'I am part of the networks and the networks are part of me...
I link, therefore I am.' W. J. Mitchell, ME++: The Cyborg Self and the Networked City.

Can I touch you online? Can we measure intimacy?
How does your kiss feel in EEG data?

Artists and researchers Karen Lancel and Hermen Maat (Lancel/Maat, based in Amsterdam) are considered pioneers exploring the tension between embodied presence, intimacy and alienation, social cohesion and isolation, privacy and trust in posthuman bio(techno)logical entanglement with (non-)human others. They radically deconstruct and re-orchestrate automated biometric control technologies neuro-feedback and sensory perception, to create poetic Trust-Systems. In internationally presented performances and installations in public space, they explore a sensitive, ethical AI design approach, based on social and embodied co-dependency in shared reflection and dialogue. Through their artistic research Shared Senses, they aim to rethink and inspire a sustainable socio-technological eco-culture of merging realities. The audience meets on imaginative planes for exploring future empathetic connections, in ‘Shared Reflexive Data-Scapes’.

The artists start from the idea that experiences of mediated intimacy, empathy and trust are embedded in public dialogue and shared sense-making. Internationally, they orchestrate dialogue in aesthetic and seducing Meeting Places. In their so-called 'Artistic Social Labs’, they invite members of the audience to interact as 'co-researchers’ of cyborg intimacy. In carefully hosted Meeting Rituals, the audience's private bodies are extended with immersive, digital synaesthetic technologies of face-recognition, smart textile, brain computer interfaces, technologies for convergent corporeality. The audience interacts through socially challenging interfaces for seeing, hearing and touching. In live events, intimate touch is performed by participants, to be neuronally mirrored by spectators, resonating in their imagination. The audience's intimate interaction is translated to real-time datavisualizations and soundscapes based on algorithms, for communal neuro-feedback systems. Their interaction is shown as Social Portraits visible on (urban) screens and in public databases. Parallel, Social Touch Data are exhibited in print and embroidery.

‘In science, digital data represents things. In art, digital data points at itself'. (T. Morton 2018). The artists critically reflect on current politically, commercially framed data representations of our intimate and embodied experience. Instead, they reclaim our intimate data and reflect on them as ‘Co-Actors’. Intimate touch performance and its datafication is combined to evoke new forms of interpretation, storytelling and narratives - about being together.
More on artistic and scientific datafication HERE.

Lancel/Maat’s international artistic practice takes place in different cultural and geographical urban public spaces of Europe, Asia and USA. Currently, they develop a novel socio-technical, multi-sensory interaction model for Intimate Interaction, that proposes critical reflection and exploration into emerging AI/AE neural networks, that is based on disruption, witnessing, play and aesthetics of interaction. This interaction model emerges from collaboration with public participants (on development of the socio-technological interfaces); from collaboration with ArsElectronica & European Media Art Platform (EMAP); and from Lancel/Maat's artistic research and PhD at the Technical University Delft (Participatory Systems Initiative). Their work is supported by Mondrian Fund with a Stipendium for Established Artist.

Exhibitions show installations, performances, related artistic research in video documentaries and in 2D and 3D print objects. Their work was awarded many grants, artist-in-residencies, research positions, fellowships and prizes, and is included in private and museum collections (ZKM Karlsruhe, LIMA Digital Art Canon). Work by Lancel/Maat is represented by Public Art Lab Berlin.

56th Venice Biennale 2015, China Pavillion // ZKM Karlsruhe // Ars Electronica Linz // Ars Electronica Export, Berlin // Transmediale Berlin // World Expo 2010 Shanghai - DCC Mobile Platform // Waag Society Amsterdam //
Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam (2000, 2011, 2012, 2017) // Rijksmuseum Amsterdam // Banff New Media Institute Canada // Public Art Lab Berlin - Connecting Cities Network // 5th TASIE National Museum Beijing //
EMAP European Media Art Platform, Creative Europe Program //Art Center Nabi Seoul // RIXC, Riga // BCAC, BCAF Beijing // CEAC Xiamen // HeK Basel // ISEA 2011 & Istanbul Biennial 2011 // ISEA 2016 Hongkong // ISEA 2004 Helsinki //
ISEA 2019 Gwangju South-Korea // Urban Screens 05 Amsterdam // Urban Screens 08 Melbourne // IASPIS Stockholm // Kiasma Museum Helsinki // Artfair Artforum Berlin // Eyebeam New York //
V2_Institute & Architecture Biennale Rotterdam // Gogbot media Festival Enschede // Robot Love - DDW Dutch Design Week 2018 Eindhoven // Baltan Laboratories - DDW Dutch Design Week 2019 // 2nd TASIE New Media Art & Science Exhibition - Millennium Art Museum Beijing //
3rd TASIE - Technology Museum Beijing // TASML Beijing // De Appel Amsterdam // Stedelijk Museum Bureau Amsterdam SMBA // Nes & Frascati Theaters Amsterdam //
NFF Netherlands Film Festival Interactive 2019 // EYE Film Museum Amsterdam // COMO Telecommunication SKT Seoul // Creativate Grahamstown Films South-Africa // KPN Telecommunication Tower Rotterdam //
Go here for more to the extensive biography.

