A digital installation by multidisciplinary artist duo Thomson & Craighead reveals the diversity of the staff and students at UCL

Thomson & Craighead
Digital animation from live sources (two panels)

This installation has been created by Jon Thomson, Professor of Fine Art at the UCL Slade School of Fine Art, and Alison Craighead, artist and lecturer at Goldsmiths University. Together they make artworks that look at how our perception of the world is changing in The Information Age.

This is one of two works commissioned for the UCL Student Centre when it opened in 2019, in addition to a sculpture by Turner Prize-winning artist Rachel Whiteread.

Read on to find out more about the artists' work in their own words:

“UCL is a truly international community and so when we were asked to make an artwork for the new student centre on Gordon Street, we wanted to reflect this diversity, while also considering UCL’s place in the wider world.

So we have made this two-channel installation; which takes admissions data directly from UCL and simultaneously displays what countries are represented and not represented at the university at any given time. Both information streams update in real time in endless rotation, and are presented side by side in identical decorative grids; the left hand screen showing us who is ‘here’ and the right hand screen showing us who is ‘not here.’

We hope that the varied colour changes and the gentle abstraction of the text as it scrolls through each grid helps provide a hypnotic framework within which each of us can contemplate this visualisation of every country in the world.” - Thomson & Craighead, London, 2019

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