Karen Lancel studied at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy Amsterdam and graduated in 2002 from Dasarts. Lancel creates together with partner Herman Maat ‘meeting places’ in public spaces. These ‘meeting places’ - performances and installations - are designed as seductive, visual environments where the audience is invited to experiment with social technologies and to reflect on their own perception of body, identity, community and alienation. Lancel/Maat research contemporary social systems in a mediated society. For every ‘meeting place’ they develop an especially designed montage of physical and virtual interaction. Through their ‘meeting places’ Lancel/Maat show social portraits of urban mediated life. The works of Lancel/Maat are internationally shown. Karen Lancel is a also a PhD candidate at the Systems Foundation Delft Technical University and a researcher at the Interface Studies UvA/ASCA.
In her current research project TELE-TRUST Lancel explores how in our changing social eco-system we increasingly demand transparency; while at the same time we increasingly cover our vulnerable bodies with personal communication-technology. For TELE_TRUST Lancel designed a hybrid play zone for a vulnerable process, of balancing between fear and desire for the other. In a visual, poetic way they explore the emotional and social tension between visibility and invisibility; privacy and trust.
TELE_TRUST takes place in dynamic public spaces. Here Lancel invites the audience in six interactive, full body data-veils. The data-veils combine visual elements of full body covering wearables in eastern and western traditions. They are inspired by a monks’ habit and a burqa; as well as by a ‘trustworthy’ chalk stripe business suit. When wearing a data-veil your body becomes an interface: flexible sensors are woven in the smart textile of each data-veil. The data-veil functions as a membrane, the six data-veils form a digital network. By touching your body in the data-veil you can meet others in the network. You meet in an intimate virtual experience, to exchange stories on horror and beauty: Am I here with you? Who is watching who? Who is controlling who? And in whose body?
Ars Electronica Linz, Austria; ZKM Karlsruhe, Germany // De Appel Amsterdam, NL // Transmediale Berlin, Germany // Eyebeam, New York, USA // Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, NL // Stedelijk Museum Bureau Amsterdam, NL // Artfair Artforum Berlin, Germany // Urban Screens 08, Melbourne, AUS // ISEA 04 Helsinki, Finland // Biennale Villette Numerique, Paris, France // Art Center Nabi, Seoul, South-Korea // Smart Project Space Amsterdam, NL // Chinese European Art Center-CEAC The Second Art @ Science International Exhibition/Symposium, Beijing, China // Dutch Institute for Media Art Amsterdam (NIMK), NL // V2_LAB for Unstable Media Rotterdam, NL // Second new media Art Exhibition at Millennium Art Museum Beijing, China.
- Stalk Show, with Hermen Maat, in: Urban Screens Reader, eds: S. McQuire, M. Martin, S. Niederer, Inc Reader #5, Amsterdam, Institute of Network Cultures, 2009, pp. 191-198.
- Tele_Trust, RTRSRCH Vol. 3 No. 2, Amsterdam, 2011, with contributions by: Geert Lovink, Erik Kluitenberg, Caroline Nevejan and Marijke Hoogenboom.
research outline Tele_Trust