Loved Up North

The North of England is increasingly regarded as the center of British new media art. Condensed within Cumbria, Durham, Lancashire, Northumberland, and Yorkshire is a range of extremely prolific artists and organizations which the UK's London-centric art press often ignores. However, with an unprecedented level of new media art events starting this May under the umbrella of four key events, some of those hacks might actually have to venture north of Watford Gap. Futuresonic will celebrate the 40th anniversary of multimedia hitting the dance floor during Britain's Psychedelic Spring/ Summer and includes over 30 events with more than 100 acts and artists from around the world. The 12th Lovebytes Festival will present 48 events across the city with 13 live performances including one by Fluxus artist Yasunao Tone. Now in its 6th year, Evolution will offer an immense program of experimental film, sound, and visual art programmed by Lumen --with 11 UK premieres. And finally, Dott 07 will be exhibiting artists including United Visual Artists (UVA), Aether Architects, and Golan Levin with 'Ghost Pole Propagator,' his interactive ghost installation which will be eerily projected onto castle walls. The season is being grandly described as the 'coming of age of digital art' and with each of the regions involved demonstrating their past and future links to all things digital, it will strengthen the bond between new media and the North. - Charlotte Frost