Well I walked into a trap by setting up false dichotomies between
artists and scientists and I am not able to defend myself against
your arguments= because I also over generalised !!
Both within the arts and humanities, and within the sciences and engineering
there are of course a whole spectrum of motivations, approaches and
to the "market" whether in arts or the corporate world in science.
I guess the point that I wanted to make , rather than defend the specifics,
is that people who work within disciplines in the arts and humanities,or
within the sciences and engineering it seems to me do have different kinds
of "cultures' of practice and that often these differences are implicit=and
because they are poorly understood or verbalised= many collaboration
between artists and scientists fail because of poor collaboration practice=
Elie During has written for example of the different role of the "prototype" in
the arts and in the sciences= both cultures use the same work but with
The Wellcome trust I heard was disappointed in many of the art science
collaborations they funded because the results were illustration
of science rather than art science collaborations.
arantxa mendiharat explains the interesting technique they used
for the artists in residence in the Dissonancias program and the new
from disonancias and improbables (the new project we are just
starting), we think that it is very important at the beginning of the
collaboration that the 2 parts express their motivation to work
together. why are they in the project? what for?
we gather the diferent partners and we use different tools (a card
play by françois deck, a game to swap roles between artists and
managers/scientists, by aniabas, etc.) to make them express their deep
motivation and values to start the process from a clear basis.
it something quite simple but very effective to come over the cultural
and professional dissonances.
I would be interested in other examples of how people involved in collaborations
that bridge the arts-humanities to the sciences-engineering have used techniques
to train people or prepare the collaborators for working together ?
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: ana leonor rodrigues <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Tue, May 18, 2010 at 6:32 PM
Subject: Re: [Yasmin_discussions] Doing and Studying International
Collaboration in the Sciences, Arts and the Humanities
To: YASMIN DISCUSSIONS <email@example.com>
I was quite surprised by your opinion, and imagine that you look at
artists from the outside, and I explain why I say this:
The profession of the artist establishes itself outside and beyond the
markets and the artistic milieu, that is something that comes after
and it is important to have that in mind.
The profession of the artist is precisely what the root of the word
means, in the way that the being of the artist is totally devoted to
his/hers art in the way that it even surpasses the idea of profession
as it is not something that qualifies him extrinsically but
Intellectual honesty and integrity are attributes of the human
character that show in the results of the work may it be scientific or
artistic, the deviations of those qualities exist, unfortunately both
in artists and in scientists and the resulting works suffer in both
Epistemic communism I have to say I do not know what it is, but then,
I'm an artist.
Organized skepticism and dis-interestedness… Well, I give you an
example that any art beginner knows, one cannot draw a nude model if
you are not able to look at it with the organized look of the
investigator and the dis-interestedness of the observer. At that
moment you are "eyes" (or visual cortex) seeing, understanding,
investigating shapes, shades, lights, shadows.
Impersonality, there I agree, the impersonal artist will be a being
without affection, and affection, in art more then anywhere else is a
About universality, that is controversial again because you relate it
to context, and only minor works cannot overcome context, however, if
they achieve to move the sensibility and the mind of the spectator,
they do have the universal quality of the micro-cosmos.
It is indifferent if there is a sponsor in art, as the major quantity
of artists do not arrive at the possibility of being sponsored, but go
on working anyway.
It is a very western way of looking at artistic activity, sponsoring I
mean, as in the majority of places it is nor even considered as an
I'd rather say that the working together of artist and scientists has
much more to do with the ability a both parts to be willing to accept
the possibility of the other: the mind of the other, the surprising
solutions or questions of the other (different from what I'm or the
other is used to), the different skills and the different methods.
Ana Leonor M. Madeira Rodrigues
2010/5/17, roger malina <firstname.lastname@example.org>:
> For our collaboration topic, here is a underlying question: do artists
> and scientists share
> the same cultures of inquiry ? Sundar Sarukkai in his article
> on Science and the Ethics of Curiosity which I have quoted several
> times on yasmin:
> Points out that scientific curiosity is often framed within
> the following ethos:
> Intellectual Honesty, Integrity, Epistemic Communism
> Organized skepticism,Dis-interestedness
> Impersonality, Universality
> It seems to me that many artists do not share all these values,
> and that when artists and scientists seek to collaborate
> these cultural difference can create friction, sometimes productive
> sometimes not.
> in my talks i like to insist that artistic curiosity is often;
> non universal : a work can be loaded with meaning in one
> context and meaningless in another. There is a large discussion
> against "universals" in art. In science there is no concept of locally
> meaningful science.
> Impersonal: whereas scientists seek to remove the personality
> of the scientist from their work, artists often seem to ground the
> work in their embodied specificity.
> Disinterested: basic scientists like to have an intellectual distance
> their work and the sponsor of their work (how succesful they are is another
> Many artists work on commissions where indeed the work is intended to be
> situated within the framing of the institution or sponsor that funds the
> eg the Bilbau museum is inseparable as a building from the ethos of the
> Guggenheim Foundation. ( but of course scientists working on applications
> are sponsor contextualised)
> I know that I am over-generalising here, but there is much discussion
> about the need for a "third culture' that somehow melds the scientific
> and the artistic ( or even E O Wilson's concept of conscilience). I often
> get very uncomfortable with these discussions, because it seems to me
> there are valuable differences between the goals, values and methods
> of scientists
> and those of artists - and that often these implicit cultural
> differences between
> artists and scientists are not made explicit.
> There is a large literature in the business world on what are called
> alliances= most collaborations between businesses fail, often because so
> many implicit values are not made explicit before a collaboration is
> entered into.
> In the case of art science collaborations, many of them fail to be
> from the point of view of one or both the art and science participants.
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