META-LIFE: Biotechnologies, Synthetic Biology, A-Life and the Arts

It is my great pleasure to announce the publication of the Leonardo – MIT Press ebook Meta-Life. Biotechnologies, Synthetic Biology, ALife and the Arts that I co-edited with Roger Malina and Louise Whiteley.

It is a real « mammoth »: 45 articles – 691 pages (not sure how you count an electronic book pages but if Amazon and MIT Press say so, we believe them!) and all that for the price of a bottle of sparkling water in a Parisian brasserie, that is 8.23 US $ (yep ! I paid 6 € for one recently …). But more seriously, here a short text of presentation of the book and its table of content.

META-LIFE: Biotechnologies, Synthetic Biology, A-Life and the Arts

A Leonardo-MIT Press e-book edited by Annick Bureaud, Roger Malina and Louise Whiteley

Editorial Committee: David Benqué, Annick Bureaud, Oron Catts, Matthew Gardiner, Roger F. Malina, Nell Tenhaaf, Ruth West, Louise Whiteley

AMAZON URL: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00LI69BQO

An exo-life may not come from outer space hiting the Earth riding a meteorite but very well from the lab, designed by a scientist —unless it is an artist— weaving biology and computing in a petri dish or a bioreactor as a vessel.

With biotechnologies, synthetic biology and Artificial Life, artists have opened new avenues in the artworld, going from still to autonomous objects to living creatures, exploring the thin border between animate and inanimate, confronting the grown, the evolved, the born and the built, raising aesthetical but also social, political and ethical issues.

In this ground breaking collection, the editors have commission new original essays by key figures in these fields and collected over 40 articles previously published in the Leonardo Journal that document the ideas and practice of artists involved in these areas as well as theoreticians and historians.

Chapters include: Between Bio, Silico and Synthetic: Of Life and Arts; Artificial Life and the Arts; Bioart; Bio-Fiction, Design, Architecture; DIY Biology-Biohacking (see below for full Table of Contents).

This ebook has a web companion

The Meta-Life e-book is a project by Leonardo/Olats as an outcome of the European Studiolab Project ), supported by the European Commission Seventh Framework Programme, in partnership with Leonardo/ISAST and MIT Press and in collaboration with ATEC at the University of Texas at Dallas.

Table of Contents

Preface, Roger Malina, Meta-Life: « Aha » Moments That Drive Art-Science

Introduction, Annick Bureaud, « Art at the Future Tense »

1 – Between Bio, Silico and synthetic: of Life and arts

- Nell Tenhaaf, « “Trust Regions” for Art/Sci », 2014

- Oron Catts & Ionat Zurr, « Countering the Engineering Mindset: The Conflict of Art and Synthetic Biology, 2014

- Amy M. Youngs, « The Fine Art of Creating Life », 2000

- Michael John Gorman, « The Sweet Smell of Synthetic Biology, GROW YOUR OWN… Life After Nature, at Science Gallery », 2014

- Matthew Gardiner & Al. « Project Genesis: Ars Electronica », 2014

2 – ARTIFICIAL LIFE AND THE ARTS

2.1 – ALife – At the Crossroad of Art, Science and Philosophy

- Nell Tenhaaf, « As Art Is Lifelike: Evolution, Art, and the Readymade », 1998

- Edward A. Shanken, “Life as We Know It and/or Life as It Could Be: Epistemology and the Ontology/Ontogeny of Artificial Life », 1998

- Kenneth E. Rinaldo, “Technology Recapitulates Phylogeny: Artificial Life Art”, 1998

- Ursula Huws, “Nature, Technology and Art: The Emergence of a New Relationship?”, 2000

- Mark Bedau, “The Scientific and Philosophical Scope of Artificial Life”, 2002

- Alvaro Moreno, “Artificial Life and Philosophy”, 2002

2.2 – ALife – Artworks

- Sommerer Christa, Mignonneau Laurent, “Art as a Living System: Interactive Computer Artworks”, 1999

- Ray Thomas S., « Aesthetically Evolved Virtual Pets », 2001

- Jane Prophet, “Sublime Ecologies and Artistic Endeavors: Artificial Life and Interactivity in the Online Project TechnoSphere”, 1996

- Bruce Damer, “The Cyberbiological Worlds of Nerve Garden: A Test Bed for VRML 2.0”, 1998

- Kusahara Machiko, « The Art of Creating Subjective Reality: An Analysis of Japanese Digital Pets », 2001

- Anna Dumitriu and Blay Whitby, “Cybernetic Bacteria 2..0, 2011

- Nell Tenhaaf, « Art Embodies A-Life: The VIDA Competition », 2008

3 – BIOART

3.1 – BioArt – Creating with Living Matter

- Adam Zaretsky, « Viva Vivo! Living Art Is Dead”, 2004

- Steve Tomasula, “Genetic Art and the Aesthetics of Biology”, 2002

- George Gessert, “Bastard Flowers”, 1996

- Suzanne Anker, “Gene Culture: Molecular Metaphor in Visual Art”, 2000

3.2 – BioArt – Creations

- George Gessert, “Notes on Genetic Art”, 1993

- Eduardo Kac, “GFP Bunny”, 2003

- Marta de Menezes, “The Artificial Natural: Manipulating Butterfly Wing Patterns for Artistic Purposes”, 2003

- Catts Oron, Zurr Ionat, « Growing Semi-Living Sculptures: The Tissue Culture & Art Project », 2002

- Catts Oron, « Not Moving – Living », 2014

- Tagny Duff, Jill Muhling, Maria Grade Godinho and Stuart Hodgetts, “How to Make Living Viral Tattoos”, 2011

- Patricia Noronha, “Yeast Biopaintings: Biofilms as an Artistic Instrument”, 2011

- Polona Tratnik, “37°C: From the inside of a Being to the Thin Line of Life”, 2005

- Zurr Ionat, « The Animation of Lab-Grown Life: Tissue Engineered Muscle Actuator (TEMA) », 2014

- Julie Clarke, “Corporeal Mélange: Aesthetics and Ethics of Biomaterials in Stelarc and Nina Sellars’s Blender”, 2006

- Pelling Andrew E., « Re-purposing The Behaviour and Motion of Living Cells in an Anti-Disciplinary and Curiosity-Driven Context », 2014

- Hilton Craig, « The Immortalisation of Billy Apple®: An Art-Science Collaboration », 2014

- Tony Bellaver, “Teaching Nature How to Become Nature: The Woodland Recovery Project”, 1998

4 – BIO — FICTION, DESIGN, ARCHITECTURE

- Judy Malloy, « OK Research, OK Genetic Engineering, Bad Information: Information Art Describes Technology, 1988

- Tran T. Kim-Trang and Karl Mihail, “Gene Genies Worldwide », 2003

- David Benqué, « Blueprints for the Unknown, Questioning the « Design » of Life », 2014

- Dennis Dollens, “Architecture as Nature: A Biodigital Hypothesis”, 2009

- Bakke Monika, « Living (On) Dust: Around the Globe with Mineral Particles & Microbial Hitchhikers », 2014

5 – DIY BIOLOGY -  BIOHACKING

- Morgan Meyer, « Hacking Life? The Politics and Poetics of DIY Biology », 2014

- Alessandro Delfanti, « Is Do-It-Yourself Biology Being Co-Opted by Institutions? », 2014

- Denisa Kera, « Do-It-Yourself biology (DIYbio): Return of the Folly of Empiricism and Living Instruments », 2014

- Nurit Bar Shai, « GenSpace, New York, Art & Science at Genspace, Brooklyn’s Community Biotech Lab », 2014

- Cathal Garvey (interview by David Benqué), 2014

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Meet to Delete! Erasing and Shredding at Galerie Up

Meet to Delete! 26 avril 2014

Meet to Delete! Bruxelles Event Report

Saturday April 26th 2014 17h00 – 21h00 local time – Galerie Up – Bruxelles

We had a lovely Meet to Delete! event in Bruxelles at Galerie Up as part of Julian Priest project The Weight of Information.

The Gallery is a small 20 square meter space in the Saint-Gilles area of Bruxelles, launched and owned by Clarisse Bardiot.

On the left side of the Gallery we put a small round table with a shredder and a pot with colored pens. People could sit at the table —or stand by it— to shred the documents they had brought or delete datas from their cell phones, in a symbolically intimate and focused act.

Next to the table, we had suspended a roll of paper onto which people could write their first name and the nature of the infomation they just deleted.

On the right side of the Gallery, we videoprojected the orbital path of the satellite. A candle was lit in the opposite corner as an evocation of the bonfire we could not do indoors. A poster was displayed next to it, another one was on the door of the gallery and 3 others on the gallery window.

A 9 slide Power Point about the project was available on an iPad for people to browse.

Drinks and light snacks (chips, olives) were served.

At the end of the event, Clarisse and I took a picture of the roll of paper, then we shredded the roll and the posters, and we blew up the candle.

The meta data of the event that we shall keep are the list of items written on the roll, samples of shredded documents and the picture of the shreds.

About 20 people attended the event, among them some children. Most of them came around the same time, which allowed for nice exchanges.

Many questions were asked about The Weight of Information satellite and the whole project.

What came out of the discussions was that we all delete stuff without necessarily thinking about it but when asked to do it consciously, and in a collective set up, it raises a different approach and feelings to the act of deleting data. Here some that were stated:

. Deleting data and information belongs to the private realm, doing it collectively is, in a certain manner, sharing some sort of privacy.

. Every one reported that they had to think about what they would delete.

. It is difficult to decide and choose what to delete [in the framework of the Meet to Delete! event], it is giving a weight to something that has no —or no more— value, that we want to get rid of and in a kind of a paradox giving it, for this moment, a central place.

. The notion of loss was also mentioned.

. It takes time to delete, that is it takes our attention. There is a sort of paradox to isolate mentally oneself from the group to focus on the deleting process.

We had also many informal conversations, some related to social and political issues of (storing) digital data!

For me, the most lovely moment was when one of kid, after having understood what it was all about, deleted « 2 files from his DS ».

It was a joyfull and friendly event, extremely rewarding intellectually and in terms of human relations.

Thank you Julian for this beautiful project, Clarisse for having hosted it and Alexi for the caring support, everyone that came to Galerie Up and Zac for the idea of the Sprite satellites.

This has allowed for a generous, sharing, poetic and light moment.

And here the list of items that were deleted, following Julian Priest’s listing system:

012 Carte de rendez-vous médicaux

013 Ticket de caisse

014 Suppression d’un SMS de help-base

015 Ticket de caisse

016 SMS envoyés: 278

017 Journal des appels

018 Lettre de relance de la bibliothéque

019 Courrier mutuelle santé

020 Courrier MSF

021 Facture de location de voiture

022 Relevé bancaire

023 Cours de math sur les limites de Mael

024 Mail d’alerte GANDI

025 65 SMS – 2012

026 78 contact gmail ESAD VAC

027 Deux dossiers sur ma DS

028 A effacé les photos

Annick – 2014-04-27

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Meet to Delete! Galerie Up, Bruxelles

Meet to Delete!

Saturday April 26th 2014 – 17h00 – 21h00

Galerie Up – Bruxelles – 17 avenue Paul Dejaer

Clarisse Bardiot and Annick Bureaud are happy to invite you on April 26th 2014 to Galerie Up in Bruxelles to Meet to Delete! as part of the art project ‘The Weight of Information’ by Julian Priest.

The Weight of Information – A Femto Art Satellite in Low Earth Orbit

On April 18th, aboard the SpaceX-3 Commercial Resupply Services flight CRS-3, a small art satellite has been launched into Low Earth Orbit from where it will begin to descend in a spiral trajectory before burning up on re-entry. The Satellite collects information from it’s on-board sensors filling it’s memory banks with data. When its memory is full it resets its registers to zero and starts collecting again, repeating this process thousands of times a second. The satellite believes that information has weight and is trying to escape it’s death spiral towards burn-up by deleting information, being lighter and ascending to a higher orbit by forgetting.

Meet to Delete! A Four Hour Evening Event

You are invited to meet to delete in solidarity with the satellite. Come together at Galerie Up to lighten your information weight. Bring some personal information to delete around a drink during this 4 hour evening event: it could be destroying old (paper) bank statements, removing old contacts from your phone, cleaning out your spam folder, removing out of focus photos from your archive. Join us to delete something, remove the cruft, take control of your information, and feel a little lighter. And remember to delete more information than you create!

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Water is in the Air: Physics, Politics and Poetics of Water in the Arts

J’ai le plaisir d’annoncer la parution de l’ebook Water is in the Air que j’ai coordonné pour la collection  Leonardo à MIT Press.

Water is in the Air: Physics, Politics and Poetics of Water in the Arts

Annick Bureaud (Ed.), Leonardo/ISAST, MIT Press, Leonardo ebook series, Kindle Edition, February 2014

ISBN: 9780262757010

http://tinyurl.com/Leonardo-Water

This ebook explores the ways that artists, from all over the world, working at the cutting edge of science and engineering, create work that addresses critical issues of water in culture and society. Drawing on thirty years of work documented in the Leonardo journal at MIT Press, the authors explore a wide range of topics, from art and climate change and pollution to artificially seeded clouds, from water fountains to the physics and poetics of waves, using all types of media (videos, performances, installations, sound art).

The Water is in the Air ebook is part of the ATEC Leonardo Initiatives in Experimental Publishing and Knowledge Curation at UT Dallas.

It is published in collaboration with the STUDIOLAB consortium, a Europe-wide initiative that merges the studio with the research lab, funded by the European Commission Seventh Framework Programme.

Editor Annick Bureaud –  Executive Editor Roger Malina – ebook Managing Editor Cathryn Ploehn.

Table of Content

Preface by Roger Malina

Introduction to Water Is in the Air by Annick Bureaud

I  WATER: ECOLOGY AND ENVIRONMENTAL ART

- Phenomenology and Artistic Praxis: An Application to Marine Ecological Communication, Jane Quon

- Lagoon Project: San Francisco Exploratorium, Laurie Lundquist

- The Durance: Interlaced Waters: Art-Science Collaborations and Audiovisual Research, Jacques Sapiega

- On The Modification Of Man-Made Clouds: The Factory Cloud, HeHe (Helen Evans and Heiko Hansen)

- Paparuda, Monsieur Moo

Sonification and Sound Projects

- Marbh Chrios, Sean Taylor and Mikael Fernström

- Pulse of an Ocean: Sonification of Ocean Buoy Data, Bob L. Sturm

- Rainwire: Environmental Sonification of Rainfall, Dave Burraston

II  WATER: FOUNTAINS, SCULPTURES, AND INSTALLATIONS

- Sculptures and Installations My “Mobile Hydromural”, Gyula Kosice

- An Application of the Water Bell Liquid Flow Phenomenon in Visual Art, Philip Bornarth and Franklyn K. Schwaneflugel

- Sculptural Constructions Involving Water Dynamics, Pearl Hirshfield

- Memory Vapor, Dmitry Gelfand and Evelina Domnitch

- Anti-Entropic Role of Art,  Ana Rewakowicz

Fountains

- Color-Music Fountains and Installations of the Erebuni Group, Abram Alexandrovich Abramyan

