Neon Songs, video documentation, 8:54 min, De Thomas, Dec, 2023 (documentation Alina Ozerova)

Neon Songs

Neon Songs is an interactive sound installation and performance, conceived as an experimental telecommunications network. The project is inspired by our ever-present screens and invisible architectures of fiber optic cable networks and other telecom infrastructures that span the globe and enable communications on our electronic devices. Interaction with the DIY network is made visible through light and sound. The project aims to make bodily relationships to our technologies visible and to build connections to one another through learning and play.

Neon Songs took place from November to December 2023 in a series of performances, exhibitions, and workshops. 

Neon Songs Performance, Rhythm Speaker, Grey Space in the Middle, Nov 2023 (Documentation by Alex Heuvink)

Neon Songs Performance, Vocal Visualizer, Grey Space in the Middle, Nov 2023 (Documentation by Alex Heuvink)

Vocal Visualizer, Neon Songs Performance, De Thomas, Dec 2023 (Documentation by Alina Ozerova)

Photoelectric Screen, Neon Songs Performance, De Thomas, Dec 2023 (Documentation by Alina Ozerova)

LED Wand and Photoelectric Screen, Neon Songs Performance, Grey Space in the Middle, Nov 2023 (Documentation by Alina Ozerova)

Photoelectric Screen with rotating pendulum and metal grating light modulator, De Thomas, Dec 2023 (Documentation by Silvia Ulloa)

Photoelectric screen with delay box and metal grating light modulator, Neon Songs installation view, De Thomas, Nov 2023 (documentation by Silvia Ulloa)

Metal speaker detail, Neon Songs installation view, De Thomas, Nov 2023 (documentation by Silvia Ulloa)

Photophones, Neon Songs performance, the Grey Space, Nov 2023(Documentation by Alina Ozerova)

Fiber optic strings , Neon Songs performance, the Grey Space, Nov 2023(Documentation by Alina Ozerova)

Strangers, group exhibition Rongwrong gallery, 2022

Our collective (Mariah Blue, Amy Winstanley, Kathrin Graf, Lana Murdochy, and Younwon Sohn) studied together at the Sandberg Instituut in Amsterdam from 2017 - 2019. Since completing our Masters, we are all living in different countries, in 3 different time zones 0 (Glasgow/ Edinburgh), +1 (Amsterdam/ Bonn), +9 (Seoul) and with a physical distance of 12,959.12 km between us. Nevertheless, we are meeting each other daily through social media and every second week through video calls to continue our dialogue about daily life experience, art production, art practice and thinking. The intersections between our lives, art, friendship and conversations are a generative force in our creative process and work. We recently received funding from the prestigious ARKO international exchange fund and DutchCulture fund to make an exhibition in collaboration between Korea and the Netherlands and celebrating 60 years of diplomatic friendship between the countries. A decision to work together has led to our continual conversations which took form in the group exhibition, Strangers. It was a response to our last exhibition, Potluck, which took place in Seoul, South Korea, where we as a group touch on themes of friendship, food, nature, technology and entanglement. Strangers is an exhibition that explores relationships and the intangible and nonlinear collective histories shared through friendship and the act of making together.

Installation view "Strangers", rongwrong, Amsterdam; Photo: Nicola Baratto

Installation view "Strangers", rongwrong, Amsterdam; Photo: Nicola Baratto

Installation View "Strangers", rongwrong, Amsterdam; Photo: Nicola Baratto

Bladderwrack, by Mariah Blue, 17:49 minutes, single channel video installation

"Strangers", rongwrong, Amsterdam; Photo: Nicola Baratto

Bladderwrack, video transcript, by Mariah Blue, single channel video installation

"Strangers", rongwrong, Amsterdam; Photo: Nicola Baratto 

Riso printed A4 text designed by Alex Walker

SleepeelS, This Art Fair 2021

In a performance at This Art Fair, Amsterdam 2021, fictional persona, SleepeelS, presented, Roses Rest, the debut album from musical duo Bots & Gas, consisting of Alexandros Papamarkou and Mariah Blue. The album presentation was a performative action by SleepeelS as the album’s promoter within the digital domain. A limited edition of ten vinyl records was released and sold at the fair as art objects alongside other art multiples (merchandise) such as t-shirts, stickers and helium balloons which were designed by SleepeelS. In the booth, she screened promotional videos while the artists, Mariah Blue and Alexandros Papamarkou were employed to work as her sales representatives at the art fair. She also hosted livestream presentations of the album for a digital audience during the fair.

Artist, Alexandros Papamarkou, performing as SleepeelS sales representative at this art fair. 

Installation view with SleepeelS, this Art Fair Promotional videos, 2021

Visitors enjoying the album, Roses Rest, with silent disco headphones. 

Installation view with SleepeelS, promotional video Bots & Gas NFT and balloon, 2021

Installation view of Bots & Gas, Album booklet designed by Tariq Heijboer and Holographic Stickers with logo, designed by Mariah Blue, displayed with record player and headphones, 2021.

