Kate Umnova is a multidisciplinary artist and curator who works across artistic↗, curatorial↗ and pedagogical↗ boundaries, exploring the subject of human machine interaction. With background in both science and art she explores the difference between the discreteness of the digital and the integrity of human experience. Her practice employs computer vision, neural networks and data visualisation to question the shifting nature of human perception in the technological realm.
By using common digital instruments – be it a popular computer software or a mobile app – we unavoidably sign ourselves up to the norms and patterns of thinking implied by these products. This narrows down our worldview and takes away from us an opportunity to be creative and curious. In my practice, I choose a deconstructive approach to the common digital instruments as a way of finding one’s agency and resisting the comfort of behaving and perceiving by default. I experiment with such technologies as computer vision, neural networks and data visualisation to explore the hidden opportunities of irrational choices and the unfamiliar sides of our reality. I collaborate with artists, scientists and engineers to create the spaces of experimental interactions with the digital. Through creating exhibitions, DIY-tools and participatory workshops, I strive to design experiences that widen our perceptions of the digital. I believe that nowadays it is important to develop 'a digital intuition' – meaning an intuitive way of navigating in the digital realm, driven by curiosity. I think it is crucial to make advanced technologies accessible to everyone. That is why I am committed to teaching and sharing my knowledge and pipelines with the art community. By introducing users to a DIY approach in their interactions with technology, I invite them to transcend the role of a conforming user and become co-creators of the world we all are living in.