- Wave Rings, Nodoka Ui

- The Futura Deluxe Bubble, Steven Raspa

III  WATER: CULTURAL METAPHOR AND ART

- Fragments of a Flow: A Thread of Water in the Video Work of Irit Batsry, Irit Batsry

- Walking Clouds And Augmented Reverie, Nathalie Delprat

- Here Is Where You Heard the Ocean: An Interactive Sound Installation, Laura L. Clemons

- Alma da Água: A Space Awareness Initiative, Dinis Ribeiro and Richard Clar

- Liquid Light: Working with Water, Liliane Lijn

- Music, Colors and Movements of Water, Jacques Mandelbrojt and Lucie Prod’homme

IV  WATER: CULTURAL METAPHOR, SOCIETY, AND SPIRITUALITY

- From “Life-Water” to “Death-Water” or on the Foundations of African Artistic Creation from Yesterday to Tomorrow, Iba Ndiaye Diadji

- The Symbolic Function of Water in Sub-Saharan Africa: A Cultural Approach, Camille Talkeu Tounouga

- Nommo —The Spirit of Water—in the Dogon World, Jacky Bouju

V  THE PHYSICS OF WATER: WAVES AND PATTERNS

- Waterfields: Conceptual Water Drawings, Robert C. Morgan

- On the Artistic Use of Fluid Flow Patterns Made Visible, A. S. Douthat, H. M. Nagib, and A. A. Fejer

- Around the Cusp: Singularity and the Breaking of Waves, Javiera Tejerina-Risso and Patrice Le Gal

- Science and Art of Sculpturing Fluids, Jean-Marc Chomaz

- Looking beneath the Surface: The Radial Spread of Ink in Water, Pery Burge

- Process and Natural Phenomena as Conceptual Points of Departure in Extended-Format Sculpture, Eve Laramée

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BIO ART – BIO DESIGN. Enjeux culturels et sociétaux de la biologie de synthèse

Le 6 mars prochain, j’organise pour Leonardo/Olats en partenariat avec Décalab une journée d’études sur BIO ART – BIO DESIGN. Enjeux culturels et sociétaux de la biologie de synthèse à l’ESPGG à Paris.

"MRSA Quilt", Anna Dumitriu

« Pourquoi est-ce que les chiens ne sont pas déjà bleus avec des points rouges, que les chevaux n’irradient pas de couleurs phosphorescentes dans l’ombre nocturne de la campagne ? (…) Nous avons appris des techniques qui rendent finalement concevable la création d’espèces végétales et animales selon nos propres programmes (…) Nous pouvons maintenant faire des êtres vivants artificiels, des œuvres d’art vivantes. »

Vilèm Flusser, Art Forum, 1988.

25 ans plus tard, les « œuvres d’art vivantes » du bio art s’inscrivent dans le champ de l’art et font l’objet d’expositions et de multiples ouvrages.

25 ans plus tard, la biologie de synthèse entend proposer de « programmer » effectivement le vivant comme nous le faisons d’un ordinateur.

25 ans plus tard, les enjeux de l’impact humain sur l’écosystème planétaire se font plus cruciaux.

25 ans plus tard, design critique et bio design imaginent des scénarios où « nature 2.0″, innovation et développement durable se confrontent.

A partir de la présentation de projets d’artistes et de designers et du regard de critiques d’art, de chercheurs en sciences humaines et en sciences dures, nous proposons lors de cette journée d’études d’explorer quelques unes des grandes questions artistiques, esthétiques, sociales, culturelles et éthiques liées aux biotechnologies à l’ére de l’anthropocène.

Participants :

Annick Bureaud, critique d’art, directrice Leonardo/Olats, Paris

David Benqué, designer et chercheur, Londres

Thibaud Coradin, directeur de recherche, Collège de France, Paris

Anna Dumitriu, artiste, Brighton

Lucas Evers, WAAG Society, Institut pour l’art, la science et la technologie, Amsterdam

Lia Giraud, artiste-chercheuse, EnsAD, Paris

Marion Laval-Jeantet (Aoo-Art Orienté Objet), artiste-chercheuse, Paris

Emmanuel Mahé, chercheur en usages émergents, EnsAD, Paris

Morgan Meyer, sociologue de l’innovation, INRA et Agro Paris tech, Paris

Franck Perez, biologiste cellulaire, Institut Curie, Paris

Natacha Seignolles, directrice Décalab, Paris

Claude Yepremian, ingénieur d’études, Museum d’Histoire Naturelle, Paris

Journée animée par Didier Laval, chef de projet Ecsite, the European network of science centers and museums, Bruxelles

Date : jeudi 6 mars 2014

Lieu : Amphithéâtre Langevin

ESPGG – Espace des sciences Pierre-Gilles de Gennes

École supérieure de physique et chimie industrielles ParisTech

10 rue Vauquelin

75005 Paris

La participation de Leonardo/Olats à cette journée d’études s’inscrit dans le cadre du projet européen StudioLab soutenu par le 7th Framework Program de la Commission Européenne.

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« Water is in the Air » in the journal Leonardo

The selection of articles from the « Water is in the Air » workshop that I have co-organised in Marseille with Roger Malina and Pascale Hurtado in June 2012 have just been published in Leonardo (vol. 47, n°1, 2014).

They are:

- J.-M Chomaz, « Science and Art of Sculpturing Fluids »

- Nathalie Delprat, « Walking Clouds and Augmented Reverie »

- Dmitry Gelfand and Evelina Domnitch, « Memory Vapor »

- HeHe (Helen Evans & Heiko Hansen), « On the Modification of Man-Made Clouds: The Factory Cloud »

- Monsieur Moo, « Paparuda »

- Ana Rewakowicz, « Anti-entropic Role of Art »

- Jacques Sapiega, « The Durance: Interlaced Waters: Art-Science Collaborations and Audiovisual Research »

- J. Tejerina-Risso & P. Le Gal, « Around the Cusp SIngularity and the Breaking of Waves »

The full documentation about this workshop and the video recordings of the presentations can be found on the website of the project.

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Meilleurs Voeux – Best Wishes 2014

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TERRA I 0 – Microwave International New Media Arts Festival 2013

Mon premier article traduit en chinois !

Cette année le festival Microwave de Hong Kong qui s’est tenu en novembre avait pour thème l’Espace.

Le catalogue inclut des essais de Rob La Frenais, Sarah Jane Pell et reprend mon article « A New Territory of (In)Human Proportions« . C’est la première fois qu’un de mes textes est traduit en chinois !

Parmi les œuvres exposées : Coallision (2013) de Reni & Jogi Hofmüller, The Martian Rose (2007/9) d’Howard Boland et Laura Cinti que j’avais présentée dans l’exposition « (In)Habitable ? L’art des environnements extrêmes » en 2009, Moon Goose Analogue: Lunar Migration Bird Facility (depuis 2011) d’Agnès Meyer-Brandis, Space Maintenance / Lost in Space (2009-2013) de duo We Colonised The Moon (Sue Corke & Hagen Betzwieser), Virtual Synchronicity (2012) de Tobias Klein. Le festival présentait également des programmes vidéos ainsi qu’un colloque.

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Rencontre BioArt – Festival Accès(s) – Pau

Le Festival Accès(s) de Pau accueillait cette année le projet Humalga de Špela Petrič et Robertina Šebjanič et organisait dans ce cadre une rencontre autour du bioart à laquelle je participais.

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6×6/36 à la Galerie Up, Bruxelles

Clarisse Bardiot et Alexi Hervé ouvrent une galerie à Bruxelles, la Galerie Up, consacrée à l’art contemporain sous toutes ses formes et qui montrera des « Flash-expos » de 3 jours maximum.

L’exposition inaugurale est autour du projet 6×6/36 du Collectif Nunc auquel j’ai participé et édité par les éditions Subjectile et se tient le 9 novembre de 18h à 21h.

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