NanoLab Director Emeritus
Adam Stieg serves as Director for the Sci|Art NanoLab Summer Institute. As a scientist and educator at the California NanoSystems Institute (CNSI), his work focuses on developing integrated approaches to study material systems at the interface of traditional boundaries. Through the implementation of original experimental techniques, this research seeks to bridge the gap between our current understanding of nanomaterials and their fundamental properties with how these systems tend toward complexity at increased scales of space and time. Dr. Stieg's research activities are augmented by active collaboration with artists and designers on various projects, installations, and public exhibitions that directly inform the scientific process and provide motivation to develop new educational content that conveys the need for creativity in innovation.
Born in Boston, MA, Aisen Caro Chacin is a regenerating composition of cells that produce a woman, an international American, and an animal whose patterns of migration are not based on seasons, but rather chance, chaos, and opportunity. Her curiosity led her to research the intersecting fields of art, science, and technology driven by conceptual forms of inquiry. Soaking with a sculpture background from the University of Houston, she also received an MFA in Design and Technology from Parsons in NYC, where she taught Physical and Creative Computing. Her radar is on Human Computer Interaction HCI- designing new perceptual interfaces; and discovering the limits of digital media. She is currently designing assistive devices as Ph.D. candidate at the Empowerment Informatics program in the University of Tsukuba, Japan. Her work has been presented and exhibited at Ars Electronica, Cite du Design, TEI, NIME, NYC Museum of Art and Design, The New York Hall of Science, Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, among others. Featured as an inventor in Future Tech by Discovery Channel, Creative Applications, FastCo, Time Techland, Engadget, and was awarded and published by PopSci, she looks forward to finding other suspended disbeliefs in her pocket.
Andrew Ortiz is a student at Los Angeles Valley College where he has completed his Associate of Arts certificate in Studio Art, and is continuing to explore his interests in design and visual art. Before attending Valley College, he spent time studying Computer Science at the UCSC Baskin School of Engineering. His recent works include large-scale surreal ink drawings and expressionist mixed-media paintings, as well as abstract photography. He is fascinated with the natural world, and his photography is largely based on abstraction of everyday things, often achieved by taking advantage of the reflective and refractive qualities of prisms and curved glass, as well as the distortions caused by flowing water.
Born and raised in Los Angeles, Angela Yang attended Pasadena’s Westridge School for Girls, but explored her eclectic scientific and artistic interests over the summer at UCLA’s Nanoscience Lab and Sci|Art Nanolab Summer Institute, the U.S. Naval Academy’s Summer Seminar, and Columbia University’s Materials Science and Nanotechnology Program. Additionally, she works as a research assistant for the Minnich Research Group at Caltech’s Mechanical Engineering Department. This fall, Angela will be joining University of Pennsylvania’s VIPER Class of 2021, a dual-degree program specializing in energy research. In her free time, Angela likes to explore her surroundings through food and document her adventures on Instagram.
An Art|Sci Center alumni—will be joining us at the end of the quarter as the Bermant Foundation Resident. Anne is a media artist and designer working in the fields of wearable technology, interactive installation and audio-visual design. She is particularly fascinated by the convergence of art, science, design and technology, and she pursues collaborative and cross disciplinary projects.
Ben Ward is a software engineer who develops websites for the ART|SCI Center. He is currently working remotely with Victoria Vesna to design school sites while building startups in the Silicon Valley.
Chris Dunham is a first-year graduate student in the Gimzewski lab at UCLA. Chris received a B.S. in Chemistry at the University of Michigan - Ann Arbor. As an undergraduate, Chris spent time in biophysical and computational/theoretical research groups; following his move to UCLA, he has now made the transition to biological and materials nanoscience research in the Gimzewski lab. Because he is a first-year graduate student, Chris no longer has free time for hobbies; however, he spends what little free time he accumulates - typically in the wee hours of the night - plotting world domination. The last year has demonstrated that anything can happen.
Christina Agapakis is a synthetic biologist interested in the structure, evolution and design of the microbial communities that help us to produce and digest our food. Her research is collaborative and multidisciplinary, working with engineers, artists, and designers and ranging from the ecology of soil to skin to cheese. Her blog, Oscillator (http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/oscillator), is hosted by Scientific American.
