Organized by the Pasadena Museum of California Art
(PMCA) and curated by Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) Visual Strategist Dan Goods and Mars Public Engagement Outreach Coordinator David Delgado, Data + Art: Science and Art in the Age of Information explores how scientific data can be experienced and translated by artists into new and startling forms. This exhibition challenges the viewers assumptions by exploring the beauty inherent in the information and asking viewers to see science in a new light. These artistic interpretations of scientific data will empower the average person to see the invisible, hear the inaudible and understand the impossibly complex.
A new generation of artists has begun to manipulate and use data as an artistic medium and explore its meaning and impact on our lives. Some artists use information from public websites and blogs, others collaborate with scientists to cull data from ongoing research, and others rely on highly personal information from their own lives. Together these artists are leading us to a new understanding of the ones and zeroes that surround us in the information age.
Spam Architecture by Alex Dragulescu presents images generated by a computer program that accepts input and junk email. Various patterns, keywords and rhythms found in the text are translated into three-dimensional modeling gestures.
Much of these works are created by sifting through vast amounts of digital information to reveal hidden stories about the natural world and the human condition. Data for this exhibition will come from a broad range of sources including JPL, Caltech, social networking web sites, email spam, scientific research data, and the presidential election. The art produced from this data will include sound, images, installations, performance and interstellar communications.
Although art and science institutions have occasionally collaborated with one another, they have historically been seen as polar opposites. Pasadena is home to the illustrious aerospace institutions JPL and Caltech, and the similarities between science and art are now brought to life in this collaborative exhibition at the PMCA, which also features an accompanying exhibition about the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, Eye in the Sky: JPLS Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. This new satellite built by JPL offers a new glimpse at the surface of Mars through a high-powered imaging spectrometer, and the resulting photos expand the traditional boundaries of art.