We first met at WOW Festival this spring, where she joined forces with our Creative Director Harriet Vine on a panel discussing ‘The Genius Gap: Women and Creative Confidence.’ Tea specialises in marrying technology and the arts as creative director of Google's Creative Lab, Sydney and we've found that her quote, 'the creative process is about not knowing what you're doing' has somewhat resonated within our studio at times! We've managed to sit down together (pronounced just like the drink) and find out what makes her tick, from Margaret Atwood to our classic Aarrghhhh Necklace. Drink up!
Sabrina Mahfouz, Harriet Vine and Tea Uglow at WOW Fest 2018
CAN YOU SUM UP WHAT YOU DO IN FIVE WORDS?
Experiments in non-linear non-contiguous narrative. LOL!
FROM FILM TO FINE ART, WHAT DO YOU LOOK TO FOR INSPIRATION?
Is this all 5 words? If not, I don't really look to anything, I am massively uncool. If I look anywhere it is normally by accident. I like ideas. I like watching people using computers, and not using computers and understanding what is good about each. I really like physics and neuroscience and behavioural psychology and fashion. I follow a lot of very odd people on Twitter and I get inspired by working with people who are as invested in what they do as we are in what we do, they inspire me. At the moment, I like what's coming out of places like the RSC, Punchdrunk, the British Library, The Royal Opera House, and the Watershed in Bristol and an overall enthusiasm to explore. That's all very inspiring.
IF YOU COULD WORK WITH ANYONE, WHO WOULD IT BE?
In history? Da Vinci or Picasso, Orwell, or Feynman. Today? Um. Richter (Gerhardt or Max), Margaret Atwood, Pipilotti Rist, Tom Stoppard, Bjork. So many people really.
WHAT DO YOU PERSONALLY REGARD AS YOUR BIGGEST ACHIEVEMENT?
Surviving my transition. It was the hardest thing I have ever been through or put anyone through. I still feel like I need to apologise and thank the people of my world for their support.
WHAT’S THE BEST DECISION YOU EVER MADE?
Taking a part-time gig making powerpoint slides for a UK Sales team at Google in London.
Ouch. This question is causing me to spiral. So many to choose from... probably not coming out sooner. But it's complicated. I also feel a bit of an idiot for not investing in things I truly believed in, like Apple in 2000, or Bitcoin in 2014. I have made many many bad decisions creatively, and in life, picking a 'worst' is quite impossible. It is probably, again, something that hurt people I love.
WHICH TATTY DEVINE PIECE IS YOUR FAVOURITE?
[Please God let this question be a subtle hint]... I love the Aarrghhhh Necklace :)
WHICH WOMEN ARE YOU WATCHING RIGHT NOW?
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Read more about Tea's work and create your own Name Necklace here. (Psst, wanna match Tea? Go for Ladybug, Pale Pink and made it BIG size! 😉)