The Digital Art GONG Show 2012

September 3rd, 2012 § 0 comments § permalink

Hosted by his Holiness the Reverend Michael James Parker, this is an opportunity to speak freely within the hallowed pillars of Fabrica – until the GONG tolls…

Six Digital Artists show works to a judging panel of seasoned art professionals.
YOU ask the questions YOU vote for the winner

£3 ENTRY buys YOU 3 votes

20:00, 10 September 2012 at Fabrica Gallery, Brighton


Brighton Digital Art GONG Show 2012 – Call to Artists

August 7th, 2012 § 0 comments § permalink

Dear artist

We are inviting artists working with digital technology to present an artwork and answer questions. It can be a completed piece, or work in progress and there will be a laptop, projector and PA at your disposal.

There is a panel of experts (including Jon Pratty from the Arts Council) who will comment on the work presented.

The audience then comment or ask questions.

The Gong is is rung to denote moments of significance. These can be salient questions, moments of clarity, confusion, boredom or poetry.

At the end the audience votes and the winner receives £50 and the Brighton Digital Art Prize.

The Digital Art GONG Show will take place at the Fabrica gallery on Monday 10th September 8-11pm.

We ran a Contemporary Art GONG Show in this year’s Brighton Festival and all the contributors found it useful for their practice.

If you are interested in contributing please fill in the form below (and please pass this on to anyone you think fits the bill.)

Consciousness Engine audience interviews

May 17th, 2012 § 0 comments § permalink

Cameron’s Dream

May 4th, 2012 § 0 comments § permalink

Fortunecat Productions have taken over the walls of The Rock Inn in Brighton for the month of May with an exhibition of paintings and new video works investigating what might be in the subconscious of the PM.

Cameron’s Dream Part 1

Cameron’s Dream Part 2

Cameron’s Dream Part 3

The Brighton £5ringe Contemporary Art GONG Show

May 4th, 2012 § 0 comments § permalink

Contemporary Art GONG Show

The May Festival is almost upon us and Brighton’s art community stands ready to peddle it’s wares. Yet it seems there are few opportunities for visual and conceptual art to be publicly discussed and judged.

This is a call out to any artist who feels courageous and unseen, be they established or emerging.

On the afternoon of Sunday May 27th at The Rock in Kemptown as part of the £5 Fringe, Fortunecat Productions are running an Art Gong Show in which a panel of seasoned art practitioners give their responses to work presented.

You are invited to bring an object, painting, idea, digital image or short performance that you feel represents your art practice.

The judges discuss the works and question the artist before the audience vote for their favorites.

The winner receives the £5 Fringe Art Prize

The artist in last place will be banned from showing any art for six months.

If you would like to participate, please email sam@fortunecatproductions.com

Tim Leopard’s World of Pain

December 6th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Who’s afraid of The Big Society?

November 11th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

For this year’s White Night the Fortunecats cast themselves as a Government Think Tank, investigating attitudes to ‘The Big Society’. Using The Bee’s Mouth Bar as our venue, we proceeded to interview and categorise the population of Brighton.

Subjects were interviewed on camera, and their responses streamed live to a projection in the basement. While the subjects gave their answers, they were scored on their Compliance, Morality, Contentedness and Deviance.

After the interview finished, the subjects were classified into one of six types, and offered suggestions as to their potential roles in The Big Society.

Click the images below to read the guides given to the interviewees after classification.


We interviewed 85 subjects over the course of the evening, which were categorised in the following proportions:

Though the chart may appear to indicate a larger proportion of type two’s, the difference was found to be statistically insignificant.

Other supporting materials

Consciousness Engine Interview

September 14th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Reposted, with permission, from Kay Johns‘ blog.

Interview with shardcore.

During this year’s 2011 Brighton Festival I went to see an exhibition at the Old Market called The Consciousness Engine by artist’s Shardcore and Sam Hewitt. I found this to be such a fascinating experience, it has left me thinking about consciousness, freedom and artificial life forms ever since.

