Project Details


An ongoing project by Paul Stewart and Sarah Perks that explores engagement with collections through creative workshops and a collaboration with AI that is an invitation for all to dream. The dreams of the collection are then visualised using machine learning and the artists create an AI-generated film that can be gifted back to the collection.

The inaugural iteration is a new commission for the exhibition Soft Structures at MIMA, Middlesbrough, developed through multiple creative workshops to offer an alternative view on the Middlesbrough Collection.

Collections are a sleeping repository of pasts and presents that, once woken, influence meaning in the future through exhibitions. Whilst they sleep, can we conceive of them dreaming? After all, dreams are atemporal self-reflection spaces, experiencers of deep fantasy, exposers of desires, and portals to process the voices of those around us. What if being awake was just to capture data for our dreams? What do the dreams of a collection look like?

Layman's description

An ongoing project by Paul Stewart and Sarah Perks that explores engagement with collections through creative workshops and a collaboration with AI that is an invitation Archives and collections are significant in evidencing practice and activities, telling stories and narratives, and expressing a cultural history. Collections equally express the conditions of historical collecting processes, choices of inclusion and exclusion, and wider social and economic relations. Museums are beginning to take important steps to try to make their collections reflect the diversity and the voices of the people they represent and re-tell narratives. Many museums have legacies rooted in colonialism; their collections from wealthy donors who benefited from empires past.

Sarah’s research is in relational curatorial strategy, this continues her work on desire and empathy in curatorial practice, alongside interdisciplinary investigations of human and non-human hierarchies. Paul’s research is in educational aesthetics, knowledge exchange and democratic participation, this continues his work on collective assemblies and digital curation. Both have a long-standing history exploring participation, decoloniality and widening access. Filmmaking is also employed as a wider curatorial methodology, each film created from workshop material generated using AI. Our impact is around changing understanding of, activation of, and engagement with collections of all types, from art objects to natural environments. We also explore how AI contributes to decolonial strategies for the museum and heritage sector.
The workshops use a range of techniques including meditation, creative writing, observation exercises, sharing methods and karaoke, they are always bespoke to the group.

Until the End of the World is supported by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) Impact Acceleration Account (IAA), part of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI). Sarah Perks and Paul Stewart are curators, artist filmmakers and academics within the School of Arts & Creative Industries and the Centre for Culture and Creativity at Teesside University.

With thanks to the growing team of collaborators on this project:
All our workshop participants

Fellow workshop leaders:
Wil Jackson, George Vasey, Danielle Ash

The MIMA team including:
Elinor Morgan, Helen Welford, Claire Pounder, Sally Pearson, Kate Moses

IAA support: Sally Blackburn-Daniels

School of Arts and Creative Industries
Centre for Culture and Creativity
both Teesside University

And our studio assistant Anouk Hoogendoorn [email protected]
Effective start/end date25/08/231/01/25


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