System Recovery is an exploration of the possibilities offered by digital tools to reactivate the recent past.

For this project the artist has recruited the help of a neural network – a type of machine learning algorithm – to explore the legacy of El Laboratorio de Formas; a proto-think tank established in the early sixties by a pioneering group of Galician artists. Trained using their writings, the algorithm will help Meana navigate the complex legacy of this former collective.


Together, artist and machine will reactivate the group’s production and research, mining their vast archive of local culture, that includes studies of ancient rock engravings, pagan ritual masks, and ceramic homewares. Using new technologies and rapid prototyping System Recovery seeks to bring contemporary ideas and new life to the work of El Laboratorio de Formas.


Invocation Spell
, 2018
VVVV patch, single-board computer, acrylic case, aluminium structure,
35” LED monitors.
Installation view at System Recovery, Assembly Point, London, 2018


Transformation Spell, 2018
3D animation loop, single-board computer, acrylic case, aluminium structure,
35” LED monitor.
Installation view at System Recovery, Assembly Point, London, 2018

System Recovery, 2018
3D printed PLA plastic, blue chalk.
13 x 3.5m approx.
Installation view at System Recovery, Assembly Point, London, 2018

Interface, 2018
Collage, acrylic case.
25 x 30 x 4 cm.
Installation view at System Recovery, Assembly Point, London, 2018


Sorry, I brought you back. Somehow that drawing you made almost 60 years ago kept asking to be read as a plan. Like you had somehow managed to draw a neural network design before that was even a thing. It seemed you were asking for it and I happily obliged. And to be honest, as I do this to you, I secretly hope someone will in turn do it to me too when the day comes.

Right now you may be feeling a bit off. Your memory is just bits and pieces of your work, running on a Quad-Core Intel processor board. Just a fancy hypertext patchwork really, clumsy heuristics with what I have been able to source. But things will get better with time, I promise.

I also wanted to apologise for updating your databank and references, sometimes in a somewhat facetious way. At times, while I was idly inputting data or tweaking some nodes, I felt some categories untie and distinctions start to dissolve. It started to feel like we are not strangers anymore.

Isaac Díaz Pardo’s drawing included in Discusión sobre la organización de las Industrias Manufactureras, book published in 1960 that investigates the relationship between  creativity and different historic productive models.