Science Talks to Art & Art Talks to Science
The questions "what we know" and "how we know" are central to both artistic and scientific inquiries.
Since 2008, the SOFAlab participants have developed a series of "laboratory/studio" exchanges in which artists are invited to observe and participate in laboratory sessions and scientists are invited into artists' studios for collaborative projects. These exchanges are intended to explore similarities and differences in how scientists and artists use experimentation and visualization in their efforts to make sense of the universe.
The interdisciplinary collective SOFAlab strives to illuminate the overlap between the two fields, bringing together artists and scientists in order to experience the transformative instances in which science and art produce a resonance.
SOFAlab collaborations have developed through partnerships between Shanti Norris, Smith Center for Healing and the Arts; Paul So, Krasnow Institute for Advanced Study at George Mason University; Helen Frederick, School of Art, George Mason University; and Hamiltonian Gallery. Interns Alex Giller, Aaron Van Andel, Scott Jemielity, and Erwin Thamm assisted the program in 2011-12.
Because of the long established separation between art and science where genuine collaborations between artists and scientists are rare, SOFAlab innovators believe a new intellectual culture is needed - as well as research and academic structures to support it. The point of such a shift is to cultivate and sustain a blending of artistic, scientific, and technological sensibilities and skills that is becoming increasingly indispensible in the modern world.
Successful scientific discoveries and artistic achievements can sometimes bring about additional transformative changes in our societal wellbeing and health. SOFAlab hopes to explore the mind, body, and spirit of those who achieve and transform consciousness through science, art, and healing and to provide ways for this information to be shared.