Rijksmuseum MediaLab Amsterdam 2013 Master Touch //
BCAF Beijing Contemporary Art Foundation 2015 Saving Face Beijing //
SKOR (Foundation for Art in Public Space) 2003 Agora Phobia (digitalis) // Hong Kong Arts Center 2007 @ Your Feet // COMO Telecommunication Seoul 2008 StalkShow // KPN Telecommunication Rotterdam SCREAM //
City of Zeist 2009 Community Car // City of Utrecht - Utrecht Province - Rotonde Lab 2012 The Hitchhiker //
City of Amersfoort Tele_Trust // Semslinie Kunstlijn Provinces Groningen Drenthe 2000 nomansland //
Kunstgebouw Zuid-Holland & City of Alphen aan den Rijn 2001 TV Centraal //

Media Kunst Museum ZKM Karlsruhe; LIMA Digital Art Canon; KPN Telecommunication Netherlands;
Iaspis Stockholm; private collections in France, USA, Netherlands, Germany, Poland, Riga, Beijing.

2019 Wu Guanzhong Art Science Innovation Award 2019 Shared Senses
National Museum of China and TASIE, Tsinghua University Beijing
2019 Golden Calf Nomination Netherlands Film Festival Interactive 2019 Kissing Data Symphony
2918 Global Art & AI Competition Award GAAC 2018 Tsinghua University Beijing, Intimate Data Symphony
2017 Europe Programm Horizon 2020 - Award BrainHack 3d prize 2017
Waag Society Amsterdam & Science Gallery Dublin. With Alexander von Lühmann, University Berlin
2012 Best Practice Award by Virtueel Platform 2012 Saving Face
2011 Best Practice Award by Virtueel Platform 2011 Tele_Trust

LANCEL is PhD candidate at Technical University of Delft Participatory Systems Initiative (promotores Prof. dr. Frances Brazier, Prof. Caroline Nevejan). She was art commitee advisor for Mondriaan Fund (2014-2017) and for Amsterdam City Public Art (Stadsdeel Zuid, 2013-2017). She membered the Amsterdam School of the Arts (AHK) research group ‘ARTI’ (Artistic research, Theory & Interpretation by Dr. M. Hoogenboom, Prof. H. Borgdorff) 2008-2011. During 2005-2008, she was core lecturer and head of the MFA programm for interactive media art at IME/ MADtech Hanze University for Applied Sciences Groningen, where she currently teaches. MAAT was art commitee advisor for Mondriaan Fund. He teaches BA media art at Minerva Art Academy, Hanze University for Applied Sciences Groningen since 1997, while being member of research groups ‘Image in Context’ (dr. Anke Coumans, 2012-2014) and Hypersensorium Lab (2019-).

Essays and papers have been included widely in both art and scientific journals and publications, by among others Springer Verlag, InderScience, CHI, ArtsIT, Leonardo, MIT Press - accessible at http://www.lancelmaat.nl/press/.

LANCEL/MAAT lecture internationally at Art Academies and Universities, including Art-Science Royal Academy The Hague; Tsinghua University Beijing; Rietveld Art Academy Amsterdam; Utrecht School of the Arts (HKU); Royal University for Technology Stockholm (KTH); ARTez Zwolle; MFA ARTez Enschede; Willem de Kooning Art Academy Rotterdam; MFA Film Academy Amsterdam; MFA a.p.t/A.pass performance studies Antwerpen/Brussels; Open Set Dutch Design School at Kookmin University Seoul and at Conferences a.o. TEDx SilkRoad Istanbul; ISEA 2011 Istanbul; 'Europe for People: Hack the Body' Baltan Laboratories/De Zwijger Amsterdam; TASIE Tsinghua University Beijing; Baltan Laboratories/Holst Centre/ Phillips Lab Eindhoven; 'Todays Art' The Hague; 'Worlding the Brain' University of Amsterdam UVA; EYE Film Museum Amsterdam; ThingsCon Amsterdam & University Twente; ArtsIT 2018, 2019; CHI Human Computer Interfaces Montreal.
Members of Research Groups Participatory Systerms Group University of Technology Delft; Urban Interfaces Group University Utrecht; Dutch Touch: Social and Affective Touch Group University Twente; Digital Synesthesia Group University Vienna; Neuro-esthetics & Neuro-cultures Group, University Amsterdam.

Beschrijving werk
Karen Lancel en Hermen Maat ontwerpen ‘ontmoetingsplekken’ voor de publieke ruimte. Deze ‘ontmoetingsplekken’ zijn performances en installaties, die zij ontwerpen als verleidelijke, visuele omgevingen. Elke 'ontmoetingsplek' of sociaal sculptuur functioneert als een 'artistiek sociaal lab’ waarin het publiek deelneemt als ‘co-researcher’. Hier nodigen de kunstenaars het publiek uit om te experimenteren en spelen met sociale technologieën; om zo te reflecteren op hun eigen perceptie en ervaring van de stedelijke omgeving; op de thema's lichaam, privacy, sociale cohesie, presence, identiteit.
Lancel en Maat onderzoeken sociale systemen in een gemediatiseerde samenleving; in smart cities en augmented / immersive spaces. Voor elke ‘ontmoetingsplek’ deconstrueren zij bestaande communicatie technologieën en strategieën; en ontwerpen een nieuwe, innovative montage en proces van fysieke en virtuele interactie. De ‘ontmoetingsplekken’ tonen sociale portretten van samenleven in een gemediatiseerde, stedelijke omgeving.
De ‘ontmoetingsplekken’ vinden internationaal plaats in dynamische urbane ruimtes zoals museums, pleinen, theater halls, treins stations; van onder andere Seoul, New York, Melbourne, London, Istanbul, Parijs, Amsterdam, Shanghai.