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boredomresearch is a collaboration between visual artists Vicky Isley (born 1974) and Paul Smith (born 1975). Collaborating since 1996, they have exhibited internationally including Los Angeles, Berlin, São Paulo, Melbourne, Lisbon, the Venice Biennale, and Brussels, in both solo exhibitions, group exhibitions, as well as a number of art festivals.

Trained in Fine Art, boredomresearch combine this discipline with modern technology to create software-based artworks that are presented as objects or as online projects.

Characteristic to boredomresearch's work, is their reference to Asian painting through the use of ornamental style and colours, to which they bring an understanding of scientific modelling techniques.

boredomresearch are represented by [DAM]Berlin and are ArtSway Associates.

Selected works[edit]

  • Possessed (2001): A web project which used simple a-life technology to engage an online audience with a synthesised supernatural experience.
  • Ornamental Bug Garden 001 (2004): Digital artwork including artificial life creatures inspired by Springtails whose behaviour generates a sound composition.
  • Biomes (2005): Ecology of digital creatures that evolves elaborate markings over time.
  • Wish (2006): An alternative online forum inspired by the Lam Tsuen Wishing Trees in Hong Kong.
  • Real Snail Mail (2008 – ongoing): Webmail service using live snails equipped with Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tags to deliver electronic messages.
  • 'Lost Calls of Cloud Mountain Whirligigs (2009): Flying bots with ever changing propeller patterns that sing melancholic songs.


boredomresearch's Ornamental Bug Garden 001 can be found in the British Council’s collection in London.[1]


boredomresearch’s artwork Ornamental Bug Garden 001 (2004) was awarded an honorary mention in VIDA 7.0 International A-Life Electronic Arts Competition, Madrid in 2004 and Transmediale, Berlin, 2005. In 2005 boredomresearch were shortlisted for The Arts Foundation, New Media Art Fellowship Award.


boredomresearch’s work has been exhibited at Itaú Cultural in São Paulo; iMAL, a center for digital cultures & technology in Brussels; Montevideo in Amsterdam; Transmediale Festival in Berlin; SIGGRAPH art show in Los Angeles (2005 & 2008) and in Boston (2006); Space Media Arts, London; and [DAM]Berlin.

boredomresesearch had a solo national touring exhibition Theatre of Restless Automata (2005-06) funded by the Arts Council of England. The exhibition toured to Aspex Gallery in Portsmouth, HTTP in London and Peterborough Digital Arts.


Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]