the artists

Daniel Alexander is an artist, photographer, director and educator with extensive experience of facilitating creative arts workshops. Daniel has brought together this group of scientists, artists and the secondary school and over the last year has developed this proposal. Daniel will direct the public engagement project.

Daniel’s practice is collaborative, working with other artists, designers and participants in the creation of artwork for books, film, exhibition, installation and online publications. Previous work includes:

Brains: a commission from the Wellcome Trust to create two bodies of artwork for their exhibition Brains: The Mind as Matter, held at the Wellcome Collection in Euston. The exhibition ran from the 29th March through to the 17th June 2012 and in this time had 105,033 visitors, making it their busiest exhibition from the time the Wellcome Collection opened in 2007. The work Daniel created went onto tour with the exhibition to the Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester in 2013, and then separately to the Charite in Berlin. The work was published in the book of the same name.

1day6cities:  In 2011 Daniel created and ran an international collaborative project called 1day6cities, in which 140 people in 6 cities; London, Dubai, Shanghai, Auckland, San Francisco and Sao Paulo created a unique snapshot of this day, by creating 6 time-lapse films, shot simultaneously. When played together the viewer can see daylight travel around the globe through the 6 different cities

When War is Over: This film and photography project explores the ongoing commemoration of the 1.7 million Commonwealth War Dead from WWI and WWII. The project was published by Dewi Lewis publishing as a photographic monograph (2016) and exhibited as a primary exhibition at the Contact Photography Festval in Toronto (2018).

In education Daniel started work in a secondary school art department, progressing to his current role as Associate Professor in the School of Arts and Creative Industries at London South Bank University. Daniel has over 15 years experience running creative courses and workshops for school children, undergraduate and postgraduate students.

When War Is Over: Exhibition installation shot, Contact Photography Festival Toronto

When War Is Over: Exhibition installation shot, Contact Photography Festival Toronto

When War is Over: timelapse film

1day6cities: Exhibition installation shot, Auckland Festival of Photography

1day6cities: Exhibition installation shot, Auckland Festival of Photography

1day6cities: collaborative film

Brains, The Mind as Matter: Charite teaching hospital Berlin, Medical Historical Museum cellars: From 2011, the resting-place for the brains previously used for study.

Brains, The Mind as Matter: Charite teaching hospital Berlin, Medical Historical Museum cellars: From 2011, the resting-place for the brains previously used for study.

When War Is Over:   2312WWI and WWII Casualties Commemorated   Kantara War Memorial Cemetery, Egypt:  From  When War Is Over

When War Is Over:
2312WWI and WWII Casualties Commemorated
Kantara War Memorial Cemetery, Egypt:
From When War Is Over


ScanLAB Projects is a pioneering creative practice. They capture precisely measured, beautifully coloured digital replicas of buildings, landscapes, objects and events. ScanLab Projects digitise the world, transforming temporary moments and spaces into compelling permanent experiences, images and film. They design online environments, immersive installations and objects. On this public engagement project ScanLab are co-directing the augmented reality experience, creating the LiDAR and photogrammetry imagery, and undertaking the editing and postproduction on the virtual reality environments the participants will enter. 

ScanLab's primary medium is 3D scanning, a form of machine vision that they argue is the future of photography and much more beyond. As the electronic eyes for billions of mobile phones and driverless vehicles 3D scanners are the cartographers of the future. By critically observing places and events through the eyes of these machines their work hopes to glance at the future we will all inhabit.

Founded in 2010, ScanLab have worked with leading architects, broadcasters, scientists and artists from across the world. ScanLAB operate from concept, through on location scanning, to delivered product. Their work has featured in major TV documentaries and cinema screenings, been widely published and exhibited internationally. Recent work includes a film for ibeyo, which has been viewed 2.8 million times on YouTube, a VR/360 project for BBC's Invisible Cities , which has been viewed 237,000 on facebook 360, and close to 500,000 when including YouTube and Vimeo. Exhibitions include Horizontal Humans at the Photographers Gallery and Displaced Witness at the Baltic Mill, both of which had over 100,000 visitors over 3 months. 

