Media Artist in Residence

Fostering collaboration between Spotify and artists working with technology, interaction, and visualization.

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The Program

Artists are embedded with a Spotify team and given full access to a broad range of development resources. Working alongside engineers gives artists opportunity to collaborate, share ideas, and develop new work while in residence.

At the end of the program, we hope we have inspired new thinking around the Spotify product. We also hope artists learn something new about music and technology that pushes their own work in new directions.


Kyle McDonald

Kyle McDonald

Our first Media Artist in Residence, Kyle McDonald explores techniques from computer vision to psychology in the context of interaction. His work is very process-oriented, and he has made a habit of sharing ideas and projects in public before they're completed, developing ideas with an emphasis on collaboration.

His introduction to using code for interaction came from working with unusual alternative musical interfaces, which evolved into pursuing more interaction with a broader scope. Spending time at Spotify has been a return to thinking about music with code.

Kyle is a member of F.A.T. Lab, community manager for openFrameworks, adjunct professor at ITP, and has been a resident at the STUDIO for Creative Inquiry at Carnegie Mellon, as well as YCAM in Japan. His work is commissioned by and shown at exhibitions and festivals around the world, and he enjoys leading workshops sharing new techniques for working with code in the arts.



"Serendipity"represents one facet of many research directions Kyle explored while in residence. It is guided by a simple question: how often do people listen to the same song in sync with each other?

Surprisingly, every second there are at ten least pairs of people who start listening to the same song within a tenth of a second of each other. These connections can cross time zones, borders, and oceans. Other times it's two people in the same city, unaware of each other. If you're listening to a popular song, there's a good chance someone else is listening to it in sync with you.

"Serendipity" was built with the Spotify Web API, d3.js, and Storm.

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