ADA LOVELACE DAY
On Thursday, 6 October 2022, the Kindness Studio is hosting an event to commemorate Ada Lovelace. Ada Lovelace, a 19th century mathematics, and computer science pioneer is celebrated globally as a role model for women in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). In March 2022, a statue of Ada Lovelace was unveiled by St Edward in Millbank Quarter at the City of Westminster.
The studio has paired up with the Alan Turing Institute and St Edward to celebrate Ada Lovelace day and discuss how the sculpture will elevate woman progressing in STEM.
The highlight of the event will be the Q&A segment which will feature Mary & Etienne Millner (artists of the Ada Lovelace statue), Elisabeth Rounis (neurologist), Diana Spiegelberg (deputy director of Somerset House) and Aidan Meller (creator of Ai-Da). The Q&A will inform the audience of the message and rationale of the Lovelace statue located in the Millbank Residences development in Westminster. The event will supply an open network to speak on the struggles of women in the sciences. The goal of the upcoming event is to promote creativity in art and science and encourage an open discussion on widening the door to gender inclusivity in STEM. The event comes at a time when, according to the UK education hub, women account for only 11.4% of STEM starts (2019/20).
The Kindness Studio encourages everyone to come out and participate in the event, hosted from 2 pm to 7 pm on Thursday, 6 October 2022.
October 6, 2022
ART & SCIENCE WORKSHOPS
INSPIRED BY ADA LOVELACE
MINGLING & REFRESHMENTS
A TIME CONNECT
NETWORKING & DRINKS
A TIME TO CONNECT
A PANEL DISCUSSION
Deputy Director, Somerset House Trust
Diana Spiegelberg is Deputy Director of Somerset House, which connects creativity and the arts with wider society. As the home of cultural innovators, Somerset House’s creative community of artists, makers, creative technologists and creative technologists and year-round cultural programme bring people together to explore unexpected intersections.
Diana leads on many external relationships and partnerships and is specifically responsible for the Development, Visitors Experience, Commercial and Live Events teams. Throughout her career Diana has worked with artists and collaborators to realise creative projects and to connect with audiences and young people. Prior to joining Somerset House, Diana was Director of the Kensington & Chelsea Foundation, having previously spent thirteen years with live music producers Serious.
Etienne Millner is a figurative sculptor working from his studio in Stockwell. The majority of his commissioned work is portraits; both monumental and life size and cast in bronze. Though he works whenever possible from life, much of his work is made from drawings and photographs. These sculptures range from over life size statues in public places to figure groups, busts of politicians, writers, musicians and other public figures and private portraits.Etienne started his career as a student at Goldsmith’s College studying under Welsh sculptor Ivor Roberts Jones (Churchill in Parliament Square). Swimming against the tide in the 1970s, he chose his own direction maintaining a clear vision in his work, with the human figure as its central theme. Now, as portraits have again emerged at the forefront of contemporary art, Millner’s sculptures, expressive of their subjects with their own inner dynamic, have established him as a leading portrait sculptor, recognised with strong demand for his work.
Mary Castle-Millner is a visual artist living in London. Her creative practice focuses on research led projects in drawing, painting and sculpture. She is exhibiting a drawing from a new portrait series in the Wales Contemporary opening in October and recently showed paintings in the John Moores Prize and BP Portrait exhibition 2020. An interest in Science led to her prize winning drawing of Otto Lilienthal which is now in the collection of the Science Museum. Mary runs the Larkhall Art Club which has collaborated with artists and charities worldwide.
Elisabeth is a leading clinician working as a Stroke Neurology consultant for the NHS. She graduated from the University College London combined MB/PhD Programme in 2007, funded by Brain Research Trust Prize studentship, where she co-developed a method of non-invasive brain stimulation known as ‘theta-burst’ stimulation that is now widely used in cognitive neuroscience. She also carried out neuroimaging studies that showed the local and distal after-effects of brain stimulation in the motor system, as a way of understanding how the brain recovers from more permanent lesions such as a stroke.
During her specialist training as a Clinical Lecturer in Neurology at the University of Oxford, she was able to translate her research interests into stroke patients and patients with Parkinson’s disease. Between 2013 and 2017 she was awarded a Helen Lawson grant from the British Medical Association, as well as grants from the Academy of Medical Sciences, OUCAGs development funds for Clinical Lecturers and the Oxford University Hospitals Charitable Funds to study mechanisms underlying the recovery of motor cognitive deficits, in a particular condition known as ‘limb apraxia’ after stroke. She has continued to pursue research in this field since then, in collaboration with the University of Cambridge. Elisabeth’s passion for science and clinical academic background means she integrates her knowledge of the neurosciences with how the patients manifest clinically. She has a holistic approach to their care, taking into consideration the biological, psychological and social aspects of management. Working as a Senior Lecturer at Imperial College, she is involved in teaching and training medical students and junior doctors to combine their training in medicine and science, aiming to help them become well-rounded clinicians, inspired also by former leading women in sciences and STEM including Ada Lovelace.
Ai-Da is the world’s first ultra-realistic robot artist, named after Ada Lovelace, the first computer programmer of all time. As a machine, with Artificial Intelligence capabilities, her artist persona is part of the artwork, along with her drawings, performance art and collaborative paintings, sculptures and for the first time in 2022 her new paintings. As a work of conceptual art, Ai-Da encourages us to re-consider our self-perception through the lens of a humanoid. Her persona blurs the lines between human and machine interactions, providing an acutely relevant reflection on current societal trends.
Ai-Da was devised in Oxford by Aidan Meller (UK), built in Cornwall by Engineered Arts (UK), and programmed internationally. Her AI capabilities come from PhD students and professors at the Universities of Oxford and Birmingham.
Ai-Da follows a raft of high profile exhibitions over the past two years including a 2022 solo show entitled “Leaping into the Metaverse” during the 59th International Art Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia. Also participating in Forever is Now 2021, the first major contemporary art exhibition at the great Pyramids of Giza in Egypt, and the London Design Festival 2021 at the V&A Museum where Ai-Da showed some of the first ever Metaverse works at a major art institution. Since her first solo exhibition Unsecured Futures’ at the University of Oxford in 2019, Ai-Da has presented a world-first Self Portrait solo show at The Design Museum London, been part of the United Nations group exhibition ‘WIPO: AI and IP, A Virtual Experience’, featured in the pop band The 1975’s art video Yeah I Know, collaborated with artist Sadie Clayton on a series of workshops titled Exploring Identity Through Technology at Tate Modern, given a TEDx talk at the University of Oxford and featured in the BBC documentary Kazuo Ishiguro: Remembering and Forgetting. In 2021 Ai-Da had an artistic residency at the iconic Porthmeor Studios in St Ives, the home of the St Ives artists who changed the course of modern art and sculpture. In September 2021 Ai-Da exhibited at The Ashmolean Museum to celebrate 700 years of Dante, and in June 2022 Ai-Da did the portrait of HM The Queen, the first time a humanoid has done the royal family.
Director of the Ai-Da Robot Project
Ai-Da was devised by Aidan Meller - a specialist in modern and contemporary art. The Creative Director and Project leader for Ai-Da Robot, Aidan has over 20 years’ experience in the art world. It was while reading and seeing how technology is disrupting large sections of society, that he realised the need to discuss these shifts in society. Focusing on AI and robotics, Aidan devised Ai-Da as an entity that would be able to challenge the morphing world of trans-humanism. Meller says: “The greatest artists in history grappled with their period of time, and both celebrated and questioned society’s shifts. Ai-Da Robot as technology, is the perfect artist today to discuss the current obsession with technology and its unfolding legacy. Is the so called ‘progress’ in technology something we really want, and if so, how should it manifest?”
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