Keith Tilford

Honolulu, Hawaii, 1978

Keith Tilford is an artist and theorist living in Brooklyn, NY.  He primarily uses 3D modeling, digital animation, and drawing to explore and integrate themes from architecture, gaming, science fiction, geology and abstraction. He is interested in a methodological understanding of art as a cognitive technology for constructing models and simulations. For Tilford, the model as constructed in artistic practice is a ‘technology of investigation’ that is manipulated and retooled according to the evolutionary trajectory of artistic experiment. As a generalized procedure of abstraction, models are idealized representations or fictional entities that enable what might appear as disparate domains to be mapped onto one another and synthesized. His recent animation project Global Services could serve as a basic illustration of this. Taking the marriage within contemporary art between speculative finance, real estate, and the art object, this work creates a hypothetical company (“Global Services”) that uses high-end fabrication to manufacture and sell products purposefully suspended between video game and science fiction objects, office furniture, and large-scale contemporary sculptures. In the sciences, models and simulations gain their partial autonomy or functional independence through mediating between theory and empirical reality; the residual information they contain can be extracted from the model and interpreted in order to better understand the systems within which the model is implicated. As a theorist, Tilford’s research interests include the history of art and technology in relation to the computer, philosophy, science and mathematics. His artwork has appeared in Urbanomic’s philosophy journal Collapse and his writing has appeared in Design Ecologies. He is currently working on an abstract graphic novel and frequently presents his research publicly at conferences and symposia. He is a co-organizer and founding member of the Fixing the Future platform [].