Thoughtworks Arts


Art-A-Hack Special Edition CYFEST 2018 in St. Petersburg

Newsletter sent on Thursday, 1 February 2018
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Art-A-Hack™ special edition for CYFEST 2018 kicked off on January 17th in central St. Petersburg, Russia.

Teams sharing updates as part of the Art-A-Hack process
CYLAND media art laboratory

Artists, programmers and other creative practitioners met each other for the first time to start discussing their project ideas in preparation for the first workshops.

Participants hail from St. Petersburg, as well as a large number who made the trip from Moscow specifically for the program. This unique Art-A-Hack™, produced in collaboration with CYLAND MediaArtLab, entails teams working together for two consecutive weekends before presenting their final projects in a public opening at the Berthold Centre in St. Petersburg on February 7th, 2018.

The teams have many exciting projects underway, including interacting with a holographic character, allowing viewer to control a video narrative by blinking, and creating a visual word cloud which responds to human voice, via sentiment analysis.

Investigating AI in Criminal Justice

During her work on Karen Palmer’s RIOT project, Thoughtworks employee Stephanie Weber researched the role AI is playing in the criminal justice system. In Weber’s write-up of the situation, she goes through topics of sentencing, risk of recidivism, and bias in automated systems, looking at the way AI is changing our perspectives on each topic.

A gavel on stylized background
Image created by Stephanie Weber

Stephanie worked on Karen Palmer’s residency project at Thoughtworks as a researcher and software developer during 2017.

Panels at Thoughtworks Arts on Emotional AI Systems

The Volumetric Society ran a series of panels at ThoughtWork NYC on the general theme of artificial intelligence and emotion. Speakers included Patrick Levy-Rosenthal, CEO of EmoShape, Aaron Trucola of Three Form, and filmmaker Noah Hutton.

A person speaking to an audience
Patrick Levy-Rosenthal presenting at Volumetric Society

Check out Patrick Levy-Rosenthal’s presentation on EmoShape, The Digital Body: Giving Technology an Awareness of Form with Aaron Trocola, and The Case Against Neural Normality with Noah Hutton.

If you are interested in joining the Volumetric Society, please sign up on our meet-up.

Introducing REFRESH

REFRESH is a new art collective dedicated to diversifying the art/tech/science world, co-founded by former TWA resident, Heather Dewey Hagborg. REFRESH is the first biennial exhibit of its kind, showcasing feminist, queer, de-colonial, and historically marginalized artists.

A graphic showing the #KissMyArs campaign
#KissMyArs Social Media Campaign Image

This initiative came about following the social media campaign, #KissMyArs, which Heather started in response to the gender problem perpetuated by the international arts and technology prize, the Golden Nika, awarded at the Ars Electronica festival annually. Heather co-authored a piece in the Guardian explaining the rationale behind the #KissMyArs.

REFRESH currently has an open call for a Curatorial & Engagement Fellowship. Application deadline is February 14th, 2018.

Directors and Alumni News


Heather Dewey-Hagborg (Past resident)
IFVA Festival
Hong Kong Arts Centre
March 6, 2018 - March 20, 2018
Hong Kong

I am here to learn: On Machinic Interpretations of the World
Frankfurter Kunstverein
February 15, 2018 - April 8, 2018
Frankfurt, Germany

Stranger Visions McGlothlin Center for the Arts
February 12, 2018 - March 9, 2018
Emory, VA
Exhibition opening + artist talk February 12th, 7:30pm

Transmediale/Festival Face Value
HKW – Haus der Kulturen der Welt
January 31, 2018 - February 4, 2018
Berlin, Germany

Strings: Data and the Self
California Museum of the Arts
Thousand Oaks, CA
January 19, 2018 - April 15, 2018

A face mask in a box
New portrait print for ‘Stranger Visions’ exhibition by Heather Dewey-Hagborg

Unreal. The Algorithmic Present
Chronus Art Center
November 11, 2017 - January 21, 2018
Shanghai, China

Big Bang Data
MIT Museum
October 11, 2017 - March 30, 2018
Cambridge, Massachusetts


Ellen Pearlman (Director)
3D Opera
PAJ: A Journal of Performance and Art

Karen Palmer (Current resident)
When Your Fear Is The Remote Control: Karen Palmer’s Immersive Cinema
Fast Company

This Filmmaker From The Future Can Teach You To Channel Your Fear

A figure emerging from a fiery landscape
RIOT by Karen Palmer

Inside Out: Emotion, Witness and Self-awareness from Immersive Experiences
Garry Haywood

Sensory storytelling: what are artists’ responsibilities when creating immersive digital experiences?
Linda Raftree

Annie Berman (Art-A-Hack Alum)
New Horizons of Virtual Reality: Exploring Utopia Through the Evolution of Second Life
The Independent


Heather Dewey-Hagborg (Past resident)
Conversation with Chelsea Manning
March 15, 2018, 5pm
Michigan Theater, University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, Michigan

Conversation with Chelsea Manning
March 20, 2018 6:30-8pm
McConomy Auditorium, Carnegie Mellon University
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
(Tickets required)

Panel Speaker: Calculating Life
February 1, 2018, 4:30 PM
HKW – Haus der Kulturen der Welt - Exhibit Hall 1
Berlin, Germany

Karen Palmer (Current resident)
Panel Speaker: The New Storytellers III
Phi Center
Montreal, Canada

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