Re-Mediations in the Bio-Digital
Connections between imaging techniques in the biomedical and ecological sciences and those of contemporary artistic practice are discussed in relation to Adams’ research and in the wider context of media art histories. Through three examples from her transdisiplinary art/science projects – extending through the biomedical sciences to neuroscientific research on the European honey bee – Adams explores practical models for interference and alternative discourses for media art. The selected projects have repositioned scientific image data within an expanded field of artistic critique and audience experience. Adams begins by describing her reinterpretations and recontextualisations of digital videomicrograph adult stem cell experimental image data in the immersive, interactive art installation: machina carnis; where her creative “interference” with the habitual scientific reading of the image data engendered a viewer/ artwork relationship that fostered an intimate, personalised interpretive dynamic. Adams’ continued to question contemporary representations of “humanness” when she carried out experimental research in the largest indoor facility for honeybee research in Australia. The video: HOST responded to the permeable membrane of interspecies proximity the artist experienced in this environment and the role of the high-end digital imaging technologies that recorded the honeybee behaviours. Finally, the mixed reality interactive artwork: mellifera poetically re-interpreted artistic observations of honeybees through the creation of a virtual environment in Second Life and real-time interactive gallery terminals. Adams demonstrates that the overall focus of these projects is on open-ended, transdisciplinary methodologies that disrupt and intervene with scientific construction of the “self” and fully explore the creative potentials of hybrid media art.