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Virtually Human!

How would you feel interacting with a virtual human? This event at the Dana Centre could be the first chance for visitors to interact with the latest digitally created characters. Improved computing power and increasingly sophisticated software means artists and engineers can now create virtual characters that are so lifelike they appear almost human. How long will it be until we see these characters appearing in everyday life, perhaps even as virtual assistants taking our cappuccino order? From the Matrix to Laura Croft, Toy Story to Monsters inc, where is animation taking us and where will it all end?

Recent advances in facial recognition, reconstruction, disfigurement and beauty research will be explored in a series of events at the Science Museum’s Dana Centre. From the hard-hitting and controversial to the creative and self-indulgent, the Dana Centre will tackle humankind’s inherent obsession with faces. The series will complement the forthcoming Future Face exhibition at the Science Museum in association with the Wellcome Trust running from 1 October 2004 - February 2005.

Delving into the social, ethical, moral and political implications of this groundbreaking field the events - running from Tuesday 5 October to Tuesday 2 December 2004 - offer the public a chance to discuss how faces and identity intertwine as well as probing common reactions to different types of faces.

The Dana Centre series of events will question the future of the human face: will we eventually be served in shops and restaurants by virtual faces as lifelike and responsive as our own? Will we one day unravel the genetic control of facial features and use this knowledge to create the ‘ideal’ child? And will the safe passage from one country to another soon be guaranteed by a computer chip containing biological data? These events offer an unrivalled opportunity for people to discuss and debate the technological, cultural, social and biomedical future of face research.

Themes explored in the Future Face events include:
· Facial Disfigurement – plastic and reconstructive surgery
· Facial Recognition – biometrics, identity cards and cctv surveillance
· Virtual Faces – animations and avatars
· Facial Beauty – facial cosmetics and the beauty industry


tbc | talks


Date and Time:

3 November 2004 at 7:00 pm


1 hour 30 minutes



Dana Centre
165 Queen's Gate
+44 20 79 42 40 40
Show map

Organised by:

Science Museum
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Available from:

Tickets are FREE but must be pre-booked on: 020 7942 4040 or tickets@danacentre.org.uk

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