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The Arts Catalyst

The Arts Catalyst is a science-art agency that aims to extend the relationship between the arts and science. It organises and promotes exchange and collaborations between artists and scientists, and research in multidisciplinary laboratory situations. Events including exhibitions, education and critical debate, which are presented in a range of arts, science and public venues. Our funding contributes to core costs and artistic programming.

Funding awards

  • 2012-2013: £266,852
  • 2013-2014: £272,990
  • 2014-2015: £280,088

Video feed

SEFT 1 Tim Waterman Parkland Walk 12 July 2014

Video (handheld) of Tim Waterman's talk Death Collapsing into Life: A Parkland Walk, Finsbury Park, London Saturday 12 July 2014 As part of the programme for the exhibition, SEFT-1 Abandoned Railways Exploration Probe - Modern Ruins 1:220 at Furtherfield Gallery. "Death needs time for what it kills to grow in" wrote William S Burroughs. True, but so is its opposite. Life needs what death kills to grow in. Hope has its roots in ruin. This walk, along a disused railway line between Finsbury Park and Highgate will explore how vicious nature and the ruthless engines of urban decay can show us a new way of imagining utopia. Tim Waterman is Research Associate (Landscape & Commons) at Furtherfield. He is a landscape architect, urbanist, writer, editor, lecturer, and speaker. His research focuses on the relationship between people and place that constructs landscape, from the ecological to the sociocultural. Of particular interest are explorations of power and democracy and their shaping of public space and public life; taste, etiquette, belief and ritual; and foodways in community and civic life and landscape. At Furtherfield, Tim facilitates research and events at the intersection of the physical and the digital commons and how art practice can shape the construction of empowering space, both real and virtual. Watch a short film of the SEFT-1 journey here For more about the exhibition and other events see www.artscatalyst.org

Republic of the Moon London

A short film documenting the Republic of the Moon exhibition, which opened The Arts Catalyst's twentieth anniversary programme. Made by Lena Nix with Video in Common, curator Rob La Frenais introduces the exhibition, the work of artists Liliane Lijn, Katie Paterson, Moon Vehicle, WE COLONISE THE MOON, Leonid Tishkov and Agnes Meyer-Brandis and the Manifesto for the Republic of the Moon. see www.artscatalyst.org/moon

A de industrialised estate, Malcolm Miles, SEFT 1, June 2014

As part of the opening weekend programme for the exhibition, SEFT-1 Abandoned Railways Exploration Probe - Modern Ruins 1:220 at Furtherfield Gallery and following Ivan Puig and Andrés Padilla Domene artists' tour Dr Malcom Miles will gave a talk on: A de-industrialised estate. Saturday 21 June 2014, Furtherfield, Finsbury Park, London N4 2NQ Railways were an integral part of the industrialisation which shaped the environment and social relations of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. They were also an important element in national identities. Now, as lines and networks are closed and privatised, their empty and abandoned sites create a new Melancolia: an attraction to ruins which becomes a lament for modernity. But this also produces reflections on industry as the defining aspect of modernity: despite its role in climate change, it cannot be written off as bad; it produced material benefits and enabled workers' solidarity. Today, modernity's abandoned estate is either preserved or recycled, and artists critically reconsider the industrial past. The talk will be followed by a discussion with the artists Ivan Puig and Andrés Padilla Domene with Rob La Frenais, curator, The Arts Catalyst. Dr Malcolm Miles is Professor of Cultural Theory, School of Architecture, Design & Environment, University of Plymouth, his new book 'Eco-Aesthetics: art, literature and architecture in a period of climate change, is published by Bloomsbury www.malcolmmiles.org.uk Watch a short film of the SEFT-1 journey and for more about the exhibition and other events see www.artscatalyst.org

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SEFT-1 Abandoned Railways Exploration Probe - Modern Ruins 1:220

SEFT-1 Abandoned Railways Exploration Probe: Modern Ruins 1:220 Exhibition at Furtherfield Gallery, Finsbury Park, London N4 2NQ, UK 21 June to 27 July 2014, open Friday, Saturday and Sunday, 11am-6pm, free Artists Ivan Puig and Andrés Padilla Domene (Los Ferronautas) built their striking silver road-rail SEFT-1 vehicle to explore the abandoned passenger railways of Mexico and Ecuador, capturing their journeys in videos, photographs and collected objects. In their first London exhibition, SEFT-1 Abandoned Railways Exploration Probe: Modern Ruins 1: 200, commissioned by The Arts Catalyst and presented in partnership with Furtherfield Gallery, in the heart of Finsbury Park, the artists explore how the ideology of progress is imprinted onto historic landscapes and reflect on the two poles of the social experience of technology - use and obsolescence. artscatalyst.org/projects/detail/ferronautas/ Between 2006 and 2011, the artists travelled across Mexico and Ecuador in the SEFT-1 (Sonda de Exploración Ferroviaria Tripulada or Manned Railway Exploration Probe). In a transdisciplinary art project, they set out to explore disused railways as a starting point for reflection and research, recording the landscapes and infrastructure around and between cities. Interviewing people they met, often from communities isolated by Mexico's passenger railway closures, they shared their findings online, seft1.com, where audiences could track the probe's trajectory, view maps and images and listen to interviews. The artists' journeys led them to the notion of modern ruins: places and systems left behind quite recently, not because they weren't functional, but for a range of political and economical reasons. In the second half of the 19th century, the Mexican government partnered with British companies to built the railway line that would connect Mexico City with the Atlantic Ocean -- and beyond to Europe. This iconic railway infrastructure now lies in ruins, much of it abandoned due to the privatisation of the railway system in 1995, when many passenger trains were withdrawn, lines cut off and communities isolated. For this new exhibition, the artists are inviting British expert model railway constructors to collaborate by creating scale reproductions of specific Mexican railway ruins exactly as they are now. One gallery becomes a space for the process of model ruin construction. The room's walls will show the pictures, documents, plans and other materials used as reference for the meticulously elaborated ruin construction. With this action a dystopian time tunnel is created. The SEFT-1 exploration probe will be on display next to the gallery 21--22 June, 11--13 July, 18--20 July and 25--27 July 2014.

Panning for Atomic Gold Part 1 Introductions

A day symposium of quests for sensory perceptions of deep time through atomic materials and nuclear culture. The symposium will make connections between The Art Catalyst's Atomic exhibition in 1998, current artistic practices and future nuclear archives. Introductions by Nicola Triscott, director of The Arts Catalyst and Ele Carpenter curator of Nuclear Cultures and Panning for Atomic Gold symposium

A Brief History of Drinking in Space

A BRIEF HISTORY OF DRINKIING IN SPACE presented by super/collider with Bompas & Parr and The Gourmand as part of the programme for The Arts Catalyst's Republic of the Moon exhibition in London To date, there has been relatively little consumption of alcohol in space and on the Moon, but that could be set to change. With space tourism taking off, new lunar missions on the horizon and manned expeditions aiming further into space -- with all its stresses -- could a new era of zero gravity libations be next? Sam Bompas of Bompas & Parr and David Lane of The Gourmand speculate about the past, present and future of alcohol in space. From Buzz Aldrin's legendary Holy Communion on the Moon to sherry experiments aboard Skylab and ceremonial 'vodka' consumption aboard the ISS, we'll discuss the secret history of a slightly tipsy space age and ask what role our favourite poison will play in the future colonisation of the moon. Event includes sampling Bompas & Parr's unique Parabolic Sherry, created exclusively for super/collider's POP ROCK MOON SHOP®, based on Skylab-era research about alcohol in space. In the 70s, NASA spent about half a million dollars studying which wines would be the best accompaniment for astronauts' space food -- even commissioning Californian oenologists to recommend the ultimate orbital wine and food pairing. Their suggestion? A medium sherry. It's high alcohol content means that that it stands up to the violence of blast off and travels well. The choice mirrors sherry's earlier history as a wine popularised by adventurer Francis Drake and appreciated by the British for centuries due to its robustness in travel. As bottles aren't allowed in space for safety reasons, Bompas & Parr's ultra limited-edition sherry is packaged in a space-worthy plastic pouch ready for extraterrestrial consumption, in moderation.

