Paul Higham is a pioneer of early computer sculpture combining conceptual paradigms with computational technology in his art for over 30 years. Since the early 70s whilst studying at Goldsmiths College of Art in London, his endeavor has remained consistent as such to propagate a new form of art based on self-organizing theories of artificial life. In the mid 1990’s he developed the concept of ‘DATASCULPTURE’ which he is continuing to produce today with new and exciting sculptural processes. His work has been shown internationally in over 100 exhibitions from China, to South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, India, Turkey, Senegal, France, Czech Republic, Poland, Germany, Austria, England, Scotland, Wales and across the USA. He has received several prestigious awards such as the McKnight Fellowship for his VR Opera ‘ Metarune Clipper’ in 1996.
Higham is one of the first in a small group of international artists and academics who pioneered the use of rapid prototyping and digital technologies in sculpture. He is an original member of Ars Mathematica of Paris, France an international non-profit organization devoted to promoting digital sculpture. Higham will be featured in the Ars Mathematica book on the history and early pioneers of digital sculpture soon to be published in Europe.
He has held several academic teaching and visiting artist positions. He has undertaken many artist residencies and presents his work regulary through lectures, panels and talks at International Sculpture Conferences, Universities and Museums.
Paul Higham’s work is driven by the concept of data and deals with the commodification of information and dynamics of data itself. He harvests grains of data from digital streams mined from population in real time revealing organicity, hysteresis & turbulence within our culture, visualizing in shape and form the flux of societal transformations such as the freeze and crash of the dollar. Retrieving real world data from sources such as the Dow Jones Index, the Statue of Liberty, The Texts of Malthus, Gold Futures, as well as GPS, weather and satellite streams. He synthesizes sets of data with coding & genetic algorithms, perturbs them with viruses & noise in order to generate automata in series thus creating new three dimensional fractal forms; a process he calls ‘Autotecture’ that in turn produce his ‘Data Sculpture’ works.
Paul Higham has extensive knowledge regarding the history and context of computation in art and conceptual digital sculpture. Of particular note from 1995 - 98 he was awarded the position of International Research Fellow in Electronic Arts at the University of Minnesota. Initiating several projects he carried out reasearch at the Babbage Institute, linking otherwise disparate disciplines in technology and art. At this time he also independently initiated a unique collaboration with Stratasys Rapid prototype Corp. USA. He was invited to join the Advanced Visualization Lab as part of the Human Machine Design Lab team at the University of Minnesota developing and building his own data gloves for interacting with VR worlds and early use of holography, haptics, mo-cap, 3d scanners and coding.