Step into the heart of the Big Bang in an immersive 360 degree audio visual installation: HALO as part of Brighton Festival 2021




UK Premiere

Semiconductor: HALO

Part of Brighton Festival 2021



Audiences invited to step into the heart of the Big Bang in an immersive 360 degree audio visual installation as part of Brighton Festival 2021  


HALO is created by renowned UK-based artist duo Semiconductor, using data collected during their residency at the Large Hadron Collider at CERN, Geneva


HALO is an immersive installation imagined by renowned UK-based artist duo Semiconductor, following their residency at CERN, the European Laboratory for Particle Physics. The artwork, which was first presented during Art Basel in Basel 2018, was commissioned by Audemars Piguet Contemporary and guest curated by Mónica Bello, Head of Arts at CERN.  Now HALO receives its UK Premiere in Brighton, where Semiconductor are based, at Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts as part of Brighton Festival 2021, from 18 May to 4 June 2021.



HALO is a multisensory experience of matter formation in the early universe. The installation is an intricate mechanical structure containing a 360-degree projection of scientific data, which recreates the conditions shortly after the Big Bang. An array of 384 vertical wires are played by the same data, to produce the sound.


Taking the form of a large cylinder, HALO draws the viewer into its centre in order to inhabit the results of particle-collisions taking place at the ATLAS experiment at the Large Hadron Collider at CERN, in Geneva, Switzerland.


Being able to look at and listen to this data gives audiences a sense of something bigger than themselves, inspiring awe and wonder at the complexity of nature, and at the elaborate systems humans create to understand the world around them.


The physics performed at the ATLAS detector probes and enhances our current understanding of the building blocks of matter and their interactions, contributing to new theories that better describe our universe. Semiconductor are the first artists to have received permission to work directly with raw data generated by the experiment. 


Semiconductor worked in dialogue with particle physicists from University of Sussex and the ATLAS experiment at CERN, to develop HALO.


There will also be a series of free online talks and workshops alongside the exhibition, including Semiconductor in discussion with Mónica Bello, Head of Arts at CERN and University of Sussex CERN scientists, along with creative activities for families and young people.


The HALO events programme is produced by Lighthouse and part of Re-Imagine Europe, co-funded by the Creative Europe programme of the European Union.





Artists Working with Data Panel Discussion (online)

Saturday 1st May, 6:30pm, Free, booking required


Presented by DRIVA Arts DRIVA, panel members include Mónica Bello, Head of Arts at CERN, Semiconductor and Dr Mark Sutton, CERN physicist and University of Sussex Research Fellow in Experimental Particle Physics, chaired by Donna Close (senior research fellow in the School of Media at University of Brighton).


HALO Family Workshops with Leap Then Look (online)

Saturday 8th May 9:30am-10:15am and 10:45am-11:30am 

Saturday 15th May 9:30am-10:15am and 10:45am-11:30am, Free, booking required


Innovative art workshop leaders Leap Then Look invite families with children of all ages (recommended age 5 and up) to take part in an interactive online workshop where you can create your own artwork in response to HALO. Experiment with sound and object making, using the objects you have at home. 


Hic Sunt Leones - Hunting for New Physics at the Large Hadron Collider (online)

Tuesday 11th May, 6:30pm, Free, booking required


Professor of Physics at the University of Sussex, Antonella De Santo gives a talk about the science behind HALO.


Antonella De Santo works on the ATLAS experiment at the Large Hadron Collider, where, after the momentous discovery of the Higgs boson, she is exploring the “terra incognita” beyond the Standard Model of Particle Physics. She will present highlights from this exciting journey.


Semiconductor in conversation with Ariane Koek (online)

Thursday 13th May, 6:30pm, Free, booking required


A chance to hear the Brighton based, internationally acclaimed artists Semiconductor discuss their creative practice with Ariane Koek, founder of Arts at CERN, creative producer and curator in the fields of arts, science and technology.


HALO 11-16yr old Workshops with Leap Then Look (online)

Saturday 22nd May 10:00 - 10:45am and 11:15 - 12:00pm, Free, booking required


Interactive online workshops with innovative art educators Leap Then Look responding to Semiconductor’s HALO. Young people are invited to experiment with sound and object making, using household objects as materials to explore the way that HALO translates scientific data.  For secondary school aged children.


