Future Realities

Issue 34 July 2017

Living Architecture

Rachel Armstrong takes an alternative approach to environmental design that couples the computational properties of the natural world with the technology of liquids and productivity of soils. She calls the synthesis that occurs between these systems and their inhabitants “living” architecture.

She is Professor of Experimental Architecture at the School of Architecture, Planning and Landscape, Newcastle University. She is a Rising Waters II Fellow with the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation (April-May 2016), TWOTY futurist 2015, Fellow of the British Interplanetary Society and a 2010 Senior TED Fellow.

In this exclusive interview she discusses her ideas and work.

Make Do and Mend and CRISPR gene editing

Anna Dumitriu is a British artist whose work fuses craft, technology and bioscience to explore our relationship to the microbial world, biomedicine and technology. She is artist-partner on the FEAT (Future Emerging Art and Technology) project, with MRG Grammar, investigating the grammar of gene regulation.

In this exclusive interview, she discusses the FEAT project, her approach to art and developing in-depth art/science collaborations.

Expressing to the Unconscious

Jim Campbell is an artist who creates LED light sculptures that are unique in that his media and message are inseparable. He uses technologies developed for information transfer and storage to explore human perception and memory. He studied Mathematics and Engineering at MIT in the late 1970s and has since worked in filmmaking, interactive video and LED light technology. His background in electrical engineering, mathematics, photography and filmmaking enables him to make immersive works that explore the space between the representative and the abstract.

In this exclusive interview he discusses his work and the importance of low resolution moving images that express to the unconscious.

boredomresearch: Robots in Distress

boredomresearch is a collaboration between British artists Vicky Isley and Paul Smith. The artists are internationally renowned for exploring an understanding of the natural world through the medium of computational technologies. Becoming intimately aware of the vulnerability of complex systems, including those which support human life on earth, they present a daring new vision for technological innovation, centred on reuniting the presently splintered domains of art, science and society. Their work considers our strategies for coping in a world increasingly destabilised by human activity.

In this exclusive interview they discuss their work and their current FEAT ‘Robots in Distress’ collaborative project .

Future Body Architect

Lucy McRae is a science fiction artist, body architect and inventor of Swallowable Perfume. She places the body in complex future scenarios, inventing visually iconic films and experiences that connect science with imagination. Lucy influences culture by providing a feminine point of view on scientific breakthroughs related to health and the human body.

Her award-winning artworks have been exhibited at London Science Museum, Royal Academy of Arts, Centre Pompidou and Venice Biennale, developed in collaboration with leading Institutes like NASA, MIT and Ars Electronica. Lucy is listed by Fast Company as one of 50 designers shaping the future.


Špela Petrič and Miha Turšič have been working together for several years and have a background in natural sciences, new media, bio art, product design, space culturalisation and postgravity art. We merged our efforts in the development of new artistic methodologies as a response to new conditions, knowledge and technology; to research the subjective, context dependent value of scientific knowledge; the development of artistic entities; to study the human condition in relation to the non-human; and to research art and humanities in outer space.

In this exclusive interview they discuss their work and their current FEAT ‘becoming.a(thing)’ collaborative project .

All aboard the Antarctic Biennale in Venice

The participants in the Antarctic Biennale international project have returned from their first art expedition to Antarctica. About 100 people from around the world – artists, architects, researchers, poets, writers, musicians and philosophers – set off on board a scientific research vessel, the Academic Sergei Vavilov, from the port of Ushuaia to the Antarctic Circle. During the artistic voyage, the participants traveled around 2,000 nautical miles (4,000 km), making over 12 landings on the shore of the Antarctic peninsula and on islands surrounding Earth’s most southerly continent. In total, on the continent’s territory, over 20 artistic projects were carried out, including performances, installations, exhibitions and sound-art experiments, as well as over 15 research sessions and philosophical discussions.

In this article, Clive Adams reviews their work and exhibition at the 2017 Venice Biennale. Clive is the founder director of the Centre for Contemporary Art and the Natural World, now based at Dartington in Devon. When working for Fabian Carlsson Gallery in London, he was involved in a project in which artist Andy Goldsworthy made the first sculpture at the North Pole in 1989