about
Since 1999 Softday, the art-science collaboration of artist Sean Taylor and computer scientist Mikael Fernström, have engaged with issues relating to natural cycles in time, climate change and its global effects.
Early projects such as Bliain Le Baisteach (A Year of Rainfall) (2000) looked at fluctuating annual rainfall patterns in Ireland. Further, Cóisir an Tsionainn (The Shannon Suite) (2003) focused on the four-year life cycle of the wild Atlantic salmon and the effects of overfishing and pollution on the species ability to survive. Projects such as Nobody leaves till the Daphnia sing (2009) examined the implications of contaminated domestic drinking water supplies in Galway and West Limerick. The Marbh Chrois (Dead Zone) (2010) project addressed the impact of two ‘contested’ marine dead zones as a key stressor on marine ecosystems in Donegal, Ireland. In 2011 Softday were selected as one of the winning entries to the prestigious project EUROPE – A SOUND PANORAMA, in Karlsruhe, Germany. The Karlsruhe live concert was recorded by Deutschlandradio Kultur and distributed to all European radio stations. Between 2011 and 2013, Softday collaborated with a number of Irish beekeepers, scientist and the monks of Glenstal Abbey, creating Amhrán na mBeach (Song of the Bees) about the life of honey bees and current threats such as Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD).
As a collaborative team they use their arts practice to explore relations to and understandings of nature, expressed through sonifications and multimedia artworks and performances. Both artists are interested in exploring the cracks between various media and creative genres such as expanded theatre, sound art, socially engaged practice, sculpture, music, dance and the application of new technologies.
Softday perforing live
Softday performing live.
Photo courtesy of Patricia Klich
selected softday multimedia exhibitions
  • 2016 (Re)Public, Hyde Park Arts Centre, Chicago, USA.
  • 2015 Et si on s’était trompé?(What if we got it wrong?) Centre Culturel Irlandais, Paris, France.
  • 2015 Hyphae, group exhibition at the Bourne Vincent Gallery, University of Limerick, Limerick. Ireland.
  • 2015 Chant des Abeilles (Song of the Parisien Bees), Centre Culturel Irlandais, Paris, France.
  • 2015 Song of the Urban Bees re-mediated, Limerick City Gallery of Art, Limerick, Ireland.
  • 2015 World Listening Day Soundwalk, O’Brien’s Bridge, Limerick, Ireland.
  • 2015 Pigtown Scratchings, Dance Limerick, Limerick, Ireland
  • 2015 Sound Kitchen 2015, Prague Quadrennial of Performance Design and Space, Prague, Czech Republic.
  • 2015 Sonic Vigil 9, Cork, Ireland.
  • 2015, 2nd Annual Acouscenic Listening Intensive, University of Limerick, Limerick. Ireland.
  • 2014 Amhran na Beacha - Song of the (Urban) Bees, Crescent Hall, Limerick, Ireland.
  • 2014 Audio Fabric: Socio-Sonic Textures In the Real World, The Irish Sound, Science and Technology Convocation.
  • Technology Association (ISSTA) fourth annual Convocation, NUI Maynooth, Co.Kildare, Ireland
  • 2014 Art, Technology and the Natural World, Harn Museum of Art, Gainesville, Florida, USA.
  • 2014, 1st Annual Acouscenic Listening Intensive, University of Limerick, Limerick.
  • 2014 World Listening Day Soundwalk, Limerick
  • 2014 BZZZ Sound Art Festival, Harp Art Lab, Harplinge, Sweden.
  • 2014 Supermarket 2014, Stockholm Independent Art Fair 2014, Sweden.
  • 2014 Marbh Chrois (Dead Zone) featured on Composers Circle
  • 2013 Aspiration, live performance with Áine Phillips, H-Q Gallery, Limerick, Ireland.