Book for all online workshops and register for live streamed events: or




Download hi-res images here:

For more information or interviews please contact:

Nicola Jeffs // // 07794 694 754



An audio visual installation created using data collected at the Large Hadron Collider


Being at the heart of the collision data, in the centre of HALO, it felt like I was participating in the first instant of the Big Bang

- Frédérick Bordry: Director for Accelerators and Technology, CERN Geneva


Watch a short film clip of HALO by Semiconductor here


Wednesday 19 May – Friday 4 June 2021

Wednesday – Sunday, 12pm – 8pm (plus bank holiday Monday 31 May, 12pm – 8pm)

FREE (tickets must be booked in advance for one hour slots to enable social distancing)


HALO events programme live online from Saturday 1 May 2021


Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts (as part of Brighton Festival)

University of Sussex, Gardner Centre Road, Brighton, BN1 9RA


[photo credit: Claudia Marcelloni/CERN]




HALO at Brighton Festival is supported by Arts Council England, and co-produced by Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts and Brighton Festival. The HALO events programme is produced by Lighthouse and part of Re-Imagine Europe, co-funded by the Creative Europe programme of the European Union. The HALO Data Panel event is supported by University of Brighton as part of DRIVA Arts DRIVA: part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund and part-funded by the ACE Creative Local Growth programme.


HALO is an Audemars Piguet Art Commission, curated by Mónica Bello and first presented in the context of Art Basel in Basel in 2018. In collaboration with CERN.


HALO was fabricated by millimetre and Polyspace in collaboration with the artists.


About Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts (ACCA)


Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts (ACCA) is a multi-disciplinary arts hub (in a mid-century modern Grade II listed building, designed by Sir Basil Spence) located on the University of Sussex campus.


ACCA strives to find imaginative ways to ACCA strives to find imaginative ways to connect artists with students and researchers across university departments, and presents a public programme of music, film, performance, dance, installation, digital practices, discussion and debate. The arts centre is named after Richard Attenborough (former Chancellor at University of Sussex). The programme at the centre is guided by Richard Attenborough's values and the things he believed in passionately: human rights, social justice, creative education and access to the arts for all.



Twitter: @attenboroughctr

Instagram: @attenboroughctr

Facebook: attenboroughcentre


About Brighton Festival


Brighton Festival will return in 2021 with a celebration of art and culture from 1 May, extending across the whole month and possibly into June. This year’s Festival programme launched online on Tuesday 30 March with guest director, the poet, author and broadcaster Lemn Sissay MBE.


Following the latest government guidance on when lockdown restrictions can be eased, events will take place online, in outdoor locations and from 17 May, live performances will open for socially distanced audiences in venues across the city and beyond.


Established in 1967, Brighton Festival is the largest and most established annual curated multi-arts festival in England. Taking place in May, the Festival is a celebration of music, theatre, dance, art, film, literature, debate, outdoor and community events in venues and locations across Brighton, Hove and East Sussex.



Twitter: @brightfest

Instagram: @brightonfestival

Facebook: brightonfestival



About Lighthouse


Lighthouse is a Brighton-based arts charity specialising in connecting new developments in art, technology, science and society. For over 30 years, our programme has revealed new ways of presenting artists and the creative industries, how artistic work and practice can cross boundaries and disciplines and be used as a way of enhancing digital technology and its place within society.


Key projects include Lighthouse Young Creatives our acclaimed mentoring scheme assisting young people to pursue careers in the creative industries and Guiding Lights, the UK’s leading mentoring scheme for filmmakers, regular residencies, to provide creative and professional development for a wide range of artists and creative practitioners.


In recent years, Lighthouse has produced, presented, and commissioned work by many internationally renowned and emerging artists and filmmakers, including Haroon Mirza, Peter Middleton & James Spinney, Lynette Wallworth, The Otolith Group, Kutlug Ataman, Matthew Herbert, Metahaven, David Blandy, Larry Achiampong, Trevor Paglen, Blast Theory, Invisible Flock, and Rafael Lozano Hemmer.



Twitter: @Lighthouse_BTN

Instagram: @lighthouse_btn

Facebook: LighthouseBTN



About Semiconductor


Semiconductor is UK artist duo Ruth Jarman and Joe Gerhardt. Over the past twenty years of collaboration they have become known for an innovative body of work, which explores the material nature of our physical world and how we experience it through the lenses of science and technology.


Their art works often evolve from intensive periods of research spent in science laboratories, including CERN, Geneva (2015); NASA Space Sciences Laboratory, UC Berkeley, California (2005); Mineral Sciences Laboratory, Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History (2010); and the Charles Darwin Research Station, Galapagos (2010). They occupy a unique position in the artworld, blending, in philosophically compelling ways, experimental moving image techniques, scientific research and digital technologies.


Semiconductor have exhibited their work internationally including at The 14th Media Art Biennale Santiago, City Gallery, New Zealand, CCCB, Barcelona, 21st Biennale of Sydney, Mori Art Museum, Tokyo, ZKM, Karlsruhe, ArtScience Museum, Singapore, House of Electronic Arts, Basel, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, FACT, Liverpool and Royal Academy of Arts.



Twitter: @semiconducting

Instagram: @semiconductor_artists

Facebook: semiconductorartists

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