Leonardo, Volume 47, Issue 1 | Leonardo/ISAST

Leonardo, Volume 47, Issue 1

February 2014

Contents

Editorial

Leonardo Gallery

Artist's Article

  • Can Personal Meaning Be Derived from Science?
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    The artist has derived deep personal meaning from the vast and intricate world revealed by science. Beyond unearthing facts and inspiring alluring images, this intricate world contributes to an overall context for one's life. She also acknowledges its ethic of concern for the integrity of research results.

General Note

  • Zdeněk Sýkora and François Morellet: Parallels and Complementarity
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    This paper compares and examines in mathematical terms the work of Zdeněk Sýkora and François Morellet devoted to structures and lines. Using concrete examples, the paper demonstrates that, despite many apparent similarities, the artists' approaches are considerably different. A farewell letter by François Morellet to Zdeněk Sýkora, who died on 12 July 2011, is included.

Color plates

General Articles

  • Sensing Nanotechnologies through the Arts: Seeing and Making on the Surface of Things
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    The author assesses the role played by the surface in selected nanoscience and nanotechnology (N) practices by examining the interaction between surfaces and their viewers. In N, issues of scale and perception challenge those involved in science-art projects, forcing them to engage with nano-objects and surfaces by using either highly specialized instruments or metaphors. The most interesting examples of nano-based artworks give the audience the opportunity to interact with N through haptic sensing.

  • A Viewpoint on the Computing-Art Dialogue: The Classification of Interactive Digital Artworks
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    The author provides a viewpoint on the dialogue between computing and art by describing a framework for classification of Interactive Digital Artworks: information technology systems in which spectators are involved in the production of the artistic output. The author bases his approach on the input-process-output view of information systems and relates it to the “Computing as a Science” viewpoint. The framework is validated by classifying 33 interactive digital artworks presented at various international exhibitions.

  • Open Source Architecture: An Exploration of Source Code and Access in Architectural Design
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    The term open source is increasingly applied to architecture, yet there is little consensus about what it means in this context. This paper explores how different literal and metaphoric interpretations of the “access to source code” principle, set by the founders of the Free and Open Source Software movements, are being applied to architecture. The authors explore several challenges that have arisen in the translation of open source rhetoric from cyberspace to architectural space and discuss paths for new conceptual and programmatic agendas promoting user empowerment and democratization in architectural design.

Historical Perspective

  • Systems and Automatisms: Jack Burnham, Stanley Cavell and the Evolution of a Neoliberal Aesthetic
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    This paper compares Jack Burnham's “systems esthetics” and Stanley Cavell's “automatisms,” linking them by way of organizational and systems theories of the mid-20th century and the rise of the post-medium condition in art. Although rarely paired, curator and critic Burnham and philosopher Cavell offer similar ontologies of art in the post--World War II period. Their ideas freed artists from old constraints of formalism and medium specificity while foreshadowing the rise of an artistic atomization driven by technology and economics. If Burnham's concept of systems aesthetics is concerned with a sense of cybernetic connectivity based on a feedback loop between the artist, artwork, art community and monetizing power of the market, then Cavell's automatisms describe a condition of laissez-faire independence in which each artist must work entrepreneurially, wholly for and unto herself.

Special Section of Leonardo Transactions: Water Is in the Air

  • Water Is in the Air—Introduction
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    In June 25 and 26 2012, in the framework of the European StudioLab project, Leonardo/Olats co-organized with IMéRA in Marseille, France, the workshop “Water is in the Air”.

  • Science and Art of Sculpturing Fluids
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    The role of aesthetics is analysed through examples of the author's work in both science and art science.

  • Walking Clouds and Augmented Reverie
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    This work focuses on the imaginary aspects of the embodied exploration of virtual matter. Thanks to a motion capture device and a real-time simulation system, modifications of bodily density can be experienced through a cloud-avatar. The mutual influence of the cloud behaviour and the user's action offers a great deal of freedom for expressive performances and creative interactions. It also provides a new mode of engagement in virtual images, allowing for the experience of a peculiar kind of dynamic reverie, which is virtually augmented and poetically enriched through the dialog with the cloud-matter.

  • Memory Vapor
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    Though initially intended for studying cloud nucleation, the cloud chamber accidentally led to the pivotal discovery of cosmic rays: a continuous cascade of subatomic particles, arriving to Earth from outer space. In the authors' artwork, Memory Vapor, the ephemeral condensation trails seeded by these particles are scanned and illuminated by a white laser sheet, transforming the cloud medium into a dynamic prism that vastly extends the spatio-temporal resolution of particle trajectories. The article also recounts the authors' prior aquatic and gaseous endeavors.

  • On the Modification of Man-Made Clouds: The Factory Cloud
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    The following article discusses anthropological clouds and in particular industrial clouds, which are exemplary for modalities of art-science collaboration. It was written for the “Water Is in the Air” workshop and is part of the forthcoming book Man Made Clouds.

  • Paparuda
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    Paparuda is the title of a project carried out in June 2011, which consisted in artificially provoking rain on the border between the United States of America and Canada.

