Machine Ghosts Brighton

A psychogeography tour with a twist 


This public tour, which I envisioned in collaboration with Emma O'Sullivan as part of the Haunted Random Forest festival, invited participants on a hands-on urban journey that explored Brighton as an algorithmic playground, revealing hidden histories where the city itself had been enacted as a kind of living machine.

This intervention found its greatest inspiration in the playful, crtitical, anti-authoritarian strategies of the Situationist International group that was prominent in 1950s Europe and birthed the fluid concept of dérive or “drift”, a new method for engaging with cities like Paris through psychogeographic walks that charted increasingly inconsistent evolutions of urban environments and their effects on individuals. Drawing from this tradition, the tour exposed moments of access, control and liberation as understood by the machines, networks and algorithms that we engaged with on a daily basis. Together with 30 participants and a few brave volunteer ‘node’ leaders, we explored a set of ditially crowdsourced nodes using creative methods, and unearthed machine spirits, languages and loves.

More details on the supernatural happenings of the Machine Ghosts tour can be found in this piece we wrote for Furtherfield, and photos from the tour are available here.