Special Topics issue: How can art influence science?
Letter from the Editor
The question of how art can influence science has long been on my mind. I knew that it could - I've had a handful of supportive, specific examples in my pocket for some years now, examples I heard or read about. These stories are my go-to material when talking about the potentials for two-way interaction between art and science, they are my external justification for why I run a residency program which pairs artists and scientists together to collaborate. But through years of repeating the same examples, I began to doubt myself - were these stories the result of statistically unlikely events, and actually a rare occurrence? Unlike art influenced by science, instances of science being influenced by art don't have a natural public presence, they don't get announced or exhibited. I decided the best way to answer this question comprehensively, or least make an attempt to do so, was to gather evidence from the source; from scientists themselves.
This issue is comprised of stories by international scientists who have actively engaged with the arts or in science-art collaboration, describing how this engagement has fed back into their own research. While this collection is by no means complete, I know of no other collection of this kind. It is my hope that with this collection, and perhaps future editions of this special topics issue, that we get closer to a cultural atmosphere where we will no longer have to ask what science gains from the arts, or why we should move from STEM to STEAM, or what a cross-disciplinary skill set can amount to. Without the need to justify cross-disciplinary work, we can focus on the fun part - the work itself!
I'd like to extend a special, and deep thank you to all who contributed to this issue. Your stories are profound, beautiful, and inspiring.
As always, I hope you enjoy this issue.
Julia Buntaine Hoel | Founder, Editor-in-Chief
October 4th, 6-7:30pm
MIT Press Bookstore, Cambridge MA
Leonardo is an academic, peer-reviewed journal which emphasizes the "writings of artists who use science and developing technologies" to create their work. The only journal of its kind, Leonardo celebrates 50 years of publishing this year around the world.
Science Gallery Lab Detroit is seeking interactive, participatory works for DEPTH, a free exhibition that will explore the power and complexities of water and its many roles in the physical and social world.
Open now through September 7th at R-Space Gallery (Ireland) is "From the Field," a solo exhibition by bioartist Anna Dumitriu as part of the Linen Biennale Northern Ireland. Dumitriu has long explored microbiology through the medium of textiles - this exhibition brings together new and existing works from the artist ranging in media from linen, wood, flax, ceramic, resin, hair, bacteria, and DNA.
The Francis Crick Institute is now home to Flow State, the latest installation work from artist Alex May. An ever-changing photo montage featuring the Institute's own activities, Flow State celebrates the work of Francis Crick and his scientific legacy in a sharp and dynamic aesthetic.