Keynote speakers & exhibition

Keynote speakers

The day will be kicked off with two keynote speakers, giving high impact talks centered around innovative approaches and how to make the most of the day’s programme.

Rachel Ara: data and conceptual artist

Rachel Ara is a conceptual and data artist who explores the relationships between gender, technology and systems of power.  She graduated with a Fine Art degree from Goldsmiths College, London, where she won the prestigious Burston award.  As a multi-disciplinary artist, she has a diverse skillset acquired from working 25 years in the tech industry to being a trained cabinet maker and combines them to make unique and often surprising installations and sculptures. The works are nonconformist with a socio-political edge that often incorporates humour and irony with feminist & queer concerns.

In 2016 she won the Aesthetica Art Prize 2016 for This Much I’m Worth, the self-evaluating artwork.  Pulling on her experiences as a computer system designer, the digital sculpture draws on data and complex algorithms to calculate its own value in real time.  In 2018 she was featured on the cover of the FT Wealth for her monumental version of the sculpture “This Much I’m Worth” that she engineered and built incorporating over 80 pieces of neon and a homemade animation system made from recycled materials. 
In 2018 Ara was made Artist in Residence at the V&A Museum in London responding to their data.  She has also shown new works in 2018 at the Whitechapel Gallery (“This Much I’m Worth (Monumental Version)”), Barbican Centre (“American Beauty, a Trump L’Oeil”), Humber Street Gallery (“The Ancestors)” and the V&A (“Transubstantiation of Knowledge”).

She’s currently showing at the MMCA in Seoul and the Vienna Biennial 2019 and currently lives and works in London.

Carlos Bayod Lucini: architect, artist and speaker

Carlos Bayod Lucini is Project Director at Factum Foundation and Adjunct Assistant Professor of Historic Preservation at Columbia University’s GSAPP.

His work is dedicated to the development and application of digital technology to the documentation, study and dissemination of cultural heritage. Recent digitization projects include the scanning and facsimile reproduction of the Tomb of Seti I in Luxor, two vast masterpieces by Spanish Baroque painter Murillo in Seville or Malevich’s iconic Black Square in Moscow. He also coordinates recording and training initiatives at ARCHiVe, a new centre in Venice devoted to digital preservation, co-founded by the Factum Foundation. Carlos received an MS in Architecture from the Technical University of Madrid and is a PhD candidate at the Spanish National Research Council with a thesis about the surface of paintings.


Students are coming to Higher Education with an increased digital literacy, which is only set to grow in the future. The exhibition hopes to encourage individuals to reflect on their practice, opening an enquiry around their current delivery methods. Explore approaches perhaps outside of your day to day work and experience an introduction to future ways of working.  

Through providing ten hands-on examples, touching on differing specialisms within the topic of digital making, you will encounter new ways of working to complement traditional making.  

You will have the chance to see examples of how new technology changes student outputs and learn how you can participate in digital offerings through delivery in manageable steps and collaborative research. The examples of work have been curated to encapsulate and reflect the major themes of Technicians’ Day with emphasis on the important balance between traditional making practices and new mediums. 

The work includes the use of VR as a design tool, photogrammetry, self-build digital fabrication and physical computing. These have been chosen because of the space they inhabit between the physical and digital world – encouraging a dialogue between the old and the new. The delivery methods on show aim to enhance our offer to future students, building on the traditions that UAL is renowned for. 

The exhibition will be available for viewing from lunchtime onward in the Brewer & Smith exhibition hall on the lower ground floor. Make sure you visit over the lunch hour or before the Final Event to see the work on display.