  • Anti-entropic Role of Art
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    This article explores an anti-entropic role of art in the service of designing a better world. The vehicle for this journey is art and the steering wheel a concept of design-science developed by Buckminster Fuller. Using the example of her recently produced piece entitled “The Cloud,” the author demonstrates a collaborative spirit of art and science through the process of creation.

  • The Durance: Interlaced Waters: Art-Science Collaborations and Audiovisual Research
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    “La Durance, parcours et regards” is the title of an audiovisual experiment (2003–2004) carried out in association with the laboratory “Environment, genome, evolution” (EGEE/Aix Marseille Université). Conceived at first as a scientific documentary, the project advanced mixing different approaches, including biology, biodiversity, eco-paleontology, history, geography, sociology and arts. The support of new digital technologies appeared a better way than a linear documentary to reproduce a multidisciplinary conception and the complexity of the Durance River.

  • Around the Cusp Singularity and the Breaking of Waves
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    WAVES is an “Art-Science” project on water surface waves. The authors aim to visualize the behaviour of water waves during their evolution: generation, focusing and breaking. Relying on the general property of waves to focus when properly generated or reflected, the authors use a parabolically shaped wave maker to focus water waves in a region of the water surface called the Huygens cusp in optics and then record these breakings using a fast video camera. A novel and spectacular vision of wave breakings is obtained when playing at slow speed.

Transactions

  • Visualizing the News: Mutant Barcodes and Geographies of Conflict
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    This paper outlines emerging research concerned with visualizing online news archives. The authors make a distinction between the use of visualization for data journalism and the evolution of reporting on current affairs over extended periods of time.

  • Mimetic Inquiry: Ethnography, Creative Analysis, and Digital Tools
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    Over the past three years, the author has pursued a method for developing interpretive exhibit materials that synthesizes ethnographic approaches, critical analysis, and creative practice. The term “mimetic inquiry” is used to describe this method, drawing on articulations of mimesis as a “thematic concept” that tracks through the history of aesthetics as a process of representation-with-transformation. The author also discusses the genesis and goals of mimetic inquiry.

  • Appropriate Sound Effector for Electronic Music Prototyping
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    The Appropriate Sound Effector (ASE) is a small, portable module to be attached to an existing acoustic instrument to modify its original sound, giving it an electronic timbre. It is composed of all of the basic components necessary for the generation of electronic sound and uses an open-source-based microcontroller in the module to maximize its expandability and for ease of future development. This project eventually showed a different possibility for appropriate technology when ASE is applied to musical applications.

  • Alternative Ways of Seeing the Inner Body: an Arts-Led Approach to Visualising MRI Scan Data
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    As artists working with clinical radiological data how might we identify and develop new models of working within the context of disease communication? Historically, we can identify various models of mediating human inner body spaces. This practice-led research explores how a blended model of 3-D CGI image creation can result in imagery that moves beyond the didactic.

Leonardo Reviews

  • Lesabéndio: An Asteroid Novel by Paul Scheerbart. Wakefield Press, Cambridge, MA, U.S.A., 2012. Originally published in German, 1913. 280 pp., illus. Trade. ISBN: 976-0-9841155-9-4
  • Philosophical Essays: A Critical Edition—Fernando Pessoa edited by Nuno Ribeiro. Contra Mundum Press, New York, U.S.A., 2012. 190 pp. Paper. ISBN: 978-0-983-697-268
  • Wartime Kiss: Visions of the Moment in the 1940s by Alexander Nemerov. Princeton University Press, Princeton, NJ, U.S.A., 2012. 184 pp., illus. Trade. ISBN: 978-0-69-114578-5
  • What Was Contemporary Art? by Richard Meyer. MIT Press, Cambridge MA, U.S.A., 2013. 360 pp., illus. ISBN: 987-0-26-213508-5
  • Afterimage of Empire: Photography in Nineteenth-Century India by Zahid R. Chaudhary. University of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis, MN, U.S.A., 2012. 272 pp., illus. Trade, paper. ISBN: 978-0-8166-7748-1; ISBN: 978-0-8166-7749-8
  • Mute Poetry, Speaking Pictures by Leonard Barkan. Princeton University Press, Princeton, NJ, U.S.A., 2012. 216 pp., illus. Trade. ISBN: 978-0-69-114183-1
  • The Fourth Dimension and Non-Euclidean Geometry in Modern Art, Revised Edition by Linda Dalrymple Henderson. MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, U.S.A., 2013. 740 pp., illus. Trade. ISBN: 978-0-262-58244-5
  • My Life by Isadora Duncan, with an introduction by Joan Acocella. Liveright Publishing Corporation, New York, U.S.A., 2012. Revised and updated from 1927 version. 368 pp. Paper. ISBN: 978-0-87140-318-6
  • Beyond Contemporary Art by Etan Jonathan Ilfeld. Vivays Publishing, London, U.K., 2012. 240 pp. Paper. ISBN: 978-1-908126-22-1
  • Illusions in Motion: Media Archaeology of the Moving Panorama and Related Spectacles by Erkki Huhtamo. MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, U.S.A., 2013. 456 pp., illus. Trade. ISBN: 978-0-26-201851-7
  • August 2013
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