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Bats About Data: Curiosity Club workshop with Cliff Hammett

29 June 2021
4:30 pm
6:00 pm

For this experimental art/science workshop aboard the ONCA Barge, we will look at how to gather data about bats, and ways to share this data in creative and unusual ways.

Bats live all around us, roosting in trees and our homes, foraging for insects in parks and woodland. But they are also very vulnerable to humans changing the environment – for instance, by demolishing buildings they roosts in, or placing too much lighting where they feed. Bats are protected under law. But we can only protect them if we know where they are and how well they are doing – and can communicate this to others.

At this creative workshop with artist/researcher Cliff Hammett, we will learn about ways to gather data about bats, and explore how we might share this data in creative and unusual ways. First, we will look at the methods used by ecologists to gather information about bats. How do they work, why are they important, and can they us all we need to know about them? If not, what gets missed out when we gather data?

Then we will imagine ways in which we could communicate data about bats back to the bats themselves. This will help us consider how humans and bats experience the world differently, and how data can be expressed to those who might not otherwise engage with it. Using sound and sculpture, we will craft data encounters that engage the senses in unexpected ways.

This free workshop is part of the Curiosity Club programme organised by ONCA and TDC. It’s suitable for age 11 to adult. Young people are welcome to bring their adults, or to attend independently – just let us know who’s coming. All Curiosity Club facilitators are DBS checked. Please email with questions or to tell us about any access needs. Click here for Barge location and venue info.

About the facilitator

Cliff Hammett is a creative tinkerer and computational meddler, who conducts inquiries through creating software, contraptions, and collective activities. For his Nightsniffing project, Cliff produced a pair of ‘datasniffers’ that are able to sniff out data about the area you are exploring and bring it to life with sound. They are inspired by experiences of bat walking – exploring a space with a special sonic device to find hard-to-see bats. While looking for hidden bats, the datasniffer helps us find hidden data that might tell us something about how the area is changing – for bats and for us.


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Please contact or 01273 607101 if you have specific access needs, please note the gallery is wheelchair accessible but the toilet is up five stairs. We have hearing assistive technology and our staff have Basic BSL & Deaf Awareness training. For more information about access and facilities at ONCA please click here.


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