The second group of first year students made their mid-semester presentations.
Rosie and Johanna are inquiring perception in different ways. They proposed/tested before their presentation three small methods for gathering opinions from the class regarding trust, transparency and prescision in a playful way (asking for drawings, keywords and through objects). They are interested in the work of Paul Feyerabend Against Method (which is available at our library and here as a PDF file), the works of Knorr-Cetina (the author of Epistemic Cultures, from which we have read some chapters) and they also mentioned the lecture by Frank Rösl at the workshop Art, Science, and Philosophy . Some notions they have been looking into: Morphic resonance Perceiving through machines How the medium affects the perception of knowledge Questioning the authority of experts ( Incompatible with democracy according to Feyerabend).
More concretely they are investigating conspiracy theories about CERN, and asking questions such as: What do these theories say about people´s perception? Can conspiracy theories be understood as contemporary folk tales? Why are there so many conspiracy theories about CERN? Does it have to do with their communication (website)? Are there positive conspiracy theories? They are interested in the Internet as a medium and how it is used to blurr facts. And they pointed out that videos debunking the myth of CERN are more popular (widely watched) than the real CERN website. They showed us some examples of such videos found on Youtube. A next step might be to do their own conspiracy theories.
Johanna will also work on the topic of "nothing" while being at CERN, possibly connecting it to Dark Matter. Rosie will deepen on perceptional knowledge and the processes in-between art and science.
Rafael, then, presented past works in which he was working with expanded polystyrene (EPS) and acid paint. And showed us a video of his pieces. He was interested in this material because of its easy formula and for its uses as insulation, and its relationship to nature. He has also previoulsy worked with coal, producing charcoal from different materials (and he presented a model made out of this material). His focus was on the circulation of value (organic matter -> activated carbon -> compost, for instance).
Marko and Rafael are working together on the CERN project. They plan on doing a workshop there and "extract art from the scientists". They want to get a glimpse of the personal, human approach to their work. But they keep it open and will react to the environment once we are in Geneva.
Marko introduced us to one of his works dealing with identity. It all started when he got accidentally mistaken for another artist who shares his name: Marko Markovic. He started mixing facts and images (personal and works) of himself and the other Marko Markovic. As a performer, he says, he had sometimes the feeling of becoming someone else. He explained that a fellow artist working in performance told him: "You are not somebody else, you are discovering parts of you that you didn´t know yet". As a glimpse for his direction of work at CERN he showed us a passage of Jarmusch´s film Only lovers left alive in which two vampires discuss Quantum Entanglement and Einstein.
Finally, Marina presented her first steps of her project. She is working with film and audio recordings. She wants to explore the possibilities of juxtaposing images to sound that do not really fit. The works of experimental filmmaker Vlado Kristl are a reference for her work. He presented two videos in which she experimented with this technique, the first one, Luchador, a short film she created together with Jasmin Hirschl; the second one, in which she plays around superimposing the audio recordings she took during our excursion to HEPHY and footage she recorded at the Prater last summer. She intends to use the film as a metaphor for the expert/ non-expert relationship (in which thoughts and imaginations collide as here film and sound do) and she will consider the spectators as detectors. Regarding attempts to deconstruct meaning and avant-garde filmmaking Kubelka´s Unsere Afrikareise and Tex Avery´s animation movies are mentioned by Valerie and Virgil.