KJ: Your video in the basement of the market place was made using generative software. Was there a reason to use generative software as part of the piece as a message within your work, or did you just use generative software as a process for making the work and it had no relevance to the actual work?

S: The use of a generative system was integral to the piece. It operates on two levels, firstly as representing one facet of conscious experience – that it is continuous, mutable experience (a feat which would either require a huge amount of scripting/editing without a generative system). Secondly, it allows for the content to appear as truly novel, just as in the conscious mind, no two moments are the same – we wanted to create a machine that, while bounded to the limits of the source content, could still produce new juxtapositions that we were unable to predict.

Looking more broadly, generative systems allow the artist to step away from the explicit form of the work, and into the realm of meta-creation – making the rules that govern the creative process, rather than explicitly creating the end piece itself. By loosening the grip on the end product, the artist is able to use the outcomes of a generative system to inform the manipulation of that system; the artist becomes a benevolent curator of the work, rather than the direct creator of the end product.

KJ: Would you say that as the artist you wanted to explore consciousness via an artificial source (the computer, core of the engine) using the process know as generative art to express and simulate existence of the natural world?

S: We wanted to explore consciousness, and that exists in a place beyond what is generally considered ‘the natural world’. So, in that sense, we were never aiming to create a naturalistic environment.

The generative nature of the system, for me, was far more about creating an experience in flux, just as the conscious mind is constantly in flux – it makes no sense to take a snapshot of a mind, it’s very nature is one of change – and that’s why it had to be a generative machine. I wanted the viewer to be an involved observer of a simulated mind, and for that, it was essential that it was constantly changing. If we had used a pre-composed, pre-recorded film, it would have been a different piece entirely.

In building the piece, I wanted to avoid existing AI paradigms and produce a purposefully (semi-controlled) chaotic system. AI generally concerns itself with simulation of specific parts of the human mind to appear ‘intelligent’ in a rather narrowly defined sense.

The Consciousness Engine exists not as an end-point, but as a symbiotic process between the machine and the viewer. The viewer needs to engage their conscious mind directly with the machine for the work to exist. When no one is observing it, it’s just a machine talking to itself in an empty room.

Conscious experience is primarily a constructive process – what you ‘experience’ of the world is mainly a projection of psychological expectations. With this piece I wanted to draw out the mind behind the expectations, the machine provided a method for doing this.

My hope was that the piece, along with the journey of installations before reaching the machine, would guide the viewer into a place where they were provoked to consider the nature of their own consciousness, and not simply assume the role of passive observer.

KJ: I found that the Core of the Engine (computer) related more to my subconscious mind. It felt like I was experiencing a dream filled full of random questions and different locations around Brighton, which were reminiscent of some of my own thoughts and memories. I’m curious was the core of the engine both the subconscious merged with the conscious mind?

S: The part of our mind that we live in, our wakeful consciousness, is but a small part of the machinations of our brains. Indeed, experiments show that the conscious mind is often ‘the last to know’ about what we, as individual functional entities, are doing.

So, rather than considering the subconscious in a Freudian way, I tend to see the conscious mind as a machine struggling to make sense of a series of events coming from both ‘external sources’ (what we see, hear, taste etc) and ‘internal sources’ (our memories, expectations and desires) – I guess you could consider the latter as ‘the subconscious’, but I tend to see them as an integrated system, with consciousness as the final layer.

It was important that the video sources used were of locations and events that may be familiar, this allows the piece to feel more like a mind like occupying a coherent space, and also to use these experiences to provoke memories and sensations in the viewer who may occupy a set of spaces and experiences.

The subconscious is generally seen as inaccessible, only visible via oblique projections, such as dream analysis. For this piece we wanted it to consider the direct conscious experience of the now.

Chatbot vs Chatbot

August 30th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Fascinating to watch the conversation to turn, so soon, to Unicorns and God.

The Consciousness Engine – The Engine Room

July 15th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink