Anna Dumitriu and Alex May are currently developing a new artistic collaboration with the EU funded CAPABLE project. CAPABLE aims to develop a virtual cancer coaching system to support the emotional, educational and social needs of patients and their home carers, as well as decision support needs of treating physicians, using cutting edge technologies for personalised medicine such as artificial intelligence, big data analysis and wearable technologies.
The artists are deeply engaging with CAPABLE research to create new artworks that can be exhibited in a range of settings. Both artists have extensive experience in working with artificial intelligence and wearable technologies and exploring the implications of emerging digital technologies in societal and cultural contexts. Together they will help CAPABLE reach out to diverse audiences across a range of contexts including art galleries, festivals and patient waiting areas, and enable the telling of complex stories in multi-layered, accessible ways through art objects, workshops, and discussion events.
“PhysicAI Garden” explores the complex artificially intelligent system within the CAPABLE App that ensures that patients are not prescribed pharmaceutical treatments that might interact badly with each other. It will take the form of digital garden, where virtual plants grow and interact with each other and with audiences. The plants each represent different drugs in the system based on a fictional test patient’s data and experiences and the algorithm and databases used within CAPABLE. The garden grows according to what drugs work well together and what drugs interact negatively. The project is inspired by notions of permaculture which puts plants that grow well together next to each other and considers the whole ecosystem. It’s also influenced by ideas of ideas around medicinal plants and in particular the concept of the Physic Garden as well as the mental health ‘capsules’ in CAPABLE, which can enhance wellbeing by suggesting beneficial activities. These include growing plants from seed, photographing the sky, and walking in nature. The work will exist as an interactive gallery installation and also as a 2D work for hospitals and possibly 3D printed work or as a building projection. Dumitriu and May are also exploring e-textiles and notions of sharing data within the context of the project.
“We are honoured to receive this fantastic opportunity to work with CAPABLE and explore this important project to benefit cancer patients and carers. As artists, we will explore how CAPABLE are using artificial intelligence and wearable technologies to create personalised medicine solutions and consider the personal, ethical, cultural and societal implications of this research” says Anna Dumitriu.