King’s College London

Seeking Connection

‘Seeking Connection’ invites the visitor on a journey of discovery – from the smallest cell to the vastness of the universe. Explore how King College London’s transformative interdisciplinary research into digital technologies is navigating opportunities for meaningful connections with ourselves, our communities and our planet.

Starting with the self, ‘Seeking Connection’ asks, how can digital design help us better understand our minds and bodies? Visitors have the chance to meet Purrble, the cuddly companion designed to guide emotion regulation for young people struggling with their mental health. In ‘Decoding Difference’, the sculpture is the artist herself and reflects her hidden impairment. Light and sound mirror her changing blood glucose levels and heartbeat, as live data is transmitted directly from an implant in the artist’s body.

Step deeper inside ‘Seeking Connection’ and discover how King’s College London’s research is helping us to understand relationships in our communities. Data shows older adults are increasingly vulnerable to experiencing loneliness, which can lead to poorer physical and mental health. In ‘Deloneliness’, learn about the pioneering design of a smart system with wearable products that measures and combats this. In ‘Room is Sad’, discover the story of a smart room that isn’t feeling quite right. The immersive experience raises questions about the relationship between identity, autonomy and privacy today.

Finally, ‘Seeking Connection’ looks at connectedness with our world. Learn about the communication gaps technology has yet to bridge in ‘Sentinels’,

a story of a Colombian court judgement intended to protect the Amazon rainforest that resulted in severe consequences for the subsistence farmers cohabiting there. In ‘Particle Shrine’ visitors can explore invisible cosmic forces that can’t be seen, heard or felt. In an audio-visual experience like no other, creative technologies and live data from four cosmic ray detectors and from the Super-Kamiokande observatory in Japan, make the invisible visible.

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Decoding Difference. Illustration: Zoe Partington


Room is sad


King’s College London is amongst the top 35 universities in the world and top 10 in Europe (The World University Rankings 2023), and one of England’s oldest, most prestigious universities. King’s has an outstanding reputation for world-class teaching and cutting-edge research and since its foundation, students and staff have dedicated themselves in the service of society. The university continues to focus on enquiry-driven research, world-leading education and service, delivering transformative solutions that have the power to accelerate global progress. The culture of King’s enhances the impact and engagement of research through creative approaches and collaborations, exploring contemporary challenges with imagination.


Presented by:

Presented by the Faculties of Arts & Humanities, Business, Law, Natural and Mathematical & Engineering Sciences at King’s College London, supported by King’s Culture


Research project team 

Dr Petr Slovak, Dr A. Jess Williams, Dr Seray Ibrahim, Nikki Theofanopoulou, Melina Petsolari, Phoebe Staab

Funded by UKRI Future Leaders Fellowship under grant no. MR/T041897/1 and Medical Research Council, under grant no. MR/W002450/1 



Maureen Freed & Dr Timothy Knowlson, University of Oxford 

Prof James Gross, Stanford University 

Dr Jessica Schleider, Stony Brook University 

Claudine Tinsman, Oxford University 

Purrble w/ self-harm

Prof Ellen Townsend & Prof Chris Hollis, University of Nottingham 

Dr Seonaid Cleare, University of Glasgow, 

Prof James Gross, Stanford University 

Public and Patient Involvement group, Sprouting Minds 

Purrble for families

Funded by UKRI Future Leaders Fellowship (award reference MR/T041897/1), and UKRI EPSRC Studentship (award reference 2436440): 

Dr Crispin Day, IoPPN, KCL and South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust

Prof Alissa N. Antle, Simon Fraser University 


Funded by UKRI ESRC: 

Prof Edmund Sonuga-Barke, Dr Katarzyna Kostyrka-Allchorne, Dr Melanie Palmer IoPPN, KCL 

Dr Crispin Day, IoPPN, KCL and South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust 

Prof Cathy Creswell, University of Oxford 

EPEC studies

Dr Crispin Day, IoPPN, KCL and South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust 

The Imagine Neighborhood Trial

Scotty Iseri, Committee for Children and Dr Sherri Widen 

Department of Informatics at King’s College London

Faculty of Natural, Mathematical & Engineering Sciences at King’s College London


Artist: Zoe Partington 

Research: Dr Katharina C. Husemann, Dr Anica Zeyen and Dr Leighanne Higgins 

Build: Craig Clarke 

Access Advice: Shape Arts 

Funding: King’s Business School Faculty Innovation Fund 


Starring: Lucía Michiels 

Direction and screenplay: Mark Knightley 

Produced and conceived by: Dr Emily Barritt 

Cinematography: Jamie Partridge 

Original music: Jonathan Charles 

CGI: Kieran West 

Dramaturgy: Harriet Madeley 

Translation: Dr Tessa Roberts 

Interviewees: Laura Jiménez Ospina, Gabriela Eslava, Valentina Rozo Ángel, Ariadna Haydar Chams, Yurshell Yanishey Rodríguez Hooker, Aderly Rolando Chamorro Rubio 

With thanks to John Clemence, Andrew and Ann Martin and James Maclaren 

Produced by Crowded Room and King's College London 

Funded by Transnational Law Institute, King's College London and Arts Council England 

Dickson Poon School of Law at King’s College London


Deloneliness Project team

Principle Investigator: Wei Liu, Department of Engineering, King’s College London 

Co-Investigators: Sebastien Ourselin, School of Biomedical Engineering & Imaging Sciences, King’s College London, Anthea Tinker, Department of Global Health & Social Medicine, King’s College London, Faith Matcham, School of Psychology, Univesity of Sussex, Yu Shi, Institute of Textiles and Colour, University of Leeds 

Researchers: Freya Probst, Research Associate in Healthcare Design, Department of Engineering, King’s College London, Jess Rees, Research Associate, Department of Global Health and Social Medicine, King’s College London, Michela Antonelli, Research Associate, School of Biomedical Engineering & Imaging Sciences, King’s College London, Xi Wang, Research Associate, University of Chester 


Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 

National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) 


Project Partners: 

Housing Learning and Improvement Network (LIN) 


Faculty of Natural, Mathematical & Engineering Sciences, King’s College London


Created by Elliott Hall, King’s Digital Lab (KDL) in partnership with Charisma.AI 


Research Project Team

Project Lead: Prof. James Smithies (Department of Digital Humanities) 

Co-Investigator: Prof. Sarah Atkinson, Vice Dean and Professor of Screen Media, Department of Culture, Media & Creative Industries 


Faculty of Arts & Humanities, King’s College London


Creative Team

Creative director, designer, producer, composer: Christo Squier 
Creative technologist, designer: Chris Ball 
Experimental particle physicist: Dr. Teppei Katori 
Lighting designer: Eden Morrison 

Videographer, editor: Matt Jolly 
Ableton Live / Max for Live bespoke devices: Mark Towers, Bill Brooks 
Soundscape install: Jack Page, Wayne Powell, d&b Audiotechnik 
Fabrication: Sam Mills 
Video animations: Peter Story 
Photography: Matt Jolly, Jack Latimer, Rah Petherbridge 



Science Gallery London 

King's College London, Department of Physics, Experimental Particle and Astroparticle Physics group 
King's Undergraduate Research Fellowships (KURF) 

King's College London 
Britten Pears Arts 
d&b audiotechnik 


With thanks to: 
Hackspace Manchester 
The Premises Studios 
Spencer Axani of CosmicWatch 

Hidden Notes 

Faculty of Natural, Mathematical & Engineering Sciences