The Vulnerability of the Query
Wander/Wonder explores the nature of speculation and our changing relationship with physicality through two separate but connected experiences: Wander, a walkable virtual street map of Baltimore City with all buildings removed except for psychic reader storefronts, and Wonder, a zero-gravity digital astral plane experienced as a virtual reality environment. While the interactor flies through the Wonder side via an Oculus Rift VR headset, the Wander side is projected on a screen for spectators to view. The interactor uses a crystal ball controller to navigate both environments simultaneously – one person guides the experiences of spectators in Wander while fully immersed in the VR environment of Wonder.
Interacting with the environments challenges participants to consider their relationship to the future in an increasingly speculative age.
Wander presents a world where the physical aspects of the city have faded, leaving only the speculation offered by psychics. Predictive algorithms use metadata such as browser activity, searches, and previous purchases to anticipate future actions by a user, much as psychics gather bits of data to divine the future through arcane or mysterious processes.
Wonder offers the opportunity to surrender physical reality in exchange for an experience beyond reality, a sort of second Sight. This reimagining of the trope of the blind oracle represents a more hopeful interpretation of the transformative powers of technology.
Mollye Bendell makes digital and analog sculptures for digital and analog worlds. Her practice explores the dissolving line between the digital and the physical that defines the human/user experience of “things.” The act of making unfamiliar methods approachable as a teacher has pushed her artistic practice towards unfamiliar media such as virtual reality, 3D printing, laser cutting, CNC machining, circuit building and bending, and codeable objects. Her recent work uses the intangible nature of electronic media as a metaphor for exploring vulnerability, visibility, and longing in a world that can feel isolating.
Mollye earned her BA in Sculpture from the Glasgow School of Art in 2012 and will complete her MFA in Intermedia and Digital Arts at UMBC in 2018. She lives and works in Baltimore, Maryland.
Shmoogle – Anarchy in the Googlearchy!
Abstract: Presented as an installation, the piece brings to the audience an experience of Augmented Listening of the Wind, where subtle changes in an open-air environment drive generative soundscapes. Using wind sensitive systems to detect orientation and speed of the wind, and acoustic events, that are registered and processed as a generative sound piece by a network of sensor networks. The work takes as a reference an ancient instrument is known as the Aeolian Harp (cf. Kircher, A ca 1650.), that was used as an object that enables sacred spaces, such as mountains and temples, to “speak with humans” according to an automatic mechanism that played with strings and resonators by the aleatoric forces of wind.
By using the advantages of embodied and pervasive computing, this installation is featured as an array of independent sensor-transmitter nodes. The nodes are used to collect sounds and sensor data, using different ranges of radio signals to transmit raw and processed data, through long distances, informing about environmental conditions among them. The installation visitors are able to listen to the resulting generative piece by using a provided set of FM radio receivers: to tune different channels of information produced by the nodes. These multiple transmissions are meant to convey the different processes involved in the interactive data manipulation that implies the piece. The possible entanglements between electromagnetic signals and wind flux could bring speculative relations between the Aeolian and the Artificial in mutual collaboration or disruption.
Wind Flux time-based events are captured through a hybrid setup, that combines electroacoustic components (microphones, light sensing, temperature, and wind flux sensors) in coordination with an artificial intelligence system. This system arrangement is intended to source environmental signals to return them as an autonomous environmental computation, within a series of location-based nodes. The networked scheme aims to articulate a spatially widespread sensor for open spaces, that is arranged as an entangled ecosystem of data and sonic signals. Originated from wind forces, the piece aims to introduce an understanding of how location-based features can teem with an artificial medium, to present an extended image of the pervasive flux of wind.
As a study of Augmented Listening, the installation conceives a reflection on micro and macrostructural transformations of the wind dynamics, to produce a database of patterns produced over long periods of time. This analysis could be used to create a map of wind fluxes that stretches from the immediate perceivable to the long-lasting wind transformations. The importance of arranging different lengths of time in wind events will be correlated to a resulting, ever transforming, sound composition that echoes past, current and possible states of transitions. Such analysis of time patterns from wind flux relies on the network of sensor nodes, in order to provide an analysis of multiple data streams that feed a neural network program, which role is to create patterns that combine wind soundscapes, radio signals, and data sonification as sonic elements to play in the installation.
Mexican-born media artist Juan Duarte Regino works on interaction as a tool for generative art experiments. He is part of Pixelache, an art and activist group based in Helsinki. Currently, a doctoral student in New Media at Aalto University in Finland, his current research focuses on Environmental Media, using open source technologies for artistic experiments, based on the knowledge of DIY communities and grassroots initiatives.
Abstract: Robinson (2015) is an animatronic sculpture inspired by the filmmaker Patrick Keiller’s documentary fiction Robinson in Space (1996). With an attempt to reinterpret the film, I created an imaginative Robinson, the film’s unseen narrator. Robinson quotes the 1960s French radical situationist Raoul Vaneigem, who demanded that “a bridge between imagination and reality must be built.” It then takes the spectator on an inner “subjective” journey through post-industrial England. Robinson presents us the two worlds: The unseen world of England’s prosperity, and the visible world of England’s decline. The wealth is hidden in exclusivity and discreteness, the apparent poverty and desolation is the result of power. In between, lies fragments of a never-achieved Utopia.
The project uses open source programming, 3d printing, and robotic devices to simulate living beings. It brings living characteristics to lifeless objects. The sophistication of its mechanics and mechanisms entail a notion about life as simulated by art and science. The project brings together digital fabrication methods and traditional art and craft technique. It explores intersections between robotics, 3d printing, open source programming and Computer Numeric Control tools, as well as sculpting, moulding, and casting technique. Moreover, the production process emphasises collaboration and experimentation by combining separate domains and disciplines. I collaborated with various organisations and companies, from Hollywood special effect company Schell Sculpture Studio to London Hackspace.
By blurring the lines between the animate and the inanimate, Robinson embodies a philosophical question about what makes a living being. It stresses a spirit of playfulness by expanding pre-existing technologies, re-developing publicly shared programming code, design information and appropriating traditional art and craft skills. Please see project video documentation: http://www.tingtongchang.co.uk/robinson-video.html
Ting-Tong Chang is a Taiwanese artist based in London. He received his MFA at Goldsmiths, University of London, and has exhibited internationally, with solo exhibitions at Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop(2013), Kunstkraftwerk Leipzig(2015), CFCCA Manchester(2015), Asia House London(2016) and Taipei Fine Arts Museum(2018). He has participated in group shows and commissioned projects at the Taipei Biennial, Saatchi Gallery, Craft Council, Compton Verney and Wellcome Trust. Chang’s major awards include the Edinburgh Creative Initiative Award 2013, RBS Bursary Award 2015, RISE Award 2016, VIA Arts Prize 2016 and EWAAC Award 2017. His works can be found in the Taipei Fine Arts Museum, Embassy of Brazil London, Noblesse Collection Seoul, and private collections in Europe and Asia.
SEE AND BE SEEN: DIY neural networks
The device, which is proposed for user interaction, functionally represents a nervous system equipped with a viewing organ and sensors and effectors which are intertwined with its environment. The device combines electromechanical actuators, an interface consisting of optoelectronic neural networks, code and connectivity: four technological vectors that provide a sufficient basis for a proposal based on an intuitive dialogue between objects and subjects.
The art assembly has more than 100 analogue electronic units which emulate biological neuron activation function: some are previously interconnected by layers or ganglia, including a viewing organ and others are directly available and can be modified. The activity of the synaptic patterns, which are being generated, can be connected to a visualization data system and thus, the immediate consequences of our interventions -and other agents which can induce computational events- can be monitorized. All of these elements help us to speculate on the origin and sense of emerging patterns of artificial behaviour, these that challenge us from an apparent autonomy and inaccessibility.
Their research is based on the crossroads of Art / Science / Technology. Currently, they focus on the exploration of the expressive possibilities offered by analog / digital electronic devices as a support for the representation of biological systems in action. Zubiaga and Cilleruelo take part in the financed research project Connected Bodies. Art and Identity Cartographs in the Transmedia Society, which addresses self-representation, identity construction and its social impact. In addition, they have studied the relationships between Art Education and New Technologies, using recyclable, low cost and sustainable materials as relevant factors when applying the ‘learning by doing’ approach.
Their most recent proposals have been exposed in the framework of different international congresses and symposia, in Valencia, Lisbon or Vienna, among others.
Lat-sac and Blo-nut: Expanding our design language for machine expression.
As humans, we tend to rely on zoomorphic or anthropomorphic references to help us understand machines with life-like behaviour. So, what happens if we design lively and expressive behaviour within deliberately abstract and ambiguous form?
I propose exhibiting Blo-nut and Lat-Sac, two soft robots designed for dramatic expressions, within the elastic constraints of a donut shape. I will also invite the audience to interact with them.
By provoking imaginative interpretation to make sense of these ambiguous objects, I seek to broaden the discussion of how we might design and experience expressive or social machines in the future.
Harvey is a designer and artist based in Copenhagen working with Interaction and Industrial design. In his research Harvey explores organic movement of abstract form as a playful performance between man and machine, seeking to broaden our interpretation of machine expression. Harvey is currently working as a research assistant and assistant lecturer at the IT University of Copenhagen.
