Archive for August, 2013

Systems Thinking. In Conversation with the artist Stanza

August 8th, 2013

Systems Thinking.  In Conversation with Stanza

Stanza’s system and technology-based works have been exhibited around the world for nigh-on 30 years. With this body of work focussing on urban architecture and alienation, data and privacy, and online environments and culture, his work – mashing up networks, screens, circuitry and CCTV – seems more relevant than ever.

We caught up with Stanza at the start of his new show at the Watermans Gallery, The Emergent City – From complexity to the city of bits.

Read the Full Interview here

http://www.imperica.com/in-conversation-with/systems-thinking-in-conversation-with-stanza

Portrait of artist Stanza

Portrait of artist Stanza

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stanza’s system and technology-based works have been exhibited around the world for nigh-on 30 years. With this body of work focussing on urban architecture and alienation, data and privacy, and online environments and culutre, his work – mashing up networks, screens, circuitry and CCTV – seems more relevant than ever.

We caught up with Stanza at the start of his new show at the Watermans Gallery, The Emergent City – From complexity to the city of bits.

Please introduce The Emergent City – your vision for the exhibition and how it came into being.

I began a series of artworks in 2003 based on connecting city spaces which used research that I have been doing into real-time data and future possibilities for smart cities. A series of artistic experiences resulted from the research, based on the mashed-up metadata from city data streams.

The Emergent City leverages these real-time data city streams, using my own sensor systems, and represents them online, showing the life of the system, opening it up, and the publishing emerging changing behaviours of the space. All things are becoming connected and networked – not just the city, but the whole world. Eventually, sensors will be interlinked to give a real-time global visualization, a public domain data resource for art and environmental monitoring.

Artwork By  Stanza Using Big Data

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The installation goes beyond simple single-user interaction, to monitor and survey the whole city in real time, and represent the complexities of the city as a shifting, morphing, and complex system. The artwork explores new ways of thinking about life, the emergence and interaction within public space, and how this affects the socialisation of space. It uses environmental monitoring technologies and security based technologies to question audiences’ experiences of real-time events, and creates visualisations of life as it unfolds. The artwork captures the changes over time in the environment (the city) and represents the changing life and complexity of space as an emergent artwork.

What you experience and see are hundreds of parts which come alive as the data changes and evolves. It’s a hybrid work, powered by live events. On the floor, there are hundreds of electronic components: fans, LEDs, solenoids, motors. The fans turn when the temperature changes and the motors turn when the light changes. These move in response to the wireless sensors, and are monitoring the light, temperature, noise, humidity of the space and the city. As this data changes, this “wired artwork city” changes. Inside the work are CCTV cameras that present feeds onto micro-monitors within the work itself.

How has the concept of what a city is and works, changed in your personal experience?

The city is everything, everywhere, without limits. It’s a virus on the skin, spreading outwards, upwards, and underground. There is no need to limit the city. It has no bounds.

The city itself is always changing; it is always in flux. Each aspect of city life seems to demonstrate specific characteristics which can be developed into individual parts of the labyrinth, making up the images that will be used. A city experience consists of small unit blocks and cells which inter-relate, and lock together to form the composite city identity. The city has moved from metropolis, to megalopolis, to the ecumenopolis. The city is everywhere, with lifeless design spreading upwards and forming a conundrum of physical objects in space.

How have you used the gallery space for this piece?

The gallery space becomes a live emergent sculpture to wander through. The changing life in the real-time city creates all the changes which one experiences in the gallery space. The leads, wires, and cables are incorporated into the artwork in order to look like a city map.

The installation is “designed” like a piece of urban design; a city, surveyed and controlled. The whole gallery space becomes one large artwork made from real-time city information and data. The moving objects, fans, changing lights, motors, noises, which you encounter in the gallery are all responding to changes in temperature, light, pressure, noise, and the sound of the city outside. The aesthetic and feel of the space looks like an electronic city. The city is made of units, grids, repetition, building blocks.

What are your personal thoughts on the amount of data that city systems now collect about their inhabitants, perhaps in the light of the recent NSA / GCHQ controversies?

Can we use new technologies to imagine a world where we are liberated and empowered, where finally all of the technology becomes more than a gimmick, and starts to actually work for us, or are these technologies going to control us, separate us, divide us, create more borders? My wireless sensor network is set up to “visualise” the space all around us as worlds full of data. These new data-spaces can help us understand the fundamentals of our external environment.

 

Please tell us about Synchronicity, and how the app has helped to augment the visitor’s experience – both in terms of the depth of what they can experience, and how mobile has helped to extend the way in which visitors understand your work.

Dara Visualisation by The Artist Stanza

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As an artwork, Synchronicity paints the real-time data of London, including public transport data, into a real time “thing”. This maze is represented to the screen as a system that moves, morphs, shifts. Its organic networks of information technology are remediated, creating analogies for the organic identity of the city as a social sculpture in what is a public domain space.

Do you think that contemporary city systems help or hinder the concept of urban alienation?

We are connecting and monotoring not just the space, but the movement and agency of space. The motives for this are vague and questionable, from a variety of positions – ethically and morally.

We know about the surveillance cultures and the notions of the Panopticon. Too much is being “invested” into this controllable space. The is no doubt in my mind, the there are obvious benefits which are easy to cite. However, such a blanketing of control is a sophisticated red herring. It is too risky for a large population of have-nots. We are better off with no surveillance, and the investment should be made elsewhere.

Can we “log off” from the system and live invisibly and choose not to be processed, or are such notions of freedom now well in the past?

The networks are never available to the public when we need them…. they get switched off. Transparency will only work when the power is shared equally.

There will be no invisibility. I explored this in Freezone, in 2005. The irony and contradiction is that if you are off-grid, it will be much easier to locate you. Work such as Monument play with levels of transparency inside this collection of information.

City systems and massive data processing facilities remain in the ownership of large organisations (whether public or private). How can they be democratised? Turned over for the common good? Hacked?

What amazes me is the shock of the Snowden leaks. However, I think all the countries are monitoring one another, so that’s no shock. We have known that various systems have been in place which have been and are being re-developed and updated all the time.

We are just going through a current phase of observation in the guise of big data: collecting everything because it has “value”. There are many reasons for this, from money-motivated values to well-grounded observations regarding modelling techniques that benefits someone in some way. However, they all lead to more levels of state control and alienation for those that will not be able to pay for them. The city of haves and have-nots.

What’s next for you after Watermans, and coming up for the rest of the year?

Data Data Data is made from data collected by the sensors inside a building. This is an art project which gives information about the fabric of our cities. In Façade, the artwork changes its behaviour as a result of changing conditions in the environment. The results become representations of the real time spaces and environment of Trondheim.

 

Stanza Body [Data as Culture] at Open Date Institutute. Extended until 2014

August 8th, 2013

Stanza Body  [Data as Culture]

http://www.theodi.org/culture/body-01000010011011110110010001111001-2012

sculpture By The artist Stanza

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

‘Data as Culture’ is reflective of our time.

The body piece and exhibition extended for six more months until 2014  on show in London

Body is a sculpture which responds to the emergent properties of the environment in South London where the artist’s network is situated for the duration. It represents the changing life and complexity of urban space as a dynamic, kinetic artwork. Real-time environmental data is embodied in Stanza’s life-size sculpture assembled from computer components and acrylic slices of his own physique. In ‘Body 01000010011011110110010001111001′ the urban environment provides a dynamic flickering and clicking sentience to the otherwise inert structure, reflecting the personal level of influence data has on an individual.

Open Data Institute
3rd Floor
65 Clifton Street
London
EC2A 4JE

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Stanza surveillance based installation exhibited at Alter?na?tiva? In Poland

August 8th, 2013

An installation by British artist Stanza using live CCTV will be on show in Poland for five months in 2013.

Urban Generation is a data artwork using real time networked cameras. The networked channels are always on, and therefore, the artwork is always changing. It depicts a constant and evolving view of the urban landscape and its inhabitants exploring the emotional state of the metropolis. The artwork considers a world of universal surveillance. The artwork collects live feeds from 200 cameras in London in real time and reworks these video streams into multi-layered visual structures.

www?.wyspa?.art?.pl www?.alter?na?tiva?.org?.pl
Pro­fes­sio­nal pre­view May 23, 2013
Offi­cial ope­ning May 24 at 7pm – November 2013

A city is never fini­shed they say. The making of a city is always con­nec­ted to a futu­ri­stic appro­ach. The metro­po­lis we envi­sion won’t per­haps be the one we are to inha­bit. The plan­ned future of the city impli­ca­tes all aspects of dwel­ling, enco­un­ters, poli­tics, leisure and access to know­ledge.

The Alter­na­tiva 2013 cura­tors have taken on the urgent sub­ject of city plan­ning and its ide­olo­gies as well as the eve­ry­day tac­tics of dwel­ling and inha­bi­ta­tion in it. Loca­ting its prac­tice in the heart of the Gdansk Shi­py­ard, Alter­na­tiva 2013 is both a result of rese­arch as much as a mat­ter of con­cern for us.

Taking Gdansk as a point of depar­ture but not limi­ting the project’s reach to just one loca­tion, „Till Tomor­row!” appro­aches the sub­ject of city plan­ning as an ide­olo­gi­cal one. The XIX cen­tury defor­ti­fi­ca­tion of Gdansk was the first of seve­ral sub­se­qu­ent demo­li­tions for both poli­ti­cal and eco­no­mi­cal cau­ses, reali­zed and unre­ali­zed moder­ni­za­tion plans, which have mir­ro­red the often-??turbulent poli­ti­cal shi­fts. This very par­ti­cu­lar case study is thus an oppor­tu­nity to begin a bro­ader debate on the question:

stanza art installation

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stanza exhibits: Urban Generation; trying to imagine the world from everyone else’s perspective, all at once”. by Stanza 2002 – 5.

http://www.stanza.co.uk/urban_tapestry/index.html

Urban Generation; trying to imagine the world from everyone else’s perspective, all at once”. by Stanza

Artwork By Stanza Using CCTV

 

 

The Exhibition At Watermans Of Data Driven Installation.

