'I am part of the networks and the networks are part of me...
I link, therefore I am.' W. J. Mitchell, ME++: The Cyborg Self and the Networked City.

Can I touch you online? Can we measure intimacy?
Artist duo and researchers Karen Lancel and Hermen Maat explore the tension between embodied presence, intimacy, privacy and trust in current social-technological systems. They radically turn upside down automated control technologies, bio-feedback and sensory perception, to create 'Trust-Systems' for intimate meeting experiences.
The artists start from the idea that experiences of intimacy and trust are embedded in public dialogue, witnessing and narrative. Therefor, their visually seductive Meeting Places, or social sculptures, function as 'artistic social labs’ in public space; with the public as 'co-researchers’. During carefully hosted Presence Rituals, they invite the public to meet through socially challenging, imaginative technologies in poetic orchestrations; and in this way to reflect on their perception of intimate body experience, privacy, identity, social cohesion.
In performances and installations Public interaction is real time scanned, traced and visualized in Social Portraits; on (urban) screens, in digi-prints and networked databases. It is shown together with related artistic research in drawings; video's; smart objects, artist's books.

Their works have been part of numerous shows, conferences
and artists in residencies internationally:
56th Venice Biennale 2015 at China Pavillion // ZKM Karlsruhe //
Ars Electronica Linz // Transmediale Berlin // Eyebeam New York //
World Expo 2010 Shanghai DCC Mobile Platform // TASML Beijing //
Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam // Banff New Media Institute Canada // Rijksmuseum Amsterdam // Connecting Cities Network Berlin //
Art Center Nabi Seoul // De Appel Amsterdam // ISEA 2011 Istanbul // IASPIS Stockholm // BCAC - BCAF Beijing // Artfair Artforum Berlin //
Urban Screens 08 Melbourne // ISEA 2004 Kiasma Museum Helsinki // ISEA 2016 Hongkong // University for Technology Delft // Gogbot media Festival Enschede // V2_Institute for Unstable Media & Architecture Biennale Rotterdam // Stedelijk Museum Bureau Amsterdam SMBA //
CEAC Xiamen // Art-Science - Groninger Museum //
Waag Society for Old & New Media Amsterdam //
2nd New Media Art Exhibition, Millennium Art Museum Beijing //
3rd TASIE Art & Science Exhibition, Science/Technology Museum Beijing
Go for more to the extensive biography here.

In their artistic research: Shared Senses, the artists aim to rethink and inspire a sustainable social eco-culture.
They deconstruct surveillance and biometric technologies (such as face recognition and E.E.G. brain computer interfaces, and neurofeedback systems) to create sensitive systems based on relational presence and reciprocity, tacit knowledge, bio-synchronisation, digital synesthesia, sensory and aesthetic perception.
In performances, participant's private bodies are extended with immersive technologies for augmented human-network interaction, thorough smart textile wearables, phone apps, data-scapes.

LANCEL is artistic PhD candidate at Technical University of Delft Participatory Systems Initiative (promotores Prof. dr. Frances Brazier, Dr. Caroline Nevejan); and art commitee advisor for Mondriaan Fund (2014-2017) and for Amsterdam City Public Art (Stadsdeel Zuid) (2013-2017). She was member of the Amsterdam School of the Arts (AHK) research group ‘ARTI’ (Artistic research, Theory & Interpretation) (Dr. M. Hoogenboom, Prof. H. Borgdorff) 2008-2011; and headed the MFA interactive media art department (IME/ MADtech, core lecturer) at Frank Mohr Institute Groningen 2005-2008. MAAT teaches media art at Minerva Art Academy Groningen since 1997, where he membered research group ‘Image in Context’ (dr. Anke Coumans, 2012-2014). LANCEL/MAAT guest lectured at many academies and universities, a.o.: Art-Science Royal Academy The Hague; Tsinghua University Beijing; Rietveld Art academy Amsterdam; Utrecht School of the Arts (HKU); Royal University for technology Stockholm (KTH); ARTez Zwolle; MFA ARTez Enschede; Willem de Kooning Art Academy Rotterdam;
MFA Film Academy Amsterdam; MFA a.p.t/A.pass performance studies Antwerpen/Brussels; Open Set Dutch Design School at Kookmin University Seoul; conferences a.o. TEDx SilkRoad Istanbul; ISEA 2011 Istanbul; 'Europe for People: Hack the Body' Baltan Laboratories/De Zwijger Amsterdam; TASIE Tsinghua University Beijing; Baltan Laboratories/Holst Centre/ Phillips Lab Eindhoven; 'Todays Art' The Hague; 'Worlding the Brain' University of Amsterdam UVA; EYE Film Institute Amsterdam; and as member of the Research Groups
Urban Interfaces Group University Utrecht; Dutch Touch: Social and Affective Touch Group University Twente; Digital Synesthesia Group University Vienna; Neuro-esthetics & Neuro-cultures Group, University Amsterdam.

Beschrijving werk
Karen Lancel en Hermen Maat ontwerpen ‘ontmoetingsplekken’ voor de publieke ruimte. Deze ‘ontmoetingsplekken’ zijn performances en installaties, die zij ontwerpen als verleidelijke, visuele omgevingen. Elke 'ontmoetingsplek' of sociaal sculptuur functioneert als een 'artistiek sociaal lab’ waarin het publiek deelneemt als ‘co-researcher’. Hier nodigen de kunstenaars het publiek uit om te experimenteren en spelen met sociale technologieën; om zo te reflecteren op hun eigen perceptie en ervaring van de stedelijke omgeving; op de thema's lichaam, privacy, sociale cohesie, presence, identiteit.
Lancel en Maat onderzoeken sociale systemen in een gemediatiseerde samenleving; in smart cities en augmented / immersive spaces. Voor elke ‘ontmoetingsplek’ deconstrueren zij bestaande communicatie technologieën en strategieën; en ontwerpen een nieuwe, innovative montage en proces van fysieke en virtuele interactie. De ‘ontmoetingsplekken’ tonen sociale portretten van leven in een gemediatiseerde, stedelijke omgeving.
De ‘ontmoetingsplekken’ vinden internationaal plaats in dynamische urbane ruimtes zoals museums, pleinen, theater halls, treins stations; van onder andere Seoul, New York, Melbourne, London, Istanbul, Parijs, Amsterdam, Shanghai.