Sammy P., the photosynthetic wall prototype designed and fabricated by IED Torino students of the Master in Smart Buildings and Sustainable Design, will be on show in the exhibit Human Factor – Endless Prototyping organized by Ars Electronica at Drive Volkswagen Forum in Berlin. Opening tonight, it will be on until the 27th of August 2016.
HUMAN FACTOR – Endless Prototyping
Humankind has been fighting for its very survival since time immemorial. For millennia, we have endeavored to arrange our habitats in ways that would henceforth make this existential struggle easier to win. Our intellect and creativity, our readiness to collaborate and our willpower ultimately enabled us to decide this fight in our favor. And what’s more, we have come to be so successful in modifying everything around us—even the essence of life itself—to such an extent and configuring it so complexly that we now find ourselves in the paradoxical situation of no longer being able to comprehend this world we have made. The HUMAN FACTOR, the very thing that has fostered our survival heretofore, is now yielding consequences that threaten to overwhelm us. We now face ever larger and more complex the challenges, the causes of which are our own doing. Dealing with these problems calls for, once again, the HUMAN FACTOR. What it takes are our creativity and flexibility, a will to cooperate, the spirit of innovation, and our determination.
There are already pioneers who have set off to blaze new trails. At the nexus of art, society and industry, they are seeking solutions with great future promise and creating viable prototypes. These men and women are artists who are working together at eye level with engineers, technologists, scientists and business executives, but the outcomes they have in mind are not uplifting works of art for display in the lobbies and galleries of this world. Instead, these are artistic experiments proposing answers to pressing social, ecological and economic questions. And they also focus on the matter of which role art can or should play within the framework of social development.
A selection of such pioneers and prototypes is presented by this exhibition entitled HUMAN FACTOR. It showcases concepts and projects that remain unfinished, have not yet fully matured, are still untested, or whose outcome and/or further progress are unknowns, but that, nevertheless—or, perhaps, for precisely those reasons—are tremendously exciting and inspirational. Moreover, they can serve as proxies for many other new, unusual, innovative alliances and cooperative ventures linking up art and industry, and thereby show that, in spite of all the problems and global threats, we can still hope. Because, thanks to the HUMAN FACTOR, we are capable of quite astounding achievements.