  • 2013 Common Ground, Occupy Space Gallery, Limerick, Ireland
  • 2013 Pigtown Scratchings 3, Limerick, Ireland
  • 2013 West Cork Arts Festival, Skibbereen , Co.Cork, Ireland
  • 2013 Hilltown New Music Festival. Castlepollard, Co.Westmeath, Ireland
  • 2013 Listening between Archaeology and Legend - World Listening Day, Lough Gur, County Limerick, Ireland
  • 2013 Amhran na Beacha (Song of the Bees) Glenstal Abbey, Murroe, Co.Limerick, Ireland.
  • 2013 Pigtown Scratchings 2, Limerick Ireland
  • 2013 West Cork Arts Festival, Skibbereen , Co.Cork, Ireland
  • 2013 Transmission Drift, The Irish Sound, Science and Technology Association (ISSTA) third annual Convocation, Dun Laoighre, Co.Dublin, Ireland
  • 2013 Pigtown Scratchings 1, Limerick Ireland
  • 2012 John Cage Centennial performance, Limerick, Ireland
  • 2012 Sounds of Europe, curated blog, www.soundsofeurope.eu
  • 2012 Underground Unknown and Forgotten's - World Listening Day, Limerick, Ireland
  • 2012 Galway Jazz Festival, NUG, Galway, Ireland.
  • 2012 The Limerick Oddity, Limerick, Ireland
  • 2012 The Sonic Abyss, Drogheda Arts Festival, Co.Louth, Ireland.
  • 2012 The Global Composition, World Soundscape Conference 2012, Darmstadt, Germany
  • 2012 West Cork Arts Festival, Skibbereen , Co.Cork, Ireland
  • 2012 Pure Data Mini-Com, 2012, Boydell Recital Room, Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland
  • 2012 21 Proposals for the Turbine Hall, Ormston House Gallery, Limerick, and the Crawford Art Gallery, Cork, Ireland.
  • 2011 Re-mediating Joris Ivens, Corona Cork Film Festival 2011, Ireland.
  • 2011 Europe - A Sound Panorama, Karlsruhe, Germany
  • 2011 RMX, Salon des Amateurs, Düsseldorf, Germany
  • 2011 Carbonation, Galway Jazz Festival, Galway, Ireland
  • 2011 As Baile – Irish World Academy of Music and Dance, University of Limerick, Ireland.
  • 2011 RAFLOST 2011, Icelandic Festival of Electronic Music, Reykjavik, Iceland.
  • 2011 POOLED, Just Listen, Cork, Ireland.
  • 2011 Pure Data Mini-Com, Boydell Recital Room, Trinity College, Dublin
  • 2011 Contemporary Music Centre, Fishamble Street, Temple Bar, Dublin
  • 2010 Boundary Work1, Wandesford Quay Gallery, Cork
  • 2010 Marbh Chrois (Dead Zone) Lovely Weather Artists Residencies-Ireland, Co. Donegal, Ireland
  • 2010 Sonic Vigil V, St.Finbarr’s Cathedral, Cork, Ireland.
  • 2009 Zeppelin 2009 Sounds of Power / Listening of Fear, Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona, Spain
  • 2009 INFECTIOUS- Stay Away, Science Gallery, Trinity College, Dublin.
  • 2008 MERGE VISUAL, Museum of Arts and Sciences, Macon, Georgia, USA
  • 2008 DEAF, Dublin Electronic Arts Festival, Dublin
  • 2005 Eist, Sound Art group exhibition, Limerick City Gallery of Art, Limerick
  • 2005 TXTULTR, Interactive Public Art commission for RTE Lyric FM, Limerick
  • 2004 6x6 for Ireland II, 411 Gallery, Hangzhou City, China.
  • 2003 Common Ground – with Michael O’Suilleabhain, ‘SIONNA’ European Festival of World Music, Limerick
  • 2002 Coisir an Tsionann (The Shannon Suite) - Ardnacrusha Power Station, Co.Clare, Live Webcast Performance.
