“Experimentation as Performance” presented by Hastings


Presentation Title:

  • Experimentation as Performance



  • Though they are segregated within the walls of academia, both science and art are rooted in our innate sense of imagination and wonder, and an impulse to explore. Yet, both the scientist and artist are defined by what they make, both fecund in new ways of creating and conceiving of knowledge through the application of imagination. It is incumbent upon contemporary practitioners to unlace the metaphorical corset that has bound us since the Industrial Revolution, when specialisation began to take precedence over interdisciplinarity, manufacturing became the dominant mode of making, and procedural efficiency and cost valued higher than artisanry and originality.
    In my hybrid art-science practise as an independent researcher (biohacker) with my own home laboratory since 2009, I pursue the vestiges of that evolutionary schism that set apart our ancestors from that of the higher apes. There is a seemingly profound element to this endeavor—that the subject (a human being) is able to analyse the very matter (proteins) that makes it possible in the first place. My artwork utilizes this data to capture the beauty, dynamism and profoundly inspiring material this project examines. I have called this project The Matter of Humanness, and have thus far experimented with incorporating this data into 2D and 3D (holographic) artwork.
    In my presentation, I wish to proffer my experience working as an independent researcher (biohacker), suggest that art-science hybridity is imperative to the future of creative practice, and scientific experimentation as a form of performance.