Karen Palmer

Karen Palmer is an artist and storyteller from the future.

A creator of immersive film experiences combining film, AI, gaming, art, behavioural psychology and the parkour philosophy of moving through fear, Karen’s works transform the participant’s awareness in a way that is key to surviving radical technological changes to come. Karen is the creator of the RIOT prototype, an emotionally responsive film using facial recognition and A.I. technology to navigate though a dangerous riot.

In 2017, The RIOT prototype was honoured as part of the Digital Dozen Breakthroughs in Storytelling and acknowledged by Columbia DSL as the most innovative approach to Narratives in Digital Media. RIOT has also been covered in  Forbes,  CBS TV, Fast CompanyEngadget, The Guardian and NBC, among others. 

Karen has exhibited at The Future of Storytelling Festival in NYC, the V&A in London, the museum of Modern Art Peru, and at the PHI Centre Montreal’s Sensory Stories Exhibition. Karen was a recently a  TED resident and an  AI Artist in Residence  at ThoughtWorks, where developed the RIOT project towards its final iteration as a multimodal, multi-player experience.

An in-demand public speaker, Karen shares her insights and practice at events around the world, from the FoST Global Summit  and the Strategic Storytelling Seminar Canada, to the Global Arts and Machine Learning Summit at the Google Cultural Institute Lab in Paris.


In October 2018, Karen led storytelling workshops "Our Brave New Worlds" at the Nederlands Film Festival, while in September she presented her work at the IFA+ Summit in Berlin and at Wired For Wonder Australia. Watch Karen’s previous talks this year including "The Film That Watches Your Back" - a presentation of RIOT at TED Residency and “Living Amongst Intelligent Machines” from ZKM. "Why we need to become Conscious Storytellers?" was Karen's talk at the future, science and media festival Silbersalz.

Read The Guardian's article about Karen's work and find out in the podcast Coffee Pod.

Find our more about Karen.

Watch below Karen's talk "Your Brain Is A Remote Control" at TEDxSydney.