Leonardo Art/Science Evening Rendezvous of January 2010

Constructive Interference of the Arts and Sciences

San Francisco, 11 january 2010
c/o University of San Francisco
2130 Fulton Street
SF, CA 94117
Building: Fromm Hall. Room: Maier.

An event about Artists and Scientists who work/think/imagine/engage at the intersections of the Arts and Science.

Chaired by Piero Scaruffi ( and Tami Spector
Part of a series of cultural events
Sponsored by:
School of the Art Institute of Chicago,
the University of Illinois' eDREAM Institute,
the University of Calabria's Evolutionary Systems Group,
and USF Dean's Office of Arts and Science.

Leonardo ISAST and USF invite you to a meeting of the Leonardo Art/Science community. See below for location and agenda.

The event is free and open to everybody. Feel free to invite relevant acquaintances.

Please RSVP to . Admission is limited.

Like previous evenings, the agenda includes some presentations of art/science projects, and time for casual socializing/networking.

In order to facilitate the networking, feel free to send me the URL of a webpage that describes your work or the organization you work for. I will publish a list on this webpage before the day of the event so that everybody can check what everybody else is doing. (Not mandatory, just suggested).

See also...

  • Harrisons exhibition in Berkeley
  • Art, Technology, Culture Colloquia
  • Conference on Neuroesthetics
  • Art/Science Fusion at UC Davis
  • Almost Scientific
  • Previous Art/Science Evenings

    • 6:30pm-6:45pm: Socializing/networking. Anyone in the audience is welcome to describe in 30 seconds what they are working on.
    • 6:45-7:10: Joe Davis (MIT Department of Biology) on "Rubisco Stars - An Active SETI Message from Arecibo" A brief description of the transmission of a coded signal from the Arecibo Observatory to commemorate the 35-year anniversary of the Drake message for extraterrestrial intelligence (ETI). On November 7, 2009, a signal was transmitted to intercept three stars likely to have planets (GJ 83.1; SO 025300.5+165258; G5B).
    • 7:10-7:35:
    • Helen Mayer Harrison and Newton Harrison on "How can art help create a sustainable world?" "The Force Majeure" is a work to reflect on the oncoming effects of Global Warming from a whole systems perspective. What can culture do, specifically the artist, as a response to the loss of glaciation and the ensuing problems with rivers and droughts in a region like Tibet? This work suggests a sweeping, but possible, biological response to the 2.4 million square kilometers of the Tibetan plateau as well as to other regions of the world.
    • 7:35-7:50: BREAK
    • 7:50-8:15: Laura Granka (Google and Stanford Univ) on "Applying Ethnography to Search" People acquire information from a number of different sources, and online search is only one part of this equation. By conducting ethnographic research in homes and offices, we are better able to capture the number of different tools, techniques, and sources that people use for information discovery. Fostering effective collaboration with design and engineering teams has enabled Google to turn user behavior research insights into actionable ideas for product development and design.
    • 8:15-8:45: Victoria Vesna (UCLA) on "Bio-Nanotech + Art: Teaching / Learning / Creating in Social Networks" Bioartists use cells, DNA molecules, proteins, and living tissues to bring to life ethical, social, and aesthetic issues of sciences. Nanotechnology has caught attention of artists to go beyond the visible and audible realm. A theory + practice course is being pioneered at UCLA and Parsons simultaneously with star art/scientist guests participating and free access for the general public to all course materials.
    • 8:45: Piero Scaruffi on the next Leonardo Art/Science evening I will simply preview the line-up of speakers for the next Leonardo evening.
    • 8:45pm-9:30pm: Discussions, more socializing You can mingle with the speakers and the audience

    • Joe Davis is an artist-researcher who has been at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) for 29 years. He has been a Research Fellow and Lecturer at MIT Center for Advanced Visual Studies and for most of the past two decades, he has been a Research Affiliate at MIT Biology in the laboratory of Alexander Rich. Joe is noted as a pioneer in the field of art and molecular biology. He was the 2008 recipient of a Rockefeller Fellowship in New Media and has widely published in both artistic and scientific venues.
    • Laura Granka is a User Experience Researcher at Google, Inc, and is working towards her PhD at Stanford University. She has spent the past seven years studying how people look for information, specifically in online search environments. Laura has approached information discovery through several research methodologies, including the behavioral (eyetracking), the implicit (clickthrough data), and the qualitiative (ethnography). Laura has applied these key learnings towards improving UI design and result ranking algorithms while at Google. She has authored over 20 publications and presentations on this topic.
    • Helen Mayer Harrison and Newton Harrison are an artist team, emeritus professors from the University of California San Diego, Department of Visual Arts. They are pioneers in the development and evolution of what can be described as ecologically-based art from a systems perspective.
    • Piero Scaruffi is a cognitive scientist who has lectured in three continents and published several books on Artificial Intelligence and Cognitive Science, the latest one being "The Nature of Consciousness" (2006). He pioneered Internet applications in the early 1980s and the use of the World-Wide Web for cultural purposes in the mid 1990s. His poetry has been awarded several national prizes in Italy and the USA. His latest book of poems and meditations is "Synthesis" (2009). As a music historian, he has published ten books, the latest ones being "A History of Rock and Dance Music" (2009) and "A History of Jazz Music" (2007). He has also written extensively about cinema, literature and the visual arts. An avid traveler, he has visited 121 countries of the world.
    • Victoria Vesna (UCLA) is a media artist, professor at the department of Design & Media Arts at the UCLA School of the Arts, director of the UCLA Art & Science center and the UC Digital Arts Research Network. Her work explores how communication technologies affect collective behavior and how perceptions of identity shift in relation to scientific innovation. Victoria has exhibited her work in solo exhibitions worldwide, and is the recipient of many grants, commissions and awards. Her most recent installations (Blue Morph, Mood Swings and Water Bowls) aim to raise consciousness around the issues of our relationship to natural systems. She published an edited volume, "Database Aesthetics: Art in the age of Information Overflow" (2007), and is co-authoring "Context Providers: Conditions of Meaning in Media Arts" (2010).


    See the campus map and directions

    University of San Francisco
    2130 Fulton Street
    SF, CA 94117
    Building: Fromm Hall (corner of Parker and Golden Gate).
    Room: Maier

    Confirmed so far: