James Bridle Digital Commission

Serpentine Online

29 Sep 2016

James Bridle Digital Commission

The Serpentine's third digital commission, Cloud Index, is by British artist and writer James Bridle. Cloud Index is a weather prediction model that consumes vast amounts of historic weather data from satellites and correlates it with polling data on major political events, most notably the recent EU referendum.

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Bridle’s new commission for the Serpentine explores the connections between climate, behaviour and networks and uses the principles of weather divination and advanced neural networks to question our technological certainties and our democratic convictions. With Cloud Index, Bridle takes on the computing ‘cloud’ as the most pervasive and least understood metaphor of our times. Cloud Index is presented on http://cloudindx.com/, at screens at the Serpentine Galleries, and as an online publication. Bridle profiled the project at the Miracle Marathon on 8 October at the Serpentine Sackler Gallery.

Bridle’s work explores the many aspects of the term ‘cloud’, from modern computer networks to the English mystical tradition, from the history of weather forecasting to climate change and contemporary conspiracy fears. For Bridle, the cloud is neither a nebulous obstruction nor a dangerous abstraction, rather it represents the best model we might conceive for a contingent and entangled world.

James Bridle said, "For centuries, we’ve looked to the sky to divine the future. Today, we look to the Cloud. We have built satellites to observe the earth, and supercomputers to crunch the data. But the more information we gather, the more complexity and uncertainty we reveal, and the more societies fracture into competing fundamentalisms. In a headless age of climate collapse, post-factual discourse, and transnational extremism, how do we understand global events not as disorder, but as the unconscious outcomes of our entangled political technologies?"

Serpentine Digital Commission

The Serpentine Digital Commission is a programme that develops new digital works through a variety of emerging mediums, hosted on the Serpentine’s website, transforming the site into a new forward thinking space for exhibiting art. Each commission aims to expand how we understand the effect of digital technologies on artistic and cultural practice today.

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James Bridle: Cloud Index

Wednesday, 5th October 2016

Extinction Marathon 2014: James Bridle, 'What the Network Teaches' film

Wednesday, 14th September 2016
James Bridle: “Citizen Ex”

James Bridle: “Citizen Ex”

James Bridle: “Citizen Ex”, 2015, website and browser extension; Courtesy the artist / booktwo.org; http://citizen-ex.com
James Bridle “Drone Shadow 006”

James Bridle “Drone Shadow 006”

James Bridle: “Drone Shadow 006”, 2013, installation, London, UK; Photo credit: Steve Stills / stevestills.com; Courtesy the artist / booktwo.org
James Bridle: "Dronestagram"

James Bridle: "Dronestagram"

James Bridle: "Dronestagram", 2012-ongoing, photography and social media, online project; Courtesy the artist / booktwo.org; http://booktwo.org/notebook/dronestagram-drones-eye-view/
James Bridle: “Five Eyes”

James Bridle: “Five Eyes”

James Bridle: “Five Eyes”, 2015, installation, Victoria and Albert Museum, London, UK; Courtesy the artist / booktwo.org; http://hyper-stacks.com/five-eyes
James Bridle: “Rainbow Plane”

James Bridle: “Rainbow Plane”

James Bridle: “Rainbow Plane”, 2014, installation, Kiev, Ukraine; Courtesy the artist / booktwo.org; http://booktwo.org/notebook/rainbow-plane-002-kiev/
James Bridle: “Seamless Transitions”

James Bridle: “Seamless Transitions”

James Bridle: Still from “Seamless Transitions”, James Bridle, 2015. Animation by Picture Plane; Courtesy the artist / booktwo.org; http://shorttermmemoryloss.com/portfolio/project/seamless-transitions/