Matt Iles to investigate Mecca Bingo
Christchurch mansion a possibility?
Hayley might know of spaces or places?


Here is a load of fragments of thought which haven’t been turned into actual pieces for the upcoming preview and exhibition. Perhaps they will stimulate some new angles of thought when regurgitated.

Have things on the streets
Milgram Experiments in Ipswich
Dave’s distance and time squidgy map
Truman show - making you the centre - exhibits follow you around and respond to you
People engaging with an inocuous looking piece are actually being
projected onto the town hall.
Hot coals
The smell and sound of singing
Using glass with cam - people writing on it
Follow the white rabbit
TV which responds to being hit, or being moved - e.g. image stays still
project fur onto people
shadow puppets then system elaborates on what you’re doing with your hands
hall going back a long way, using oil, lifts with fake holes
Being in a giant’s ear.
Jane, losing clothes interactively
Own weather system
Uncomfortable interfaces
Lists of people not allowed to die.
Human Sudoku
Bitumen dripping from the ceiling super slow
Indoor blimps/balloons

Terms and Conditions

Please read these terms and conditions carefully. Your home may be at risk if you do not keep up attendance at the collective. Your enthusiasm for the collective may go down or up. By joining this collective you agree to be bound by the rules of pinch punch first of the month, and no returns, and he who smelt it dealt it. The information and material associated with the curiosity collective, and descriptions which appear, are subject to change and wild exaggeration at any time. They are provided ‘as is’, ‘as available’ and ‘as if’. No warranty of any kind, implied, expressed or statuesque, in connection with any failure of performance is accepted so ner!


Join the mailing-list by signing-up here:!forum/curiositycollective

To invite

Various people have been suggested as people we should get involved, because maybe they already know how to do some of this stuff, or could just be nice to have around - make good cups of tea, that kind of thing.

  • Veronica from CSV [invited]
  • Matt Webb - audiovisual specialist [now invited]
  • Hayley - works in design at Suffolk College and curated ‘Twisted’ at Bury [now invited - she suggested contact her boss in the Art Dept who might point us towards funding]
  • Chris Rutherford - electronics extraordinaire, just built a Tesla coil for fun - see images on his Hacking Hardware site
  • Hunkin - major player in the Southwold pier curiosities, friend of John
  • Damian - another friend of John - something to do with ventilators?
  • Andy Gower - Recognised MDF wizard
  • Paula Raffill - Photographer and Radiographer


One of the common themes which has returned again and again is showcasing weird physical phenomena and visual illusions, in common with the Victorian Curiosity theme. Below is a rough list of the phenomena which people have brought up and want to play with.

  • Cornstarch holes and fingers(cefn and dave)
  • inverted face (with back projection) this could be a piece already?(martin russ)
  • earthquake machine (martin russ)(variant of panicroom?)
  • 3d sound system (matt webb’s 6 speaker surround)
  • Tesla Coil (chris rutherford)
  • revolving room (variant of panicroom?)
  • Holbein’s the ambassadors (reb)
  • Peppers ghost phenomenon
  • Lifters
  • camera obscura

see blog entries about phenomena



Various working principles have been suggested, to guide what we do, and help to define a shared manifesto. Some of these are in plain contradiction, but who cares.

  • The experience is primary
  • Pieces should invite interaction and be self-explanatory/self-exploratory
  • Interactions with pieces should be childproof
  • Be inclusive - our message is for all
  • Be exclusive - keep the riff raff away
  • Invite participation from those outside the exhibition space
  • Things thinking for themselves
  • Computers should never look like computers
  • Originality is irrelevant, Shameless Rip Offs are fine, with accreditation
  • Gadgetry should be lo-tech and inexpensive


A lot of contributors feel an exhibition will be better understood, easier to present etc. if it has a theme. Various themes have been proposed. Here’s just a few. If you want yours added, then add it or just mail me and I’ll do it.

