The computer age has transformed everyone into an artist. Teenagers on average have created over 200,000 images on their smartphone by the time they graduate from college. This digital democratisation of image making and the power to broadcast on social media, enabling us all to creatively publish our own life stories and incidents, is a revolution which is fuelling a radical metamorphosis of society. Furthermore, the far-reaching consequences of digital technology have extended out into the exponential growth of online shopping and home delivery services, causing a huge vacuum of space in our towns and high streets. The North West region's cultural heritage has played a fundamental role in the creation of this computer age. Alan Turing created the world's first computer in Manchester and sowed the seeds for a new intelligent species of machines. Digital Wigan 2020 will explore how computers have transformed aesthetics and hierarchies, revealing how the Digital Age has reshaped art making, research and knowledge, working life, social connections and the capacity to reconfigure human communities and the built environment.
Wigan has nurtured a groundswell of digital cultural events and space. Wigan-STEAM provides learning opportunities, enriching social space, and collaborative working environments to empower young people and adults with creative digital knowledge to navigate and innovate future worlds. D:Circus stages ground breaking digital artistic and performances in Wigan Libraries and in site specific locations around Wigan and Leigh.