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Dr Libby​ ​Heaney


  • Dr Libby Heaney
  • Area

    School of Communication


    Tutor​ ​(research)

  • Libby​ ​Heaney​ ​is​ ​an​ ​artist,​ ​researcher​ ​and​ ​quantum​ ​physicist working​ ​at​ ​the​ ​intersection​ ​of​ ​art,​ ​technology​ ​and​ ​science. Specifically​ ​Libby​ ​is​ ​pioneering​ ​quantum​ ​computational methods​ ​as​ ​both​ ​tools​ ​and​ ​concepts​ ​in​ ​creative​ ​practices. 

  • Biography

  • In​ ​2015,​ ​Libby​ ​completed​ ​a​ ​MA​ ​in​ ​Art​ ​and​ ​Science​ ​at​ ​Central​ ​St. Martins​ ​and​ ​she​ ​has​ ​been​ ​working​ ​with​ ​the​ ​Information Experience​ ​Design​ ​course​ ​at​ ​the​ ​Royal College of Art​ ​first​ ​as​ ​a​ ​visiting​ ​lecturer and​ ​then​ ​later​ ​as​ ​a​ ​tutor​ ​since​ ​2014.

    Since​ ​then​ ​she​ ​has​ ​exhibited​ ​work​ ​at​ ​Sonar+D,​ ​Barcelona;​ ​Ars Electronica,​ ​Linz;​ ​Science​ ​Gallery,​ ​Dublin;​ ​Tate​ ​Modern;​ ​Blitz Gallery,​ ​Valletta;​ ​Aboagora,​ ​Turku;​ ​Arebyte​ ​Gallery;​ ​with​ ​Space 10​ ​at​ ​London​ ​Design​ ​Festival​ ​and​ ​also​ ​Point​ ​B,​ ​New​ ​York. Libby​ ​recently​ ​completed​ ​a​ ​research​ ​project​ ​with​ ​the​ ​V&A Museum​ ​and​ ​the​ ​University​ ​of​ ​Bristol​ ​making​ ​the​ ​first​ ​artworks with​ ​quantum​ ​computers​ ​and​ ​questioning​ ​what​ ​this​ ​means.

    Libby​ ​graduated​ ​with​ ​an​ ​MSci​ ​in​ ​Physics​ ​from​ ​Imperial​ ​College London​ ​in​ ​2005​ ​and​ ​a​ ​DPhil​ ​in​ ​theoretical​ ​Quantum​ ​Information Science​ ​from​ ​the​ ​University​ ​of​ ​Leeds​ ​in​ ​2008.​ ​​ ​Since​ ​then​ ​she spent​ ​5​ ​years​ ​working​ ​as​ ​a​ ​post-doctoral​ ​researcher​ ​at​ ​the University​ ​of​ ​Oxford​ ​and​ ​the​ ​National​ ​University​ ​of​ ​Singapore, exploring​ ​quantum​ ​entanglement​ ​in​ ​many-body​ ​systems.

    At​ ​the​ ​Royal​ ​College​ ​of​ ​Art,​ ​Libby​ ​runs​ ​the​ ​Systems​ ​Research Group​ ​and​ ​the​ ​More​ ​is​ ​Different​ ​elective​ ​and​ ​has​ ​published around​ ​20​ ​internationally​ ​peer​ ​reviewed​ ​research​ ​papers​ ​in physics​ ​and​ ​art.

    Libby​ ​is​ ​currently​ ​a​ ​resident​ ​of​ ​Somerset​ ​House​ ​Studios​ ​and works​ ​with​ ​The​ ​Artists​ ​Development​ ​Agency. 

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  • Practice

  • Libby​ ​Heaney’s​ ​artwork​ ​takes​ ​quantum​ ​physics​ ​as​ ​a starting​ ​point,​ ​playfully​ ​(re)examining​ ​systems​ ​through​ ​a quantum​ ​computational​ ​lens​ ​in​ ​interactive​ ​installations and​ ​participatory​ ​events.​ ​She​ ​uses​ ​its​ ​counter-intuitive concepts​ ​(such​ ​as​ ​contextuality,​ ​entanglement​ ​and superposition)​ ​to​ ​explore​ ​resonances​ ​with​ ​other​ ​fields and​ ​develop​ ​new​ ​languages​ ​around​ ​quantum​ ​science.

    Libby’s​ ​works​ ​include​ ​​Time’s​ ​Tattarratttat​,​ ​an​ ​interactive projection​ ​controlled​ ​by​ ​the​ ​palindromicity​ ​of​ ​words;​ ​​Lady Chatterley’s​ ​Tinderbot​,​ ​an​ ​AI​ ​bot​ ​conversing​ ​on​ ​Tinder with​ ​dialogue​ ​drawn​ ​from​ ​D.H.​ ​Lawrence's​ ​novel​ ​​Lady Chatterley’s​ ​Lover​;​ ​and​ ​​Sensory​ ​Apparatus​,​ ​an installation​ ​exploring​ ​how​ ​user​ ​behaviour​ ​can​ ​be​ ​altered by​ ​advertising.

    Libby​ ​has​ ​exhibited​ ​her​ ​work​ ​across​ ​Europe​ ​including​ ​at Sonar+D​ ​with​ ​the​ ​British​ ​Council​ ​and​ ​with​ ​Non-Space Gallery​ ​and​ ​ScienceAtHome​ ​as​ ​part​ ​of​ ​the​ ​official programme​ ​for​ ​the​ ​2017​ ​EU​ ​Capital​ ​of​ ​Culture​ ​and​ ​Ars Electronica​ ​2017.

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  • External collaborations

  • Practice/Research:

    (2017)​ ​Collaboration​ ​with​ ​the​ ​Centre​ ​for​ ​Quantum Photonics​ ​at​ ​the​ ​University​ ​of​ ​Bristol​ ​and​ ​the​ ​V&A​ ​on Quantum​ ​Computer​ ​Art​ ​project​ ​(Institute​ ​of​ ​Physics funded).

    (2016–2017)​ ​‘Lady​ ​Chatterley’s​ ​Tinderbot’:​ ​Justin​ ​Long CEO​ ​of​ ​​ ​provided​ ​technical​ ​support​ ​for producing​ ​the​ ​artwork.

    (2017)​ ​‘Quantum​ ​Breathing’:​ ​ScienceAtHome commissioned​ ​a​ ​virtual​ ​reality​ ​artwork​ ​for​ ​the​ ​2017​ ​EU Capital​ ​of​ ​Culture.

    (2015​) ​‘Times​ ​Tattarrattat​: performance​ ​and​ ​interactive installation​ ​exploring​ ​the​ ​nature​ ​of​ ​time’​ ​Dr.​ ​John​ ​Goold from​ ​ICTP,​ ​Trieste,​ ​Italy.


    (2016)​ ​Arebyte​ ​Gallery​: More​ ​is​ ​Different​ ​elective students​ ​are​ ​in​ ​residency​ ​at​ ​Arebyte.

    (2016–2017)​ ​ScienceAtHome​: More​ ​is​ ​Different​ ​elective students​ ​collaborate​ ​with​ ​ScienceAtHome​ ​producing games​ ​that​ ​were​ ​taken​ ​to​ ​a​ ​quantum​ ​games​ ​cafe​ ​at​ ​the 2017​ ​EU​ ​Capital​ ​of​ ​Culture​ ​in​ ​Aarhus,​ ​Denmark. 

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Selected work