  • Curiosity
  • Superstition
  • Optical Illusions
  • Local theme (Ipswich stuff)
  • Unknown Effects (people don’t realise what their causing)
  • Dangerous democracy


Participating with the Collective

If you want to see what’s already been going on, and what we’re into, you can browse the blog.

Join us at our next meeting if you want to participate in live projects.

If you want to stay informed about what the Collective is up to, have proposals to create crazy stuff, or want to share your own knowledge about interactive artwork, then Get in touch with us.

If you want to lurk and wait for something else to happen, you can subscribe to this blog. In the meantime, follow up on some of the other relevant events listed.

Our New Show

Our new show is a collection of interactive curiosities of all shapes and sizes, with events running between Saturday 19th and Saturday 26th April 2008. Go here for full details.

Archive of Second Exhibition

Our second exhibition (7th April 2007) was a workshop format where we unveiled a number of pieces of work and also taught people to make their own. The event took place as part of the Key Arts Cobbler at St-Mary-At-The-Quay. We showed some more crazy constructions, previews for the coming year, including stuff for Ip-Art, and stuff we just fancied constructing.

You can see photos at Flickr and moving images at Youtube which cover both shows.

Stuff on show at the last event included…

  • drawing with lasers
  • dance-controlled music
  • animation machine with photo canisters, sellotape and paint rollers
  • human kaleidoscope
  • inflatable tentacle monster
  • home-made touch sensitive table
  • inverted depth-perception glasses
  • talking tapes

Archive of First Exhibition

Get Your Own! | View Slideshow

Our first exhibition has now finished (29th July through 6th August St-Mary-At-The-Quay).

There are videos and still photos showing a range of the works shown, and experiments undertaken throughout the show.

Read the press release for a historical view, or take a look at the exhibits page for an out of date but more detailed view of the kinds of things we are producing for the event.

To find out the latest activity from the live Curiosity Blog, then go here

Screensavers For The Apple Mac

If you are looking for wild Curiosity Collective screensavers, then look no further. They are here!


The Curiosity Collective is a group of enthusiasts, designers and artists working in Ipswich, UK. Many are technologists at BT’s Adastral Park Research Labs, and are seeking a fun experimental outlet for their technical skills. Other contributors are audiovisual specialists, photographers, art curators. Any enthusiastic participants who can contribute their skills are welcomed.

The aim is to fill an exhibition space with interactive curiosities, like Regeneration at St Mary’s (update: the Ipswich Artists group is negotiating for access to this space) or the Collision Collective series. These could be graphic pieces, sculptures or interactive work built on technologies such as Processing, Max MSP Jitter, PD.

Although creating Heath Robinson devices is a kind of unifying principle, there is plenty of space for other contributions from people who are not technologists. Sculpture, photography, graphic art and other more static pieces will definitely add to the mix if people want to get involved.

The presentation should overwhelm our visitors with an impression that Ipswich really is full of very interesting people after all. So we welcome suggestions for basically any kind of audio, video wiring, dynamic or static effect we can think of to deliver a distinctive experience.

See the live list of possible pieces at the Exhibits page.

See blog entries about events


Artists Impression of the Handcar exhibitHuberman with bottle reciprocator Remaining phones hanging for testClick to play movie

From the recent meeting, here are the pieces which are still going ahead, annotated by the people who are planning to contribute.

Alexey Anvar Cefn Craig Dave KatyaMartin MatthewMichal Paul SebastienTotal
Pipedreams     3002525250105
Fibredisplay     4010202090
Twistedmap     4030070
Videomontage     530201065
Swollenballs     301020565
Springthing     402060
Fridgemagnets     52503060
Realitytracking     202002060
Greatoutdoors     30101555
Cornfingers     252045
Fartgallery     03510045
Harmonograph     2020040
Killthecat     52025
Panicroom     1515
Ovaltune     0

Basically each person has been given 100 votes which they can give to any artwork they wish. So if you want to add a new person, or a new piece, or change the amount of effort you want to commit to each piece, then mail me with your votes.

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