Join us Thursday Night for an Opening Reception with Elaine Whittaker’s Cc:me

We are looking forward to our kickoff event Thursday evening from 7:30 to 10 pm at the Red Head Gallery.

Elaine Whittaker is a Toronto based  bioartist. Elaine has been busy this week installing her show Cc:me.  Elaine’s transdisciplinary work perfectly mirrors Subtle Technologies mandate of bringing together art and science. When you see her work you will agree that she combines art and science in elegant ways.

For this show she combines live halobacteria  with archival fax material collected over a ten year period.

The opening reception will include ambient sound works by Tom Auger and poetry readings by Jim Johnstone, Julie Roorda, Ruth Roach Pierson, and Larry Sulky. For more information on the show and reception please check out this page on our site. See you at the Red Head Gallery!

A Dancing Physicist

We are excited that Krister Shalm will be joining us at our symposium Friday . That day we will look at a number of ideas across the spectrum of art and science, from quantum physics to an artist’s interpretation of motion patterns in bird flight. Krister joined us a number of years ago to speak on some other research he was doing at the time. He was entertaining then and I’m looking forward to his presentation again this year. Not only is he an award winning physicist, Krister is an amazing dancer

Krister Heel Click 606x403 Krister Shalm

His passion for communicating science has led him to team up with a magician, musicians and other dancers.  Krister’s Project Q brought together almost 500 Lindy Hop dancers to demonstrate the power of quantum computing. Hopefully Krister will have a chance to tell and show us more about that project on Friday but he will also speak about some interesting work he recently did with University of Toronto physicist Aephraim Steinberg . Their research was recently awarded Top Physics Beakthrough of the Year by Physics World. This research involved using “weak measurements” to trace the average trajectories of single photons in the classical double slit experiment.

I’m looking forward to hearing more about this work from Krister since I have always been led to believe this was an impossible measurement to make.  This will be a very inspiring presentation not to be missed!

Ecology + dance = ?

We’re really lucky this year to have LINK Dance company coming out to our Festival for a two-night Toronto premiere of EXPERIMENTS: Where Logic and Emotion Collide.

What I’m particularly looking forward to seeing is how the choreographer Gail Lotenberg has synthesised the scientific and the artistic in this piece.

I particularly remember something Gail said when she was visiting the Festival last year to give a talk about this piece. People often talk about how both science and art are similar because they’re both creative, but Gail said something much more interesting: she was struck by the similarity between how scientists and artists observe the world intensely, and by their shared desire to understand the tiniest details.

Based on my last couple of years of working with artists (having a scientific background myself), I think she’s definitely captured something there. I’m certainly looking forward to seeing how this idea of deep observation emerges in EXPERIMENTS.

And of course the images from the production are striking: Here’s a couple of my favorites:

Subtle Technologies Festival Coming Soon!!

It’s that time of year when we look forward to international artists and scientists coming together at our festival to share their work with each other and our audience. Keep your eye on our blog as we present the latest news and tell you more about upcoming events and festival participants.

We have had a great year of doing workshops in science labs throughout the year. At our festival we will be hosting a workshop on (get ready for it) SLIME MOULD. This unique organism has found it’s way into many areas of research including city planning, adaptation and robotics. The workshop is being hosted by visual artist, researcher and educator,  Heather Barnett from the University of Westminster in the UK.

Photo by Heather Barnett

Heather has been conducting a number of experiments with slime mold as part of her art practice. She started an amazing blog entitled The Slime Mould Collective, which invites scientists artists and others who are investigating the properties of slime mold to post their images and comments. The images on the site are visually stunning. Check out the blog and  I think you’ll agree.

Here is an interesting article about Japanese scientist Toshiyuki Nakagaki who is attempting to understand slime molds ability to solve mazes.

There are a limited number of spaces in the workshop so sign up early to guarantee a place. You will get to bring home your own pet slime mold. You can find more information on the workshop here.