Metrography (2012) by Benedikt Groß & Bertrand Clerc. part of the first Data as Culture exhibition at the ODI. Image © the artists.
Metrography (2012) by Benedikt Groß & Bertrand Clerc. part of the first Data as Culture exhibition at the ODI. Image © the artists.

Data as Culture - a partnership with the Open Data Institute


27 September 2013

Lighthouse is pleased to announce a new partnership with the Open Data Institute. We are working together on the next phase of their Data as Culture programme.

Lighthouse, the Open Data Institute, and Manchester’s digital culture festival, FutureEverything are working together on a new geographically distributed exhibition of data-driven art.

We are now calling for proposals from curators who want to explore this exciting concept.

In 2012, the Open Data Institute presented a cutting-edge exhibition of data-driven artworks at their new premises in central London. The show outlined the notion of data as a vital form of culture, and included a number of new commissions, funded by the Open Data Institute (ODI), plus displayed existing works such as 20Hz by Semiconductor, co-commissioned by Lighthouse.

We are excited to be working with the ODI on an open call for curators to apply for funds to conceive and produce the next phase of the Data as Culture programme.

For all of us, Data as Culture makes the point that open data is a cultural concern, not just a technological matter. As Gavin Starks, the CEO of the ODI has written:

“In an age of data-driven decision-making, we are led to believe that data represents truth. Simultaneously our collective data shadows are revealing, in real-time, details about our personal lives, social groups, corporate interactions, and civic society.

Combined, these trends open many, many questions: whose data are we trusting? Who wrote the algorithm? Who wrote the code? What are the unexpected consequences of combining different data? If our personal, business, and political decisions are shaped by these data, is there dogma in the code?

Equally, our maker culture is re-emerging, as evidenced not only in events around the world, but in the art commissions themselves: only one of the nine works is screen-based. This concept of the web ‘breaking through the glass’ and becoming part of our physical world could not be more timely, and significant, to the work of the Open Data Institute: to catalyse the evolution of an open data culture that creates economic, environmental, and social value."

The new Data as Culture show will be geographically dispersed exhibition. Applicants will have the opportunity show work within the ODI’s working environment in central London, at Lighthouse’s space in Brighton, and as a key part of FutureEverything festival’s programme in Manchester.

Some of the themes central to the work of the three venues include: globally connected networks, tools for unknown futures, and physical manifestations of digital worlds.

The deadline for curatorial proposals for Data as Culture is 13 October 2013.

More details of the opportunity, and how to apply, can be found here: http://www.lighthouse.org.uk/about/opportunities

Data as Culture is the first step in what we hope will evolve into a deeper collaboration with the ODI. We look forward to exploring the notion if data as a critically important part of our technologised world, with them.


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