For my second event, I attended a presentation by Maria Antonia Gonzalez Valerio on her interdisciplinary projects at the National Autonomous University of Mexico on May 26 at 6 pm.
I found this presentation very worth while and wish it was given at a large scale. I think one of the biggest lessons I've learned from it was the possibility to spread messages, political or social, through these experiments involving art and science, and the possibility to get involved without having expensive equipment.
(Professor Vesna and I <3)
For example, with her involvement in “Sin origen/Sin Semilla (first transgenic and biotechnological exhibition in Mexico)”, this sent messages to people all over Mexico that GMO crops do have some sort of toxicity in them due to the use of pesticides and the country should keep defending itself from the persuasive business intentions of Monsanto.
Maria stated her philosophical position very well in my opinion. I think the questions she posed about the logistical aspects of performing in the scientific method with the use of machines that constantly need to be updated and adapted to versus the consistency in performing individual methods in art, should artists have labs? As I research and search with keywords, "artists" and "labs" it is disappointing to see how few results come up.
It seems that most art and science experiments are done as collaborations. There is nothing wrong with that, I collaborate everyday in different ways. But, the connotation in my opinion, is very voluntary and not expected, as if the only way we can get these two forms of expressing reality is by mutual desire and not as part of how we learn and create. I am not sure if this makes sense, I am still trying to figure it out myself.
I also tried to look up "kitchen labs" and see what is an example of the best at-home labs out there. There are not many examples to see, or I could find on the surface web. I came across an article about "biohackers making at-home labs" who found more benefits in making labs at home than using community labs. It stated, "Science is all about coming up with smart ways to answer hard questions. But sometimes getting those answers requires expensive machines." In relation to Maria's argument, she expressed the ineffectiveness of needing such equipment, when there are people out there who are using creative ways to make DIY science legitimate, such as the "Rock N' Roll" biotech group/event at Aalto University in Finland.
The biggest take away I can express from this event to not surpass the word limit, is the potential to find answers unconventionally and be a part of this movement if the passion, curiosity, and philosophy is there. As an artist, I would love my own lab, in ways it could be a "studio" but I don't want to limit the use of its space just to paint and photography equipment, but as a space that anything can be made in.
"Hic Et Nunc/News." MAGV. N.p., n.d. Web. <http://www.magonzalezvalerio.com/>.
"Mexico's Transgenic Maize under Fire." Nature.com. Nature Publishing Group, n.d. Web. <http://www.nature.com/news/2009/091125/full/462404a.html>.
"Residency Program." Art/Science. N.p., n.d. Web. <http://www.artistsinlabs.ch/en/residency_programs>.
Biba, Erin. "Genome at Home: Biohackers Build Their Own Labs." Wired.com. Conde Nast Digital, n.d. Web. 11 Aug. 2011. <http://www.wired.com/2011/08/mf_diylab/>.
Nicholson, Leigh. "Hacking the Body-the Scientific Counter-culture of the DIYbio Movement." Hacking the Body-the Scientific Counter-culture of the DIYbio Movement. N.p., 2 Sept. 2015. Web. <http://phys.org/news/2015-09-hacking-bodythe-scientific-counter-culture-diybio.html>.
"DIYbio." DIYbio. N.p., n.d. Web. <https://diybio.org/>.