Music and art computing


Research staff working in music & art computing

Freida Abtan / Tim Blackwell / Mark Bishop / Tim CrawfordMark d'Inverno / Rebecca Fiebrink / Marco Gillies / Mick GriersonJanis Jefferies / Simon Katan / William Latham / Frederic Fol Leymarie / Dan McQuillan / Jane Prophet / Atau Tanaka / Matthew Yee King

Research projects

A page of musical notes

Transforming Musicology

This project explores how emerging technologies for working with music as sound & score can transform the theory and practice of musicology. Tim Crawford, David Lewis, Christophe Rhodes. Transforming Musicology website

Rapid Mix logo

Rapid Mix

A technology transfer consortium developing innovative interface products for music, gaming, and e-Health applications. EU-funded project led by Atau Tanaka, Mick Grierson and Rebecca Fiebrink. RAPID-MIX website

An old manuscript page with words written on it

‌The Digital Fauvel

A research project exploring human-computer interaction in the digital humanities, The Digital Fauvel is a digital platform for the 14th century multimedia manuscript Roman de Fauvel. Formerly funded by David A. Gardner ‘69 Magic Project in the Humanities, USA. Rebecca Fiebrink. Digital Fauvel website


PRAISE: Practice and PeRformance Analysis Inspiring Social Education

A social network tool which aims to widen access to music education and make learning music more accessible and more social. EU Mark d’Inverno, Matthew Yee King, Marco Gillies. PRAISE website

A person playing on a keyboard connected to an iPad


SoundLab aims to find simple and effective ways to help people with learning disabilities to express themselves musically and collaborate with other people using both readily available musical technologies and also cutting edge research in interface design and machine learning. NESTA/ACE/AHRC-funded project with Mick Grierson, Simon Katan and Heart n Soul. Soundlab Framework website

A photo of a museum exhibition

Modelling Psychoses

Part of the larger Posthumanist Desire exhibition at Taipei Museum of Contemporary Art. An installation of couture garments, photographs, new font, animated text and video installations, developed from discussions with forensic psychologists, expert witnesses and detectives from sex crimes units. MOCA Taipei website

Tightly-packed books

cREATE: Centre for Copyright and New Business Models in the Creative Economy

The Whose Book Is It Anyway? project looks at Intellectual Property, collaborative business models and questions of ethics and creativity in digital publishing. Dr Sarah Kember, Prof Janis Jefferies. Whose Book Is It Anyway? website

Images from the Creative Machine exhibition

Creative Machine exhibition

Research in the twilight world of AI, Robotics and Art. Arts Council-funded exhibition curated by W. Latham, F.F. Leymarie, Atau Tanaka. Creative Machine website

A sculpture of a human skull with the brain exposed

Neuro Memento Mori

The exploration of brain activity during the contemplation of memento mori artworks and death. Jane Prophet with Research Grants Council, City University Hong Kong, Aarhus Univeristy, Denmark, New York University. Neuro Memento Mori website

Watercolours with "What if..." written over them

The WhatIf Machine (WHIM)

A software system able to invent, evaluate and present fictional ideas such as stories, jokes, films, paintings and advertisements. EC FP7 Simon Colton, Jeremy Gow University of Cambridge; University College, Dublin; Institute Jožef Stefan, Ljubljana; Universidade Complutense de Madrid WHIM project website

A man with graphic wings behind him


Procedural art and exhibition. W.Latham, S.Todd, F. F. Leymarie, P.Todd with the Development Arts Council. Mutator website

A person speaking on a stage

Where Am I?

Collaboration with choreographer Marguerite Galizia to develop a tracking system and dance work based on Daniel Denett's "Where Am I?" Arts Council-funded project with Simon Katan. Where Am I? on Vimeo

Photo of complex musical score

Music Complexity

The measurement of music using ideas from information and complexity theory.

  • Tim Blackwell, De Fleurian R. Ben-Tal O, Mullensiefen D, Blackwell T. 'Comparing Perceptual and Computational Complexity for Short Rhythmic Patterns'. In Procedia - Social and Behavioural Sciences. Vol 126, pp 111-112.
An acrobat hanging from a hoop

Fear of Flight

Surround audiovisual multimedia production for aerialist and dance ensemble integrating computer visition based motion-tracking, real-time sound and video with pre-rendered media. Freida Abtan working with Fonds Quebec Recherche sur la Societe et la Culture.

