Welcome!

News Feed Item

Antenna Lab Brings New Life to Statues Across London and Manchester

Antenna Lab, Antenna International’s digital think tank, today announced the launch of “Talking Statues” across London and Manchester in the UK – a project that brings some of the region’s most historic and iconic statues to life. Developed in conjunction with the non-profit event production company Sing London, the Talking Statues project will bring 35 statues to life through Antenna Lab’s innovative technology and a dozen of Britain’s most recognizable celebrity voices.

Through its unique use of Near Field Communication (NFC), Antenna Lab will enable curious passers-by to swipe their smart-phone over a statue’s signage, triggering a “call back” from the likes of Isaac Newton, Queen Victoria or Sherlock Holmes. A call back can also be initiated by the use of a QR code or by using a short URL that is displayed on the signage at each statue.

“Talking Statues is all about using low cost technology to give people access to art, culture and technology in streets and parks,” said Jessica Taylor, Antenna Lab Director. “The technology is intuitive, making it easy to launch a spontaneous and immersive cultural experience. Even those who already love culture and public art will appreciate seeing these statues in a totally new way. Our hope is that museums – small and large – will benefit from this pioneering approach.”

The Talking Statues project will run for one year and will be closely monitored and analysed by Leicester School of Museum Studies, gauging whether the technology can lead people to visit surrounding galleries and museums, such as Palace Galleries, the V&A, the British Library, and the National Gallery. All findings will be made publicly available to museums and galleries.

“By giving these statues something to say, we persuade people to look at them more deeply,” said Colette Hiller, Artistic Director of Sing London. “Gallery visitors typically spend, on average, a few seconds in front of a painting. Talking Statues aims to persuade visitors to spend at least 2 minutes engaging with a statue – and to inspire the visitor to want to know more.”

Sing London commissioned some of Britain’s most celebrated writers to imagine and pen monologues for a range of iconic statues which were animated by a cast of actors and comedians, including: Dominic West, Patrick Stewart, Simon Russell Beale, Meera Syal, Hugh Bonneville, Jeremy Paxman, Jacqueline Wilson, Anthony Horowitz, Tony Harrison, Timberlake Wertenbaker, Prunella Scales and Tom Conti.

The ‘Talking Statues’ include:

(Links accessible only on mobile devices)

  • Dominic West as a stir crazy Achilles in Hyde Park (speak2.co/Achillies)
  • Patrick Stewart as the haunting voice of the Unknown Soldier at Paddington Station (speak2.co/Soldier)
  • Jeremy Paxman defending free speech as John Wilkes in Fetter Lane (speak2.co/Wilkes)
  • Baker Street’s Sherlock Holmes, as imagined by Anthony Horowitz with Ed Stoppard (speak2.co/Sherlock)
  • Tom Conti as Lincoln in Manchester’s Lincoln Square, written by Gary Younge (speak2.co/Abe)
  • Nicholas Parsons as Samuel Johnson’s famous cat, Hodge in Gough Square (speak2.co/Hodge)
  • Coronation Street star David Neilson propping up the bar as LS Lowry at Sam’s Chop House (speak2.co/Lowry)
  • Prunella Scales as Queen Victoria in Manchester’s Piccadilly Gardens (speak2.co/Vic1)
  • Hugh Dennis as a goat in Spitalfields (speak2.co/Hugh)
  • Alan Johnson MP as Rowland Hill, inventor of the Penny Black in EC1 (speak2.co/Alan)
  • Simon Russell Beale as Isaac Newton at the British Library by Timberlake Wertenbaker (speak2.co/Isaac)

Talking Statues is made possible with financial support from NESTA’s Digital R&D Fund. Additional support comes from Google Fieldtrip, and from Audible.co.uk – which is hosting a public writing competition to accompany Talking Statues. The company is inviting the public to submit their own monologues for one of four iconic statues. Winning pieces will be recorded by name actors and installed on the street by December. More details on the competition will be available at www.talkingstatues.co.uk in the coming months.

About Antenna Lab

Antenna Lab, part of Antenna International, is a collection of leading cultural technologists and creators of immersive multimedia museum experiences. The organization serves as a hub for exchanging ideas and trend spotting in the cultural sector. Drawing on original research and embracing rapid prototyping, digital innovation and emerging platforms, the Lab delivers consultancy and training products as well as showcasing leading-edge pilot projects and the latest digital innovations. www.antennalab.org | www.antennainternational.com

About Sing London - Sing London is a non-profit arts organisation whose events aim to lift the public’s spirit. Whether they’re filling the streets with pianos or with public ping-pong tables, Sing London projects strive to connect people to each other, and to the public spaces around us all.

