Critical Art Ensemble

A member of Critcal Arts Ensemble stands beside a canister emitting orange smoke, on board a boat.
Critical Art Ensemble, Marching Plague, 2006
Two actors dressed in safety suits investigating a strange white mist.
Critical Art Ensemble, Disturbances Book Launch, October 2012.
Scientists handling transgenic bacteria equipment.
Critical Art Ensemble, Clean Rooms, Genterra, 2002.

Critical Art Ensemble (CAE) is a collective of five tactical media practitioners of various specialisations including computer graphics and web design, film/video, photography, text art, book art and performance. Formed in 1987, CAE's focus has been on the exploration of the intersections between art, critical theory, technology and political activism. The group has exhibited and performed at diverse venues internationally, ranging from the street, to the museum, to the internet. Museum exhibitions include the Whitney Museum and the New Museum in NYC, Corcoran Museum in Washington D.C., ICA in London, MCA in Chicago, Schirn Kunsthalle in Frankfurt and the Natural History Museum in London.

The collective has written seven books, with writings translated into 18 languages. Titles include The Electronic Disturbance (1994), Electronic Civil Disobedience & Other Unpopular Ideas (1996), Flesh Machine: Cyborgs, Designer Babies, & New Eugenic Consciousness (1998), Digital Resistance: Explorations in Tactical Media (2001), Molecular Invasion (2002), Marching Plague (2006) and Disturbances (2012).

Their participatory theatre aims to involve the public in the processes of biotechnology in order to contribute to the development of an informed and critical public discourse on contemporary bioscience.

In 2015, CAE was involved in Wrecked on the Intertidal Zone alongside YoHa and Art's Catalyst.