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Art + Science Now

How scientific research and technological innovation are becoming key to 21st-century aesthetics

Stephen Wilson


A groundbreaking guide to the art being made at the cutting edge of scientific research, drawing on kinetics, biology, robotics and information technologies


In the 21st century, some of the most dynamic works of art are now being produced not in the studio but in the laboratory, where artists probe cultural, philosophical and social questions connected with cutting-edge scientific and technological research. Their work ranges across disciplines – microbiology, the physical sciences, information technologies, human biology and living systems, kinetics and robotics – taking in everything from eugenics and climate change to virtual reality and artificial intelligence.

Art + Science Now provides a dazzling overview of this new strand of contemporary art, showcasing the best international work produced since 2000. Featuring around 250 artists from the UK, Germany, France, the Netherlands, the US, Japan, Australia and elsewhere, it presents a broad range of fascinating projects, from body art to bioengineering, from music, dance and computer-controlled video performances to large-scale visual and sound installations, all of which challenge our assumptions about our relations with science, technology and the world around us.

Stephen Wilson, a leading authority in the field, neatly summarizes the latest scientific research for the lay reader, and supplements his text with a reading list and extensive online resources, highlighting the museums, festivals, research centres and educational programmes that support this new work.

Presenting a comprehensive guide to contemporary art inspired or driven by scientific and technological innovation, Art + Science Now points to intriguing new directions for the visual arts and traces a key strand in 21st-century aesthetics.

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'Eye-catching work by artists blurring the boundaries between art and science'

'Fascinating … the artists/scientists in this book show that good art and good science are not so very different, and that when they find their niche, their joining can make something powerful, interesting and beautiful'
The Art Book

Product Information

Book Details

Format: Paperback with flaps

Size: 27.5 x 23.0 cm

Extent: 208 pp

Publication date: 12 July 2012

ISBN: 9780500289952

Contents List

Introduction: Art, Science + Technology • 1. Molecular Biology • 2. Living Systems • 3. Human Biology • 4. Physical Sciences • 5. Kinetics and Robotics • 6. Alternative Interfaces • 7. Algorithms • 8. Information

About the Author

Stephen Wilson (1945 - 2011) was Professor of Conceptual and Information Arts, at San Francisco State University. He was co editor of Leonardo, the international journal of art and science.

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