New Science Gallery summer show invites artists, scientists and citizens to HACK THE CITY

Once the stuff of sci-fi movies and illicit underground movements, hacking has today been adopted by citizens worldwide as a force for good. Applying the hacker mindset to Dublin with a view to improving our everyday lives, Science Gallery at Trinity College Dublin is set to unite artists, scientists, citizens and city authorities to HACK THE CITY.

A centrepiece of the Dublin City of Science Festival 2012, HACK THE CITY is a major new exhibition and event series developed by Science Gallery at Trinity College Dublin that is set to tool-up city dwellers to shape the future of the city. Featuring a spectacular range of exhibits, hacklabs, events and interventions, from a flock of robot drones to billboards hijacked in augmented reality and stealth underwear, HACK THE CITY will invite citizens of Dublin to take control and adopt a hacker mindset to bend, tweak and mash-up Dublin’s existing urban systems – rethinking the city from the ground up.


WHAT: HACK THE CITY: Take Control - A major new programme of exhibits, events and interventions by Science Gallery that invites citizens to shape the future of the city.
WHERE: Science Gallery at Trinity College Dublin (Pearse Street, Dublin 2) and citywide.
WHEN: 22.06.12 - 08.09.12


By 2030, the majority of the world's 8.1 billion people will live in cities. So why are we still using systems of transport, energy, water and information that were designed to suit the needs of centuries past? What if we could make the cities of today work for their current inhabitants? And how can we come up with new ideas, tools and technologies that will help shape the city of tomorrow and anticipate our future needs?

Presented in unique collaboration with the Department of the Arts, Heritage and Gaeltacht, Dublin City Council, IBM, Dublin City of Science and EC Seventh Framework Programme (FP7), HACK THE CITY will feature the ingenuity of over 70 leading artists, scientists, engineers, designers and start-ups who are hacking, modding and rewiring the urban environment.

Highlights include:

  • A summer-long HACK THE CITY EXHIBITION at Science Gallery, which will see an expected 60,000 visitors deep-dive into the world of city-hacking; exploring the idea of cloaking their movements with stealth underwear, creating their own DIY cola, considering new uses for Dublin’s ghost estates and getting equipped to view an augmented reality art exhibition on hijacked billboards by artist Julian Oliver (winner, Prix Ars Electronica ‘Golden Nica’ award 2011).
  • Provocative CITY WORKS that will include a band of robotic buskers and ‘City is a Playground’, a series of citywide interventions transforming everyday urban objects into opportunistic games by artist Florian Rivière.
  • The HACKLAB - a living space at Science Gallery with an extensive workshop programme that amongst other will teach visitors to hack into wireless surveillance cameras, set up their own mobile networks and transform their spare bedrooms into artist residences.
  • IDEALAB, a previously vacant retail space on Dublin’s Capel Street that will nurture five enterprising ideas focusing on open-source transport, crowdsourcing of public services and solutions to dereliction. Presented in collaboration with Dublin City Council and IBM, the IDEALAB will invite the public to meet the teams working at IDEALAB daily.
  • An extensive events programme that includes Dublin’s first ever Mini Maker Faire, the biggest and best TEDxDublin to date, the next installment in the rapid-fire IGNITE Dublin talk series, and Science Gallery’s return to the Electric Picnic at Stradbally to HACK THE PICNIC through a distinct line-up of events, workshops and performances.

HACK THE CITY is curated by a local and international curatorial team including artist and designer Teresa Dillon, hacker and presenter ofNational Geographic Channel show The Link Josh Klein, Trinity College Engineer Linda Doyle, Martin Kelly of IBM and Science Gallery Founding Director Michael John Gorman. Speaking about the groundbreaking HACK THE CITY programme, Michael John Gorman said, “Hack The City will demonstrate that by redesigning and rethinking how we navigate, share ideas and innovate in our cities, we can create an environment that inspires ideas and offers opportunities for creative collaboration. We’re looking forward to inviting the citizens of Dublin to join artists and scientists at the epicentre of these creative collisions, to reimagine the future of the city together”.