A photo of dark clouds and a rainstorm


Real-time media simulation system for modeling low-level climate behavior. Freida Abtan with Arizona State University, USA

The shadows of three people projected on a tan screen

A photo of dark clouds and a rainstorm

Audiovisual work for two ensembles with custom controllers and real time visual scenography. Freida Abtan and Patricia Alessandrini (Music) with funding from Share Music Sweden.

An image of a wharped painting

Orpheus Machine I

Piece for two early music keyboard instruments, custom electronics and software. Freida Abtan with Patricia Alessandrini (Music) and New York University. Orpheus in the Underworld website

Black and white poodle

Lives of Narratives, Narratives of Lives

Narratives from literature, social media narratives; and contemporary narratives of our digital society and of the Internet of Things. Prof Fionn Murtagh Lives of Narratives website

TV aerials against a blue sky

Better Than Life

A collaboration with interactive theatre company Coney, to create an interactive performance that is streamed live online and which online audiences can interact with the physical show. This project is funded by the Nesta R&D fund for the arts. Marco Gillies. Better than Life website

CGI image of a woman at a desk


Art, perception, computing and robotics. Led by Frederic F. Leymarie, P. Tresset with funding from the Leverhulme Trust. Aikon website

Funfair carousel at night

Creativeworks London

Bringing collaborative research opportunities to London’s creative businesses, and co-creating new ways to do creative research. AHRC-funded project with Mark d’Inverno, Janis Jefferies and Dan McQuillan. Creativeworks London website

Robotic machine drawing graffiti


Graffiti, perception, computing and robotics EPSRC/IGGI Frederic F. Leymarie, W. Latham, D. Berio IDIAP (Switzerland) ‌AutoGraff website

Old master painting of flowers

Ubiquitous Computing and Artificial Life

Practical and theoretical research into ways ubiquitous computing can produce playful apps and objects that enable users to have a blended online and offline relationship with artificial life forms. Includes works in agmented reality and 3D printing. Jane Prophet, City University, Hong Kong. School of Geography, Queen Mary, University of London.

  • SIGCHI 2015 Paper: Prophet, Jane and Pritchard, Helen, 'SE Asian Ubicomp and ALife: Roaming and Homing with TechnoSphere 2.0 Computational Companions'. In CHI15 Extended Abstracts on Between the Lines: Reevaluating the Online/Offline Binary. ACM, 2015.
  • Chapter in book: Prophet, Jane and Pritchard, Helen, 'Ubiquitous-ALife in TechnoSphere 2.0: the design, individuation and entanglement of ubicomp apps in urban South East Asia'. In Ubiquitous Computing, Complexity, and Culture. Routledge: New York 2015
Starburst painting

Live Algorithms

Live Algorithms are, or will become, autonomous digital improvisers. Tim Blackwell.

  • Young M. and Blackwell T. 'Live Algorithms for Music: Can Computers be Improvisers?' In Oxford Handbook of Critical Improvisation Studies, vol 2, ed Lewis G. and Piekut B. (Forthcoming)
  • Blackwell TM, Bown, O and Young M. 'Live Algorithms: Towards Autonomous Computer Improvisers', in d'Inverno M., McCormack, J. (eds) Computers and Creativity, Spring 2012, pp147-174.
Lichen on a rock

Artificial Life and New Materialist Theory

Referring to the philosophies of New Materialism, specifically, Karen Barad, we argue that there is a need for a new ontology - one that positions ALife as a “lively process”. City University, Hong Kong. Jane Prophet City University, Hong Kong. School of Geography, Queen Mary, University of London

  • Prophet, Jane and Pritchard, Helen, 'Performative Apparatus and Diffractive Practices: an account of Artificial Life art', Artificial Life - Quarterly, Vol. 21, No. 3, p1-13, ISSN 1064-5462, 2015 (In Manuscript)