More Stories By Business Wire

Copyright © 2009 Business Wire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of Business Wire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Business Wire. Business Wire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
You know you need the cloud, but you’re hesitant to simply dump everything at Amazon since you know that not all workloads are suitable for cloud. You know that you want the kind of ease of use and scalability that you get with public cloud, but your applications are architected in a way that makes the public cloud a non-starter. You’re looking at private cloud solutions based on hyperconverged infrastructure, but you’re concerned with the limits inherent in those technologies.
As Marc Andreessen says software is eating the world. Everything is rapidly moving toward being software-defined – from our phones and cars through our washing machines to the datacenter. However, there are larger challenges when implementing software defined on a larger scale - when building software defined infrastructure. In his session at 16th Cloud Expo, Boyan Ivanov, CEO of StorPool, provided some practical insights on what, how and why when implementing "software-defined" in the datacent...
ChatOps is an emerging topic that has led to the wide availability of integrations between group chat and various other tools/platforms. Currently, HipChat is an extremely powerful collaboration platform due to the various ChatOps integrations that are available. However, DevOps automation can involve orchestration and complex workflows. In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Himanshu Chhetri, CTO at Addteq, will cover practical examples and use cases such as self-provisioning infra...
Blockchain. A day doesn’t seem to go by without seeing articles and discussions about the technology. According to PwC executive Seamus Cushley, approximately $1.4B has been invested in blockchain just last year. In Gartner’s recent hype cycle for emerging technologies, blockchain is approaching the peak. It is considered by Gartner as one of the ‘Key platform-enabling technologies to track.’ While there is a lot of ‘hype vs reality’ discussions going on, there is no arguing that blockchain is b...
Leading companies, from the Global Fortune 500 to the smallest companies, are adopting hybrid cloud as the path to business advantage. Hybrid cloud depends on cloud services and on-premises infrastructure working in unison. Successful implementations require new levels of data mobility, enabled by an automated and seamless flow across on-premises and cloud resources. In his general session at 21st Cloud Expo, Greg Tevis, an IBM Storage Software Technical Strategist and Customer Solution Architec...
The need for greater agility and scalability necessitated the digital transformation in the form of following equation: monolithic to microservices to serverless architecture (FaaS). To keep up with the cut-throat competition, the organisations need to update their technology stack to make software development their differentiating factor. Thus microservices architecture emerged as a potential method to provide development teams with greater flexibility and other advantages, such as the abili...
Nordstrom is transforming the way that they do business and the cloud is the key to enabling speed and hyper personalized customer experiences. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Ken Schow, VP of Engineering at Nordstrom, discussed some of the key learnings and common pitfalls of large enterprises moving to the cloud. This includes strategies around choosing a cloud provider(s), architecture, and lessons learned. In addition, he covered some of the best practices for structured team migration an...
Product connectivity goes hand and hand these days with increased use of personal data. New IoT devices are becoming more personalized than ever before. In his session at 22nd Cloud Expo | DXWorld Expo, Nicolas Fierro, CEO of MIMIR Blockchain Solutions, will discuss how in order to protect your data and privacy, IoT applications need to embrace Blockchain technology for a new level of product security never before seen - or needed.
The use of containers by developers -- and now increasingly IT operators -- has grown from infatuation to deep and abiding love. But as with any long-term affair, the honeymoon soon leads to needing to live well together ... and maybe even getting some relationship help along the way. And so it goes with container orchestration and automation solutions, which are rapidly emerging as the means to maintain the bliss between rapid container adoption and broad container use among multiple cloud host...
Blockchain is a shared, secure record of exchange that establishes trust, accountability and transparency across business networks. Supported by the Linux Foundation's open source, open-standards based Hyperledger Project, Blockchain has the potential to improve regulatory compliance, reduce cost as well as advance trade. Are you curious about how Blockchain is built for business? In her session at 21st Cloud Expo, René Bostic, Technical VP of the IBM Cloud Unit in North America, discussed the b...
In his general session at 21st Cloud Expo, Greg Dumas, Calligo’s Vice President and G.M. of US operations, discussed the new Global Data Protection Regulation and how Calligo can help business stay compliant in digitally globalized world. Greg Dumas is Calligo's Vice President and G.M. of US operations. Calligo is an established service provider that provides an innovative platform for trusted cloud solutions. Calligo’s customers are typically most concerned about GDPR compliance, application p...
Imagine if you will, a retail floor so densely packed with sensors that they can pick up the movements of insects scurrying across a store aisle. Or a component of a piece of factory equipment so well-instrumented that its digital twin provides resolution down to the micrometer.
In his keynote at 18th Cloud Expo, Andrew Keys, Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise, provided an overview of the evolution of the Internet and the Database and the future of their combination – the Blockchain. Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life settle...
The cloud era has reached the stage where it is no longer a question of whether a company should migrate, but when. Enterprises have embraced the outsourcing of where their various applications are stored and who manages them, saving significant investment along the way. Plus, the cloud has become a defining competitive edge. Companies that fail to successfully adapt risk failure. The media, of course, continues to extol the virtues of the cloud, including how easy it is to get there. Migrating...
No hype cycles or predictions of a gazillion things here. IoT is here. You get it. You know your business and have great ideas for a business transformation strategy. What comes next? Time to make it happen. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jay Mason, an Associate Partner of Analytics, IoT & Cybersecurity at M&S Consulting, presented a step-by-step plan to develop your technology implementation strategy. He also discussed the evaluation of communication standards and IoT messaging protocols, data...