Simon Mckeown

Simon McKeown is an award winning internationally exhibiting visual artist renowned for his work which touches on and considers disability. He exhibits internationally and his work has been shown as far afield as the Smithsonian International Gallery in the USA, The DOX Centre for Contemporary Art in Prague, Czech Republic, GAK in Kosovo along with galleries in Australia, Norway, America, South America, the United Kingdom and most lately at the Deutches Hygiene Museum in Dresden, Germany. His work involves movement, motion capture, computer graphics, games technology, inflatable structures and outdoor projection and performance along with traditional mediums including painting.

McKeowns latest outdoor work played out live to an audience of around 10,000 as the culmination of Culture Night Cork. 
Cork Ignite was a state of art, 2 years in the making by a very small team! Simon was invited to come up with a project idea and as a result 6 huge outdoor projectors headed to Ireland on the back of a truck from Hemel Hempstead near London as well as a team of engineers. Using 3D scanning and projection mapping technology McKeown’s team brought City of Cork to Light. The work features items and inspirations from Cork, from the disabled community of Cork as well as from Irish history. It’s a poetical visual work full of fun and chaos which surprised, amused and hopefully stunned viewers in the best possible way.
Please see www.corkignite.com and the video link on this page.

McKeowns latest outdoor work played out live to an audience of around 10,000 as the culmination of Culture Night Cork. 

Cork Ignite was a state of art, 2 years in the making by a very small team! Simon was invited to come up with a project idea and as a result 6 huge outdoor projectors headed to Ireland on the back of a truck from Hemel Hempstead near London as well as a team of engineers. Using 3D scanning and projection mapping technology McKeown’s team brought City of Cork to Light. The work features items and inspirations from Cork, from the disabled community of Cork as well as from Irish history. It’s a poetical visual work full of fun and chaos which surprised, amused and hopefully stunned viewers in the best possible way.

Please see www.corkignite.com and the video link on this page.

  • Image © Simon Mckeown

    Cork Ignite

  • Image © Simon Mckeown

    Cork Ignite

  • Image © Simon Mckeown

    Prometheus Awakes

  • Image © Simon Mckeown

    Motion Disabled

  • Image © Simon Mckeown

    Motion Disabled

  • Image © Simon Mckeown

    Motion Disabled with Frank Letch

  • Image © Simon Mckeown

    Trace Elements

  • Image © Simon Mckeown

    Trace Elements

  • Image © Simon Mckeown

    Ghosts

  • Image © Simon Mckeown

    Ghosts

Contact details

Simon McKeown
Artist and Director

C/O
Platform Arts Ltd
Former Parcel Store & Fish Quay
Middlesbrough Train Station
Middlesbrough
TS1 1EG
UK

Artistic Director(s)

Simon McKeown

Online

Email: info@simon-mckeown.com
Web: http://www.simon-mckeown.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SimonMckeownArtist

Cork Ignite by artist Simon Mckeown - Time Lapse video by XL Video

Productions

Ghosts

Duration: 3 minute animation
Number of people on road: Simon Mckeown
Freight: No freight necessary

Freight details:

Description

 

Ghosts features a virtual cast of disabled veterans from across the spectrum of World War One as they awake and prepare for the day ahead. Set in a landscape filled with the artefacts and objects of war, the characters dress in the uniforms of various armies, talk, cook and tend to pigeons. 
Taking inspiration from Siegfried Sassoon’s 1917 poem, Does It Matter?, Mckeown and four other contemporary disabled artists reflect on the legacies of WW1 and disability in Britain today. When two million newly disabled British ex-servicemen returned from the First World War, society’s attitudes to disability had to change

 

In the aftermath of the war cities witnessed enormous numbers of their young returning, alive but permanently disabled. Embedded in the life of the times, each family had an injured uncle, father or son walking the streets, in a scary pre NHS world with no state support. Ghosts is a timely comment on the millions disabled by WW1; we are their descendants, they are our ancestors.

Ghosts features a virtual cast of disabled veterans from across the spectrum of World War One as they awake and prepare for the day ahead. Set in a landscape filled with the artefacts and objects of war, the characters dress in the uniforms of various armies, talk, cook and tend to pigeons. 

Taking inspiration from Siegfried Sassoon’s 1917 poem, Does It Matter?, Mckeown and four other contemporary disabled artists reflect on the legacies of WW1 and disability in Britain today. When two million newly disabled British ex-servicemen returned from the First World War, society’s attitudes to disability had to change.

Ghosts has recently been shown at the Athens Film Festival and the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and will be shown at the Adelaide Film Festival later in 2015.

Please see www.simon-mckeown.com/ghosts

Motion Disabled

Duration: Up to 15 minutes of video split across 1 to 3 screens or projectors, depending on the display system with addons
Number of people on road: If the 10M tall inflatable is used, 1 technician is required to set up this object. They will install it and oversee its use, or train people.

Freight: Freight necessary

Freight details:

If the 10M tall inflatable is used, freight is necessary. It packs down to a pallet size with all required kit. Banners and maquette can be sent by post.

Description

Motion Disabled is a digital exploration of the bodies - the biological pathologies - of people who are physically different. The work makes use of motion capture, a technique more commonly associated with feature films and computer games, along with 3D animation to create a kinetic connection with the human form - beautiful everyday movements highlighting all the intricacies and uniqueness of each person's physicality.It has been created by recording the physical movements of fourteen physically impaired people with conditions, such as Spina Bifida, Cerebral Palsy and Brittle Bones, who had their movements captured - their physical signatures in 3D digitised forever. Each characted is represented as an digital avatar.

First shown at Wolverhampton Art Gallery in the UK, Motion Disabled has gone on to be exhibited nationally as well as internationally from South Korea, Argentina, Saudi Arabia and more including the prestigious Smithsonian International Gallery - Washington D.C. USA, in an exhibition organised by VSA, where it was viewed by over half a million visitors over a 3 month period.Motion Disabled was exhibited internationally globally on the same day in 17 countries and 25 locations on December 3rd 2010. Promoted by VSA of Washington D.C. USA and DadaFest International the events were seen by many thousands of people as well as being covered by news media including the BBC.  

Simon Mckeown was named Artist of Year by DaDaFest International 2010.

During 2012 McKeown further developed the project, with the addition of a ten metre tall motion capture based sculpture as well as undertaking further work with Paralympians. Please see www.simon-mckeown.com/motion-disabled-unlimited/disabled-normality

The work can be used in a gallery setting as well as in outdoor projections.

Additionally both miniature Maquette’s and a huge 10m tall cold air filled inflatable motion capture based character sculpture are available to support the work.

For example DOX Contemporary Arts Centre in Prague, Czech Republic, used all components, showcasing digital work across 3 screens.

Please see: Motion Disabled

Trace Elements

Duration: Exhibition with looping videos and photograph 3mins to 15 mins
Number of people on road: 2 people to set deliver and set up the exhibition and the technology for the shoe box
Freight: Freight necessary

Freight details:

Shoe Box is 3m by 1m approximately and this contains the exhibition and kit. This can be delivered in a small van and by air freight.

Description

Trace Elements explores the mind blowing world of 3D projection mapping. The exhibition explores McKeown's large-scale outdoor work miniaturised to a gallery and workshop level. Based around a magic 'Shoe Box' featuring a collapsing shoe, the exhibition also uses 3 video screens and hundreds of photographs spectators to demonstrate Mckeown's advanced mix of creative technology and disability. The exhibition provide documentation of the Shadow Puppetry and  the Cork Ignite project and invites you to learn more about the process behind projection mapping and try the technology for yourself.

Wrap-around work

Simon can offer both high tech and traditional workshops using digital tools, movement, stop frame animation and art based tools. He also undertakes presentations, talks and discussions based around his work and the cultural presentation of disability and his wider experience as an artist for instance on his London 2012 Olympic experience. His most recent work, Trace Elements featured both workshops and a final exhibition at the Foundation for Art and Creative Technology in Liverpool, UK which utilised projection mapping on a minature, yet exciting scale.

