Creative Lab: Digital & the Outdoor


The Digital & the Outdoor Symposium

The Creative Lab: Digital is a national event that explores the potential and practice of digital innovation in the outdoor and public space contexts. Focusing on the special challenges and opportunities of using creative technology in urban and natural environments, the event was comprised of two parts: The Digital & the Outdoor Symposium and the Creative Tech Lab.

The Digital & the Outdoor Symposium

The Digital & the Outdoor one-day symposium for artists, producers, festivals, funders and technologists explored the opportunities to work with digital technology outdoors and in public spaces.

Presentations and discussions featured key players in the digital realm and explored case studies from exciting artistic projects that combine virtual, live, physical and environmental elements.

There was also contributions from Abandon Normal Devices, Watershed, Google Arts & Culture Lab as well as a range of exciting artists making work for public space that covered areas including augmented and virtual reality, gaming, projection work and geolocated sound.

Speakers included:

  • Freya Murray (Google Culture Labs)
  • Hilary O’Shaughnessy (Watershed)
  • Donna Close (Brighton University)
  • Catherine Waddington (Abandon Normal Devices)
  • Brendan Walker (Thrill Laboratory)
  • Ray Lee, Sound Artist & Composer
  • Ling Tan, Designer, Maker & Software Developer
  • Ju Row Farr (Blast Theory)


‘[It was useful to hear] each of the artists talking about their projects – in very honest terms (e.g. the time it took to get something off the ground, the considerations of making and delivering something large scale and ambitious, the considerations for your audience in a lively Northern city, at night, and more).’

Digital & the Outdoors Symposium attendee

‘It was refreshing to hear and inspiring to know that these artists had chosen to make their work, despite the difficulties they faced during the delivery of their work.’

Digital & the Outdoors Symposium attendee

The Creative Tech Lab

The Creative Tech Lab was a three day intensive residential for artists and creative practitioners wanting to immerse themselves in the ‘how’ of integrating and developing creative technology aspects of their work in outdoor and public space.

Combining hands-on practical sessions with individual surgeries and group discussion, artists had the chance to access 101’s dedicated fabrication workshop and a range of indoor and outdoor spaces to play with possibilities.

‘It was great to be able to create and experiment at the labs and also meet and develop relationships with the other artists.’

Creative Tech Lab resident

‘This event more than anything else helped me understand how my work fits into the outdoor arts scene and further challenged my outlook on how technology can further enhance this work.’

Creative Tech Lab resident