Performers needed: Join the Binary Graffiti Club – STANZA, SPECTRA 2017

Written by andybrydon on . Posted in Art, Data Vis, Installation, Light, Our Projects, Performance, Technology, Urban Spaces

Performers Needed - Join the Binary Graffiti Club - STANZA

As part of the first round of ENLIGHT residencies, a major international project instigated by SPECTRA Festival‘s Curated Place in partnership with Manchester Metropolitan University’s MIRIAD research centre, Fondazione Mondo Digitale (Rome) and I/O Lab (Stavanger) we are seeking volunteer performers to join “The Binary graffiti Club” – an ongoing project by renowned digital artist STANZA.

Stanza has been artist in residence in Aberdeen’s twin city of Stavanger, Norway developing a new work “The Global Dérive: The Sum Is Greater Than The Parts“. This newly created artistic experiment engaging with issues of data ownership, privacy of information within the real time city.

During this performative event The Binary Graffiti Club are tracked in the city, they are monitored and surveyed and the collected data is used to visualise them live on large screens at the heart of the festival.

How to get involved:

We need twelve people to walk around the city.

You need to have an Android phone and be willing to download STANZA’s custom software.

You need to ‘perform’ by walking around the city as instructed by the Artist for 2 hours each night from 1900-2100 on the 9-12 Feb inclusive.

In return you will receive an exclusive Binary Graffiti Club Hoodie and an invitation to the SPECTRA wrap party on the 12th Feb from 10pm-2am.

To apply please send an email confirming your availability and commitment including your email, phone number and a short statement of why you want to be involved to before the 3rd February.

The work is supported by Creative Scotland and the Culture Fund of the European Union

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STANZA is an award winning London based artist whose practice includes include installations, netart, public art, generative data driven art, paintings and prints. His work has been exhibited at the Venice Biennale, Tate Britain and the Victoria and Albert Museum.

The Global Dérive: The Sum Is Greater Than The Parts

Twelve people to walk around the city…They are dressed in the Binary Club uniform the black binary hooded top; the clothing symbol of the age. They are tracked and monitored as units of data, reduced and simplified and represented as a zero or a one. Custom made software tracks their real time position and the data is collected and fed back to the servers. This performance is exhibited inside the gallery or outside in the city in real time. What you seen on the screen is a poetic interpretation, an abstracted interpretation.

Although they meander they are re-formed via software into active agents while their every move is monitored. The group of seemingly aimless individuals are actually collaborating to make the artwork which is visualised. The output represents the collective agency of the performing groups, thus the sum is greater than the parts. Each person in the system is by default an active participant in the creation of the result whether they like it or not.


While representing a large population as a collective entity in a virtual way ie the collective agency of the group is harvested. The patterns we make, the visual and imaginative interpretations we give to real world events, are already being networked into retrievable data structures that can be reimagined and source for information. These patterns disclose new ways of seeing the world. There are 7 billion people on the planet which  can be harvested as data assets. This is stage one uniting everyone  as collaborative agents for change. The artwork questions who owns the data we generate and suggest that privacy as a social concept is now obsolete.

The individual is no longer present in the city. The city is now a fully integrated platform of observations owned and controlled by the people. Every action forms part of the structure of the design of the city buffeted by  its physical architecture. A newly created virtual city of data is formed.


A newly developed software APP is used to collect the data and gps location and a server API  formats the data which is visualized into an interface a vasilias experience in Three JS.


All the data once collected will become part of the an open virtual space that shares it values amongst its contributors. NOTE In line with the data protection act and our own ethical code of conduct all data is anonymised and represented in a way that allows the project to  infer common ownerships of the material  while allowing us to express the idea (We are however not hacking the data, not selling the data, and not disclosing any sensitive information.)

Wider Cultural Context

The terms of flânerie dates to the 16th or 17th century, denoting strolling, idling, often with the connotation of wasting time. While Baudelaire characterized the flâneur as a “gentleman stroller of city streets. He saw the flâneur as having a key role in understanding, participating in, and portraying the city. A flâneur thus played a double role in city life and in theory, that is, while remaining a detached observer. “The deepest problems of modern life derive from the claim of the individual to preserve the autonomy and individuality of his existence in the face of overwhelming social forces, of historical heritage, of external culture, and of the technique of life. “— Georg Simmel, “The Metropolis and Mental Life”. Walter Benjamin adopted the concept of the urban observer both as an analytical tool and as a lifestyle. Debord defines the dérive as “a mode of experimental behavior linked to the conditions of urban society: a technique of rapid passage through varied ambiances.”It is an unplanned journey through a landscape, usually urban, in which participants drop their everyday relation and ‘let themselves be drawn by the attractions of the terrain and the encounters they find there’. Debord indicates.

