Above: Aerosolar sculptures launch in November 2014, as part of the Becoming Aerosolar seminar co-taught by Tomas Saraceno, Sasha Engelmann and Jol Thomson. Photography by Sasha Engelmann.
My academic work is always already engaged with practice, with experiments in sensing the atmosphere, and with collective and collaborative endeavors across the arts and sciences.
My DPhil dissertation emerged at the intersection of Geography, Earth Science and Contemporary Art. I am specifically interested in the ways contemporary artists engage with scientific topics like air quality, atmospheric space, climate change and weather. My first year of academic research took place in London at the site of artist Dryden Goodwin's large-scale video animation, Breathe. This work, commissioned by Invisible Dust, was developed as an art-science collaboration with air quality scientist Professor Frank Kelly at King's College London. I have published an article drawing from my work on Breathe in the journal Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers - find it here.
In February 2013 I visited Tomás Saraceno's large-scale installation On Space-Time Foam, at the Hangar Bicocca in Milan. Later that year I traveled to Düsseldorf, Germany to study two large-scale installations: Big Air Package by Christo, and another installation by Tomás Saraceno called In Orbit at the K21 Ständehaus. I was fortunate enough to meet Tomás and his studio team, and to be invited to Studio Saraceno to begin ethnography-based research. I was supported in this endeavor by a grant from the DAAD (German Academic Exchange).
For three years (2014 - 2017) I lived in Berlin undertaking fieldwork at Studio Tomás Saraceno. I approached the work of the studio through four key forms (surfaces, spheres, webs, interstices), and participated initially in Tomás Saraceno's research and residency on solar balloons with the French Space Agency (CNES). Together with Jol Thomson, Ivana Franke, Alan Prohm and Natalija Miodragovic, I designed and delivered a new curriculum for arts practice in the Anthropocene at the Institut fur Architekturebezogene Kunst, directed by Tomás Saraceno, at the Technical University of Braunschweig. I co-organized the first Aerocene Campus at the Royal College of Art in London in November 2016, and edited the first Aerocene Campus Reader.