A Brazilian-American interdisciplinary artist, designer, educator and researcher, Claudia Jacques de Moraes Cardoso holds an MFA in Computer Art (School of Visual Arts, NY) and is currently a PhD candidate at the Planetary Collegium, University of Plymouth, UK. Under Professors Roy Ascott and Søren Brier, she is researching space-time aesthetics in the user-information-interface relationship through the lens of Cybersemiotics. Intersecting art, technology and science, she designs interactive hybrid art and information environments that aim to explore perceptions of space-time and the digital-physical in the pursuit of human consciousness and expansion of human knowledge. She collaborates with many artists exhibiting and presenting both nationally and internationally. She has published in Leonardo, TEKs, Art & Engine, etc., and serves as Art+Web Editor for Cybernetics and Human Knowing journal. Jacques is also a participant with three other scholars in a 2014-17 NEH Collaborative Research Project based at Roosevelt University in Chicago. She has been collaborating with UCLA’s ArtSci Center since 2011 as an Information and Instructional Design Consultant and is currently the ArtSci Nanolab Associate Director. Jacques teaches studio, digital and communication arts, and her studio is in Valhalla, NY.
Scholar in Residence
Claudia Schnugg is a researcher, educator, producer, and curator with an interdisciplinary background in social sciences, business administration, cultural sciences, and the arts. Currently, she is exploring the practices and social dynamics of interdisciplinary collaborative projects, involving art, science, and new technologies. Apart of her research projects she is working with institutions like Science Gallery International to support them in developing research proposals and artscience research opportunities, and consults scientific institutions in the development of artscience projects, artist in residence programs, and artscience interventions. Previously, she curated the Ars Electronica Residency Network. This included EU projects and programs in cooperation with institutions like CERN, ESO (European Southern Observatories), Queensland University of Technology, voestalpine, and Chungnam Culture Technology Industry Agency. Prior academic positions include an Assistant Professorship at the Johannes Kepler University, Linz, and a Visiting Postdoctoral Research Position at Copenhagen Business School, with special focus on organizational aesthetics and artistic interventions in business contexts.
David S. Robert is a filmmaker, writer and graphic designer. Born and brought up in Hyderabad, India, he moved to Los Angeles to make feature films for international audiences and to study film producing at UCLA. He studied Life Science in undergrad, and in grad school he double majored in Business Administration (Marketing) and Public Relations (Advertising). He has a diploma in Multimedia Arts and is well-versed in New Media. He extensively worked as an art director and creative director in film and Theatrical Poster Branding and Advertising besides writing and directing several feature shorts. He loves dogs and horses.
Dawn Faelnar is a Media Art Scientist with special interest in innovative projects that promote the beautiful collaboration between Art, Science, Design and Technology. Since graduating from the Design|Media Arts program at UCLA (minor in Neuroscience), and with nearly a decade of exposure to design development, new media and interactive technology, Dawn has been extensively involved in multimedia projects throughout the globe. Dawn spends her spare time obsessing over novelty paper, experimental music & cupcakes, and managing the continuing fundraising effort she co-founded for the victims of Typhoon Haiyan—Rebuild Cebu.
Dayan Wickramaratne is a Biomedical Engineer/Scientist, who graduated from UCLA recently. His work during ucla involved inventing a cancer diagnostic medical device for superficial cancers. He’s currently working as a curator for events at Art|Sci Center. He loves to fly drones in his free time and make aerial cinematic videos. He also plays violin and enjoy VR drawing in Google Brush. Nanolab Instructor
dward A. Shanken writes and teaches about the entwinement of art, science, and technology with a focus on interdisciplinary practices involving new media. He is Director of the Digital Arts and New Media (DANM) MFA program at UC Santa Cruz and Associate Professor in the Arts Division. Prior academic posts include Digital + Media MFA program at Rhode Island School of Design, DXARTS Ph.D. program at University of Washington, New Media International MA at University of Amsterdam. Fellowships include National Endowment for the Arts, American Council of Learned Societies, UCLA, University of Bremen, University of Memphis, and Washington University in St. Louis. Dr. Shanken earned a Ph.D. and MA in Art History at Duke University, an MBA at Yale University, and a BA at Haverford College.
