Digital Humanities Centre
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DHC Leonardo fellow



 The DHC's Leonardo Fellow is an artist in residence with full access to the centre's resources, he/she works with the student volunteers on digital media based projects and provides specialist assistance to users.


James E Smith

James E Smith is a local artist working with lens-based media; his work has been exhibited at the Ropewalk Gallery, Surface Gallery, Broadway Cinema, and Surface Gallery amongst others. His latest work ‘Model’ which was created entirely at University of Nottingham’s Digital Humanities Centre is currently exhibiting as part of OPEM3 at The Collection in Lincoln.

Read what James has to say about the thoughts and processes that went into creating ‘Model’ on DHC’s Digital Dialogues blog.



James E Smith was selected by Turner Prize winner Mark Leckey and Kenneth Armitage Foundation Fellow Jess Flood-Paddock along with seven other artists to exhibit in OPEM 3, the third biennial open exhibition at The Collection in Lincoln. Each selected artist received a bursary to produce a new work specifically for the exhibition.

Smith’s work ‘Model’ was produced during his first months of his residency at the DHC. The artist placed an advert on a jobs listings website looking for someone willing to pose nude and have their body scanned inch by inch with DHC’s handheld 3D scanner operated by Smith himself. The procedure was captured from multiple angles using video cameras and the footage was edited together to present a real time film of the entire scanning process.

The other element of the work is a sculpture manufactured by a machine that uses a laser to bond nylon powder, a process called additive manufacturing or more commonly, 3D printing. The object in this case originated from point cloud scan data we see Smith capturing in the video piece. The video shows Smith moving around the sitter, checking his captured data on a nearby computer. The scanning process captured millions of individual points on the sitter’s body and took over an hour and a half.

Smith presents this object in an alcove cut into a large wall joined to the main gallery wall. The wall juts out into the room and creates a walkway so that visitors can walk behind it where they are presented with the film piece. Depending on how the viewer orientates the space determines which part of the work they encounter first. Those walking around the gallery clockwise would no doubt glimpse the film and enter the space behind the wall before seeing the sculpture in the alcove. The encounter is reversed for those walking anti clockwise around the space.

OPEM 3, The Collection, Lincoln, 31st May-7th September 2014.


Digital Humanities Centre

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