HACK THE CITY is just one of three Science Gallery exhibitions opening in three continents across the globe this June. Fresh from the launch of the SURFACE TENSION: The Future of Water at the World Science Festival in New York on June 1st, Science Gallery will also launch BIORHYTHM: Music and the Body at Science Centre Singapore on June 16th. Science Gallery’s international ambition is palpable - the ‘high-profile art-science venture’ (TIME Magazine, June 2012) plans to establish a Global Science Gallery Network with seven more hubs around the globe by 2020.

Back in Dublin, Science Gallery will launch HACK THE CITY with a member’s preview party on June 21st that will see a network of drones controlled by revellers hovering above proceedings. The HACK THE CITY exhibition opens to the public on June 22nd and will run until September 8th.

Watch more video of work in the exhibition:
Graffiti Analysis
Chimeres Orchestra
The Outdoor Miner
A Journey
Submap 2.0

For more information, interviews or images, contact:
Shaun O’Boyle (+353 87 6410553 / or Fionn Kidney (+353 85 7386425 /


Teresa Dillon
Creating artistic, educational and social interventions is Teresa’s passion. Her performance work has been shown across Europe and Canada and over the years she has collaborated with numerous experimental musicians and performers. Since 2007 she has established and run media art festivals and networks including, OFFLOAD: Systems for Survival, UM and N.I.P.  She has held lecturer positions in Strathclyde, Bristol & Cambridge University, UK, Trinity College, IRL and worked as a researcher and manager across public sector bodies including Nesta/Futurelab & BBC, UK & NDRC, IRL. Since 2003 she has supported numerous companies co-developing early stage concepts and prototypes. Teresa holds a PhD in psychology (The Open University) and has published on creativity, open
source, music technology and collaborative learning.

Michael John Gorman
Michael John Gorman is the Founding Director of Science Gallery. Currently, through a gift of of €1M from, he is developing an international network of Science Galleries in partnership with leading universities in urban centres worldwide. Michael John is also Adjunct Professor of Creative Technologies at Trinity College, Director of the Idea Translation Lab (in partnership with Harvard University) and PI of the European StudioLab project. Prior to coming to Trinity College, he has worked at Stanford University where he lectured in science, technology and society, and has held postdoctoral fellowships in Harvard University and MIT. He has authored numerous publications and articles on aspects of the relationship between art and science and history of science. He holds a PhD in seventeenth century history of science from the European University Institute in Florence.

Linda Doyle
Linda Doyle is a Professor in the School of Engineering Trinity College Dublin (TCD) and the Director of CTVR. CTVR is a national research centre focusing on industry-informed research in the telecommunications field. Headquartered in Trinity College, it is based in six other Irish academic institutions with over 80 active researchers. Linda’s area of research is in wireless communications with a particular focus on cognitive radio, reconfigurable networks, spectrum management and art & technology. Her group has built an international reputation in experimental cognitive radio work. She is a Director of Xcelerit, a recent CTVR spin-out and a fellow of TCD.

Josh Klein
Josh Klein has practiced and was trained, both formally and informally, in hacking – social systems, computer networks, institutions, consumer hardware, animal behavior, and, most recently, the television industry. When he is not taking things apart or putting them back together again he speaks, writes, and consults on new and emerging technologies that improve people’s lives – and has tremendous fun doing it. He is currently presenting The Link, a new show on the National Geographic Channel. 

Martin Kelly
Martin Kelly is a key partner at the Venture Capital Group (EMEA) at IBM. He helped to establish this group in 2007 and since then has co-led the development and global rollout of IBM SmartCamp. With over 20 years industry experience, Martin has held a variety of technical, strategy and business development roles for firms including PWC Consulting, Masterfoods Europe, H.J.Heinz UK and Bank of Ireland. He sits on
the advisory board of Innovation Fund Ireland and holds a BSc in Information Systems from Trinity
College and an MBA from University College Dublin.

Science Gallery at Trinity College Dublin is a world first, a space that ignites creativity and discovery where science and art collide. Since opening in early 2008, over 900,000 people have experienced 21 exhibitions ranging from light to love, from sustainability to infection. Science Gallery’s 22nd exhibition, HACK THE CITY, is part of a vibrant 2012 programme to celebrate Dublin City of Science Festival 2012, including EDIBLEHAPPY?MAGICAL MATERIALS and GAME. Science Gallery is an initiative of Ireland’s leading research university, Trinity College Dublin and is kindly supported by the Wellcome Trust as founding partner, and by ‘Science Circle’ supporters DELL, Deloitte, Google, ICON and NTR Foundation. Science Gallery also receives government support from the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Department of Arts, Heritage and Gaeltacht and Science Foundation Ireland. For more information

HACK THE CITY is part of the Dublin City of Science 2012 Festival. Over the course of 2012, Dublin will host a yearlong celebration of science with a programme of over 160 science-related events that cross the worlds of art and culture to entertain the general public and visitors to Ireland’s capital. The main event is the Euroscience Open Forum (ESOF) 2012 which takes place in the Convention Centre Dublin in July. ESOF 2012 will bring the world’s leading scientists to Dublin from 11th to 15th July. The event will bring together over 5,000 scientists, business leaders, government officials and international media to discuss the best of European science and to address all of the major global challenges, including Energy, Climate Change, Food and Health. ESOF 2012 has been brought about thanks to the support of The European Commission, IBM, Intel, Janssen, Science Foundation Ireland, Forfás, Robert Bosch Stiftung, Eirgrid, Dublin City Council, Marine Institute, the Department of Jobs Enterprise and Innovation, Bord Gáis, Abbott Fund, COST and Teagasc. For more information visit

At IBM, we want that intelligence to be infused into the systems and processes that make the world work—into things no one would recognise as computers: cars, appliances, roadways, power grids, clothes, even natural systems such as agriculture and waterways. Since 2008, we've talked about what it takes to build a smarter planet. We've learned that our companies, our cities and our world are complex systems-indeed, systems of systems. Advancing these systems to be more instrumented, intelligent and interconnected requires a profound shift in management and governance toward far more collaborative approaches. In more than 2,000 Smarter Cities engagements, we see forward-thinking leaders emerging with new approaches to make their communities smarter and to make them work better. For more see

Dublin City Council is the democratically elected body that governs Dublin City and is the largest local authority in Ireland. The City Council plays a pivotal role in providing strong leadership for the Dublin City Region and in developing Dublin as an Open, Smart and Innovation City. Key initiatives such as DUBLINKED and INNOVATION DUBLIN help drive this vision. DUBLINKED is an open data portal and membership network and INNOVATION DUBLIN celebrates and showcases innovation and creativity in Dublin. Dublin City Council’s support for HACK THE CITY is also helping to realise this vision by bringing together citizens, innovators, entrepreneurs and artists to help design a better city.

Studiolab is a 3-year Europe-wide initiative that merges the artist's studio with the research lab. Funded by the EC Seventh Framework Programme in 2011 and co-ordinated by Science Gallery Dublin, Studiolab is a network that provides a platform for creative projects that bridge divides between science, art and design.

The Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht was established on the 1st of June 2011 on foot of the reorganisation of Government Departments announced by the Taoiseach in March 2011, bringing together functions from the former Department of Tourism, Culture and Sport, the Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government and the Department of Community, Equality and Gaeltacht Affairs. The Department oversees the conservation, preservation, protection and presentation of Ireland's heritage and cultural assets. The Department also seeks to promote the Irish language and to support the Gaeltacht. The key functions under its remit include: Arts, Culture, Film and Music, as well as oversight of Ireland's cultural institutions; Ireland's Built and Natural Heritage; The Irish language, the Gaeltacht and the Islands; and North/South Co-operation insofar as it relates to Waterways Ireland, An Foras Teanga and the wider functions of the Department.