You and Your Work – Tim Kindberg

Q. Who are you and what form does your artistic practice take?

I’m Tim Kindberg. I’m a creative technologist, which means I work on creative applications of technology. I’m a writer in my spare time (I’m working on a dystopian novel set in Avonmouth in 2087) and director & occasional editor of Magma, a poetry magazine.

Q. Why and how did you start this sort of work?

I’m a computer scientist by background. I collaborated with artists a few times when I was with Hewlett-Packard Labs in Silicon Valley and Bristol. When I left HP at the end of 2010, I decided to work mainly on creative applications of what is called ubiquitous or pervasive computing – roughly speaking, software and hardware that is integrated with the world away from the desktop.

Q. What contexts do you tend to work in and with whom?

I’m based at the Pervasive Media Studio in Bristol: home to artists, technologists and academics. I work with people from film and theatre mostly, as well as other technical people. And lawyers – I’m occasionally an expert consultant in patent litigation cases.

Q. What’s your most significant moment of inspiration or learning as an artist?

My most significant moments have always been learning itself: that I was wrong, that I was right, that there was something I hadn’t thought or known about at all.

Q. How do you feel your artistic practice fits within the bigger picture?

I tend to work on physically embedded applications of technology, and apps for us to experience while physically together – which runs against the trend for us to interactive virtually, over the internet. As a writer, I find myself following a path roughly along the lines of existentialist literature, coming from a philosophical and somewhat alienated frame of mind.

Q. Can you give us a quotation, individual or piece of artistic work that you find inspiring, and why?

Lou Reed died yesterday, and currently it’s the Velvet Underground: ironic, deconstructed and irreverent garage music.

Q. Who else is taking part in the making of Future Tourist and what do they each bring?

Rachel Aspinwall, artistic director of Part Exchange, plus a writer I am looking forward to meeting.

Q. What do you think you’ll be doing over the given time and how might you be working together?

I’ll be listening to their creative thinking about the Future Tourist project, adding some of my own, and bringing knowledge of technologies that might feature either in the delivery of the project or feature as its subject (or both).

Q. Where do you hope the process might take you individually and collectively?

I hope the Future Tourist project will become informed about technology options, and that I will play at least a small part in its creative conception of them.

Q. Why does it feel important to make this work now?

When it comes to mass deployments of technology and their increasingly intimate impact upon our lives, there’s plenty of room for a sceptical view about corporate and governmental intentions. 1984 is a great work but could do with an upgrade.