First Friday is a monthly social event open to anyone. These events are somewhere between the last meeting of the week and the first event of your weekend. You might meet an artist or an engineer, a school teacher or a city leader. It is a place to connect with someone you might not otherwise meet, and hear about stuff you didn’t already know. All are welcome - from inside and outside the city, online or in the Watershed building.
July 2023 event
The next First Friday will take place both in Pervasive Media Studio and online on Fri 7 July 17:00-18:00.
Our July event coincides with our Playable City showcase week.
People joining online can participate in short speed networking conversations, facilitated by our chat roulette style software. You will be paired up at random for a series of five minute conversations, one-to-one with other guests. There is an option to take a break between each chat and you are welcome to pop in and out whenever you like. It's fine to join the event late and leave the event early.
People joining us in person will have the opportunity to have a look around Pervasive Media Studio and to find out more about some of the work that happens here. There will also be some equipment set up to chat with people joining the event remotely.
As well as the chance to socialise in the Studio, attendees joining the event in person will also get to see a selection of work by Residents, themed around Playable City. The projects being shown are:
- Alison Neighbour is a scenographer, theatre designer, and performance maker, interested in using art to connect people and place. Alison will be sharing footage and performance objects from Beacons, a large scale Quest and Performance that took place in Folkestone at the end of 2021 and is available for touring; and from The (Future) Wales Coast Path, an international project addressing sea level rise.
- The Company of International Artists is a multi-form project by award-winning Bristol company Brave Bold Drama. Agents Kahlo and Dali of the top-secret global creative agency The Company of International Artists are alleged to be breaking cover briefly at this prestigious event with their lobster telephone and mobile filing cabinet to consult with creative minds in the locality. Their mission is to collect interesting ideas that have been spotted hiding in art.
- Joseph Wilk is a digital artist and disabled cyborg who uses automative forms of expression working with alternative bodies. Joseph will be sharing the Augmented Reality project “Wheeltrails”, an excuse to dance in public spaces, exploring the wheelchair's movement as a creative body and its interaction with the design of the physical world. This was performed over the entire Southbank Centre site (including the odd places nobody goes) as part of the Unlimited Festival 2022.
- Kaleider, a production studio that combines installation, live performance, and digital, will share a prototype of their new work for public space, Blocks (working title). Blocks is a giant, illuminated, playable, and sustainable cardboard sculpture that the public can collaboratively move, touch, and twist into thousands of different shapes – an accessible and creative visual-tactile experience.
- Play Disrupt's practice is built through years of making interactive performance, play interventions and embedded community engagement. They will be inviting you to take part in some of their playful methods of engagement. You can play ROOTS - a place based project generating activity and #oneplaything - a method that invites people to engage with a space going through change in a playful way.
- Rachel Smith is an artist and web developer who makes performative installations. She will be sharing a section of ‘We Stayed up all Night Waiting for the Sun to Set’, a collaborative work with artist and landscape architect Maud Canisius which utilises live YouTube streams and allows the audience to watch a never-ending sunset, circling the earth while standing still in one place.
- Tine Bech Studio is multi‑disciplinary art studio creating beautiful and meaningful experiences focused on positive social impact. They will be sharing Be a Tree – Green Earth a hybrid digital installation that blends sustainability, technology and play with the climate debate to encourage us to grow trees.
- Theatre company Uninvited Guests and artist Duncan Speakman will share Future Places Toolkit. This project uses Augmented Reality, science fiction and immersive sound to support people in imagining preferable futures for their neighbourhoods, aiming to make planning consultation more playful and engaging. Funded by MyWorld Catalysts and Connectors: Tools for the Creative Industries they are currently working with Zubr.co to develop a new version of the software.
The hosted element of the event will finish at 6pm. After that, in person attendees are welcome to continue conversations in Watershed's cafe bar area.
To join us online sign up here. You will be asked for your email address so we can send you your personal link. Please try and use either Chrome or Firefox on your computer (rather than a mobile device).
If you are attending in person, there is no need to pre-book. Head to our main bar area, buy a drink if you want to, and then follow directions down to Pervasive Media Studio.
About Pervasive Media Studio
The Pervasive Media Studio hosts an international community of over 100 artists, companies, technologists, and academics exploring experience design and creative technology. We are a space for risk taking and early ideas; for the kind of projects and questions that inhabit the meeting points of art, technology, and society.
Our projects span play, robotics, location-based media, food, connected objects, interactive documentary, new forms of performance and more.
We have an open plan studio with a culture if generosity, curiosity, and interruptibility. We believe that by clustering people together from a broad range of backgrounds, with differing skills, experience, and opinions, all of our ideas become better.
Join the First Friday mailing list here.
This event is supported by MyWorld.
Pervasive Media Studio is wheelchair accessible and there is an accessible and gender neutral toilet. There is also a baby changing area.
We have a dedicated quiet room where there is low lighting, sofas, bean bags and space to lie down. This is away from the general open space of the Studio.
If drop in events aren't accessible for you, please email email@example.com to book in. When you book in, we will link you up with a member of our team who will reach out to find out where you would like them to meet you and what time you will arrive. That team member can also arrange a time for you to visit the Studio for a 1-2-1 tour so you can familiarise yourself with our space before attending.