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Orbital Reveries

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This visual essay documents the author’s developing artistic project Orbital Reveries. This project compiles terrestrial satellite imagery using data from the Landsat Earth observation programme, and then sequences it through an algorithmic matrix to compose generative visual ‘textscapes’. In parsing technoscientific data into experimental artworks, this project follows the conjectures of a number of theorists concerning the potential for speculative modes of sensory practice—going beyond ‘the utensil-problem space, where environmental sensors facilitate increasingly regimented and automated ways of life’, to ‘consider how environmental computational practices open into experimentation, expanded experiences, and speculative adventures’ (Jennifer Gabrys, Program Earth: 270). This essay will discuss the project’s motivating contexts, before detailing its formal and technical attributes, and then relating these back to a number of critical themes—especially the possibilities of expressing the collaborative entanglements between different sensing and interpreting agencies—both human and more-than-human—that make it possible to characterise fundamental transformations in climate, ecology, and culture across the contemporary world.

is an artist and lecturer in Digital Media at the University of Roehampton. Carter is interested in examining questions and issues concerning more-than-human agency within digital art and literature - considering how the latter generate insights into what it means to perceive, to articulate, and to act within the world. Carter's research is embedded within his artistic practice, developing hybrid art objects that meditate on the potentialities of sensing, knowing, and writing at the intersection between human and machinic actors. Website: