Victoria Vesna 2010 (c)

Art & Science collaborations: Being in Between

Lecture and Workshop with Victoria Vesna, Director UCLA Art & Science center

Victoria Vesna has been invited to hold a guest lecture and workshop in order to foster international exchange and to bring greater depth to an already completed Memorandum of Understanding. Victoria Vesna is Director of the ArtIScience research center and Professor for Design and Media Arts at UCLA (Los Angeles). Currently she is also Visiting Professor and Director of Research at Parsons School for Design in New York. Next to an open lecture at the University of Applied Arts Vienna, a workshop is offered for the “Art & Science” students. The participants are introduced to the personal career as an “art(scient)ist” as well as to an international student-level network via which self-organized exchange and a learning platform should be developed. The Master’s course “Art and Science” participates in the Social ArtSci Networked Discourse (SAND) as the first German-speaking satellite.



Victoria Vesna


Artists have always played a role in interpreting, albeit poetically, how technological and scientific advances affect society at large and our individual perceptions of self. This observation is not new for scientists who have for a long time recognized the similarities in the creative process of these two seemingly opposite disciplines. For instance, physicist Werner Heisenberg believed artists, creativity arose out of the interplay between the spirit of the time and the individual. The spirit of the time is, of course, very much determined by scientific innovation and so it is natural that in our current state networks and computers are the driving force of this renewed relationship. As the world becomes more technologically complex, with the nonstop bombardment of endless information, it is possible that this role becomes ever more important. This talk is dedicated to exploring the context of science labs as the new territory media artists are exploring. Increasingly, there is a trend of artists making labs their studios as scientists are opening their doors and inviting them in. The fascination comes from both sides and both media artists and scientists use technological tools that are almost identical, and are used to working in interdisciplinary groups with funding issues and deadlines. This makes the language barrier that was traditionally creating a two-culture gap much easier to cross over and allow for a new hybrid culture to emerge. Yet this third culture emerges from an entirely different context that at once intensifies the relationship between art and science and raises many new issues for both sides. This talk will address these issues by showing examples work I have done as an artist in close collaboration with scientists, the activities of the UCLA Art | Sci research center and the most recent educational initiative, the Social ArtSci Networked Discourse (SAND).


Victoria Vesna is a media artist exploring the overlap between technology and identity formation. Her installations bridge the gap between scientific and artistic languages. She has produced different models for rendering abstract models of the universe tactile and visual, bringing nanoscience into the experiential realm. Her collaborators have included Tibetan Monks at the Gaden Lhopa Khangsten Monastery and Dr. James Gimzewski, nano-science pioneer. Her work has been exhibited internationally and has won the prestigious Oscar Signorini award for best net artwork (1998). She holds a PhD from the University of Wales and is director of the ArtScience center at University of California at Los Angeles. Dr. Vesna is the North American editor of AI & Society and editor of Database Aesthetics.




Ausschnitt 1 Lecture Victoria Vesna

Ausschnitt aus der Lecture von Victoria Vesna

Ausschnitt 2 Lecture Victoria Vesna

Ausschnitt aus der Lecture von Victoria Vesna



Workshop Victoria Vesna


Fact Box

Art & Science collaborations: Being in Between
June 16, 2010