Several things lately are making me feel nostalgic for NYC, one of which is the work of a few friends in an exhibition at the NY Hall of Science in Queens now through January (I presented Cloud Car there a few years ago). The exhibition is called Regeneration and “explores the connection of cultural vitality to sustainability, immigration, and urbanization, through the intersection of art, science and technology.” What’s interesting and inspiring to me is how the artists are using a kind of sci-fi mindset and narrative to communicate. Some of my favorite artists in the show are:
Amy Francescini and the Future Farmers with a work called Ethnobotanical:
a mobile module that draws upon the diverse lineage of knowledge to study the complex relations between plants and humans. It brings in the question our faith in modern quantitative science as compared to the long tradition of qualitative indigenous knowledge through an inventory of distinctive tools, exemplary specimen and mappings that explore new ways to relate to the plant life around us. A combination of mythology and science fiction combined with qualitative science is used to create an experimental framework that regenerates traditional knowledge. Hands-on workshops and visual display are the vehicle for exploration and sharing new configurations of knowledge. Just like the intricate mechanisms for seed dispersal, E.B. moves freely to collect and disperse knowledge freely.
World’s Fair 2.0 by Stephanie Rothenberg and Marisa Jahn that:
reclaims the current home of the New York Hall of Science, re-envisioning the concepts that transformed Fitzgerald’s famous “valley of ashes” into Flushing Meadows Corona Park, the site of the 1939 and 1964 World’s Fairs. The fairs, through exhibits such as Futurama, The Road of Tomorrow, and Hall of Electrical Living, introduced visitors to products and ideas ranging from domestic robots and dishwashers to superhighways and space colonies, and as such, were seminal moments in the national psyche and global consciousness.
Looking to this rich cultural and technological history, Jahn and Rothenberg worked with 14 teens, and together they used innovations in mobile and augmented reality technology to ask: what are the continuities between utopian visions from the past and today’s vision for the future? Using a smartphone, visitors can experience World’s Fair 2.0 at locations in and around NYSCI. At the Rocket Park, for example, visitors will encounter visions for future living, from the “liberatory” promise of the electric dishwasher to single family space pods. Available both as a self-guided tour and teen-produced mobile game–where zombies thwart players in their time-traveling quest to explore the history of the future–World’s Fair 2.0 stages interventions into the past and future, regenerating conceptual tools to interact with the present.
2049 by Scott Kildall
A Geography of Being by Ricardo Miranda Zuniga. Ricardo initially sent me the information about this show and also a link to this video: