Amy Cunningham is a multidisciplinary artist who explores the glitches and gaps in forms, media and ideas using the singing voice and visual art.
Teaching and researching in fine art, music and performance at the University of Brighton, Amy has exhibited her performance, installation and screen-based work in various galleries and spaces in Europe since 2000. She collaborates widely with researchers, artists and institutions.
Amy Cunningham is a multidisciplinary artist who explores the glitches and gaps in forms, media and ideas using the singing voice and visual art. She has exhibited her performance, installation and screen-based work in various galleries and spaces in Europe since 2000. She collaborates widely with researchers, artists and institutions.
Amy Cunningham is a multidisciplinary artist, lecturer and researcher, who uses the singing voice, video, objects and drawing to explore patterns and glitches in technologies and environments. Addressing both the obsolete and the futuristic, her artworks have included a fictional computer game in a real 18th century garden, opera as a video installation and an Internet broadcast as a song cycle.
Recently the focus of her practice is the role and representation of women in the assimilation of technology into culture. This work has taken the form of a series of performances and video installations.
Art practice and research
Amy Cunningham's artworks are realised in a variety of media and a key element of her work is the use of her own classical singing voice. Shifts, discrepancies or glitches, that she finds in a given medium or idea, become the means to structure her visual and vocal compositions to address what she describes as 'the mediated voice'.
Recently the focus of her research is the role and representation of women in the assimilation of technology into culture. This work has taken the form of a series of performance installations for voice, sound and video. The first two works in the series 'Personal Wireless' and 'On Standby' were exhibited at Soundwaves Festival Brighton and St James's Piccadilly London in 2011. The third work in the series 'Oracle' was exhibited at IKON Gallery Birmingham as part of Autumn Almanac: The Voice and the Lens, curated by Third Ear and Sam Belinfante in 2012.The most recent work 'Smart Appliances' for soprano voice, cello and video was performed as part of Sounding Food and Music curated by Contemporary Connections, The Old Market Theatre, Brighton and Hove, 2014-2015.
The exploration of the mediated voice in her practice is underpinned by a wider investigation into the role of the voice in contemporary art. The Voice Laboratory, a research network founded by Amy in 2009 initiates cross-disciplinary debate and acts as a platform for new work by way of symposia, seminars, workshops, performances and exhibitions.
Cunningham has exhibited her performance, installation and screen-based work in various galleries and festivals in Europe and USA including, Stevens Institute of Technology, IKON Gallery, Cafe OTO, The Forge Camden, St James's Piccadilly, Norwich Gallery, Kulturens Hus Luleå Sweden, ZINGERpresents Netherlands, Slade Research Centre London, Towner Gallery, Musée des Beaux-Arts de Nîmes, Portland Sculpture Quarry Trust, Brighton Festival, Soundwaves Festival, SC Gallery Croatia and Serpentine Gallery London. She studied Fine Art Painting at Wimbledon School of Art, London and Fine Art Media at the Slade School of Fine Art, University College London.
In parallel to her individual solo practice, Cunningham works collaboratively and collectively including with the Voice Laboratory which she founded in 2009 and with the art collective SpRoUt of whom she has been a key member since 2004.
Site-specific installation, drawing, vocal performance, video, and sound are areas of research, which inform Amy's teaching. Her specialisms include; mentoring, research project supervision, seminars and practical workshops in contemporary art, voice and music, as well as the facilitation of independent reflective learning and teaching. The Voice Laboratory, includes a forum for students to explore the voice in an interdisciplinary context, through workshops, discussion and collective artworks.
Amy is a fellow of the Higher Education Academy, U.K and was awarded a teaching excellence award in 2007 by the Centre for Learning and Teaching, University of Brighton. In 2012 she worked alongside colleague Jane Fox to investigate the role of documentation in Music and Visual Art, with 'Exploding the Workbook' for which a learning and teaching fellowship award was granted. In 2014 Amy began 'Walk Write Create' a collaborative research-led learning and teaching project with colleagues Shirley Chubb (University of Chichester) and Jac Cattaneo (University of Chichester, University of the Arts and Northbrook College). A University of Brighton learning and teaching scholarship has been awarded to develop the project during 2015-16.
Amy has taught at various academic institutions including Slade School of Fine Art, West Dean College, Chichester, University of East Anglia, Kings College London and University of Zagreb, Croatia.
Tableaux that explore the relationship between operator and machine, the coded nature of gestures and effects without an apparent cause.
A 'video song cycle’ in which disembodied voices reveal analytical statements by the 19th century computer pioneer Ada Lovelace.
A performance for voice and video which seeks to have a dialogue with the limitations and possibilities of communication technology both old and new.
Alchemical texts and engraved images from the 16th century combine with the hard edges of the digital, using performance and Internet broadcast.
Amy Cunningham uses her trained voice to develop ‘video opera’ pieces, which explore the implications of the futuristic and the nostalgic.
Exploring the voice across arts and sciences, linking practitioners and thinkers, in an interdisciplinary network
Cunningham, Amy (2015) Oracle: the engine weaves In: Hammerman, R. and Russell, A.L., eds. Ada's Legacy: Cultures of Computing from the Victorian to the Digital Age. Association for Computing Machinery and Morgan & Claypool, New York, NY, USA. ISBN 9781970001488
Cunningham, Amy (2013) Articulation of promise [Exhibition]
Cunningham, Amy (2012) Oracle [Exhibition]
Cunningham, Amy (2011) On Standby [Musical composition/Choreography/Art direction ]
Cunningham, Amy, Skipper, Hayley and Cull, Laura (2010) SpRoUt is an Art School In: Art Schools: Inventions, Invective and Radical Possibilities, 11th & 12th June 2010, University College London.
Cunningham, Amy (2008) Echo fold revolve [Exhibition]
Karikis, Mikhail, Martin, Jean, Gleeson, Conall and Cunningham, Amy (2008) Sounding out the museum: tête-à-tête [Performance]
Cunningham, Amy (2006) Alchemical streaming Slade Research Centre, London, Woburn, London.
Video and audio screening, as part of Wednesdays at The Forge, London, curated by Claudia Molitor.
2014-2015 Smart Appliances
Video and music composition for electronics, mezzo soprano and cello, Sounding Food and Music, The Old Market Theatre and Jubilee Library, Brighton and Hove, curated by Contemporary Connections.
Video and sound Installation, Labouring With No Matter, Circus Street Old Market, Brighton, curated by Mikhail Karikis.
Live vocal music and digital images, The Voice and the Lens, Spitalfields Festival, Richmix and Whitechapel Gallery, curated by Sam Belinfante and Third Ear.
2013 Articulation of Promise
HD single screen video installation, Six Degrees of Separation, curated by Juan Bolivar, Wimbledon Space, Wimbledon College of Art, University of the Arts London.
Video installation and performance for video and voice, Autumn Almanac: The Voice and the Lens, curated by Sam Belinfante and ThirdEar, IKON, Birmingham.
2011 On Standby
Composition for voice and video, They Clapped Unit She Bowed Once More, St James’s Piccadilly, London.
2011 Personal Wireless
Video and voice installation, Soundwaves Festival, Brighton
2009 Stacking Incidentals
Video and Sound Installation, in collaboration with Conall Gleeson and Claudia Kappenberg (The Oolith Project), exhibited as part of Seeing Through Stone, Portland Sculpture Quarry Trust, Portland Dorset.
2009 Echo Fold Revolve II
Video and voice performance, Noisy Image, Café OTO, London
2009 The Voice the Iron Horse
Super 8 film music composition, part of The Voice and Nothing More, Slade Research Centre, Woburn Square, London
2008 A SpRoUt manifesto (in the style of a relay race)
Performance Manifesto by SpRoUt Collective as part of Manifesto Marathon curated by Hans Ulrich Obrist, Frank Gehry Pavilion, Serpentine Gallery, London
2008 Under Construction: Staging the Future
Collaborative Exhibition by SpRoUt collective, SC Gallery, Croatia.
2008 Echo Fold Revolve
Video and sound installation, Syncopate, Parlour Studios and Project Space, London
2006 Alchemical Streaming
Performance and Installation, as part of Framed and node.london, Slade Centre for Electronic Media, Slade School of Fine Art, University College London
2006 Hydrophobia II
Works on Paper, ZingerPresents Gallery, Netherlands.
