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01Conception20180107

How has technology changed the way we come up with ideas?

Clemency Burton-Hill presents a series exploring the impact of technology on creativity. Across three episodes she traces how technology has shaped the creative process, from conception and execution, to sharing and experiencing. Technology may help us to be more productive, but does it make our ideas better?

Artists are both preoccupied with technology and empowered by it. Technology underpins the way we live, but how does the technology artists, writers and musicians use change the way they create?

In this first programme she focuses on conception - how technology has shaped the way we have come up with ideas over the last 50 years. We examine the impact of a seminal event in New York that formed a brave new alliance between art and technology. Electronic music composer Suzanne Ciani explains how she trained as a classical composer, but was frustrated by the limitations of the instruments and sought answers in a new instrument built by a former NASA scientist. Pulitzer prize-winning composer John Luther Adams finds his music in wild exposures; a cabin in Alaska that was his home for close to forty years. For him the tool he keeps returning to is a rare discontinued pencil.

Computers can help us paint, write stories, design objects and compose music, but as technology is heralded as an enabler to a better life do we risk losing sight of that spark of imagination that makes us human? If human beings are no longer needed to make art, then what are we for?

Produced by Barney Rowntree.
A Reduced Listening production for BBC Radio 3.

02Execution20180114

As technology has improved how has it enabled artists to create new kinds of work?

Clemency Burton-Hill presents a landmark series exploring the impact of technology on creativity. Across three episodes we trace how technology has shaped the creative process, from conception to execution, to sharing and experiencing. Technology may help us to be more productive, but does it make our ideas better?

In the second programme we focus on the execution of ideas. As technology has improved how has it enabled artists to create new kinds of work?

Musician Holly Herndon reveals how technology is not only central to her creative process but it's also key in terms of subject matter. She responds to the impact of technology on society and is raising an AI baby that she's teaching to sing.

Doug Eck from Google's Magenta is also looking to create new forms. His goal is to create a new form of art, generated by computers. If fifty years of music was driven by the electric guitar, perhaps it's time for a new type of sound generated with the help of machine learning and AI?

We hear from visual artists including Trevor Paglan and James Bridle, who reveal the hidden infrastructures of the internet.

Writer Ed Finn asks what impact these technological advances are having on our cultural output? Instagram's filters may make us feel creative but does increasingly average perfection lie ahead?

Computers can help us paint, write stories, design objects and compose music, but as technology is heralded as an enabler to a better life, do we risk losing sight of that spark of imagination that makes us human? If human beings are no longer needed to make art, then what are we for?

Produced by Barney Rowntree.
A Reduced Listening production for BBC Radio 3.

03 LASTExperience20180121

As technology has improved how has it enabled artists to create new kinds of work?

Clemency Burton-Hill presents a landmark series exploring the impact of technology on creativity. Across three episodes we trace how technology has shaped the creative process, from conception to execution, to sharing and experiencing. Technology may help us to be more productive, but does it make our ideas better?

Artists are both preoccupied with technology and empowered by it. Technology underpins the way we live, but how does the technology artists, writers and musicians use, change the way they create?

In the third and final programme we focus on how technology has changed how we share and experience art, music and literature.

Artist Olafur Eliasson reflects on The Weather Project, where a giant "sun" illuminated the Tate's Turbine Hall. It helped changed the role of the museum and he explains the possibilities that new technologies and collaborations can open up.

Instagram has changed how we experience art and has given artists a new mode of discovery. As the photographs we take on our smartphones are silently improved by algorithms, is it harder to judge the value of culture when there is so much of it?

The British choreographer Wayne McGregor has been using dancers to explore cognition, mathematics and neuroscience. He wants to see what happens when a machine learns your choreography and how it may predict what happens next.

Computers can help us paint, write stories, design objects and compose music but as technology is heralded as an enabler to a better life, do we risk losing sight of that spark of imagination that makes us human? If human beings are no longer needed to make art, then what are we for?

Produced by Barney Rowntree.
A Reduced Listening production for BBC Radio 3.