Wonder: Where Reality and Imaginary Collide, The Herbert Art Gallery & Museum, Coventry

Marrakesh Photo by Ian Cox, 2016, with Lucy McLauchlan

Interested in fun, immersive digital art, augmented realities or simply short of something to do in-between lectures? Take a gander at Wonder (Sat June 29-Sept 15), the latest exhibition at Coventry's Herbert Art Gallery & Museum (next to The Hub).  

It features innovative work by seven very cool UK digital artists:  

  • Edie Jo Murray, who has a MA in Digital Culture and Media from Warwick University, is a neurodivergent practitioner obsessed with digital sensory experiences and alternate realities. For Wonder, Edie brings insects and animals from the Herbert’s Natural History collection to life using Augmented Reality technology and animations. Only visible through the use of iPads provided, butterflies will flutter through the space alongside other insects and creatures. 

  • Birmingham-based new media artist and curator Antonio Roberts reimagines cartoon characters to reveal the more sinister side of childhood fairy tales. He questions the use of IP and copyright laws to control how these stories are told and by whom.  

  • Lucy McLauchlan’s large-scale monochromatic paintings (see above) have covered gigantic billboards in China, huts in The Gambia, a Norwegian lighthouse and abandoned NYC subway tunnels. She will be taking imprints of The Herbert and its surroundings and documenting them using canvasses painted beyond the frame edge. 
  • Hull’s Davy and Kristin McGuire have created an animated diorama for Harrods, an installation for Barney’s Christmas windows in New York and jam-jar fairies for the RSC. Their latest body of work for Wonder was inspired by the seedy, shady underworld of Film Noir. Characters come alive within a series of intricate, animated, wall-mounted dollhouses. And what’s even more absorbing is that the artists themselves play all of the characters in these silent digital dioramas. 

  • Illustrator Ben Javens, a University of Central England fine art graduate, invites you to go beyond the gallery wall like Alice through the looking glass. His simple, beautiful, carefully-considered and almost child-like drawings - influenced by mid-20th Century illustrators - will lead to a life-size diorama installation. Crawl through a hole to discover a hidden landscape and more... 
  • Textile artist Julia Snowdin will build an interactive, sensory Light Pavilion. 

#WonderCov runs from 10am on Sat June 29 until 4pm Sun Sept 15, with free entry to all, www.theherbert.org/whats_on