Aaron Koblin is an artist specializing in data and digital technologies. His work takes real world and community-generated data and uses it to reflect on cultural trends and the changing relationship between humans and technology.

Why you should listen

Aaron Koblin finds art through the unlikely confluence of massive data sets and personal intimacy. His work ranges from animating the paths of every North American airline flight, to using Amazon’s Mechanical Turk crowdsourcing platform to pay workers to “draw a sheep facing left,” which were then placed in "The Sheep Market."

Koblin was creative director for Johnny Cash's final music video, "Ain't No Grave," and worked on Radiohead’s video “House of Cards,” both of which received a Grammy nomination. He is now the Creative Director of the Data Arts team in Google's Creative Lab. His team collaborated with Arcade Fire to produce an online music video that allows viewers to incorporate images of their home neighborhood into the experience using Google Street View.

What others say

“He likes his data ‘super fun’ -- that is, messy.” — William Bostwick, Print Magazine

Aaron Koblin’s TED talk

More news and ideas from Aaron Koblin

In Brief

Reggie Watts’ virtual reality dance party and more TED news

January 31, 2019

The TED community is busy with new projects and news — below, some highlights. A virtual reality dance party at Sundance. Musician and comedian Reggie Watts and artist Kiira Benzing debuted their new project “Runnin’” at the Sundance Film Festival’s New Frontier exhibit. “Runnin’” is an “immersive, interactive music video” backed with a hypnotic techno […]

Continue reading

Unnumbered sparks fly through the sky, created by cellphone signals

March 31, 2014

“It looks like it’s holding up the clouds.” “It’s like a sky jellyfish.” “I love how the light moves across it along with the sound.” These were some of the comments heard at TED2014 about Skies Painted with Unnumbered Sparks, a collaboration between sculptor Janet Echelman and data artist Aaron Koblin. This monumental sculpture stretched […]

Continue reading