Mapping Uncertainty


Session Title:

  • Mapping and the User Experience

Presentation Title:

  • Mapping Uncertainty




  • The issue of exactitude in ‘mapping’ the physical world has been debated extensively in science and has deeply influenced the formulation of scientific paradigms. As we pass from Modernist reduction and mathematical formalism to contemporary complexity, uncertainty and complementarity, our perception and understanding of the relationship between physical and virtual worlds are changing in the most unexpected manner. In particular, the developments in Quantum physics and scientific visualisation have revealed an emerging kind of multi-dimensionality that characterises the fuzzy boundaries between reality and virtuality and probes new relationships between part and whole. As a result, a new understanding of space and reality in general, as well as of the limitations of science, is developing.

    In contemporary art, architecture and the related disciplines, the changing relationship of data flows and data matrices inspires new types of spatial research and practice. As a designed environment, built space can be perceived as a fragment of an excessive superimposition of dynamically interacting algorithmic, geometrical, topological and structural grids. A creative exploration of the data flows into, from and within the physical structures of the built environment, challenges our common assumptions about space and our experience of it.

    Emerging types of site-specific digital art are developing, for creatively investigating the point of intersection between the various types of reality and their ‘exchanges’. This paper offers an investigation into the ways through which, potential in-between spaces can be creatively revealed, through new kinds of site-specific intervention. The emphasis is placed on how it is possible to ‘trace’ and interact with the half- and by- products of algorithmic flows that remain unbuilt, their meta-dimentionality and the emerging paradoxes, through different modes of innovative spatial intervention such as, mixed realities para-sites, ‘injections’, ‘cuts’, interruptive sites-specificity and others. Selected cases from the author’s own practice and research in digital site-specific art and other examples of spatial practices and research in art and architecture will be discussed in conjunction with the relevant scientific, cosmological and philosophical theories.

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