New Media Art: Human Bodies and Social Cybernetics


Date: 4 October Monday 

Time: 6:30pm-7:30pm

Venue: DAFA Seminar Area, 1F Asia Standard Tower 

Format: 5-10 min sharing,  20min discussion, 10min Q&A

Speakers: Henry Chu, Jeffrey Shaw, De Kai

Moderator: Ashley Lee Wong, MetaObjects

Language: English

Description: The relationship of art and technology dates back to the 1940s, from the articulation of light and movement, to the interaction between humans and computers in the 1980s. The advent of digital technology has disrupted artist-centred practices and audience interactivity. The panel discussion shares on the changing configuration of interrelations between artists, audiences, artworks and art institutions; our changing relationships with machines; and media art as a force to respond, critique, and innovate.


De Kai

Professor of Computer Science and Engineering, The Hong Kong University of Science and Techonology

De Kai’s work in AI, language, music, creativity, and ethics urges cultures to interrelate. For pioneering contributions to machine learning of AIs like Google/Yahoo/Microsoft Translate, he was honored by ACL as one of only seventeen Founding Fellows worldwide and by Debrett's HK 100 as one of the 100 most influential figures of Hong Kong. De Kai is Professor of Computer Science and Engineering at HKUST and Distinguished Research Scholar at Berkeley's ICSI. De Kai is also creator of one of Hong Kong’s best known world music collectives, ReOrientate, and was one of eight inaugural members of Google's AI ethics council.

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Henry Chu

New Media Artist

Henry Chu is a designer, programmer, and new media artist. Born in Hong Kong, Henry graduated from the Electrical and Computer Engineering programme at the University of Auckland, and founded pill & pillow in 2004. The independent studio has won more than 150 local and international awards including Cannes Lions, Webby and One Show. Many of his works are about the interaction between body movement and visual/music. His iPad music app “Squiggle” was exhibited in MoMA New York. “Reflection” is an interactive projection where the audience can play with their own shadow. “Shadow Harp” turns the audience’s body into a musical instrument. “Music Puddle” is a sound installation to generate music from the kids’ dancing. “The Sound of Market” generates music from the stock charts.


Henry was also a speaker at Business of Design Week,  TEDxKowloon and TEDxTaipei. He recently created a commissioned work “Canto Cocktail” for M+ Museum. It is a Cantopop generator that you can play on a website.

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Jeffrey Shaw

Chair Professor, Academy of Visual Arts, Hong Kong Baptist University

Professor Jeffrey Shaw has been a leading figure in New Media Art since the 1960’s. In a prolific body of widely exhibited and critically acclaimed works, he has pioneered and set benchmarks for the creative use of digital media technologies in the fields of expanded cinema, virtual and augmented reality, immersive visualization environments, digital cultural heritage and interactive narrative.  Prof. Shaw was the founding director of the ZKM Institute for Visual Media Karlsruhe, Germany (1991-2002), Australian Research Council Federation Fellow at UNSW Sydney from 2003 to 2008, and from 2009 to 2016 was Dean of the School of Creative Media at City University of Hong Kong. Prof. Shaw is currently Chair Professor at the Academy of Visual Arts at Hong Kong Baptist University.

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Ashley Lee Wong

Co-Founder and Artistic Director, MetaObjects

Ashley Lee Wong is Co-Founder and Artistic Director of MetaObjects, a studio facilitating digital production with artists and cultural institutions. MetaObjects has worked with artists including Lu Yang, Samson Young, and Gordon Cheung; and institutions including, M+ and Tai Kwun. Ashley completed a PhD at the School of Creative Media, City University of Hong Kong and an MA at Goldsmiths, University of London. She is a Research Associate with the Research Network for Philosophy and Technology and lectures at universities in Hong Kong. She was Head of Programmes and Operations of Sedition, the online platform for distributing digital limited editions in London.