Eli Joteva is an inter-media artist and researcher working on the intersection of Art and Neurophysics. Joteva received a B.A. in Fine Arts from USC Roski (where she focused on experimental video, photography and installation) and is currently an M.F.A candidate at UCLA Design | Media Arts, where she studies how new imaging tools and biofeedback technologies can provoke embodied reflections of internal experiences and mental health. Her work extrapolates the ephemeral realms of human perception by amplifying the invisible and inaudible processes underneath conscious awareness. Joteva’s work has been exhibited as solo shows in North America, Europe and Australia.
Hsinyu Lin is an artist / researcher / educator who studies the modes by which internet shape and gets shaped by social, cultural, economic, and political dynamics. She co-founded voidLab, an intersectional feminist collective for women, non-binary, gender nonconforming, trans and queer people to express individual identities through arts and technologies. Lin received her M.F.A. from UCLA Design | Media Arts and is currently a Visiting Professor at Loyola Marymount University. Lin’s work had been exhibited at the Hammer Museum, IndieCade Festival, Machine Project, and Gene Siskel Film Center.
Jim Gimzewski is a Distinguished Professor of Chemistry at the University of California, Los Angeles; Director of the Nano & Pico Characterization Core Facility of the California NanoSystems Institute; Scientific Director of the Art|Sci Center and Principal Investigator and Satellites Co-Director of the WPI Center for Materials NanoArchitectonics (MANA) in Japan. Prior to joining the UCLA faculty, he was a group leader at IBM Zurich Research Laboratory, where he research in nanoscale science and technology for more than 18 years. Dr. Gimzewski pioneered research on mechanical and electrical contacts with single atoms and molecules using scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) and was one of the first persons to image molecules with STM. His accomplishments include the first STM-based fabrication of molecular suprastructures at room temperature using mechanical forces to push molecules across surfaces, the discovery of single molecule rotors and the development of new micromechanical sensors based on nanotechnology, which explore ultimate limits of sensitivity and measurement. This approach was recently used to convert biochemical recognition into Nanomechanics. His current interests are in the nanomechanics of cells and bacteria where he collaborates with the UCLA Medical and Dental Schools. He is involved in projects that range from the operation of X-rays, ions and nuclear fusion using pyroelectric crystals, direct deposition of carbon nanotubes and single molecule DNA profiling. Dr. Gimzewski is also involved in numerous art-science collaborative projects that have been exhibited in museums throughout the world.
Joel Ong is Assistant Professor in Computational Arts at York University in Toronto, Canada. His research explores emergent ways of interfacing with the natural elements through the lens of digital and interactive technologies. He is an alumni of SymbioticA and is also an artist with the UCLA ArtSci Collective.
Jonathan Fletcher Moore is a multi-dimensional (x, y, z, time) visual artist based out of Los Angeles, California. Professionally, he has spent the past seven years in the VFX / Animation industry as a lighting / compositing artist, technical director, and cg generalist. Personally, his artwork has shifted from animation and photo based works to interactive installations utilizing micro-controllers (tiny computers), the internet, and everyday objects to explore the relationship between technology, society, and the modern human condition.
Intern + Counselor
Judy Kim is a second-year undergraduate at UCLA primarily studying cognitive science and film. She is a lead artist for game development and animated film teams at UCLA, often drawing from a background in 2D art but also currently learning Maya and stop motion techniques. Her interests in anthropology, psychology, philosophy, film theory, and game design revolve around understanding the mind and how both narrative and visual aspects of entertainment can positively influence our perceptions of the world. She joined the Art|Sci Center as an intern in 2015.
Writer & Poet
Kenneth Azurin is a writer with a background in art gallery exhibitions, brand growth, digital marketing and product. No stranger to UCLA's Art|Sci Center + Lab, he's contributed to recent projects such as 2013's Octopus Mandala Glow and the following year's AURORA media art science benefit show. When he's not writing for Art|Sci, Kenneth spends his time reviewing art books and novels, exploring the city, playing basketball or working on various collaborative projects as one half of th1nkblender, a creative partnership which he cofounded with Dawn Faelnar. Somewhere in between, he’s scrawling a novel.
