Motion Studies

Motion Studies, investigates the intersection of Art and Science. Central to the project are actual motion studies from an ornithological flight lab, translated into video. Motion Studies uses the scientific imaging system, “Digital Particle Image Velocimetry.” The fluid dynamics of the air currents around the bird are made visible by the application of colors and grids that respond to the flow of air generated by the flight. At times this footage is a moving abstract painting, other times the bird’s flight is more explicit. Location footage of bird mating dances & flights, in slow motion, is also altered by DPV.



Fernanda D’Agostino

Independent Artist

Since 1984 Fernanda has completed twenty-five public commissions and fifteen solo exhibitions, many incorporate moving images in novel ways. Her work has been recognized by a Bonnie Bronson Fellowship, Flintridge Fellowship, and the National Endowment for the Arts. Motion Studies, examines the intersection of Art and Science, and has screened at Rencontres Internationales Sciences et Cinémas, France; 809 International New Image Art Festival, China; Technarte-Bilboa, Spain; Madcat International Experimental Film Festival; EVA, London; and Mumbai International Film Festival. At the American Academy of Rome this January work began on a new installation investigating the nature of memory.

Bret W. Tobalske

University of Montana Flight Lab Harry Dawson, Dawson Media Group

As a comparative biomechanist, I enjoy exploring questions that blend biology with physics. My primary passion for science is for furthering understanding of the biology of bird flight. I use a variety of techniques in the laboratory and in the field to measure wing motion, muscle contractile behavior, and aerodynamics with an overall goal of improving understanding of how flight shapes the ecology and evolution of birds and other flying animals. Two key aspects of my research philosophy are that it is important to study biology both in the lab and in the field and, secondly, to maintain all questions within a comparative, phylogenetic context.