August 8th, 2013

Data artworks by stanza

The artist explains that he uses data from security tracking, traffic, and environmental monitoring to make artworks. “These investigations have created new ways of comparing, conceptualizing and then visualizing complex concepts related to the relationship of emergent data and real space in the built environment.”

The artwork captures the changes over time in the environment (city) and represents the changing life and complexity of space as an emergent artwork.

The data and their interactions – that is, the events occurring in the environment that surrounds and envelops the installation – are translated into the force that brings the electronic city to life by causing movement and change – that is, new events and actions – to occur. In this way the city performs itself in real time through its physical avatar or electronic double: The city performs itself through an-other city. Cause and effect become apparent in a discreet, intuitive manner, when certain events that occur in the real city cause certain other events to occur in its completely different, but seamlessly incorporated, double. The avatar city is not only controlled by the real city in terms of its function and operation, but also utterly dependent upon it for its existence.

Visitors to the gallery have given their comments and selections are highlighted below.

“Totally excellent”
“Interesting and inspiring I worry about the overuse of electricity but got fascinated by the gadgets on it.”
“Very original and inspiring work, Symbolises how cities are developing very well.”
“Wonderful sparky city.”
“We were very impressed by the originality and felt part of the art work installation. It had an immediate effect on the viewer.”

For more information on the project click on the link below.

http://brentford.hounslowchronicle.co.uk/2013/07/artist-stanza-wow.html

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The London Based artist Stanza will be giving the keynote at Calculative Devices in the Digital Age Durham University

August 8th, 2013

The London Based artist Stanza will be giving the keynote at Calculative Devices in the Digital Age Durham University

Stanza_body1

Conference Durham University, 21-22 November 2013

Others Keynote Speakers Professor Pat O’Malley (Sydney), Professor Marieke de Goede (Amsterdam) & Professor Rita Raley (UCSB).

Calculative Devices in the Digital Age Durham University

The conference will be oriented to the following key themes:

•Data and calculation  – algorithms and algorithmic logics

•Associative life – ‘real’ and digital identities and social relations

•Data, analytics and decision-making – applications, interfaces, protocols

•Calculating futures – uncertainty, prediction and potentiality

The Securing against Future Events project is organizing a two day conference on the forms and techniques of calculation that emerge with digital computation.

How does the drive to make sense of, and productively use, large amounts of diverse data, inform the development of new calculative devices, logics and techniques?

How do these devices, logics and techniques – from neural networks to decision trees, from Monte Carlo method to traversal algorithms, from text analytics to data visualisation – affect our capacity to decide and act?

In a world of changing data landscapes, how do mundane elements of our physical and virtual existence become data to be analysed and rearranged in complex ensembles of people and things? In what ways are conventional notions of public and private, individual and population, certainty and probability, rule and exception transformed and what are the consequences of these transformations?

How does the search for ‘hidden’ connections and patterns using association rules, correlation rules or link analysis, change our understanding of social relations and associative life?

Do contemporary modes of calculation, based on constant incorporation of heterogeneous elements, produce new thresholds of calculability and computability, allowing for the improbable or the merely possible to be embraced and acted upon?

As contemporary approaches to governing uncertain futures seek to anticipate the yet unknown event – in domains as diverse as marketing and insurance, emergency preparedness and counter-terrorism – how are calculation and decision engaged anew?

http://www.dur.ac.uk/geography/news/futureevents/?eventno=16518

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The British artist Stanza is keynote and chair at the Fascinate Conference Pervasive Media.

August 8th, 2013

The British artist Stanza is keynote and chair at the Fascinate Conference Pervasive Media. Stanza will be talking about networked connected space, big data, his work.

FASCINATE is an interdisciplinary conference investigating the current and future applications of ubiquitous computing technologies in visual and performance arts, architecture, craft, design and interactive media.

FASCINATE will explore technology, design and experience related to ubiquitous computing. Areas of interest include: ambient intelligence; experience design; cognitive environments; augmented performance; pervasive media and the internet of things.
FASCINATE will offer participants the opportunity to present and discuss their work, inspire and be inspired by the work of others across a range of fields of practice; build on the experience of keynote speakers and establish new and eclectic collaborations.
Stanza Portrait 2012

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

http://www.fascinateconference.com/info/

FASCINATE 2013 : 28-30 August : Falmouth University – Cornwall – England

FASCINATE is an interdisciplinary conference investigating the current and future applications of ubiquitous computing technologies in visual and performance arts, architecture, craft, design and interactive media.

FASCINATE will explore technology, design and experience related to ubiquitous computing. Areas of interest include: ambient intelligence; experience design; cognitive environments; augmented performance; pervasive media and the internet of things.

http://www.fascinateconference.com/presenters/stanza/

Other keynotes from Atau Tanaka Ruairi Glynn Seth Honnor

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