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SPECTRA Volunteers needed

Written by Susan Wareham on . Posted in Uncategorized

Circle 6 (detail)Image-by-Roman-Gerasymenko-660x440

We are looking for volunteers to help with the delivery of SPECTRA, Aberdeen’s Festival of Light. There are lots of different ways to get involved all listed in the call-out below. 

The recruitment is being managed by our partners Aberdeen City Council, so if you are interested please contact Louisa Snelling on


Volunteer at SPECTRA 2017

What’s in it for you?
• SPECTRA, Aberdeen’s annual festival of light is first and foremost great fun!
• Get up close to the work of leading international artists as well as talented Scottish creatives and help the public to enjoy the experience. There are lots of interactive pieces, so there’s plenty for all ages to enjoy and a number of more thought provoking installations. SPECTRA brings light, art, technology and music together to create an amazing spectacle.
• Whilst it’s hard work we believe you’ll find it rewarding. Whether you’re a student looking to gain experience in festivals, or just enjoy cultural events and keen to get stuck in, then we can find a role for you. It’s an amazing opportunity to put on your CV and make you stand out from the crowd. Plus you’ll have the satisfaction of knowing you’ve helped to bring another successful event to Aberdeen that makes art accessible to all.
• If you are a student we’re happy to verify the work and hours you’ve done for a course leader if required.
• We’ll provide an induction and training so even if this is the first event you’ve volunteered at you’ll soon feel at home.

What’s in it for us?
• SPECTRA is a very popular FREE event open to the public. We rely on volunteers to help us deliver a high quality visitor experience during the four night festival run across our various sites and are very grateful for everyone’s help.

Don’t forget your thermals, it’s going to be chilly!
• Most of the roles involve working outdoors, which will be a chilly experience at best, and a cold, wet and windy experience at worst, so wrap up with lots of layers. We recommend you wear sturdy shoes or boots.

What skills and qualities are we looking for?
• The public play a major part in many of our roles, so we’re looking for volunteers who are friendly, good with people and have a good customer service attitude.
• However, if you’re more technical, behind the scenes, then we have roles for you too. Production volunteers are needed to help with the set up and dismantling of the installations.

All volunteers must be:
• 18 years old or over
• Be good with people and willing to work as part of a team
• Have availability and commitment to undertake the role you are interested in
• Attend a Volunteers Briefing session on Tuesday 6 February, 6-7pm, at Seventeen, 15-17 Belmont
Street, Aberdeen AB10 1JR.

The SPECTRA organisers, Curated Place and Aberdeen City Council Events team will explain
everything you need to know about the festival and the duties required in each role. If you’re
keen to volunteer but unable to make this time please email

What are the roles and when do you need us?

Production Assistants – need to be available during the set up Mon 6-Thurs 9 Feb and
dismantling Mon 13-Tues 14 Feb

Experience of installing artwork and being good with a tool box is an advantage but not essential as
training will be given. Although building the artwork is strenuous work involving long hours and
attention to detail, it is equally rewarding and assistants will work closely with the artists to ensure it is installed correctly. A clear understanding of health and safety and respect for adhering to site
management rules is required.

In previous years some Production Assistants have also volunteered in the evenings as they are
really familiar with, and understand, the artwork so can show the public how to interact with it
too – Thurs 9- Tues 12 February 6-10pm

Event Stewards – need to be available during Thurs 9- Tues 12 February 6-10pm
– It’s great if you can help for the whole festival but not essential.
Welcome the public, hand out maps, answer general questions, give directions and information.
Crowd management, looking out for hazards and reporting any incidents and assisting in emergency
situations. Will suit those with a friendly and positive attitude keen to give good customer
service and make the festival an enjoyable experience. Stewards are our ambassadors and will be
responsible for the audience’s first impression of the festival.