Since founding in 2010 workshops have been an important and regular part of ScanLab's practice. They have nurtured teaching relationships with the UK's two leading schools of architecture, The Bartlett UCL and The Architectural Association. ScanLab have also taught internationally including at SciArc (Los Angeles), Azreili Shool of Architecture (Ottawa), Princeton (New Jersey), UCSD (San Diego) and outside of academia have hosted workshops for The Photographers' Gallery (London), Keilder Art & Architecture (Northumberland) and Nike (Portland, Oregon). Participants have varied in age from school children of 12 yrs to retired artists. 

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The Greek islands neighbouring the Turkish coast have become the unofficial ‘gate’ for refugees trying to cross into Citadel Europe over the past year. Lesvos is perhaps the largest ‘island’ on the archipelago of the ‘migrant corridor’, along which physical and social space are set under constant negotiation. The rugged, mountainous coastline of the north is perforated by synthetic piles of survival. The social terrain is in flux with displaced people, locals and volunteers renegotiating social space in the island. Displaced Witness asks the viewer to bare spatial witness to the people and landscape of Lesvos. Stepping from the centre of the installation viewers begin an act of sensory transportation. The sound of the Lesvos coastline meets their ears, pebbles crunch beneath their feet. A visual testimony emerges from a whirling cloud of points. They are confronted with a portrait or landscape from Lesvos. ‘Displaced Witness’ takes place on a homogeneous surface of transplanted 1 meter by 1 meter textures from the island of Lesvos, digitally re-enacted from 3D scan data.

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There are approximately 31,500 asylum seekers in the UK waiting for a decision about their asylum status. This film allows you to experience what it is like to live in this period of limbo, waiting for a decision that will affect the rest of your life.


John McGhee is a 3D Computer Artist and the Director of the 3D Visualisation Aesthetics Lab at UNSW Sydney. His visual practice explores art and design-led modes of visualising complex scientific and biomedical data using 3D computer arts approaches, most recently Virtual Reality (VR) Head Mounted Displays (HMD). In early 2016, he was recognised as one of UNSW Sydney’s 20 ‘Rising Stars’ and emerging research leaders. On this Public engagement project John will be working on visualising the scientific research data, captured by imaging mass spectrometry and advanced 3d microscopy. John will translating this into CGi for both 2D and 3D/360 VR viewing. John is at the forefront of using this technology to engage the public with scientific data, recently working with stroke and cancer patients to enable them to better engage with the medical imaging of their bodies. 

The 3D Visualisation Aesthetics Lab is an Art and Design led research hub that explores modes of visualising complex scientific and biomedical scan data. The research team in the Lab bring their arts-led 3D computer animation expertise into new clinical fields, by finding new ways of experiencing personalised 3D datasets using head mounted Virtual Reality (VR) displays. The research team explore the challenges of visual narrative structure and develop new ways of navigating complexity using this emergent platform. The Lab is engaged in a variety of collaborative projects. Since its inception in early 2014, the 3D Visualisation Aesthetics Lab has gained two international research grants (from the Chief Scientist Office in Scotland, UK). It has also been awarded three Australian research grants: one exploring VR in stroke rehabilitation at St Vincent’s Hospital in Sydney; a second related to the BioNano Science and Technology Australian Research Council (ARC) Centre of Excellence and a third, UNSW Infrastructure grant.

Imagine being able to see your illness? Travelling through your own body to see the problem area. Dr John McGhee from UNSW Art and Design is helping stroke patients at Sydney's St Vincent's Hospital come to terms with their diagnosis using 3D techniques normally employed in the games industry.

This animation describes the latest research developments in nanoparticle-based cancer therapies. It explores how the technology can be used to specifically target cancer cells over healthy cells and how scientists can exploit the natural processes of cells to deliver the drug inside the cell where it is needed for its cancer-killing effect.

Documentary about John McGhee's work

Stroke: Occlusion and Flow, by John McGhee, in the exhibition Blood at the Science Gallery Melbourne

Stroke: Occlusion and Flow, by John McGhee, in the exhibition Blood at the Science Gallery Melbourne