Monday, April 23, 2018

Video documentation: Nonhuman Agents in Art, Culture and Theory - 9th panel

Beyond the Animal as Machine. Ethology in the Age of Technoscience
#animal-machine interfaces #ethology #Uexküll
Moderator: Christian de Lutz

Birgit Schneider (Media Ecology, Institute for Arts and Media, University of Potsdam)
Through the Eye of an Animal. Uexküll’s Perceptual Worlds in 360°?

The zoologist Jakob von Uexküll conceptionalized the German term “Umwelt” to describe the way different types of animals such as birds, marine fish or snakes are perceiving their surroundings. He was guided by the Neo-Kantian idea that the organs of perception shape the ways how the world is perceived. By adapting the concept to all forms of animals he consequently ended up withthe idea of manifold “Umwelten” (in plural), because each animal is equipped with different organs adapted to the environment. In my talk I am guided by the observation that today Uexküll’ian ideas are taken up by means of new media technologies: interactive programming, virtual-reality-helmets, go-pro-cameras and 360 degree videos try to get beyond the human cave of perception and allow animal world experiences. In my talk I will introduce and problematize some current examples in between science, animal protection and art that are telling in respect to how people think that animals perceive the world but also about their own (media) tunnels of perception. This leads to the question if, in fact, the current ways that connect to animal perception tell more about the disconnectedness from other species than about animal perception.

Robertina Šebjanic (Artist, Ljubljana)
Sounds of Troubled Worlds = Songs for Serenity

-“There are still songs to sing beyond mankind” by Paul Celan Improved living conditions in a technologically advanced world enables us to live significantly longer than in the past centuries. But the question is how this coexistence and relationship is going to be shaped in the future. The work 'Aurelia 1+Hz / proto viva generator' (2014) addresses the co-existence of human animals and machines in this “new normal” situation. The most substantial aims of the audiovisual performance 'Aurelia 1+Hz / proto viva sonification'(2015) are to explore the phenomena of interspecies communication, sonification of the environment and the underwater acoustic/ bioacoustics. The project 'Aquatocene / subaquatic quest for serenity' (2016) reflects about the immersion into the underwater acoustic environment and the sound and noise pollution produced there by human presence. The project explores the relationship between sound, nature and society and the human impact on the (under)water habitat as well as the establishment and maintenance of safe audio environments for animals that live in the oceans and seas.

Vivian Xu (Artist, Designer, Shanghai)
The Silkworm Project

The Silkworm Project explores the possibilities of designing a series of hybrid bio machines that are capable of generating self-organized silk structures. The silk machines utilize a closed feedback loop system between the organic and the artificial, where the biological and the computational form an ecosystem that demonstrates automated production that is autonomous in its nature. Researching in the history of computation and its entanglement with the technological development of the loom, the artist is explores a critical and artistic intersection between the organization of silk and the organization of information. This comparison between old and new technologies, between one of the world’s oldest materials – silk – and the its newest medium – data –brings up new questions of production and computation in the present day. The artist tackles this question through a series of machines that addresses 2D and 3D printing.


No comments: