Mindscape

artandsciencejournal:

Light Up the Skies

When two artists with different aesthetic backgrounds collaborate, they often create stunning pieces, and the collaboration between artist’s Aaron Koblin and Janet Echelman is no exception.

Janet Echelman, who has been featured already on Art & Science Journal, creates fishnet-like aerial sculptures that look as if they were floating entities in the sky. The nets’ shapes are manipulated to form anything from funnels to winged creatures. Aaron Koblin is an artist and designer who focuses on data and digital technologies, how this information relates to cultural trends and how people react to changing technologies.

These artists collaborated together on March 15, 2014 at TED 2014 to create “Skies Painted with Unnumbered Sparks” outside the Vancouver Convention Centre where the TED talks were being held. TED is integral to this installation, as the two artists met at TED 2011 after their talks. In order to make such an installation possible, Echelman needed the expertise of Autodesk, a 3D design engineering software that specializes in working with interesting design problems. The amazing feature about this outdoor installation is that passersby can choreograph the lights on the web with their smartphones, controlling the aesthetic nature of the piece through technology.

If you would like to see how a sculpture of this magnitude was imagined, and then installed, TED blog has a ‘making-of’ gallery.

The installation will be up in Vancouver until the 22nd of March, 2014.

-Anna Paluch

artandsciencejournal:

Weaving the Invisible Thread: Urban Fiction 2.0 by Petra Gemeinboeck

Urban Fiction 2.0 is a participatory installation that deploys locative devices and social media. Enacted in Sydney, Australia, the installation is activated by participants through a special mobile app that allows them to “weave an imaginary lace over Sydney’s urban and social landscape.”

With the app, users can move through physical space and cause disturbances to the imaginary “lace” projected onto a GPS rendering of the city. As the app measures the movements of each participant in real time, any motion or disturbance caused will immediately alter the virtual lace.

Images of lace, fabric, and thread symbolize the urban and social sphere and point to the idea of each participant’s role as a networked actor, moving through the space and collectively tracing their paths. An example of locative art, Urban Fiction 2.0 allows users to feel a heightened sense of awareness of their positions in the imaginary lacy grid of the city and in the physical space they occupy. With a nod to the locative capabilities of Web 2.0 platforms, Urban Fiction 2.0 enables participants to “weave” their own experiences into the model of the city grid, issuing a sense of their actions in the broader context of a networked society.

For more information about Petra Gemeinboeck’s work, please visit her website here.

- Victoria Nolte

artandsciencejournal:

Q&A With Geoffrey Harrison: An Interview with the Art and Science Journal

Geoffrey Harrison is a painter specializing in figuration and anatomy that has recently discussed his residencies in London with us. Check out the video above and the interview below to see what he has to share:

Lea Hamilton: Could you elaborate on your experience at your residency(ies?) What was it like to work with those specimens? Did you feel the environment influenced your body of work in the creative process itself as well as the content?

Geoffrey Harrison: I had been going into the Pathology Museum at St Bart’s for a while to look at the specimens and draw. I’d been working with anatomical images since I had a show at the Art Workers’ Guild in 2010 which was called ‘in the midst of life’. It was a series of paintings of dead animals. It sounds pretty grim, but was actually all about beauty and life. In some of the paintings it wasn’t clear whether the animal was alive or dead, while in others, it was pretty clear. I think these more explicitly visceral images led me towards the work I produced for the Bloomsbury Festival in 2011, which was an installation of very large drawings of ‘intestinal’ loops. I happened to be introduced to some people from the museum a huge nineteenth century, three story high, purpose built hall with galleried walkways on two upper levels. Somehow it is hidden away up a shabby staircase in a corner of the hospital. The shelves are crammed with specimens and the atmosphere is fairly unique but I was quite familiar by then with human specimens as both my parents had been Medical Illustrators, so I felt quite at home. It was a nice place to draw and the environment retained a Victorian atmosphere, which may have influenced me.

The more I discovered about the specimens however - the human aspect; the who and why and where and so on, the less I was at ease. I was pleased about that though. I didn’t want to get blasé about seeing such challenging things and really felt that it was important to still have an emotional response to the specimens. Much of the forensic collection have particularly sad and violent backstories, which brought a lot of that emotional content. I think that has carried through to the work I am doing now, which although not entirely focused on gross anatomy and specimens.

Working in both institutions has been really interesting experience. At the Museum, it was mainly a place for me to go and sketch and draw inspiration from. It was about the space and the contents. I ended up producing a series of work which I showed there and which has since been shown in a few other places and is due to travel overseas this year. The experience at the RVC has been more immersive and about the people and processes in the college as well as the objects that tend to attract my attention. In addition to producing artwork, I am involved in funding applications, public engagement and art teaching.

LH: How long has the concept of autopoiesis influenced your work?

GH: I started working with this concept perhaps before I realised it. I had long been in the habit of reducing the images I worked with to singular entities, which I eventually described as islands or archipelagos. In this way I was approaching this idea of margins and boundaries around things. I became a bit preoccupied with this idea of where one things ends and another begins and started to think about body parts and processes in this way. I think the work on islands really led to this because even though visually the things I was painting, animals, chairs, they were all surrogates for the human body, and by extension, the individual as a separate entity, self sufficient and isolated.

Of course, we are an interdependent species. We may kid ourselves that we are self-sufficient, and independent but like the hermit crabs I studied, we are actually totally dependent on a community and a bunch of other creatures. I have a compulsion to delineate and isolate, while at the same time recognising that the world doesn’t really work like that. Things are intricately linked and don’t necessarily end in crisp lines. Margins are blurred and diffuse as the seashore where the water percolates through the sand. You can’t really separate the two if you look closely enough. I recognise this and yet I am still drawn to delineate and classify. Is this cognitive dissonance?

Anyway, I wanted to somehow illustrate this paradox and create images of things that appear feasible as whole enclosed systems, but that aren’t possible. While doing some drawings of intestinal looking organs that were complete loops, like Mobius strips I was looking at M. C. Escher and I came across a book called ‘I am a Strange Loop’ by Douglas Hofstadter. His work led me to the concept of Autopoiesis, which I thought was an ideal description for my work and liked that it was relevant to mathematics and biology as well as philosophy and sociology.


LH: Both of your residencies (at Bart’s Pathology Museum and The Royal Veterinary College) are sort of hidden and tucked away. Given your interest in isolation, is that partly what drew you towards these residencies, or was it more based on past experience with anatomy and medical illustration?


GH: I’m not sure that I consciously made an effort to find places to work that were hidden away, but perhaps that made more more interested in them. I think I was fortunate enough to be introduced to these places as a result of similar work before, which yea, is probably all down to the Medical Illustration thing. It seems to be one continuum. Perhaps it will all loop back to the beginning at the end.


LH: How do you personally view the anatomical collections that you work with? Do they lean more toward being curiosities, or do they present themselves as preserved, perpetual objects?

GH: That’s a really interesting question. The nature of the ‘curious’ must depend on the viewer. I don’t see the specimens themselves as curious. Interesting and fantastic in some cases, yes, but I’d think I was being lazy if I stopped at curious, like I was simply noting an odd shaped vegetable. Some of the medical and veterinary specimens that I spend my time with are still relevant in a practical educational sense, while others are pretty much redundant in the face of trends of disease or medical progress. For some people, however, preserved specimens of unusual afflictions are gonna have a kind of ‘fairground sideshow’ quality and will remain curiosities, but if that inspires people to look beyond the bizarre and freakish and contemplate the ‘science’, that’s great.

Pickling and even plastination fundamentally change the nature of the specimen, so they aren’t really preserved verbatim. They are altered and won’t last forever anyway.

LH: I find it interesting that you have such great interest in self-sustaining objects, but the actual anatomical specimens that you study need to be carefully preserved and sustained by others. Is this boundary between sustaining and preserving blurred or disrupted by your interaction with the objects and subsequent created artworks? Do they become ‘fresh’ again, or is the boundary even relevant?

GH: Perhaps I am casting a fresh eye on the subject, which might give someone an alternative perspective, but I also think that while the specimens stay immutable (and this is not always the case) a med student, for example, may look at it one day and see one thing and the next something completely different according to the page they are on in their textbook. There are many ways to refresh a perspective. I think this boundary is totally relevant. That’s an intriguing boundary there. The point at which the world changes when we understand something about it. Secrets divulged, innocence lost. Hmmm.

I’m not sure this answers the question but I got intrigued by the idea of ‘fresh again’ when I was studying cane toads that had been squashed by traffic on an island where I used to live. The flattened corpses used to desiccate in the heat, but whenever it would rain, the amphibian hydrophilic skin would rehydrate and they’d become fresh again. In the end though, they’d disintegrate to nothing. The objects in the jar are in a very gradual state of deterioration. I think the fact that they continually need maintenance and care belies their ultimate impermanence. Someone will forget to top them up, they’ll spring a leak or get dropped. They are only going one way. Mind you, there is a pretty healthy looking specimen in the Barts’ collection that dates from the 1700s, so the journey to dust is longer for some than others…

cellostargalactica:

queenfattyoftherollpalace:

I don’t care how many times I’ve reblogged this 

prince derek your game is weak as fuck

(Source: seekelsey)

darksilenceinsuburbia:

Jake Stollery

COMPOSITE is a portraiture series of work that explores the evolution of self in its interplay between organic and digital identities. Each piece featured an accompanying QR code, linking to auxiliary content such as, behind the scenes videos and wallpapers for your mobile device. Artwork sequentially titled, ‘W’, ‘E’, ‘A’, ‘R’, ‘E²’, ‘ONE’.

All print artworks, 1000 x 666mm, Kodak Photographic Gloss Paper 190GSM, UV Treated Ink & Editions of 1.

Via  

Tumblr

artandsciencejournal:

Inside Out: The Art of Vesna Jovanovic

The art of science is in full bloom in the multimedia drawings of Vesna Jovanovic. Jovanovic, a visual artist based in Chicago, creates mysterious and complex images in which human organs, plants, and other organic shapes emerge out of abstract inky pools. Invoking the phenomenon of pareidolia, or the perception of meaningful forms from random stimuli (think Rorschach blots), Jovanovic typically begins her drawings by spilling ink on various 2-D media, including paper and Yupo (a polypropylene-based paper). In response to the shapes created by the ink, she draws in new elements to create a detailed and cohesive composition: cilia-like hairs sprout from shadowy watermarks; intestine-like tubes snake around a rivulet of ink; dividing cells blossom out of blotchy, reddish stains.

Overall, Jovanovic’s work reflects her interest in the broader question of what it means to have a body in an age of dizzying technological advancement and scientific discovery. Her work is a striking montage of the physical and the ephemeral: far from traditional medical illustration, Jovanovic’s compositions are thoughtful and poetic reflections on our relationship with nature and the human form.

Given her background in both visual art and chemistry, Jovanovic’s fascination with the intersection of art and science seems a natural fit. In addition to informing her drawings, her interest in science has tinged other aspects of her work, including her photography and ceramics practices. Vesna Jovanovic is currently completing a residency at the International Museum of Surgical Science in Chicago. To see more of her work, go to her website , and her fascinating blog, Traces.

- Suzanne Hood

artandsciencejournal:

Light Up the Skies

When two artists with different aesthetic backgrounds collaborate, they often create stunning pieces, and the collaboration between artist’s Aaron Koblin and Janet Echelman is no exception.

Janet Echelman, who has been featured already on Art & Science Journal, creates fishnet-like aerial sculptures that look as if they were floating entities in the sky. The nets’ shapes are manipulated to form anything from funnels to winged creatures. Aaron Koblin is an artist and designer who focuses on data and digital technologies, how this information relates to cultural trends and how people react to changing technologies.

These artists collaborated together on March 15, 2014 at TED 2014 to create “Skies Painted with Unnumbered Sparks” outside the Vancouver Convention Centre where the TED talks were being held. TED is integral to this installation, as the two artists met at TED 2011 after their talks. In order to make such an installation possible, Echelman needed the expertise of Autodesk, a 3D design engineering software that specializes in working with interesting design problems. The amazing feature about this outdoor installation is that passersby can choreograph the lights on the web with their smartphones, controlling the aesthetic nature of the piece through technology.

If you would like to see how a sculpture of this magnitude was imagined, and then installed, TED blog has a ‘making-of’ gallery.

The installation will be up in Vancouver until the 22nd of March, 2014.

-Anna Paluch

artandsciencejournal:

Crushed Goods

Using the medium of porcelain, artist Lei Xue’s series Drinking Tea (2001-2003) may be read as a commentary on how the production of commodities impacts the environment. It is a cluster of crushed cans, the intricate blue images distorted by grooves and bends, crushed into indiscernible shapes.

The environmental impact of creating porcelain goods includes extensive fresh water usage. As a result, the water put into the ground or rivers cause pollution. As well, air-borne particles from the sanding down of shapes impair breathing within the factories. Quantities of fluorine and lead are also potentially prone to leaking into the water or soil, around porcelain factory grounds. There are attempts to make this process more sustainable though. A recent paper suggested that is it possible to recycle up to 80% of the original water used in making porcelain commodities, towards the productions of the next batch.

This is where the conceptual message of the piece goes deeper. Aluminum cans are recyclable, so why shouldn’t the process of creating porcelain goods (or any goods for that matter) be? The artist’s work echoes the consciousness of the new generation, a more eco-friendly generation, attempting to find equilibrium between commodity and conservation. It is a juxtaposition of tradition and evolution in the world of goods production.

-Anna Paluch

darksilenceinsuburbia:

Kate Eric.

Feeder on the Flurry, 2012. Acrylic on canvas.

Looming the Hive, 2012. Acrylic on canvas.

Portrait 1, 2012. Acrylic on canvas.

Leila Heller Gallery

artandsciencejournal:

Globalizing the Tag

 You couldn’t necessarily call him a cyborg, or a magician, but artist Alex Kiessling has managed to use robotic arms to create artworks in three separate cities simultaneously. The project, called Long Distance Art, incorporates satellite feeds and industrial robots, acting as an extension of the artist’s hand around the globe. While Kiessling himself was drawing and painting in Vienna, the robots physically mimicked him in London and Berlin.

The piece itself sets up an interesting dialogue between street artists and telepresence. By introducing communications technology into his art practice, Kiessling has raised the bar of the mobility of street art, altering the context of graffiti to that of a global scale. He is also broadcasting and globalizing his own personal ‘tag’, or his identity as a street artist. The robots have allowed him to transcend the confines of space and location, making living in the city whose streets are the canvas unnecessary. As robots and technology become more available and affordable, it becomes easier for an artist to replicate this identity through their artwork. Kiessling’s project also marks an historic moment for graffiti itself by being able to extend the sociopolitical power of graffiti into separate cultural contexts. 

To view a video of the project in action, click here.

- Lea Hamilton

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