Glasgow based artist from Newcastle working on communication (social media) and surveillance, cultures of speed and predictability, environment and wellbeing. Eye-tracking projection mapping, digital.
Cultura – from culture. The arts, ideas and social behaviour that arise from a group, as well as the biological conditions suitable for growth
Plasmic – from plasma. The fourth state of matter consisting of many charged particles, or as in blood plasma, a fluid medium that transports cells
Inc. – from incorporation.
What is Cultura-Plasmic Inc?
Kin and Lila Darkstar are part of Cultura Plasmic Inc, an art collective of one demonstrating a multi-pseudonymic, identity-fluid practice.
Cultura Plasmic INC combines sound, moving image and physical structures to create installations that navigate the relationship between digital culture, the body and space, mental and physical health and how our use of and, at times, dependence on digital technology shapes who we are. Her installations often make use of motion sensors, digital software, tracking devices and drones with metaphors and imagery from the natural environment to examine understandings of nature, agency, and power within the digital landscape. Current areas of interest include the relationship between communication and surveillance technologies, our participation in online networks, cultures of speed and predictability, and use of natural resources to sustain excess online.
Her works are frequently designed for unusual, non-traditional art spaces, including disused shop units, playgrounds, green spaces, piers, beaches, and derelict buildings. She has created site-specific pieces for DNweekeND (Doncaster), Chorlton Arts Festival (Greater Manchester), Sound UK (rural touring in Wiltshire, Devon and Cornwall), Reuse Aloud (New Bridge Project, Newcastle), Wandsworth Arts Festival (London), InTransit festival (Kensington and Chelsea, London), Hackney WickED (London), the Poor Door at A-Side B-Side Gallery (London) and Coastival (Scarborough). In 2016, her cardboard and electronic work Dead Pigeons and Chandeliers featured in a New York gallery exhibit on Politics and Power, and in May 2017, she received the international premiere of her audio-visual installation Watchtower at the European Convention Centre in Luxembourg. In 2018 she was Artist-in-Residence at Cryptic’s Winter season in Cove Park and at Can Serrat, El Bruc, where she developed Living in an Inbox, an installation using eye-tracking technology and projection mapping to explore digital addiction, the attention economy, compulsive message-checking and intrusive advertising.
CV & Education
2019 Cryptic Nights presents Watchtower with 5.1 sound and 15-min film, CCA Glasgow
2019 Brewing, new commission with disabled artist and curator Aidan Moesby on social isolation and digital connectivity, ARC Stockton
2019 Selected artist for Issue 2, Rung magazine, a print and online platform for artist-curator collaborations, run by Isobel Emberson and Frances Kelly
2019 Living in an Inbox 30-sec mini film edit programmed for Strangelove Time-Based Media Festival, event touring to The Photographers’ Gallery, London (23 February), Turner Contemporary, Margate (2 March), Fabrica, Brighton (11-15 March), Folkestone’s Quarterhouse and Brewery Tap (18-24 March). Theme looks at the ‘fast-paced consumer culture of digital media’, curated by Terry Smith and David Gryn (of Daata Editions)
2019 Paper published in Medium ‘Subversion in the shadows: making art about darkness, privacy and the data exhaust’
2019 An Inward Outlook: Loneliness and the weather, 30-min radio programme written and recorded for Radiophrenia’s 24-hour broadcast, featuring sound art piece ‘Shipping Forecast for Social Media Sentiment’
2018 Axisweb’s ‘New Art Highlights of the Week’ for video installation Hold Me, 10-16 Sept
2018 Paper ‘Against the artist as brand’ published in Hypocrite Reader, guest edited by Erica X Eisen
2018 Invited speaker at Global Control conference. Paper: ‘The personality as artwork in online surveillance cultures’
2018 Artist-in-Residence at Can Serrat, artist-led space near Barcelona, developing Living in an Inbox, an installation combining moving image, sound and projection mapping on digital addiction, distraction, compulsive message-checking and resisting eye-tracking technologies
2018 19-25 February, five day invited residency at Cove Park organised by Cryptic
2017 Watchtower at Devonshire Collective’s Digital Weekender
2017 Watchtower’s international premiere at Luxembourg’s European Convention Centre, Friday Island’s conference including artists’ critical perspectives on Power. Exhibition and public talk.
