This year's festival once again attracted many entries in a wide variety of formats. No specific theme is set for entrants, which makes judging truly difficult, as has been said in past jury critiques.Several works left a deep impression on me. They created a new point of view in a collaboration between humans and non-humans in a large stream of data. By modifying consciousness, the physical body and the world we live in (I apologize for such banal phrases), these works gave shape to questions that are important to all of us--"what is life?" "what is nature?" and "what is the universe?" -- within a collaboration with "some- thing" beyond one's self.These works are not simply questioning, ridiculing or mocking these conditions. Neither are they graphic representations of contemporary thought, claiming to reveal the deeper levels of these conditions. These works are not shut up in art history, nor are they con- strained by the self-definition of art as a privileged sphere from which the artist can criticize science and technology.These works almost violently present a vision for life that is not yet known (collaboration with science is essential in the path to the future) in an unimaginable form (realizing it will require insights into ecosystems, including technology). These works hint at the potential for this kind of exposition. Even though at first we might not know what we are experiencing, the entire setting of the work and the artist becomes inscribed on our body so that we can never forget it. I am very grateful for the artists whose works express such possibilities.
An associate professor at the Nagoya University Graduate School of Informatics. He specializes in aesthetics and arts. For nearly twenty years, he has worked among mathematicians, biologists, computer scientists, complex systems scientists, cognitive scientists, psychologists, philosophers of science, robot ethicists and information philosophers. Since information and life are common topics among scholars in a diverse array of fields, Akiba aims to consider beauty and art in terms of those topics. He is enjoying more opportunities to talk with creators after publishing Creating New Aesthetics [Misuzu Shobo, 2011].
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