Conference Notetakers – Fri 10 & Sat 11 Feb 9am-5pm
The Catalyst Conference is a high profile two day cultural conference with International and UK
speakers and open to artists, designers, academics, architects, business leaders and social

Sessions will be recorded on video, and to complement this we require a written record the
discussions which take place so we can feed back on potential projects and collaborations at the
end which have come out of these conversations. This would suit a journalism student familiar
with freehand or anyone who is good at summarising and recording key points made during the

‘Stanza’ Art installation Volunteers – need to be available Thurs 9-Sun 12 Feb 6-10pm
12 volunteers are required to take part in an interactive piece by becoming part of a Binary Graffiti
Club. Twelve people will walk around the city, wearing a Binary Club black hooded top to represent
units of data, either 1 or a 0. Each person’s movements will be tracked, their real time position will
be fed back to the servers and used to create patterns on an image on display for the public to see.

Where will you be working?
You’ll be located at one of our sites:
• Union Terrace Gardens
• Marischal College
• Seventeen on Belmont Street
• St Nicholas Kirkyard
• The Roof Top Garden next to St Nicholas Kirkyard (New for 2017)

Who is organising the event and who will you be working with?
SPECTRA 2017 is an Aberdeen City Council project delivered in partnership with Curated Place. Curated
Place is an arts-led production company delivering, creating and curating contemporary exhibitions and
events on an international platform.

How do I sign up?
Please email Louisa Snelling on with the following details:
• Name:
• Mobile Number:
• Dates available:
• Role/s interested in:
• Any related skills/experience:
• Have you volunteered at Spectra before, if so when and what did you do?:
• If you’re a student, which course and year you are in:

SPECTRA Catalyst Conference Assistants Job Vacancies

Written by Susan Wareham on . Posted in Uncategorized


We are hiring!

We are looking for two friendly, enthusiastic and organised Conference Coordinators to support the delivery of our Catalyst Conference running as part of SPECTRA Festival 2017

Find out more about the conference here

Please see the job description below and contact Susan Wareham, to apply or find out more information. 

Conference Coordinators x 2

Role: SPECTRA Catalyst Conference Assistant
Dates: Thursday 9th – Saturday 11th February 2017
Shift times: 9am – 6pm
Venue: The Anatomy Rooms, Queen St, Aberdeen, AB10 1AP
Salary: £200 Fee

Job Description
As part of SPECTRA 2017, Curated Place and Aberdeen City Council are running an arts industry conference, Catalyst, over two days during the festival to invite artists, designers, academics, architects, business leaders and social entrepreneurs to come together with our international partners, destination agencies, the hospitality industries and Aberdeen City Council to identify ways to develop the cultural economy in Aberdeen.

We are looking for two Conference Assistants to help with the smooth running of the conference (including one day prep prior to the festival).

Job Specification
• Conference setup and tech install
• Welcome delegates and speakers to the conference, handing out marketing material, answering questions and offering information about the conference and the larger festival
• Assisting with setting up and taking down the space with furniture and technical equipment
• Managing the filming of interviews with delegates and speakers
• Assisting with the serving of lunch and refreshments
• Assisting with the evaluation of the conference through handing out evaluation cards and gathering feedback
• Clean-up and strike each day

Job Requirements
• Experience of working in catering, hospitality or events
• Excellent communications skills with a friendly and approachable nature
• An interest in the Arts and in SPECTRA festival

• Knowledge of food hygiene regulations
• Technical skills – experience in setting up AV, sound and light equipment
• Experience of working with a videographer and filming
• Experience of working at conferences

To apply please send a covering letter explaining why you are suitable for the job and why you are interested in the role, as well as a CV to the email below marking the subject CATALYST CONFERENCE APPLICATION

Susan Wareham,
Production Manager, Curated Place

Deadline: Noon Monday 30th January



ENLIGHT 2017 Call for Artists – 3 Funded International Residency Opportunities

Written by andybrydon on . Posted in Uncategorized


Deadline midnight on 1st April 2017

Four funded residency opportunities for mid-career artists across Europe to take part in new international partnerships developing installations that combine light and sound.

Jump to the Application Form

The second round of residencies offered from the newly formed ENLIGHT project invites three European artists to undertake collaborative residencies developing public-realm artwork with technical teams based in Manchester, Stavanger and Rome.

Curated Place with SPECTRA Festival  in partnership with MIRIAD at the Manchester School of Art (UK), I/O Lab in Stavanger (Norway), and Fondazione Mondo Digitale in Rome (Italy), are offering artists the opportunity to participate in a new programme and network producing and promoting light and sound artworks – exploring the meeting point of art, technology and design. Artists will be invited to undertake several short residencies with their host organisations – supported by their teams of technologists and technicians to create a new public realm work for exhibition in our existing festivals. The residencies are squarely focused on completing production for exhibition outside of traditional art spaces and developing the skills and networks of all involved.