2017 Watchtower, programmed for and UK premiere at Coastival festival in Scarborough
2017 Artist-in-residence at The Auxiliary experimental project space, Stockton (January-March). Recipient of Grants for the Arts award from Arts Council England.
2017 Density at Roper Gallery, Bath Artists’ Studios
2017 Butchered at Norwich, environmental art show curated by Kate Knowlden for an urban green space
2017 Shortlisted for the opening show of the Science Gallery, London, a new video installation on addiction to digital technology through the lens of diet and wellbeing.
2017 Shortlisted for the Nourish Curatorial Commission at Humber Street Gallery for Hull2017
2017 Shortlisted 1 in 4 for Spitalfields Music’s Open Call, to develop a piece that used Skype and live performers to explore how we communicate across distances via screens.
2016 Dead Pigeons and Chandeliers at Ann Street Gallery, New York, ‘Politics & Power’ exhibit. A series of cardboard and electronic works depicting long-term empty mansions in North London which, despite being fitted with luxury furnishings, had never been lived in. These paintings incorporated conductive ink and light technology.
2016 Shortlisted 1 in 10 for the Collide International Artist residency (3 months in Geneva with CERN at the Hadron Collider and with FACT’s technology lab in Liverpool).
2016 Shortlisted 1 in 4 for Varc’s 12 month rural residency in Northumberland (£15,000 plus full accommodation and studio for a year).
2015 Dead Pigeons and Chandeliers at The Poor Door exhibition, A-Side B-Side gallery (shortlisted 1 in 6 for Artquest’s Work Week award, part of Art Licks weekend)
2015 Ruin Nation at Doncaster’s DNweekeND, a continuation of cardboard and electronic paintings
2015 See. Sit. Sound at Chorlton Arts Festival, an interactive bench which repurposed technology from a dance mat. Sounds were triggered when people sat down, the full effect could be heard if multiple people sat down together, reclaiming the bench as a social space.
2014 Ripples on the surface awarded Special Merit Award by lightspacetime, and shown at 59 Paintings, Moderna Art, London Wall. A series of paintings incorporating children’s toy diggers and trucks to explore our relationship to the environment and how we mark the earth’s surface.
2014 Nesting Instinct at InTransit festival, Kensington and Chelsea, and Hackney WickED, then donated to a children’s charity A walk-in birdhouse with bird’s nest and soundscape bringing the rural environment to a noisy polluted urban space underneath a major road network.
2014 Access Denied at Facade, Open Wall project curated by Blair Zaye in partnership with Moderna Art
2013 Eavesdropping at Walton-on-the-Naze, sculpture trail funded by Essex County Council
2013 Eavesdropping and The Paths We Tread, Sound UK’s rural sculptures tour ‘Playing the Field’. Two installations designed for outdoors incorporating motion sensors to trigger audio recordings collected from rural environments to explore land ownership and attempts to control how Nature is defined.
2013 Music in the Shape of a Cube at Reuse Aloud, Basic FM, New Bridge Project Space, Newcastle. An interactive installation using Processing and PureData to produce live remix of a piece of music controlled by the audience’s body movements.
2011 Winds of Resistance, London New Wind Festival (panelist and composer)
2011 Vision Sound Music Festival at Southbank Centre (composer)
2010 Glimmer International Film Festival (sound for visuals)
2010 Hull’s Institute of Creativity and Innovation (sound for visuals)
MSt Musicology (University of Oxford, 2012) – Distinction
BA (University of Hull, 2010) – First Class Honours & departmental award