2004 Phantom Keyboard
Sculpture with recorded sound, Trackers, group exhibition, including artists Stuart Brisley, Bruce McLean, Goshga Macuga, Charles Danby, Alejandro Ospina, PM Gallery, London
2012 One Water
Video commission for collaborative performance, Kulturens Hus Luleå Sweden, 2012.
Installation performance for video and voice, Voice and the Lens, IKON, Birmingham.
2012 Articulation of Promise
Video commissioned in association with Peter Vogel: The Sound of Shadows, University of Brighton Gallery, October 2011.
2011 On Standby
Composition for voice and video, They Clapped Unit She Bowed Once More, St James’s Piccadilly, London.
2008 The Siege of Rhodes
Composition for live voice and video as part of Sounding Out the Museum, Ensemble Scratch the Surface, Musee des Beaux Arts, Nimes, France.
2008 Echo Aviatrix
Performance, as part of Notations 2008, Slade Research Centre, Woburn Square, London.
2007 Light Music
Public Sculpture intervention as part of Space Between: Four Artists, Four Interventions, commissioned for SpRoUt by Towner Art Gallery, Eastbourne.
2006 Alpha Mike Yankee
Performance intervention as part of Artists-On-Site, commissioned for SpRoUt, by Towner Art Gallery, Eastbourne.
2003 Delayed Dreaming
Internet Web cast performance as part of Low-fi project, DMZ, Media Festival and node.london, Limehouse Town Hall, London
2012 Video commissioned as part of One Water, a multimedia performance in collaboration with composers and musicians including; Amy Cunningham, Sam Underwood, Annika Cleo and Jonas Asplund, Sweden.
2004-Current Key member of SpRoUt Art Collective
2011 Resonant Spaces I Resonant Voices, a vocal intervention, collaboration with Brighton Early Music Festival Consort of Voices, (directed by Deborah Roberts), and artist Helen Dewhurst & Amy Cunningham for Voice Laboratory, White Night Blanc Nuit Brighton, October 2011.
2011 Rounds: a Vocal Process Intervention, by Voice Laboratory Ensemble as part of Anniversary an act of memory Act 31: a collective and multilingual recitation from memory of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, by Monica Ross and Co-recitors, Brighton Festival ‘Freedom Picnic’, 29th May 2011.
2010 The Musical 100 Metres and The Musical 100 Metres :Replay, a collaborative project by Amy Cunningham and Nick Collins for Voice Laboratory Ensemble.
2006-2009 The Oolith Project, collaboration with Claudia Kappenberg and Conall Gleeson, in partnership with Portland Sculpture Quarry Trust, Dorset
2015 'Oracle: The Engine Weaves' in Ada's Legacy: Cultures of Computing from the Victorian to the Digital Age, by Robin Hammerman and Andrew L.Russell, Stevens Institute of Technology, Association for Computing Machinery and Morgan & Claypool New York, NY, USA. ISBN: 978-1-97000-151-8, ebook: 978-1-97000-149-5
2013 'Oracle: The Articulation of Promise' in EVA LONDON 2013: Electronic Visualisation and the Arts, Kia Ng, Jonathan P. Bowen et al, BCS Learning and Development, Swindon. ISBN 978178172156
2013 S1X, Six Degrees of Separation, [Exhibition Publication], Camberwell Press.
2009 A SpRoUt Manifesto in the Style of a Relay Race, Serpentine Manifesto Marathon, Julia Peyton-Jones, Hans Ulrich Obrist et al, Walther Koenig, Berlin. ISBN 9783865606945.
