Posted on Fri 30 Oct 2020
Announcing the seven recipients of the Future Themes Fund, the ideas they are playing with, and conversations that they will be embarking on
We are delighted to announce the recipients of our Future Themes funding. Made possible by the ongoing and longstanding collaboration between the Watershed, UWE Bristol and University of Bristol, the fund was set up as an open call to all Pervasive Media Studio residents to spend time exploring ideas at the intersection of technology and culture.
At the Pervasive Media Studio we have always seen technology as more than a tool for information, efficiency, or the proliferation of screens. We see it as a material with which to create new kinds of expression, interaction and experience, alone and with each other.
We are a place for deep conversation about art, technology and society; conversation that is hopeful and yet critically engaged. We firmly believe that a diversity of perspectives improves ideas, so for the fund we sought proposals that involved dialogue across disciplines, within and beyond our community.
While we can’t be in the building, we have been looking to stretch current and provoke new thinking in the community and find ways to connect us as a creative community and inform a public dialogue about the future.
Future Themes residents will deliver Lunchtime talks from October onwards and share blogs that take us deeper into the research they’ve undertaken, the questions they are investigating, and where their research might take them next. You can subscribe to our YouTube channel here, to see all the talks across the season and follow us on Twitter to check out the blogs, when they land on our website.
Ethno Augmenting Social Realities
Across the Room, a new collective comprising of collaborators Imwen Eke, Camille Aubrey, Takita Bartlett and Will Taylor, will be embarking on R&D for Ethno Augmenting Social Realities. They have interrogated new ways of developing digital facilitation tools for cultural relevance in physical and virtual spaces beginning with the inclusion of Black African and Caribbean voices in the creation process.
Watch Across the Room’s talk, broadcast on October 30th, here
It's our Pleasure
It's Our Pleasure is a multidisciplinary experience of Pleasure, Community, Diversity & Exploration. A story of Intimacy, Identity & Human Rights. Audiences are invited to join an underground community where anything goes. It’s Our Pleasure is a collaboration between Jane, international artists, interdisciplinary consultants and digital technology experts.
Watch Jane’s talk, broadcast on 13th Nov 2020, here.
Housebound, the Musical
Stephanie Kempson (Sharp Teeth Theatre) collaborates with Ben Osborn, Linzy Nakorn and Helen Edwards to work with artists and people with experiences with chronic illnesses and/or being long term housebound, researching and developing an interactive musical about being Housebound.
Watch Stephanie's talk, broadcast on 20th Nov 2020, here.
Crip Tech & New Modes of Togetherness
Raquel Meseguer collaborates with Jonny Cotsen, Stephanie Kempson, Grace Quantock and Barrington Chambers for Crip Tech & New Modes of Togetherness, an opportunity for disabled artists to reflect on their relationship to technology and facilitate open conversations around the following questions, “What tech could we, as disabled artists, not live without? How have we ‘cripped’ tech, in life and in art? What technology or strategies do we use to create meaningful connection and modes of togetherness?”
n.b. Crip is a term from disability scholarship and disability justice movements. It suggests a desire to “to jolt people out of their everyday understandings of bodies and minds, normalcy & deviance” A. Kafer, Queer, Feminist, Crip. Raquel uses Crip as an artistic provocation to do things differently).
Watch Raquel's talk, broadcast on 27th Nov 2020, here.
Silhouettes Project: Old and New Modes of Connection & Togetherness
Ellie Chadwick collaborates with Depi Gorgogianni, Abi Zakarian, Ana Ines Jabares-Pita, Gael Le Cornec, Amanda Guardado, Gabriela Roman Gonzalez for a project inspired by the Cuban-American artist Ana Mendieta, who made provocative work utilising her body, natural materials, and photography/film. They explored questions such as “Can we push the extremes we are faced with, taking inspiration from Mendieta’s work:
both ephemeral, bodily, sensorial and archival, technological and visual?”.
Watch Ellie's talk, broadcast on 11th Dec 2020, here.
The (Future) Wales Coastal Path
Alison Neighbour has collaborated with dance artist Vikram Iyengar and Oregon based writer & game designer Ken Eklund for ‘The (Future) Wales Coast Path’, a body of work that responds to flood maps released in the Welsh media showing huge areas of the country at risk from sea level rise; and to the slow crisis unfolding around the world as land becomes sea.
Watch Alison's talk, broadcast on 8th Jan 2021, here.
Trigger will collaborate with Carl Robertshaw (Bjork/ The Hatchling) and writer Zena Edwards (Apples & Snakes) for research on a new project called GROW. They will begin by asking “How can global stories aided by technology be told through the history of botany, historically a colonial act, and how do we allow these transient narratives to be seen, heard and felt by a larger audience? They will explore biopiracy – the ways in which flowers, herbs, plants and spices from across the world were collected, patented and named by Western explorers meaning that some indigenous cultures have lost local species and remedies to western law and patents.