  • 2000 Bliain le Báisteach – A Year of Rain, Irish Pavilion, World Expo 2000, Hannover, Germany, University of Limerick Concert Hall, Limerick.
selected softday multimedia awards
  • 2015 Arts Council of Ireland, Artist in the Community Scheme managed by Create – the national development agency for collaborative arts. (Phase One Research & Development funding for Requiem for a Hollowland)
  • 2015 Residency at the Centre Culturel Irlandais, Paris, to work on the “Song of the Paris Bees”, project.
  • 2014 Limerick National City of Culture commission for Amhran na mBeach - Song of the (Urban) Bees.
  • 2014 Limerick Regeneration funding for the Limerick Urban Beekeeping Project
  • 2013 CREATE, Artist in the Community Scheme Award.
  • 2011 Cork City Council commission for Re-mediating Joris Ivens, Corona Cork Film Festival 2011.
  • 2011 CREATE, Artist in the Community Scheme Bursary.
  • 2011 The Goethe-Institute of Belgrade, Deutschlandradio Kultur, Radio Belgrade, the European Broadcasting Union’s (EBU) Ars Acustica Group, the Institute for Music and Sound at the Centre for Art and Media Technology in Karlsruhe (ZKM) Germany, Award.
  • 2010-11 Arts Council of Ireland, Artist in the Community Scheme Award
  • 2010 Donegal County Council Arts Office Per Cent for Art Award
  • 2005 RTE Lyric FM funding for ‘TXTULTR’
  • 2001 Arts Council Project Funding for ‘Coisir an Tsionann’
  • 2000 Arts Council of Ireland, Interdisciplinary Collaboration Award
softday discography
  • 2013 Amhrán na mBeach (Song of the Bees) Softday Label, Limerick, Ireland
  • 2011 Marbh Chrois (Dead Zone) Softday Label, Limerick, Ireland
  • 2011 Sonic Vigil V, curated by TheQuiet Club and Gruenrekorder
  • 2008 Dublin Electronic Arts Festival (DEAF) CD, Dublin, Ireland
  • 2005 TXTULTR, released on the Softday Label, Limerick, Ireland
  • 2002 Coisir an Tsionann - released on the Softday Label, Limerick, Ireland
  • 2000 Bliain le Báisteach - A Year of Rain, released on the Softday Label, Limerick, Ireland
softday publications
  • 2015 "From a Year of Rain, to Fifteen Years of Art-Science with Contested Watery Issues", academic paper for "Fluid Currents: Water, Art and Ecology", 2015 SECAC Conference, Pittsburgh, USA.
  • Taylor, S., Fernström, M. 2014 Marbh Chrois (Dead Zone), in Water is in the Air: Physics, Politics and Poetics of Water in the Arts, Annick Bureaud (Ed.), Leonardo/ISAST, MIT Press, Leonardo ebook series, Kindle Edition.
  • Taylor, S., Fernström, M. 2013 Amhrán na mBeach (Song of the Bees) Softday ebook series, published by Softday, Limerick, Ireland
  • Taylor, S., Fernström, M. 2012 Socially Engaged Sound Art Practice, Irish Sound, Science & Technology Association Convocation proceedings, Cork, July 31 – August 2, 2012
  • Fernström, M., Taylor, S. 2012 Socially engaged sound art practice, in Proceedings of The Global Composition, Conference on Sound, Media and the Environment Proceedings, Sabine Breitsameter & Claudia Söller-Eckert (Eds.), published by Hochschule Darmstadt, Germany
  • Taylor, S., & Fernström, M. 2012 Marbh Chrios. Leonardo, 45(2), 192–193.
  • Taylor, S., & Fernström, M. 2011 Marbh Chrois (Dead Zone) Softday ebook series, published by Softday, Limerick, Ireland
  • Fernström, M., & Taylor, S. 2010 Exploring ambient sonification of water toxicity. In Proceedings of the 2010 International Conference on Auditory DisplayWashington DC, USA: ICAD.
  • Fernström, M., & Taylor, S. 2001 Blain le Baisteach - a Year with Rain. In Proceedings of the 2001 International Conference on Auditory Display. Helsinki University of Technology.
current employments
softday membership
examples of current/previous softday work