Arts Design & Architecture

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  • (2005) Barker, Michele Frances; Munster, Anna Marie; Goldberg, Michael
    Creative Work (non-textual)
    The interdisciplinary field of art-science research is marked by a range of multi-media methods. Australian artists such as the Tissue Culture and Art Project have contributed to this field. Much of this research takes a scientifically informed approach but concentrates upon the ethical issues in contemporary science such as cloning and stem cell research. Michele Barker and Anna Munster use practice-based research to contribute to the ethical debate about the environmental consequences of scientists reverse engineering extinct species. ‘The Two of Us’ is a site-specific installation that comprises a digital animation of an imaginary two-headed Thylacine and actual footage of the last Thylacine alive in captivity. In 1999 the Australian Museum embarked on research to clone a living Thylacine. This installation responds to the ethical problems that arise in relation to cloning. It demonstrates that the art-science field can be a contributor to public debate about the ethical implications of contemporary science. The Butterfly Effect was a curated show for the Australian Museum, umbrella of the Sydney Festival of the Arts 2005, in its first large-scale exhibition involving artists responding to its displays. It was reviewed John McDonald in The Sydney Morning Herald, 6 February 2005. It is cited in the peer-reviewed journal article: M. Goldberg, ‘The Butterfly Effect: The Natural History Museum, Visual Art, and the Suspension of Disbelief’; International Journal of the Inclusive Museum, Volume 1, Issue 1: 1-10.

  • (2007) Barker, Michele Frances; Munster, Anna Marie; Bond, Tony
    Creative Work (non-textual)
    Contemporary digital media art investigates intersections between art and science, often by recontextualising visualisation technologies from the medical and life sciences. These images can hold meaning that is aesthetic and ambiguous beyond their diagnostic use. Although this research has shown the significance of visualisation technologies’ aesthetics, it has failed to show how this aesthetic is embedded in a history of science-art intersections in other media such as photography. The 3-channel audio-visual installation Struck by Michele Barker and Anna Munster addresses the question of how current medical imaging aesthetics are related to the aesthetics of early medical photography. It achieves this by a comparative study of early institutional photography and drawings of the human body and face from the nineteenth century with contemporary Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scans. In drawing this comparison, it makes a major contribution to the discipline of creative digital media practice by showing that art and science have a long history of aesthetic intersection with respect to medical visualisation. Struck was awarded an acquisitive cash prize of $8,000 in 2006 by the National Digital Art Award in the ‘dynamic’ category. It was included in an international group show at Eyebeam Gallery in New York in 2005. It toured in the International Digital Art Exhibition showing at the Beijing Film Academy, China. In 2007, it was selected for exhibition at Level 2 Contemporary Art Projects, Art Gallery of New South Wales as one of only 5 solo shows exhibited per year out of a wide field of national and international submissions.