Nonvisual Art: Novel Images of Magical Beauty

Lisa Buttinger displayed meticulous attention to the most minute details as she went about completing her graduation project at Linz’s High School for Artistic Design. In this interview, she talks about what she calls nonvisual art, an innovative artistic medium that has garnered her twofold honors—the Golden Nica in the 2017 Prix Ars Electronica’s u19 – CREATE YOUR WORLD category and an Honorary Mention from the 2017 STARTS Prize.

2017 STARTS Prize: Innovative Projects That Cross the Boundaries of Disciplines

Dealing with complex issues calls for marshalling insights and skills from numerous fields, cultures and perspectives. Excellence in accomplishing this is precisely what the European Commission aims to honor with the STARTS Prize. Here, we present 2017’s best projects and what the jury’s statement has to say about them. Many will be featured in a special exhibition running at the Ars Electronica Festival in Linz.

Sophie Lamparter: “Designing our future can’t be left up to individuals”

The STARTS Prize awarded by the European Commission spotlights collaboration of science, technology and art. That’s the same approach taken by Sophie Lampartner, director of swissnex San Francisco and one of this year’s STARTS jurors. In this interview, she talks about trends at the nexus of these three domains.

Get Inspired

“GET INSPIRED – Promising Projects at the Nexus of Art, Technology and Science” was the theme of a showcase of innovative projects based in Linz and Upper Austria staged yesterday by Ars Electronica in cooperation with a regional association of young businesspeople. Join us for a look back at an inspiring evening.

STARTS Prize: The 2017 Prizewinners

This year’s STARTS PRIZE recipients come from Japan and Switzerland. “I’m Humanity” garnered the Grand Prize for Artistic Exploration for Etsuko Yakushimaru; the Grand Prize for Innovative Collaboration goes to Gramazio Kohler Research at ETH–Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich and the Self-Assembly Lab at MIT for their “Rock Print” installation.

VERTIGO STARTS: Artists Wanted!

Now that the 2017 STARTS Prizes have been selected, the European Commission’s STARTS initiative is launching another attractive program. Artists can now apply for a residency in which they create a new work of art using the technology of the R&D project of their choice. The entry deadline is May 22, 2017.

l’m Humanity

In l’m Humanity, Yakushimaru makes pop music with the use of the nucleic acid sequence of Synechococcus, which is a type of cyanobacteria. The musical information is converted into a genetic code, which was used to create a long DNA sequence comprising three con-nected nucleic acid sequences. The DNA was artificially composited and incorporated into the chromosomes of the microorganism. This genetically-modified microorganism with mu-sic in its DNA is able to continuously self-replicate. So even if humanity as we know it be-comes extinct, it will live on, waiting for the music within it to be decoded and played by the species that replaces humanity.

Rock Print

Rock Print shows the potential of using granular jamming for architectural purposes. These principles are applicable to a large range of granular materials which allow for use of local materials, and the fact that they can be fully returned to their original state points towards a truly sustainable construction method.

treelab

The goal of our artistic-scientific research project trees: Rendering Ecophysiological Processes Audible, was to connect sounds that occur in trees with ecophysiological processes and thus investigate and render perceptible processes in plants that are not noticeable to humans. The acoustic emissions of a tree in the Swiss Alps were recorded with special acoustic sensors, and all other non-auditory ecophysiological measurement data were sonified–that is, translated into sounds and music. The recordings and sonified measurements were implemented in a number of different media art installations under the preamble “treelab”, which at the same time served as a research environment, in order to display and examine the temporal and spatial connections between plant sounds, physiological processes, and environmental conditions in an artistic­scientific observation system.

Sentient Veil

Sentient Veil is a jewel-like canopy containing multiple miniature sound processors interwoven with hundreds of digitally controlled lights installed within the historic galleries of the lsabella Stewart Gardner Museum. The work pursues intimacy and sensitivity through intricate miniature components and layers of diffusive, hovering material close to the scale of a human body. Sentient Veil is composed of digitally fabricated cellular textile lining floating over the ceiling surface of the gallery. The work is composed of finely detailed interlinking skeletal components containing distributed computational controls with soft LED lighting and whispering interactive sound functions.