Helen Pritchard

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I am the Head of Digital Arts Computing and a Lecturer in Computing (Digital and Computational Art) at Goldsmiths, University of London.

As an artist and geographer my interdisciplinary work brings together the fields of Computational Aesthetics, Geography, Design and Feminist TechnoScience. My practice is both one of writing and making and these two modes mutually inform each other in order to consider the impact of computational practices on our engagement with environments. Central to my work is the consideration of co-research, participation and environmental practices. My practice often emerges as workshops, collaborative events and computational art.

Since 2013 I have been a member of the European Research Council funded project "Citizen Sense" led by Dr Jennifer Gabrys. Where in collaboration we have developed ground breaking and internationally recognised participatory research on sensing practices. As both researchers and makers we have developed innovative creative methods that use physical computing and sensing technologies to think through and develop new theories of citizen sensing.

My interdisciplinary dissertation on “Animal Hackers” undertaken in the Department of Geography at Queen Mary University of London (completed 2018), considers the entanglement of more-than-humans with ubiquitous computing. Examining the practices of environmental data that emerge in the context of communicative capitalism from planetary-scale computational ecologies. In the project I focus on fieldwork with dairy cows monitored by remote cameras in a “big data” environmental observatory, participatory urban sensing by an internet-famous cat and the genetic engineering of Transgenic Fish to monitor water quality. The diffractive figure of the ‘Animal-Hacker’ is used to consider activities of sensing not as measuring or writing the other, but instead as co-writing with articulate nonhumans.The dissertation focuses on how the animal is inscripted with, and by, new technology and the theoretical perspectives that we need in order to take seriously the participation of nonhuman animals in computational systems. Developing a set of practices as a manifesto for designing for “more-than-human” computing. During this project I undertook visiting research at the School of Creative Media, City University of Hong Kong.

As an artist and designer I have shown work internationally including Tate Exchange (UK), Transmediale (Germany), DA Fest International festival of Digital Art, (Bulgaria), Spacex (UK), Microwave Festival (Hong Kong), ACA Florida, (USA), Arnolfini Online (UK) and previously held associate lectureships in Art, Technology and Critical Studies at Plymouth University (where I was a member of Kurator) and Dartington College of Arts.

My work 'The Recipe Exchange' commissioned by Spacex Off-Site program is featured in the illustrated section charting significant projects undertaken by the artists and curators in "Gallery as Community: Art, Education, Politics", Whitechapel Gallery, London in collaboration with Valiz. 

— Source: Helen Pritchard's website

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