The installation: Gallery, Invisible Agency and Cultural Behaviours, made in 2008 by Stanza makes the invisible visible, and describes the space or gallery it is presented in. In this case the upper gallery in Plymouth Arts Centre, England. The gallery is laid bare as a work of art. Gallery proposes that the invisible can be seen and experienced as a space is full of data; which is in fact the medium from which the art is realized. The gallery is described by the shifts in the environment of the space. ie the light, temperature and noises in the space over time. The art becomes the real time flow of the things around us that allow our senses to invoke understanding. I suppose people could go around the gallery shouting or, lighting matches, use torches and switch the lights out. But I am not responding in this way to the audience I am responding to the architecture, to the physical presence of the space which appears de -voided of art.

The gallery interior has also been made virtual and placed online by monitoring all of these micro changes in the space IE, The gallery becomes the artwork formed by the emergent real time data in the space. This is an experimental engagement with data in the art gallery using custom made software and wireless sensors. Stanza asks , "what happens during the process of visiting the gallery as a dataspace"; ie what happens to the gallery and what do the visitor do? The sensors are used as real time recording devices to gather information about the sensory behaviour of the real space.

What is "Gallery, Invisible Agency and Cultural Behaviours"

The artwork involves gathering the material, ie, real time pure data from sensors and using the data as assets, to make an audio /visualization of the real gallery. Gallery becomes monitored as an environment and re- made visible because of the changing data over time. Gallery is an empty room full of sensors with an online representation of the space itself. "I am doing nothing to the space other than monitoring it, observing the interactions on a micro". The intervention in gallery and interactions in the space are created by visitors whose presence changes the data.

The space is the art; and data is the medium used to form this artwork. The work is based on a series of ideas exploring time based interactions within art gallery setting using technologies used for urban monitoring and surveillance. The artwork questions whether meaningful cultural interactions can take place by changing the way we focus on space and consider what art is in the process.

When we are out of the gallery the building itself has behavior and so does the surrounding environment. On a smaller micro level things change constantly in a gallery. The gallery itself is made more alive by the objects that move inside and make noise, people for example. But this is not the participatory or performative element in gallery, this is embedded in the artwork by default. The sensors themselves are controlling this. The gallery is made interactive by this element of control. The gallery is in fact monitored by technology over various networks.

"Gallery" as a data space.

The body experiences the artwork called "Gallery, Invisible Agency and Cultural Behaviour" by default. The body is the interpreter of the "artwork". The "anomalies" of presence in this work are not key to any interactivity. The shifting data in the space is measured and the interactivity is not based on direct physical response to sensor devices. The interactive response is on a metaphysical level ie how one interprets an artwork. This is an interactive response between audience and the artwork (which is titled "Gallery, Invisible Agency and Cultural Behaviour") and therefore in this case between audience and the gallery space itself.


Gallery is available for exhibitions and touring, ie it can be remade and set up in your space or gallery. It makes the invisible visible. To do this I have to set up a sensors netwrk in your gallery and make the feeds online then allow the visualisation. What it look like is dependent on the sensor reading s from each venue.

First made and installed by Stanza at Plymouth Arts Centre in situ in the gallery space during Feb 2008.




Gallery by Stanza.  The installation makes the invisible visible, and describes the space or gallery it is presented in.
Online interface to the data at Plymoth Arts Centre 2008

"Gallery", input from other artists and curators.

What is Gallery.

" Audiences are increasingly seeking the artistic environment for entertainment. And what do you do, when there¹s nothing to see? You either get frustrated, or you end up realizing that we accept without any reflection that everything that is enclosed within the art gallery walls should be considered art. Encountering an empty space can be an incredible opportunity to rethink our position as spectators. Our perceptible generosity and curiosity towards the artistic space could very well be extended to everything in life. It seems to me that this was the invitation proposed by Stanza. " text by Cadu. {Cada is a Brazilian artist who responsed to this artwork with these comments, he is also artist in residence in Plymouth Arts Centre feb 2008.}

"Stanza’s art is consonant with a new philosophical position, or rather set of positions, that has recently emerged, that seeks to develop just such a complex understanding. There are a number of names associated with this, including Speculative Realism, Object-Oriented Ontology, and the New Materialism. Among its major figures are Quentin Meillassoux, Graham Harman, Levi Bryant, Ian Bogost, Jane Bennett, Vickie Kirby, and Timothy Morton, though it must be said that there are many others also working in the same are, and also that this is not to ascribe any overly unified character or set of beliefs to these thinkers. Nevertheless they offer a new way of thinking about the world, one that does not reduce it to what is available to human consciousness.