2004 Trackers, [Exhibition Catalogue], PM Gallery and House. Text by Soraja Rodriguez.
2015 Walk Write Create
by Shirley Chubb, Amy Cunningham and Jac Cattaneo, presentation at Place Based Arts: Brighton Writes 29th May 2015 http://arts.brighton.ac.uk/research/humanities-research/research-events-in-the-humanities/events/events-calendar2/place-based-arts-writing-brighton
Presentation at CAL Conference: An Interdisciplinary Conference Celebrating the Achievements and Legacies of Ada Lovelace October 2013, Stevens Institute of Technology, Hoboken New Jersey, USA. https://web.stevens.edu/calconference/
2013 Echo Fold Revolve
Presentation at Raymond Williams, John Logie Baird: Television, Technology and Cultural Form, University of Brighton in Hastings. http://arts.brighton.ac.uk/study/media-studies/events/raymond-williams,-john-logie-baird-television,-technology-and-cultural-form
2013 Oracle: The Articulation of Promise
Exhibition at EVA (Electronic Visualisation in the Arts), British Computer Society, London. http://www.eva-london.org/eva-london-2013/programme/exhibition
2012 The Difference Machine
Presentation, at SOUND::GENDER::FEMINISM::ACTIVISM, Centre for Research in Sound Art Practices, London College of Communication, University of the Arts London, May 17th 2012. http://crisapdotcom.wordpress.com/soundgenderfeminismactivism/
2011 The Voice in Contemporary Culture
A public round table discussion convened and chaired by Amy Cunningham, Unitarian Church, Soundwaves Festival, Brighton July 2011.
2011 Voice Laboratory
Presentation in ‘Collaboration Ideas’ session, Third Ear Symposium Scene & Heard, Music in a Visual Culture, South Bank Centre, London.
2010 SpRoUt as an Art School
A performative paper by Amy Cunningham and Hayley Skipper, Art Schools: Inventions, Invective and Radical Possibilities, conference, University College London, 11th & 12th June 2010
2009 Lamenting or Just Pitch-shifting
A vocal presentation at Voice Laboratory Symposium, convened and co-ordinated by Amy Cunningham, Sallis Benney Theatre, University of Brighton.
2004 Green Blues
Live Webcast performance, Decentred – Distributed conference, Norwich School of Art and Design.
2003 Delayed Dreaming
Installation performance presented as part of Medium Matters Today Academic Session, convened by Mark Godfrey, ARTiculations Association of Art Historians Conference, Birkbeck & University College London. 10 - 13 April 2003
2002 The Mediated Voice
Presentation, Graduate Exchange Conference, Department of Music, Kings College London.
2001 The Mediated Voice
Presentation, Voice and Technology: A Symposium, co-ordinated by Amy Cunningham in collaboration with Dr Joy Sleeman, Slade School of Fine Art, University College London.
2011- 2012 New Music Incubator, PRS for Music Foundation, London, and Sweden 2011 & 2012
2008 & 2010 Artist-in-residence, SC Gallery, Zagreb, Croatia
2003 Artist-in-residence, West Dean College, West Sussex
2005 – current Fellow of Higher Education Academy
2009 - current Principal Investigator for Voice Laboratory interdisciplinary research network cluster, based at University of Brighton
2008 Lead artist Under Construction: Staging the Future, SC Gallery Zagreb, Croatia
2011 New Music Incubator 2011-2012, PRS For Music Foundation
2011 Ernst von Siemens Foundation for Music, for Articulation of Promise
2010 Creative Campus Initiative Cultural Olympiad and Arts Council of England Grants for the Arts for The Musical 100 Metres a collaborative project by Amy Cunningham and Nick Collins for Voice Laboratory.
2010 Croatian Ministry of Culture grant for Under Construction II: They Will Have Gathered, SpRoUt collective, SC Gallery, Zagreb. Croatia
2009 University of Brighton, Research Innovation Award for Voice Laboratory
2008 European Cultural Foundation, British Council, Arts Council Grants for the Arts for Under Construction Staging the Future SpRoUt collective, Collaborative project, SC Gallery, Zagreb. Croatia.
2007 Teaching Excellence Award, University of Brighton, Centre for Learning and Teaching.
2006 NAN Go See Bursary, SpRoUt Collective, Dublin and Belfast.
2002-2003 Clare Winsten Fellowship Award, Slade School of Fine Art, London
2002 Nominated for Becks Futures, ICA London
2000-2002 AHRB Scholarship Award, Post Graduate Study, Slade School of Fine Art, University College London.
2002 - 2004 Honorary Research Assistant, Slade School of Fine Art, University College London.
2009-2011 Vocal artist for Xenon: An Exploded Opera by artist Mikhail Karikis, Kings Place London, Sounds New Festival Canterbury and Whitstable Biennale http://www.whitstablebiennale.com/biennale-2010/section/artist-commissions/mikhail-karikis.html
2006-2010 Vocal artist for Music Sideways, and Song Machine by Athanasios Argianas,Serpentine Gallery, Guest Room, Random Acts Channel 4, TATE and MW Projects, London.