Multiple Presentations
Canada ― US ― Germany ― 2013-2016

Longing + Forgetting explores the ways in which machines are ascribed intelligence, whilst humans are increasingly treated like machines.

The work presents the idea of generative choreography amongst multiple  ‘digital performers’ and can be adapted to almost any architectural features or projection surfaces.

Made in collaboration with Dr Philippe Pasquier, a world leading expert in machine learning for ‘metacreation’, and Dr Thecla Schiphort, a pioneer of digital choreography who created Lifeforms, the choreographic computer system used by Merce Cunningham, the work was developed during my residency at the School of Interactive Art and Technology, Simon Fraser University (Vancouver, CA) as part of Moving Stories, a broader research project into gesture, machine learning, dance, movement and meaning.

Originally commissioned as an interactive public artwork for the Surrey Urban Screen (Vancouver, 2013), Longing + Forgetting has had several presentations, including live performance, generative video projection (Generations, ISEA Vancouver, 2015), real-time data visualization (Scores + Traces, New York, 2016) and an academic paper and performance for CHI 2017 (Denver), the premier international conference in the field of Human-Computer Interaction.

Using a simple movement ‘alphabet’ that borrows from Laban concepts such as effort, weight, and space, the 12 physical performers were filmed traversing a climbing wall. This resulted in thousands of video clips which were then analysed and tagged according to movement properties.

As such, each digital performer is comprised of many fragments of movement, which can be stitched together to create complex and emergent choreographies.


Profs Thecla Schiphorst
Philippe Pasquier



Creative Director & Programming
Technologies: HD Projection, machine learning and path planning, high volume video playback, c/c++, openFrameworks