Residencies will take place in the following production windows with hosts:
Manchester: July 2017 – October 2017
Norway: July – October 2017
Italy: July – October 2017

All artists will be required to exhibit their final work at the 2018 SPECTRA Festival in Aberdeen (Feb 2018) the 2018 Rome Media Festival (Early May 2018) and The Stavanger Article Biennial (August 2018).

Theme: A New Light

Light plays a fundamental role in the story of Europe, shaping the rhythms and boundaries of social interaction within cities; defining the drive of the enlightenment; and providing the means through which we now overcome the restrictions of geography and time thanks to modern digital communications. As such it precedes, defines, and now enables our cultural landscape.

Across every state in the Union light has played a central role in how both physical and social space has been defined providing a universal language for expression and interpretation. However, each state has negotiated its own unique relationship with illumination through the peculiarities of their built environment, the oral and written histories crystalized within them and the historical social, scientific and cultural interactions with the medium. This complex story delineates those subtle differences and similarities that define a shared European heritage and delineates where out future shared space of identity could lie.

We are inviting artists to escape the ahistorical white cube and set their work within the environment of the cities where we work, inviting creative proposals for developing new works and artists professional practice that will explore how new collaboration with teams that allow artists to explore new technical ground can reinterpret the experience of the built environment in public realm installations using light and sound.

Deadline: midnight on 1st April 2017


Applicants must hold a valid passport from and reside in one of the following countries (passport and residency need not be the same state):

EU Member States:
Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Rep, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, UK

EEA / EFTA countries:
Norway and Iceland (Switzerland is currently not part of the Culture Programme and is excluded)

“Candidate” countries:
Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro, Republic of Serbia, Moldova, Georgia


Artists who have a track record of exhibition and collaboration, who are established in their own region and are at a stage in their career to successfully engage in international collaborations are invited to apply for the opportunity to work with a host arts organiasation in Norway, Italy or the UK through a series of intensive residencies to develop new works.

Through the residency the artist will be required to work closely with their partnering host to develop a new light-based artwork for presentation outside of traditional gallery spaces. We are looking for artists who enjoy working flexibly and are eager to engage in an experimental process – not simply a commission.

Successful applicants will develop a new work with one of the three partnering organisations with support and mentoring from the broader ENLIGHT network in Norway/Italy/UK before having the work exhibited at partners’ festivals in 2018.

Commitment to the Project:

The project will run a split residency format with each artist being invited to work with hosts over three visits.

The applicant will be required to carry out an initial meeting with their host organisation to meet, familiarise themselves with the tools, resources and personnel available, and devise a project direction then work before leaving to develop these ideas.

The artist will then be invited to undertake two residential visits during the residency window periods (exact timing to be agreed with successful applicant). By the end of the process artists will be required to have an installation ready for exhibition. The premiere installation will take place over three days prior to the Aberdeen festival in February 2018 and artists will be required to be present during the 4 day festival if their work needs operational oversight. A further two exhibitions will take place at the Rome Media Festival and Stavanger Article Biennial.

We will provide:
• Hosts’ support and personnel to develop their ideas, and the resources of the host organization outlined below (SEE CHART).
• All travel, accommodation and a sustenance budget
• An artist bursary of €2000 fee ring-fenced from all other costs
• Marketing for the project
• Introduction to local cultural partners and peers in the host cities
• An exhibition of the work in Aberdeen/Rome/Stavanger

How to apply
Artists should apply through the application form and provide:
• Their choice of partnering organisation and why
• An outline of how their involvement in the project would impact on their professional development (300 words)
• A brief proposal (500 words maximum) outlining their ideas of how they would approach the collaboration creatively, thematically and practically.
• A strategy for engaging new audiences in the work (300 words each)
• Two examples of their work to date (preferably demonstrating an ability to work in a collaborative fashion and delivering works outside traditional gallery settings.
• Images and tech specs of previous work presented
• A press-ready biography
• Press clippings of previous work
• An up to date CV

A shortlist for interview will be selected by the project partners.

Shortlisted candidates will be interviewed by Skype/Facetime in early April 2017.

Resources for Artists

  • Fondazione Mondo Digitale

Video Lab
Game Lab
Fab Lab
Immersive Lab
Robotic Center
Expert consultations and technical support
Art Critics, Art Curators, Experts
Collaboration with other artists (sound artist, videoartist, ecc.)

  • Manchester School of Art

3D Print Services – Powder Printing
Our 660 colour powder printers can provide full colour, high detail prototypes, ideal for architectural presentations and visual prototypes that require colour information and fine structures. The finished model is robust but not strong enough for real world applications.

3D Print Services – Plastic extrusion printing
Our CubePro printers provide good rapid prototyping and can produce objects like toys and phone cases that can be used straight off the printer in material that are ready to use in real world applications.

AV Store
The AV Store offers short term loans of camcorders, lighting, digital cameras and other audio-visual equipment to faculty students and staff.

Animation Capture Suite
The computer equipment and cameras in the Animation Capture Suite can be used to create stop motion animations.

Photography Resources
Photography studios, darkrooms and film processing facilities are available in the Chatham building.

Edit Suites
The Edit Suites provide post-production video editing facilities using Final Cut Pro and sound editing tools.

Wood, Plastics and Foam
There are extensive workshop facilities to support students working with wood, plastics and foam.

Facilities for jewellery making, traditional blacksmithing and forging, metal fabrication, machining and welding.

Workshops for mould making, casting, throwing, glazing and firing using electric and gas kilns.

Facilities for both hot and cold glass working.

Computer Aided Manufacture (CAM)
A digital router and laser cutter are available in the CAM Workshop.

Chemical Workshop
For spraying and other processes involving chemicals.

  • i/o/lab

Laser cutter
Multiple CNC Mills for soft metal, plastics and wood
Multiple 3D printers
Large plotter
CNC vinyl and paper cutters
Electronics equipment
Various power and handtools



Curated Place is a creative production company specializing in developing, delivering, managing and marketing major projects across international borders and with numerous partners. They commission and present new music and visual art across Europe and beyond, and have developed successful large scale projects for Royal Botanic Gardens Kew, CityCo, Essential Edinburgh, The City of Edinburgh and Aberdeen City Council. As well as founding and directing the Moving Classics European Network for New Music they produce and lead creative direction on all aspects of the Enlighten Manchester Festival of Light and Sound Art and Aberdeen’s Spectra Festival of Light Art which attracts over 40,000 visitors each year.


MIRIAD (Manchester), Part of Manchester School of Art at Manchester Metropolitan University, carries forward Manchester’s proud 175 year tradition in art and design education, whilst offering an innovative and modern approach to research and study. MIRIAD engages with the changing territories of knowledge and new technologies, to interrogate dominant cultural viewpoints and identify emergent patterns in the international cultural landscape and global environment. It also encourages debate and disseminates knowledge to a variety of audiences through publication, exhibition, new technologies and media, events and consultancies. MIRIAD’s main aim is to develop research capabilities commensurate with sustainable national and international levels of excellence. MIRIAD’s external collaborations and projects are extensive – a recent survey showed that last year it undertook 180 external collaborations, 130 professional activities and had 82 links with industry.


i/o/lab (Stavanger), is an artist-run organization with expertise within the field of art, technology and science. i/o/labs projects have on several occasions been referred to as one of the most innovative and interesting art projects in the region and nationally. Our expertise extends from production to dissemination and knowledge of art within new technology and science.The dimensions of i/o/lab is to provide innovative and artistic projects through creating meeting places between art and research to multiple audiences in the community where projects are partly based in public spaces.

We represent the region’s most innovative arts festival focusing on media art that expresses contemporary technology and trends, Article Biennial, which has been arranged in the Stavanger region since 2006. The purpose of Article Biennial is to promote art forms commenting on our digital world and affecting ethical and political issues concerning our time.


Fondazione Mondo Digitale (FMD) (Rome), is committed to the creation of an inclusive learning society in which innovation, education, inclusion and fundamental values work together. The potential benefits offered by knowledge, new technologies and innovation must be made available to everyone without any form of discrimination. The FMD mission is to promote the sharing of human knowledge, social innovation, and social inclusion, with particular orientation to the categories at greatest risk of exclusion (the elderly, immigrants, unemployed young people, etc.). The Foundation has developed projects with artists since 2014. The main project is the Rome Media Art Festival. It is a large event aiming at bringing the younger generations closer to a new way of conceiving and using digital technology for creativity, visualization and communication. The event seeks to establish a bridge between schools, museums, research centres, universities, companies. Furthermore, the FMD implements artist’s reside.


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