An art fair visitor performs SleepeelS by wearing her Be My Body, T-Shirt. The QR code links to this video by SleepeelS:

Artist, Alexandros Papamarkou leads an improvisational helium choir with artists and visitors at the art fair. 

Installation view of vinyl albums backlit by led lights, Mariah Blue, 2021

Roses Rest, Record Display, Mariah Blue, 2021

Bots & Gas, Roses Rest, 2021

Bots & Gas is a cross-disciplinary music and artistic project consisting of Alexandros Papamarkou and Mariah Blue. Roses Rest is the debut album released at This Art Fair 2021. The songs have come from channelled sources, automatic writing, Ouija board and text writing algorithm. Following the whims of channelled material and leaving song writing to chance results in a musical blend of styles and genres. The record interweaves experimental pop, dance music, multi-layered (choral) a cappella singing, spoken word and even a ballad written by a nineteenth century ghost. In this work, alternative ‘technologies’ are used in a generative way to uncover new combinations and possibilities. By using the Ouija board as an alternative knowledge seeking device (unlike google) to generate song lyrics, we are searching for paradox within definitions of technology and indeterminate methods for knowledge discovery.

Cover Page of the foldout album booklet. Designed by Tariq Heijboer, 2021

Page 2 of the foldout album booklet. Designed by Tariq Heijboer, 2021

Fat Jack, 3:03 min, from the Roses Rest, full album, video playlist, 2021

Potluck, 2021, Gallery 17717, Seoul

A group exhibition by the artists, Mariah Blue, Kathrin Graf, Lana Murdochy, Younwon Sohn, and Amy Winstanley, exploring what it is to come together and exchange ideas, culture and create bonds of friendship over the sharing of food, space and landscape at a time when the artists can’t physically be together. The exhibition included sculpture, painting, YouTube video playlist, a collaborative video, and also saw the launch of their publication What thoughts think thoughts.
The exhibition is funded by Seoul Metropolitan Government and Foundation for Arts and Culture.

Installation view Potluck, Gallery 17717, Seoul

Video stills Potluck

Potluck is a collaborative video by the artists. It was filmed on the Scottish Isle of Lewis where they shared a house, meals, and conversations. The video examines topics of entanglement, nature, technology, silent space and friendship in relation to a society striving for optimization.

All footage was filmed with mobile phones originally to document our trip together. The idea to make a video came later.

Link to video (excerpt 3:35 min of 13:03 min):

Installation view Potluck, with recent artist's publications, What thoughts think thoughts and What ties ties, ties,  Gallery 17717, Seoul

What thoughts think thoughts 

A riso printed book of images compiled by the artists, Mariah Blue, Kathrin Graf, Lana Murdochy, Younwon Sohn, and Amy Winstanley, designed by Alex Walker and published by Print Art Research Centre, Seoul.

The pages are bound with an elastic band, allowing the book to also function as a collection of separate prints. The cover displays an index and descriptions of the works written by the artists in English, Korean and German. 

Looking For the Pixels

I zoom further into the screen of my smartphone, looking for the pixels. Every time I get closer I take a screenshot. My camera’s image processing algorithm blurs some parts of the image, sharpens other parts and it corrects the color. Rather than the photos becoming more abstract, the collaborative decision making between me and the camera creates strange and otherworldly forms.

A Bird A Fish, 2021, smartphone screenshots, 14.9 X 7.0 cm

InterObjects, 2021, smartphone screenshots, 14.9 X 7.0 cm

Google Translate Poetry, 2020

In a collection of found poems, Google translator camera app is used to instantly identify and translate images into text from a mobile camera. The translated texts are read out loud and recorded on a video. Street signs, building logos, and even the random patterns seen in tiles and skyscraper windows are translated. These poems are sometimes nonsensical strings of words or syllables and sometimes reveal more complex word combinations, relating to mundane, philosophical, or even spiritual subject matter. The work playfully challenges the capabilities of Optical Character Recognition (OCR) and translation systems, exploring their creative possibilities when confronted with simple everyday provocations. This work has been exhibited in 2021 for the Digital Program, Flash Fictions: Alternative Networks with the London based Photographers Gallery.

Palma Song Room Poetry, digital video, 3 minutes 24 seconds,

AIIIIIIIII, 2020, digital video, 1 minutes 49 seconds,

What ties ties, ties

A collection of essays by Mariah Blue, Kathrin Graf, Lana Murdochy, Younwon Sohn, Amy Winstanley

What ties ties, ties is a book created by five artists of different nationalities, backgrounds, ages, and gender identity. This book is tied by 'Doubt', a short story about questioning perceptions of the world by Scottish painter Amy Winstanley (b.1983), 'Call Us by Our Names', poems that are a collaboration between Mariah Blue (b.1977) and a machine learning algorithm, 'Housewarming, Dear Ghost Ants', an invitation essay about house, creature, and future scenery by Korean artist Younwon Sohn (b.1990), 'Tadpoles', a short coming of age story exploring friendship and imagination of young women by Scottish-Kurdish artist Lana Murdochy (b.1995), and 'Moving Matter', an essay on exploring the relationship between feelings and the design of surfaces by German sculptor Kathrin Graf (b.1984).

What ties ties, ties

18.5 x 10.5 cm, 136 pages, soft cover with riso print, 500 copies
Designed by Alex Walker
Published by Print Art Research Center, Seoul, South Korea
Printing & Binding by Printon Trükikoda
ISBN 979 -11-956458-7-9
€ 12

Call Us by Our Names is collaborative poetry written by a text predicting algorithm and curated by myself. The content for these poems is sourced from a trained dataset of eight million web pages. 

Book launch What ties ties, ties at NEVERNEVERLAND, Amsterdam, 7 March 2020

Kathrin Graf - what ties ties, ties

Sonic Meditation: Vibrational Bodies

In a collaborative sound performance with artist Tina Reden, we discovered the sonic possibilities of ceramic coil pots as natural speakers — think of the sound produced by a sea shell when held to the ear. The varying shapes and sizes of the hand built coiled pots create varied tonalities depending on how they are interacted with. These ceramic coil pots were made using similar techniques to those used since the stone age. We imagine alternative uses for technologies and play with the distinctions between hi and low tech by plugging in these stone age pottery vessels and using them as musical instruments.

Sonic Meditation and Vibrational Bodies, 2019

A collaborative performance with Tina Reden, Zone2Source, Amsterdam 


Fictional persona, SleepeelS, uses Youtube’s Creator interface as a medium. In her live performances, she  co-opts the digital devices of her audience through the Youtube platform. A cacophony of echoes can be heard in the room as  phones playback her performance  at differing stream rates. These echos are fed back into her computer mic and broadcasted again, creating a sonic feedback loop. Eventually all speech is drowned out by the intensifying reverb. 
The Youtube algorithm is designed to selectively choose extreme content in order to captivate the attention of its audience. A feedback loop occurs between viewer and algorithm where ideologies become polarized in a self-fulfilling echo chamber of ideas. SleepeelS hopes to someday be an influencer of the Youtube algorithm. 

SleepeelS youtube channel livestream performance, broadcasted on multiple handheld devices during Torpor/A Bliss/A Slump, Staircase exhibition May 2019.

RT/ActivTrak, 2019, 3:21 min

In this video, a worker surveillance algorithm mines SleepeelS' employee data, takes random screenshots of her online activity, and tracks her digital activities. 

You Are The Future, 2019, Youtube video, 2:28 min

Silicon Valley Doomsday, 2019, Youtube video, screened for Festival of Choices, Zone2Source, Amsterdam

Paradoxical Mountain, 2019, 3:23 min

My friend and colleague Younwon Sohn shot the original footage for this video.

Sleepeelssleepeelssleepeels, 2020, reversed sound recording, 0:09 min

SleepeelS is a phonetic palindrome, is sounds the same played backwards as it does forwards.

Domestic Work Algorithm

These works examine the exploitative relationships between labor and digital platforms. I use my employee work data to create digital tapestries.This data is collected from my “day job” with the domestic labor platform Helpling, a digital platform described as “Uber for housekeepers.” The tapestries are created by a similarly exploitative online platform which outsources weaving to the lowest bidder. 

Helpling Grrrl, 2018, video, 0:34 min

The Helpling house cleaners platform logo has been manipulated in video editing software and gains her own voice.  

Digital weaving of work data from contracted cleaning work with Helpling™ domestic help platform

Tapeworms Mosaic (hand embroidery detail), 2018, 50 x 150 cm, digital weaving

Domestic Work Algorithm and Tapeworms Mosaic, 2018, 50 x 150 cm, digital weaving

Algorithmic Drawings

Digital drawings can be made using the language of code. Anything can be used as data and therefor programmed into a drawing.

Symbols are hand drawn in repetitions following an algorithmic equation. The equation is created using dice. The dice choose which symbols will be used within the drawings, how many times they will be repeated, what order, and the colors which are used. The drawings can be hand replicated once an equation is formulated. 


Kraken, Digital representation of cryptocurrency trading from October 2017 to January 2018, Dimensions variable

Kraken and Domestic Work, 2018, Dimensions variable

Digital representations of cryptocurrency trading and Helpling labour programmed in Java 

Domestic Work Algorithm Java Code, 2018, Dimensions Variable

Java program using data from my work with the online house cleaners platform Helpling.  

Algorithmic Drawing, 2017, colored pencil on paper 150 x 125 cm

Part of a series of drawings created using imaginary symbols drawn in repetitions according to an equation created by dice throwing.

Performed Algorithmic Drawings,  2017, Dimensions variable

Documentation of Performance at De Punt, Amsterdam

Using Format