edited by Jill Scott, Artists-in-Labs Networking in the Margins


Springer Vienna Architecture, 2010, English, book+dvd, 212 pages, ISBN: 978-3709103203

After decades when artists had to take a guest seat in scientific labs (when admitted), being regarded as accepted intruders, the development of art and science laboratories has become more viable with increasing communication between the two cultural spheres. Artists and scientists who share similar backgrounds but deal with heterogeneous knowledge bases (albeit in different languages) have had new opportunities to develop their dialogue as the notion of transdisciplinarity becomes more prevalent. The “immersive education” which is possible in these spaces can be capitalized on in cultural terms, even in financially limited situations (for instance, in the so-called Fab Lab sustainable models). This book illustrates the experiences of twelve different artists working in universities or private laboratories to develop their projects, with an accompanying DVD documenting the relationship with the respective lab teams. On the artistic side, the works seem to be more scientifically robust, although they face more diverging perspectives and interpretations from within the team – in the best cases producing a more profound understanding and exploration of new processes, methodologies, and observation practices. This work constitutes a good anthology of dialogues and case studies for those considering new artist-in-lab projects, a critical mass of work for evaluating what is needed to establish fruitful experiences elsewhere.