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Urban Projections is the work and collaborations of artist & creative technologist, Rebecca Smith. Fusing hand-crafted art-forms with with digital technologies, her work seeks to surprise and engage audiences with it's playful tone and interactivity. Constantly striving and seeking ways to push the boundaries of her discipline, Rebecca create's unique digital experiences.
Rebecca's practice centres around the natural environment, and our place within it. Her process and output seeks to reaffirm our connection to nature, with a beauty and depth of simplicity. Through a shared experience, audiences are subtly invited into action, discovering a positive reconnection with both the natural world and each other. This fascination with how we connect drives much of her work, as she believes it is through experiences like this that we can encourage perspective and behavioural shifts.
Rebecca’s work has been viewed in prestigious venues throughout the UK and internationally, such as The Saatchi Gallery, Tate, The Royal Academy of Arts and The Royal Albert Hall. However, her work is equally at home on the streets and in unusual outdoor locations. With a heavy influence of street art culture, and love of abandoned sites and objects, she uses forgotten spaces as a canvas for much her work.
Her process seeks to discover new, and original, ways of presenting digital media for audience interaction, pushing the boundaries of creative possibility and pioneering new approaches to mixed media application. Above all, her work always remains accessible to its audience, regardless of the intricacy of its design.
With over twenty years experience as a professional audio-visual performer, Rebecca has lead high quality, cross-boundary projects, workshops, and seminars at both educational institutions and within the community. Sharing her enthusiasm and passion for arts and technology she actively encourages new and creative ways of exchanging new media practice. Rebecca is an active advocate for the encouragement of women and the LGBTQ+ community in the arts, and technology.
A BIT OF BACKGROUND
Rebecca’s creative career began in the late 90’s, working in a local recording studio as an occasional sound engineer. With a love of electronic music, she quickly progressed into electronic music production and turntablism, establishing a DJ collective which ran nights and provided tutoring in technical DJ skills. With a keen interest in visual & contemporary art, Rebecca’s passion for graphic & video design would play a key role in the development of her future live sets.
“Back then, there seemed a natural progression with the way that technology was moving in club culture, to start to incorporate audio and visual forms together. The transition of playing from vinyl to digital formats on a laptop, presented a symbiosis of all the things which excited me. I could use the language of digital production skills, which I already had, to suddenly perform both audio and visual elements live to audiences. It gave me a level of creative expression that I had never experienced before”.
Over the following years, Rebecca developed a visual language largely influenced by U.K club culture. As her visual practice began to mature, her skills in animation, 3D design, projection and video design heightened. She was invited to collaborate in theatre design, on festival stages, at international fashion weeks and on public art commissions. These opportunities provided the perfect juncture for experimentation with early projection mapping software. From this familiarity with the format, it was a quick evolvement into large-scale architectural mapping pieces and immersive environments.
Collaborations have always been pivotal to Rebecca's practice. In 2010, Rebecca became one half of the duo Stylus. Stylus was an adventure with Modern Mural Painter, Peter Barber, and marked the pairs experimentation with the juxtaposition of spray paint and projected light. Invited to perform internationally, Stylus charted innovations in the live performance of projection murals. With a sustained passion for street art, Rebecca also created The Light Cycle as a means for taking guerrilla digital art to unexpected places.
Rebecca's Studio is now based on the historic Welbeck Estate (supported by the Harley Foundation) in Nottinghamshire, UK. Located in the heart of Sherwood Forest, it provides the perfect location for experimentation, collaboration, prototyping and development. Rebecca's practice continues to push the boundaries of shared audience experience, working across a plethora of disciplines including: projection, light, augmented reality, immersive design and interactive technologies.