Global Lunar Day, Joanna Griffin

Global Lunar Day, symposium An afternoon symposium investigating international cultural approaches to the Moon as part of The Arts Catalyst's Republic of the Moon exhibition at Bargehouse, Southbank, London 10 January - 2 February 2014. The launch of India's Chandraayan-1 and the (projected) first soft landing on the moon since 1976 by the Chinese Space agency's Chang 'E-3 has shifted the global perspective on lunar exploration. What are the implications of the new wave of lunar missions by former developing countries? How does this affect the cultural perspective worldwide on the Moon and what does this mean to people who live in non-western countries? A panel of commentators from the science, engineering and art worlds give their opinions during the final weekend of The Arts Catalyst's Republic of the Moon exhibition. Moderator: Dr Jill Stuart (Executive Editor of Space Policy) Prof Bernard Foing (Executive Director, International Lunar Exploration Working Group) Bijal (Bee) Thakore (engineer and member of Board of Directors, Planetary Society) Dr Marek Kukula (Public Astronomer, Royal Observatory Greenwich) Joanna Griffin (Artist, Srishti School of Art, Design and Technology, Bangalore, India and Transtechnology Research Group, Plymouth University, UK). Support Republic of the Moon is a touring exhibition, commissioned by The Arts Catalyst with FACT. The first version of the exhibition was presented at FACT Liverpool in winter 2012. The exhibition and residency has been made possible with Grants for the Arts support from Arts Council England and Science & Technology Facilities Council. Bargehouse is owned and managed by social enterprise, Coin Street Community Builders: www.coinstreet.org

Global Lunar Day, Marek Kukula

Global Lunar Day, symposium An afternoon symposium investigating international cultural approaches to the Moon as part of The Arts Catalyst's Republic of the Moon exhibition at Bargehouse, Southbank, London 10 January - 2 February 2014. The launch of India's Chandraayan-1 and the (projected) first soft landing on the moon since 1976 by the Chinese Space agency's Chang 'E-3 has shifted the global perspective on lunar exploration. What are the implications of the new wave of lunar missions by former developing countries? How does this affect the cultural perspective worldwide on the Moon and what does this mean to people who live in non-western countries? A panel of commentators from the science, engineering and art worlds discuss. Saturday 1 February 2014, 2-5pm Moderator: Dr Jill Stuart (Executive Editor of Space Policy) • Prof Bernard Foing (Executive Director, International Lunar Exploration Working Group) • Bijal (Bee) Thakore (engineer and member of Board of Directors, Planetary Society) • Dr Marek Kukula (Public Astronomer, Royal Observatory Greenwich) • Joanna Griffin (artist and researcher Srishti School of Art, Bangalore, Transtech). Support Republic of the Moon is a touring exhibition, commissioned by The Arts Catalyst with FACT. The first version of the exhibition was presented at FACT Liverpool in winter 2012. The exhibition and residency has been made possible with Grants for the Arts support from Arts Council England and Science & Technology Facilities Council. Bargehouse is owned and managed by social enterprise, Coin Street Community Builders: www.coinstreet.org

Global Lunar Day Q&As

Global Lunar Day, symposium An afternoon symposium investigating international cultural approaches to the Moon as part of The Arts Catalyst's Republic of the Moon exhibition at Bargehouse, Southbank, London 10 January - 2 February 2014. The launch of India's Chandraayan-1 and the (projected) first soft landing on the moon since 1976 by the Chinese Space agency's Chang 'E-3 has shifted the global perspective on lunar exploration. What are the implications of the new wave of lunar missions by former developing countries? How does this affect the cultural perspective worldwide on the Moon and what does this mean to people who live in non-western countries? A panel of commentators from the science, engineering and art worlds discuss. Saturday 1 February 2014, 2-5pm Moderator: Dr Jill Stuart (Executive Editor of Space Policy) • Prof Bernard Foing (Executive Director, International Lunar Exploration Working Group) • Bijal (Bee) Thakore (engineer and member of Board of Directors, Planetary Society) • Dr Marek Kukula (Public Astronomer, Royal Observatory Greenwich) • Joanna Griffin (artist and researcher Srishti School of Art, Bangalore, Transtech). Support Republic of the Moon is a touring exhibition, commissioned by The Arts Catalyst with FACT. The first version of the exhibition was presented at FACT Liverpool in winter 2012. The exhibition and residency has been made possible with Grants for the Arts support from Arts Council England and Science & Technology Facilities Council. Bargehouse is owned and managed by social enterprise, Coin Street Community Builders: www.coinstreet.org

Global Lunar Day, Dr Bernard Foing

Global Lunar Day, symposium An afternoon symposium investigating international cultural approaches to the Moon as part of The Arts Catalyst's Republic of the Moon exhibition at Bargehouse, Southbank, London 10 January - 2 February 2014. The launch of India's Chandraayan-1 and the (projected) first soft landing on the moon since 1976 by the Chinese Space agency's Chang 'E-3 has shifted the global perspective on lunar exploration. What are the implications of the new wave of lunar missions by former developing countries? How does this affect the cultural perspective worldwide on the Moon and what does this mean to people who live in non-western countries? A panel of commentators from the science, engineering and art worlds discuss. Saturday 1 February 2014, 2-5pm Moderator: Dr Jill Stuart (Executive Editor of Space Policy) • Prof Bernard Foing (Executive Director, International Lunar Exploration Working Group) • Bijal (Bee) Thakore (engineer and member of Board of Directors, Planetary Society) • Dr Marek Kukula (Public Astronomer, Royal Observatory Greenwich) • Joanna Griffin (artist and researcher Srishti School of Art, Bangalore, Transtech). Support Republic of the Moon is a touring exhibition, commissioned by The Arts Catalyst with FACT. The first version of the exhibition was presented at FACT Liverpool in winter 2012. The exhibition and residency has been made possible with Grants for the Arts support from Arts Council England and Science & Technology Facilities Council. Bargehouse is owned and managed by social enterprise, Coin Street Community Builders: www.coinstreet.org

Global Lunar Day, Bee Hayes Thakore

Global Lunar Day, symposium An afternoon symposium investigating international cultural approaches to the Moon as part of The Arts Catalyst's Republic of the Moon exhibition at Bargehouse, Southbank, London 10 January - 2 February 2014. The launch of India's Chandraayan-1 and the (projected) first soft landing on the moon since 1976 by the Chinese Space agency's Chang 'E-3 has shifted the global perspective on lunar exploration. What are the implications of the new wave of lunar missions by former developing countries? How does this affect the cultural perspective worldwide on the Moon and what does this mean to people who live in non-western countries? A panel of commentators from the science, engineering and art worlds discuss. Saturday 1 February 2014, 2-5pm Moderator: Dr Jill Stuart (Executive Editor of Space Policy) • Prof Bernard Foing (Executive Director, International Lunar Exploration Working Group) • Bijal (Bee) Thakore (engineer and member of Board of Directors, Planetary Society) • Dr Marek Kukula (Public Astronomer, Royal Observatory Greenwich) • Joanna Griffin (artist and researcher Srishti School of Art, Bangalore, Transtech). Support Republic of the Moon is a touring exhibition, commissioned by The Arts Catalyst with FACT. The first version of the exhibition was presented at FACT Liverpool in winter 2012. The exhibition and residency has been made possible with Grants for the Arts support from Arts Council England and Science & Technology Facilities Council. Bargehouse is owned and managed by social enterprise, Coin Street Community Builders: www.coinstreet.org

Kosmica Full Moon Party Part 6, Jill Stuart

KOSMICA: Full Moon Party celebration as part of the Republic of the Moon exhibition programme. Each KOSMICA session is unique: bringing together the cosmically curious and culturally quirky space community for a social mix of art--space programmes - a film screening, performance or live concert with a short presentation, talk and debate about alternative and cultural uses of space. Jill Stuart (space politics specialist) Dr Jill Stuart is Fellow in Global Politics at the London School of Economics, and reviews editor for the journal Global Policy. She researches law, politics and theory of outer space exploration and exploitation. Her interests extend to the way terrestrial politics and conceptualisations such as sovereignty are projected into outer space, and how outer space potentially plays a role in reconstituting how those politics and conceptualisations are understood in terrestrial politics. www.lse.ac.uk/researchAndExpertise/Experts/profile, www.globalpolicyjournal.com/videos/dr-jill-stuart-outer-space-politics The evening will offer visitors a chance to see the exhibition and enjoy talks by: Also speaking at the event were: - Lucie Green (space scientist) - Tomas Saraceno (artist) - Kevin Fong (space medicine expert) WE COLONISED THE MOON (artists) Live moon smelling Orchestra Elastique (music) live performance accompanying A trip to the Moon by Georges Méliès Republic of the Moon is a touring exhibition, commissioned and presented by The Arts Catalyst with FACT. The first version of the exhibition was presented at FACT Liverpool in winter 2012. The exhibition and residency has been made possible with Grants for the Arts support from Arts Council England and Science & Technology Facilities Council. Bargehouse is owned and managed by social enterprise, Coin Street Community Builders: www.coinstreet.org

Kosmica Full Moon Party Part 5, Kevin Fong

KOSMICA: Full Moon Party celebration as part of the Republic of the Moon exhibition programme. Each KOSMICA session is unique: bringing together the cosmically curious and culturally quirky space community for a social mix of art--space programmes - a film screening, performance or live concert with a short presentation, talk and debate about alternative and cultural uses of space. Kevin Fong (space medicine expert) Kevin is the co-director of the Centre for Aviation Space and Extreme Environment Medicine (CASE Medicine), at University College London. Also he has been the presenter of the BBC2 science programme, Horizon and of Extreme A&E at Channel 4. Walking on the Moon (article) The evening will offer visitors a chance to see the exhibition and enjoy talks by: Also speaking at the event were: - Lucie Green (space scientist) - Tomas Saraceno (artist) - Jill Stuart (space politics specialist) WE COLONISED THE MOON (artists) Live moon smelling Orchestra Elastique (music) live performance accompanying A trip to the Moon by Georges Méliès Republic of the Moon is a touring exhibition, commissioned and presented by The Arts Catalyst with FACT. The first version of the exhibition was presented at FACT Liverpool in winter 2012. The exhibition and residency has been made possible with Grants for the Arts support from Arts Council England and Science & Technology Facilities Council. Bargehouse is owned and managed by social enterprise, Coin Street Community Builders: www.coinstreet.org

Kosmica Full Moon Party Part 4, Live Moon Smelling with WE COLONISED THE MOON

KOSMICA: Full Moon Party celebration as part of the Republic of the Moon exhibition programme. Each KOSMICA session is unique: bringing together the cosmically curious and culturally quirky space community for a social mix of art--space programmes - a film screening, performance or live concert with a short presentation, talk and debate about alternative and cultural uses of space. WE COLONISED THE MOON (artists) This duo formed by Sue Corke and Hagen Betzwieser returns to KOSMICA to present the largest Moon smelling session ever done on our planet. Together they seek to demonstrate that the future may indeed be frightening, but also highly entertaining. Previous projects have included creating solutions for space waste elimination by disguising satellites as asteroids; building a solar powered solarium because 'the sun dies anyway' and synthesising the smell of the moon. As well as projects and exhibitions the duo also give regular performance lectures and workshops. www.wecolonisedthemoon.com/ The evening will offer visitors a chance to see the exhibition and enjoy talks by: Also speaking at the event were: - Lucie Green (space scientist) - Tomas Saraceno (artist) - Kevin Fong (space medicine expert) - Jill Stuart (space politics specialist) WE COLONISED THE MOON (artists) Live moon smelling Orchestra Elastique (music) live performance accompanying A trip to the Moon by Georges Méliès Republic of the Moon is a touring exhibition, commissioned and presented by The Arts Catalyst with FACT. The first version of the exhibition was presented at FACT Liverpool in winter 2012. The exhibition and residency has been made possible with Grants for the Arts support from Arts Council England and Science & Technology Facilities Council. Bargehouse is owned and managed by social enterprise, Coin Street Community Builders: www.coinstreet.org

Kosmica Full Moon Party Part 3 Tomas Saraceno

KOSMICA: Full Moon Party celebration as part of the Republic of the Moon exhibition programme. Each KOSMICA session is unique: bringing together the cosmically curious and culturally quirky space community for a social mix of art--space programmes - a film screening, performance or live concert with a short presentation, talk and debate about alternative and cultural uses of space. Tomas Saraceno (artist) Trained as an architect, since 2002 Tomas Saraceno has been developing his ideas for cities built in the air. His ongoing project Air-Port-City imagines a network of biospheres (or habitable cells) in the sky, like clouds, constantly moving, changing shape, and merging with one another. www.tomassaraceno.com/ The evening will offer visitors a chance to see the exhibition and enjoy talks by: Also speaking at the event were: - Lucie Green (space scientist) - Kevin Fong (space medicine expert) - Jill Stuart (space politics specialist) WE COLONISED THE MOON (artists) Live moon smelling Orchestra Elastique (music) live performance accompanying A trip to the Moon by Georges Méliès Republic of the Moon is a touring exhibition, commissioned and presented by The Arts Catalyst with FACT. The first version of the exhibition was presented at FACT Liverpool in winter 2012. The exhibition and residency has been made possible with Grants for the Arts support from Arts Council England and Science & Technology Facilities Council. Bargehouse is owned and managed by social enterprise, Coin Street Community Builders: www.coinstreet.org

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EC1M 5PS

51.522461, -0.09907

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