Art does not, indeed cannot tell us about things in the way that science or philosophy does, but it can tell us something about how we can come to know and understand the world into which we are flung. To put it another way it offers us an insight into the act of knowing and the way that that knowing is structured and determined. Works of art set us up us as observers of different sorts, according to the dominant epistemologies of the context in which they are made. Thus to look at a work of art made in a context different to that in which we find ourselves is to be given a potential insight, however partial, into a different way of thinking about and representing the world

Stanza’s work not only performs the way in which non-human actants now appear to talk to each other, especially in relation to the so-called ‘internet of things’, but moreover how these conversations take place in literal black boxes, in other words the computers and networks whose operation is both largely hidden from us, and at the same time vital for our everyday existence. But this must not be seen merely as a comment on network technologies. Rather it should be understood as reflecting a more complex and widespread aspect of our existence, in short the degree to which we can now recognize that everything can and does communicate everything else. Much of this communication is not easily available to human subjects. Thus the opacity of Stanza’s and other new media work can be understood as the most profound artistic response to both our current mediated condition and to the new ontologies and philosophies it has engendered."

Professor Charlie Gere

Gallery is a network, net art , networked, generative. Sensor, installation and database.
Gallery is also a real time audio and visualization of an environment.

network: (1) a system or group of interconnected elements; (2) a set of nodes, points, or locations connected by means of data, voice, and video communications for the purpose of exchange.

net art: art projects for which the (Internet) is both a sufficient and necessary condition of viewing/expressing/participating.

networked art: (1) works in which nodes, objects, and people connect via computer networks, including the Internet, Local Area Networks, and mobile networks; (2) works that invite (inter)action and/or participation.

generative. evolving continuous system of data.

(1) bridge multiple realities while maintaining autonomy;
The project gathers assets from the real house and represents this data across networks as an online system a generative experience of a a real architecture.
(2) engage the user as a participant;
The user participates in the online system by mixing and controlling the assets and the data. An interface will be created to  enable this
(3) include the dynamics of both one-to-one and one-to-many communication within the work;
A multi- node wireless sensor network ie a rhizomatic network gathers the assets (data) and feeds it online for interpretation my end users.
(4) require collaboration between artists, programmers, scientists, and others; and, (5) encourage dialogue.


A special hardware system has been custom installed and custom software created can also allow the visualization to be viewed live on the internet. Eventually a network of environments( gallleries and real spaces) can be connected to show a global space a global world of data. ie galleries can be linked up and networked.

A network of live wireless sensors is deployed and this collects the data. A wireless sensor network with ten motes and multiple sensors on each data maps the environment. Using Tiny OS and open source software the motes  are programmed so that they communicate over the air. Once OATP is established the data is collected and extracted via a router as xml. A unique system for live XML broadcast has to be developed which archives and relays the data to the online systems and interface. A java and PHP system is used to relay the live data ie a mote reader for the live version.

Gallery by Stanza. Concept, sounds, design, visualisation, copyright Stanza. 2008.

Thanks to Scan, Plymouth Arts Centre, and IDAT. Curated by Paula Orrell and Helen Sloan. This was part of part of "Distributed South", which is a project funded by The Arts Council England. Thanks for support from Eamonn Martin and Adam Hoyle. Research supported by an AHRC creative fellowship.

Projections of the virtual gallery back in the real gallery space.


Gallery by Stanza.  The installation makes the invisible visible, and describes the space or gallery it is presented in.

© Stanza 2008

KEYWORDS: network, net art , networked, generative, sensor, installation and database, real time audio, visualization, environment.

made by stanza...redirects to stanza main home page.