Libby Heaney, Caroline Sinders and Elaine Hoey announced as major artists for upcoming Dublin 8 arts and technology festival
- Beta, developed by The Digital Hub and Aisling Murray, to explore technology’s impact on society
- The festival, taking place from November 2nd to 5th at The Digital Hub campus and surrounding locations
- Installations and exhibitions will focus on key cultural themes such as quantum technologies, the global energy crisis, data rights, and Artificial Intelligence in Art.
The Digital Hub, in partnership with Aisling Murray and with the support of Science Foundation Ireland (SFI), has announced the line-up of artists, exhibitions and installations at Ireland’s upcoming arts and technology festival, Beta. Beta will take place from Thursday November 2nd to Monday November 5th at The Digital Hub and the surrounding Liberties area. Beta will focus on key themes dominating the current technology discussion, including artificial intelligence, quantum technologies, data rights and sustainability.
Seeking to critically engage with technology’s impact on society through a combination of creativity, debate, and experimentation, Beta will offer a variety of installations, projections, and exhibitions which attendees can interact and engage with. Renowned UK artist and quantum physicist Libby Heaney will be among the array of artists providing experiences for Beta attendees. Her piece, Evolution of Ent-: QX, is the first immersive installation using quantum computing as both the medium and subject matter. The 360˚ projection Ent- takes audiences through three earthly layers of experiments containing quantum hybrid lifeforms and pulsating liquid worlds filled with fantastic creatures that zip in and out of dimensions.
Among these installations is the Potato Internet, an experimental small-scale social network developed by Caroline Sinders and Trammell Hudson. The Potato Internet scales down the internet itself, allowing artists to build a social media network from scratch using potatoes as a source of energy. Artwork will be developed in partnership with local Dublin 8 community gardens, with local potatoes harvested for the unique exhibit. Beta will host the Repair Café by TOG Hackerspace, a workshop where attendees can bring broken household items to be fixed and have coffee while learning how they are repaired.
Events and exhibitions will take place predominantly in buildings across The Digital Hub campus, including iD8 Studio, newly reopened venue The Bank and the Learning Studio.
As the night-time festival partner, Roe & Co Irish Whiskey prides itself on reimagination and breathing new life into the world. Today the brand continues their collaborative bold spirit in Dublin 8 by announcing their partnership with Beta Festival and their support of the nighttime program of events. The festival opening night will take place at the Roe & Co Distillery on Thursday Nov 2nd, with guest appearances from thought leaders, artists, and festival curators. In conjunction Roe & Co will support key on trade locations through their headline events including curated lineups from GASH Collective’s and Open Ear festival in Tailor’s Hall.
Key highlights from the weekend will include:
- Project Arts Centre will host performances from Dwelling; a new audience driven interactive performance, creating imperceptible, poetic worlds that allow the audience to pass through space, time, and memory to experience the lives of others. Created by Peter Power & Leon Butler.
- The Ethics Studio, a space for members of the public to engage with real ethical concerns and potential real-world impacts of new and emerging technologies developed with the festival research partner ADAPT Research Centre.
- Prompt Battle, a rambunctious live event where people compete against each other using text-to-image software from Sebastian Schmieg, Bernadette Geiger, and the Prompt Battle Team
- Keynote talk from Rachel O’Dwyer, nominated author of the Financial Times Best Business Book of the Year 2023 on Tokens
- International arts residencies with transmediale, Berlin – supported by the Arts Council with newly announced selected artists Bassam Issa Al-Sabah, bela and Kloxii, Mac Andre Arboleda, and Nadia J. Armstrong
The opening will take place on Thursday as part of the partnership with Roe & Co with the exhibition at The Digital Hub & Pallas Studios followed by the reception happening in the Roe & Co. Distillery.
Aisling Murray, Director of Beta, said:
“Beta offers a wide range of activities for attendees – from exhibitions and installations to workshops and performances, there truly is something on show for everyone. Beta comes at a time when digital transformation and technology is becoming an increasingly common conversation, and we have a prime opportunity to highlight Ireland as a leader in the tech and digital arts intersection. We are very grateful to The Digital Hub for their support and, would like to thank them and our other partners for their support. I’m incredibly excited for Beta to kick off on November 2nd and look forward to seeing the great work of artists on show and the visitors that come to see what Beta has to offer.”
The Digital Hub has a strong track record in supporting digital technology industries, creative enterprises, and community learning programmes in Dublin 8 and beyond. Beta is aimed to be both a culmination of various activities within the Liberties campus, as well as a starting point for further discussion on how to make complex technologies more accessible to communities. The Digital Hub and Aisling Murray are being supported in its preparations for Beta by SFI, The Arts Council, Project Arts Centre, Roe & Co. Distillery, Goethe Institut Irland, Studio Quantum, Ambassade de France en Irlande, British Council, ADAPT Research Centre, European Media Art Platform (EMAP), Trinity College Dublin, Creative Futures Academy, Pallas Projects and NCAD Gallery.
Beta will officially launch on Thursday, November 2nd in The Digital Hub and will run to Monday, November 5th.
Tickets to the events can be found on the events page on the Beta website.
Notes to Editors
For more information:
Jackie Phelan | Murray | email@example.com | 083 859 7874
Rachel Power | Murray | firstname.lastname@example.org | 087 9399 605
Taking Ireland’s role as a central node in today’s wired world as a starting point this festival will showcase and celebrate Ireland’s research and artistic communities through a combination of creativity, debate and experimentation. Beta will allow members of the public to engage playfully and critically with new technologies essentially beta testing ethical issues facing society.
The festival will create a network, international platform and anchor for the community of digital artists and researchers based in Ireland. Providing commissioning, upskilling, residency and mentorship opportunities as well as nurturing a creative pipeline and creating pathways for industry collaboration. Beta will allow members of the public to engage playfully and critically with new technologies essentially beta testing ethical issues facing society. The programme will explore AI and creativity, immersive technologies and big ethical questions on diverse topics including the environmental impacts of our networked society, data equity, web 3 and the third quantum revolution. Beta aims to increase tech and digital literacy in the general public through exhibitions, screenings, panel discussions and workshops.