Irish Examiner Review by Kelly O'Brien Saturday 19th September 2015 
From trad sessions to rock concerts, poetry readings to magical 3D projections, Cork’s Culture Night was, as ever, one to remember.A highlight of the event was, predictably, Cork Ignite, a collaborative project spearheaded by renowned artist Simon McKeown, which brought the façade of Cork’s College of Commerce to life with 3D projections.The animations, which were set to a musical backdrop, lulled the crowd gathered on Union Quay into a respectful reverence before they were ushered either home to bed or further into town to enjoy the rest of the festivities.
http://www.irishexaminer.com/ireland/pics-multi-cultural-cork-trips-the-light-fantastic-354746.html
Irish Examiner Review by Breda Graham, Tuesday 22nd of September 2015
As darkness fell Friday night in Cork city, the countdown began to the much anticipated Cork Ignite outdoor live art event ... The commitment and attention to detail of Cork Ignite was evident. The show wowed the crowd as kids, teenagers, adults, and elderly alike enjoyed what was a fantastic event for all ages.
http://www.irishexaminer.com/video/viral/video-cork-ignite-lights-up-corks-college-of-commerce-for-culture-night-355276.html
Create News Special: Sheelagh Broderick on Cork Ignite
Cork Ignite was a 30-minute performance of technical precision led
by Mckeown as part of Culture Night Cork on 18 September 2015. It
comprised an outdoor digital projection with manifestly ambitious artistic and technical objectives, screened across the River Lee along the entirefaçade of Cork College of Commerce. For the 10,000 + people whoconverged on Union Quay, Cork Ignite was a spectacular visual feast,which focused in part on the history and landscape of Cork, intertwined with imagery, to evoke perceptions of disability.
http://www.create-ireland.ie/create-news/create-news-20-sheelagh-broderick-on-cork-ignite

 

Press Comments & Testimonials

 

Irish Examiner Review by Kelly O'Brien Saturday 19th September 2015 
From trad sessions to rock concerts, poetry readings to magical 3D projections, Cork’s Culture Night was, as ever, one to remember.A highlight of the event was, predictably, Cork Ignite, a collaborative project spearheaded by renowned artist Simon McKeown, which brought the façade of Cork’s College of Commerce to life with 3D projections.The animations, which were set to a musical backdrop, lulled the crowd gathered on Union Quay into a respectful reverence before they were ushered either home to bed or further into town to enjoy the rest of the festivities.
http://www.irishexaminer.com/ireland/pics-multi-cultural-cork-trips-the-light-fantastic-354746.html
Irish Examiner Review by Breda Graham, Tuesday 22nd of September 2015
As darkness fell Friday night in Cork city, the countdown began to the much anticipated Cork Ignite outdoor live art event ... The commitment and attention to detail of Cork Ignite was evident. The show wowed the crowd as kids, teenagers, adults, and elderly alike enjoyed what was a fantastic event for all ages.
http://www.irishexaminer.com/video/viral/video-cork-ignite-lights-up-corks-college-of-commerce-for-culture-night-355276.html
Create News Special: Sheelagh Broderick on Cork Ignite
Cork Ignite was a 30-minute performance of technical precision led
by Mckeown as part of Culture Night Cork on 18 September 2015. It
comprised an outdoor digital projection with manifestly ambitious artistic and technical objectives, screened across the River Lee along the entirefaçade of Cork College of Commerce. For the 10,000 + people whoconverged on Union Quay, Cork Ignite was a spectacular visual feast,which focused in part on the history and landscape of Cork, intertwined with imagery, to evoke perceptions of disability.
http://www.create-ireland.ie/create-news/create-news-20-sheelagh-broderick-on-cork-ignite

Irish Examiner Review by Kelly O'Brien Saturday 19th September 2015 

"From trad sessions to rock concerts, poetry readings to magical 3D projections, Cork’s Culture Night was, as ever, one to remember. A highlight of the event was, predictably, Cork Ignite, a collaborative project spearheaded by renowned artist Simon McKeown, which brought the façade of Cork’s College of Commerce to life with 3D projections. The animations, which were set to a musical backdrop, lulled the crowd gathered on Union Quay into a respectful reverence before they were ushered either home to bed or further into town to enjoy the rest of the festivities."

Irish Examiner Review by Breda Graham, Tuesday 22nd of September 2015

"As darkness fell Friday night in Cork city, the countdown began to the much anticipated Cork Ignite outdoor live art event ... The commitment and attention to detail of Cork Ignite was evident. The show wowed the crowd as kids, teenagers, adults, and elderly alike enjoyed what was a fantastic event for all ages."

Create News Special Sheelagh Broderick on Cork Ignite

"Cork Ignite was a 30-minute performance of technical precision led by Mckeown as part of Culture Night Cork on 18 September 2015. It comprised an outdoor digital projection with manifestly ambitious artistic and technical objectives, screened across the River Lee along the entirefaçade of Cork College of Commerce. For the 10,000 + people who converged on Union Quay, Cork Ignite was a spectacular visual feast, which focused in part on the history and landscape of Cork, intertwined with imagery, to evoke perceptions of disability."