Arts Lab Experimental visual arts for social change

Q&A with ‘Winter Experimenter’ Matt O’Halloran

Matt O’Halloran tells us about what he made of the opportunity on Arts Lab’s virtual residency between November 2020 and March 2021.

SDL: What attracted you to Arts Lab?

MO: I’ve been very independant with my practice and never really worked with anyone else before. I wanted to open myself up to a more collaborative way of working, and when I saw the advert to join Arts Lab it sounded perfect!

SDL: Can you tell us a bit about your creative process?

MO: At the moment I don’t really have a particular process as it’s been changing constantly over the past year or so. Something Arts Lab has really helped me with is to try different ideas and media; there’s always something new to work towards.

SDL: Why did you take up the virtual residency as ‘Winter Experimenter’ with us? 

MO: To re-evaluate my making process, together with extending practical research I’d started on my MA on perceptions of good and evil. Doing this in a differenht creative environment, provided new insights and fresh ideas.

SDL: How does your work connect with audiences?

MO: This is a really hard one to answer because honestly I’m not sure myself at the moment. There are a few ways I’m looking at presenting my research in formats like infographics, a pamphlet or zine; something that’s quick to read and easily digestible. 

SDL: What would you say you’ve gained from this opportunity?

MO: I’d say I’ve certainly gained a lot from this experience. Collaborating and working together on community projects was something that before Arts Lab I had no idea how to accomplish or where to even begin. Having that support in getting projects off the ground has been monumental as well. I never thought I’d be organising a project with the prisoners at Dartmoor for example – something that’s had a huge impact on my professional development.

To learn about Matt’s experiment in full, see Being Human in our Archive.

See also his online exhibition of digital collages TheLucifer Effect. You can purchase limited edition prints of Matt’s work from our Shop.