work of my peers, and see an unbroken line of experimentation – and I am envious! The consistency and pursuit to a particular style/material/theme… the mastery! So, I’m going to try to focus my energy a bit more and refine the overall theme of my work this year. I’m also going to push myself with different media.
I’ve been on residency here for 2 weeks now, and it’s fantastic to have the space and time to be able to experiment without a show deadline/commission or even assignment. Just to make things again but with a structured self guided pathway entered voluntarily without any particular goal in mind other than to explore ideas visually/physically.
The studio that I’m staying in is the largest that I’ve ever worked in. I find the scale intimidating.
That being said, I’m off to a good start. I identified 3 outdoor sites that I can experiment with. I’m in two minds as to whether I should do the module at Valand. In some ways it will push my process and I really want to experience an alternative pedagogical approach to PG arts education – to compare it to my previous experiences. But, I don’t want it to distract from my making either!
I’m waiting for two small sensors to turn up for a new work – it’s really simple from an electronic perspective but I’m hoping that it will allow a different way of experiencing a viewscape from a more than human perspective. There is still lots of repetitive construction of the actual viewing device so progress is slow and steady. I’m hoping to have it ready in the next month or so because I’ve put myself down for open studios.
I’m looking forward to the Christmas break from my day job which starts this Friday! It means that I will be able to venture out and explore a little but more importantly have lots of time to do the work!!!
It’s been 2 weeks since I started my stay here at Konstepidemin. It’s a fantastic opportunity to have time away from London to focus on my project and refine it.
I’ve identified a whole list of activities for the next few months to explore the theme of Thigmotropism.
There are few affordable makerspaces in the city, so I find myself drawn to embroidery as a medium. There is a sewing shop at the bottom of the hill! I’ve also identified two potential sites for site specific works.
Being on a longer residency is fantastic because I don’t feel pressured to push out work.
I’ve got some dates for opem