Interfacing in live electronics performances.
Abstract: Finnish media artist Jukka Hautamäki will be talking about how he makes live electronics sound performances with his diy instruments.
Through his practice Hautamäki considers the relationship between modern hardware hacking with similar practices of the 60’s and 70’s, and during his talk will also speak about these influences and his relationship to media art history and media archeology.
Hautamäki’s sound performances are microscopic studies into electronic sound. His live setup consists of primitive sound devices, which he manipulates in real time by changing components and reconnecting circuits.
Live setup is an abstraction of a sound machine divided into miniature components, which all have their specific task. Together these sonic components are creating vast network of tools for experimental performance.
In his live electronics performance practice he experiments with interfacing, by integrating bodily performance with media technology. Hautamäki will adress the concept of “forced” improvisation: his intentional challenge of using laborious interfaces, and turning chaos and trash-aesthetics into instruments of live electronics and inventiveness.
During the performances unexplainable electronic phenomenas happen, to which he is trying to react by improvising with sound. He is curious to study methods for creating sonic narration in relation to magic and hauntology.
Jukka Hautamäki (b. 1971 in Oulu) is a Helsinki-based media artist who works with sound, light, moving image and electronics. In his artworks, he studies new levels and interpretations of materiality, mediated by technology and media.
Hautamäki has performed live in Europe and North America. Performance venues include La-bas Biennale, Lal lal lal and AAVE festival in Helsinki, Ges21 in St. Petersburg, Mengi in Reykjavik, Avatar Centre in Quebec City, Electric Knife in London, Madame Claude in Berlin, CT-SWaM at Fridman Gallery, Harvestworks and Trans-Pecos in New York. His music style could be described as abstract noise with a rhythmic twist.
Hautamäki has kept numerous interactive sound art and electronics workshops, courses and lectures in Europe and North America. More information: jukkahautamaki.com
Transplanting the Self: microbiome anthropophagy (Fiction or Intervention)
We live the rise of an era where the human kind is mastering engineering behavior from a molecular level. A growing number of experiments in cells and molecular biology show that the proportion of each microbe species in mammals’ gut doesn’t just influence digestion – it has a direct and decisive influence in brain development, cognition, and not easily measurable emergences from micro, nano and subatomic scale events and processes such as personality, mood, and consciousness. A growing number of researches investigating the relationship between gut microbiota, human brain and behavior examines the impacts of managing or engineering specific microbial colonies in human hosts. For EVA2018 we propose building and performing a fictional scenario as an art and sci installation, based on the administration of cultured microbiome samples of given individuals with specific personalities and that is linked to the workshop “Psychobiotics: engineering melancholic microbes” designed and realized by the artist in which samples of the volunteers saliva (members of the CrossLab research group) were collected and cultivate to produce the ‘probiotics’ that will integrate the artwork. Imagine choosing one personality to ‘embody’ a time in a vending machine that gives access to a small collection of encapsulated microbiome samples (mixed cultures i.e. microbial associations or communities) of donators such distinguished scientists and writers, talented musicians, revolutionary media artists and theorists – the possibilities are endless. Exploring this idea, the proposed art and science work can be considered as a conceptual anthropophagic exercise that invites volunteers to participate in a specific scenario: choosing drinks containing a ‘microbial blend’ from cultured microbiome samples of real individuals that have a specific expression of it – ‘personality donators’ that have emergent behavioral patterns derived from the chemical interactions and integrations between their body cells and their gut microbiome. You take the bottle and by ingesting the ‘product’ one will start a process of transmutation of the self that evokes human ancient desires and rituals – anthropophagi in a molecular level. Collecting and cultivating the saliva microbiome of the volunteers that participates in the above mentioned workshop, we recall and explore ancient beliefs as the mystical power of human saliva in the middle east and islamic cultures and rituals of cannibalism from native Brazilian tribes.
Clarissa Ribeiro, Ph.D., is an Architect, Media Artist, and Researcher, teaching experimentaldesignstrategiesforfirstandfinalyearundergradstudentsinBrazil, attheUniversityofFortaleza,wheresheisthedirectoroftheCrossLab,andtheLIP
–LabforInnovationandPrototyping.SinceSeptember2017sheishostingthefirst Leonardo ISAST LASER talks to take place in Brazil, organizing the themed conversation between artist and scientists monthly. As an independent artist, she has been producing and exhibiting experimental interactive installations internationally. From 2014 to 2015, joined the Roy Ascott Studio`s team as an AssociateProfessorfortheB.A.inTechnoeticArts,inShanghai,afterbeingawarded aFulbrightgrantinArts(2013),livinginLosAngeles,California,asaPostdoctoral ResearchScholar,connectedtotheUCLAArt|SciCenterandLab.DuringherPh.D.in VisualArtsbytheUniversityofSaoPaulo,Brazil,bythetimeshewastogetherwith ProfessorGilberttoPrado’sgroup,shespentoneyearinUKasavisitingresearch memberoftheCAiiA-HubofthePlanetaryCollegium.
Anatomy of an Interconnected System
Presented at EVA-Copenhagen in an abridged format, the performative lecture “Anatomy of an Interconnected System” (2017) looks at how today’s understanding of organisms as programmable machineries emerges from an conceptual continuum. The evolution of such continuum is traceable in the construction of space in classical and contemporary artworks. The work is structured in a lecture and a participative performance which critically frame the discourse on wet machines in a historical-philosophical perspective. Finally, participants engage in an intense bodily experience featuring ancestral materials such earth, soil, and bones, reflecting body and space.
Today, humans can design, control and engineer organisms in unprecedented ways though biotechnology – in other words, human agency on evolution can happen in times and scales unseen before. How does this affect the way humans understand ecosystems? Are ecosystems and organisms machines that can be improved, a complex that can be controlled, or an interconnected system with leaky holes and uncertain areas? The double register of “Anatomy of an Interconnected System” elaborates on concepts from the history of art and philosophy to tackle the mentioned questions and a bodily session where to imagine how the idea of organism can be transformed by the wet machines discourse.
Pevere collaborates with Aalto transdisciplinary platform CHEMARTS. She is founder member of the Berlin advocacy group AG21c and member of the Finnish Bioart Society. Most recent exhibitions include State Festival for open science and society, Berlin, curated by Daniela Silvestrin; Non-human agents, Art Laboratory Berlin, curated by Christian de Lutz and Regine Rapp, Emergent Forms in Art and Science, Fields Insitute Toronto, curated by Roberta Buiani. www.margheritapevere.com
The Living Language Project
Abstract: Protoplasmic routes is an audiovisual BioArt project. It focuses on the evolution of humanity and our vital relation with technology and microorganisms. Our symbionts and co-travelers ever since our species emerged millions of years ago. The exploration of the complex interactions of the growth, movement, and learning of slime mold Physarum polycephalum inside multicursal acrylic mazes from a posthuman perspective is the main focal point of this art-science project.
I construct acrylic mazes inside Petri dishes previously prepared with an Agar-based medium. In the center of the mazes and the peripheral regions, I put raw oat flakes. In the center of the mazes, I set a chip of dry sclerotium, a dormant colony of Physarum polycephalum. Oatmeal seems to be a gourmet delicacy of slime mold. The high-concentration of carbohydrates allows it to be nourished and proliferate.
This multi-nucleated protoplasm grows approximately one centimeter every hour. It connects food source-points from the inside-out of the acrylic mazes. It creeps underneath, above and through the border walls. This nonconformist act of “jumping” border walls reveals a metaphorical transformation of a multicursal maze into a unicursal labyrinth. I find this nonconformist act and metaphorical change envisioning and inspiring.
My work explores the threshold of phenomenological perception, audience attention and the mystery of imaginary worlds I perceive between microscopic and macroscopic dimensions. My research is primarily concerned with the current intersection between science, immersive technologies, and live performing arts.
Those Algorithmic Lives of Ours
Abstract: The Those Algorithmic Lives of Ours installation exemplifies the often substantial part algorithms play in people’s lives. It demonstrates that people are quite experienced in encountering, de-coding and appropriating algorithms in many contexts of everyday life and prepared to do it. The ensuing action regularly takes the form of playful exploration. In the installation, various everyday objects are made available for participants to interact with. The objects are selected for their algorithmic properties. They embody algorithms in material, such as the Rubik cube. The artefacts on-location can be compared and categorized, based on participant experience with them, in dynamic negotiation processes.
Daniel is Associate Professor at the ITU, Copenhagen, and member of the Center for Computer Games Research (game.itu.dk) and the Pervasive Interaction Technology Lab (PitLab, pitlab.itu.dk). Daniel writes, composes, codes, builds, performs and plays. He is interested in artistic, analytic, explorative, critical and subversive approaches to and practices of play. Discourses he is specifically interested in, are play and materiality, play and learning, and critical play. He aims to integrate and constrast methods and practices of art, design, media studies, engineering and education. He runs the University’s monthly workshop series which is about electronics, mechanics, alchemy, interface devices and dangerous things. In his own practice, he makes interactive works which are shown at art exhibitions, academic conferences and popular events. (More info at www.dace.de)