2021 Art + Technology Lab Grant Recipients

The Art + Technology Lab at LACMA is excited to announce its 2021 grant recipients! 

Emphasizing iteration and risk-taking over the completion of a finished work, the Lab continues to support artist projects that engage emerging technology. Selection criteria includes artistic merit, opportunities for public engagement, and the suggested forms of data, methods, and/or models that might be of interest to other artists. LACMA issued the 2021 Request for Proposals in December of 2020 and received over 900 submissions.

2021 Art + Technology Lab Grant Recipients:

Black sculpture with wires
American Artist, Server Rack (for Pigford), 2021, © American Artist?, photo courtesy Miguel Abreu Gallery, New York

American Artist will reimagine the field of rocket science to foreground the ideas of science fiction author Octavia E. Butler, and their own roots in America’s Second Great Migration. The community of Altadena, California, home to Butler and Artist, and the neighboring NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, will serve as a basis for this research. Ultimately, the project aims to build a machine in the form of the historic 1936 GALCIT Rocket Motor Test that incorporates Butler’s notion of “change.” American Artist’s project is called Collective Head.

figure in a pale skirt and head covering with a basket over head in a field
Lukas Avendaño, courtesy of the artist

Lukas Avendaño, EYIBRA (Abraham Brody), NNUX (Ana Lopez), and Oswaldo Erreve will work with performance, virtual reality, and 3D video to express the multiple spiritual bodies based on the muxe identity of the Zapotec people of Mexico. Centered on the experience of Avendaño, a muxe artist, the group will use avatars to challenge gender norms in Western society. Brody, Avendaño, and Erreve’s project is called MUXX.

Two people in an installation
Jacqueline Kiyomi Gork, the input of this machine is the power an output contains, Made in L.A. 2020: a version, installation view, Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, photo: Joshua White

Jaqueline Kiyomi Gork and Rhett LaRue will develop a multiplayer game space that uses sound as its main modality for navigation and interaction. Giving consideration to empathy and intimacy, they will disrupt the traditional structure of gaming experiences, developing an experience based on collaboration and listening. Gork and LaRue’s project is called Inhabit360.

still from film with words Dance, Dance, Superstar!
Lawrence Lek, AIDOL, film still, 2019, courtesy of Sadie Coles HQ

Lawrence Lek will employ video game technology to create an interactive road movie that explores non-Western perspectives of technology and the theme of empathy for the non-human other. The narrative is centered on a rebellious autonomous vehicle named Theta and is set in a virtual world where digital surveillance and artificial intelligence have redefined the socio-political landscape. Lek's project is called Death Drive.

Stay tuned for updates on the projects in the coming months and congratulations to the recipients!

The Art + Technology Lab is presented by

Hyundai logo

The Art + Technology Lab is made possible by Snap Inc.

Additional support is provided by SpaceX and Google. 

The Lab is part of The Hyundai Project: Art + Technology at LACMA, a joint initiative exploring the convergence of art and technology. 

Seed funding for the development of the Art + Technology Lab was provided by the Los Angeles County Quality and Productivity Commission through the Productivity Investment Fund and LACMA Trustee David Bohnett.