Klaus Spiess is an endocrinologist, psychosomaticist and medical anthropologist who now works as an associate professor in the field of art and science at the Medical University of Vienna. His performances and installations (all together with Lucie Strecker) address biopolitical issues in medicine and have been shown at numerous performance and exhibition spaces (Budascoop Kortrijk, Tanzquartier and Belvedere/21er Haus Vienna, Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin, the BEALL Center for Art + Technology, Irvine, the Onassis Cultural Center Athens, the Bemis Center of Contemporary Arts Omaha and the OK Center, Linz, where he was awarded an Honorary Mention at the Prix Ars Electronica. He has published numerous articles on his transdisciplinary work (Performance Research, Kunstforum International, Springerin, The Lancet and Leonardo, among others).
Linda Weintraub is a curator, educator, artist, and author of several popular books about contemporary art. She has earned her reputation by making the outposts of vanguard art accessible to broad audiences. The current vanguard, she believes, is propelled by environmental consciousness that is not only the defining characteristic of contemporary manufacturing, architecture, science, ethics, politics, and philosophy, it is delineating contemporary art. “TO LIFE! Eco Art in Pursuit of a Sustainable Planet” was preceded by the series, Avant-Guardians: Textlets in Art and Ecology (2007). It includes EcoCentric Topics: Pioneering Themes for Eco-Art; Cycle-Logical Art: Recycling Matters for Eco-Art; EnvironMentalities: Twenty-two Approaches to Eco-Art. Weintraub established Artnow Publications in order to apply environmental responsibility to the books’ material production. Linda applies these environmental concerns to her personal life by managing a sustainable homestead where she practices permaculture. Weintraub is also the author of In the Making: Creative Options for Contemporary Artists and Art on the Edge and Over: Searching for Art’s Meaning in Contemporary Society. She edited ANIMAL. ANIMA. ANIMUS with Marketta Sepalla; served as the director of the Edith C. Blum Art Institute located on the Bard College campus where she originated fifty exhibitions and published over twenty catalogues; and held the position of Henry Luce Professor of Emerging Arts at Oberlin College. Dear Mother Nature at the Dorsky Museum, SUNY New Paltz is the most recent exhibition she curated. Other exhibitions include Lo and Behold: Visionary Art in the Post-Modern Era, Process and Product: The Making of Eight Contemporary Masterworks, Landmarks: New Site Proposals by Twenty Pioneers of Environmental Art, Art What Thou Eat: Images of Food in American Art, and The Maximal Implications of the Minimal Line. Weintraub received her MFA degree from Rutgers University.
Lindy Ransom is currently an administrative specialist working for Professor James Gimzewski at UCLA. Professor Victoria Vesna and Dr. James Gimzewski have been collaborating in various exhibits and Art|Sci Center activities for the past decade. Her background as both a coordinator and administrative assistant has both freelance feature film production experience, as well as studio executive level administration skills. Her current projects include the collaborative effort of OMG! (Victoria Vesna’s installation at Glow Festival 2013), and the parties hosted by her private event company, Events by Lindy.
Incoming Art|Sci artist in residence, she has been developing trans-disciplinary performances and installations that address biopolitical issues for five years. An artist and stage director, she holds a senior postdoc position at the University of Applied Arts Vienna. She has performed at Budascoop Kortrik, Tanzquartier & Belvedere/21 Haus Kortrijk, Tanzquartier and Belvedere/21er Haus, Vienna and her installations have been shown at the Haus der Kulturen der Welt in Berlin, the BEALL Center for Art + Technology in Irvine, and the OK Center in Linz, where she was awarded an Honorary Mention (2015) at the Prix Ars Electronica. She has published articles on her trans-disciplinary performances in Performance Research, Kunstforum International, Springerin, and The Lancet, among others.
Editor-in-chief at CGmag. After studying at the Universities of Applied Sciences in St. Pölten and Hagenberg, Martina started working for the Industrial Motion Art visual effects and digital art studio in Linz and later Vienna. Currently, she is working on her doctoral thesis at the University of Applied Arts Vienna. Under Professor Alfred Vendl she is creating marine biology animations for the new collaboration with Victoria Vesna and the ArtSci team -- the Noise Aquarium.
Mary Tsang is a hybrid of sorts, specialized in both Biology and Art from Carnegie Mellon University. She dabbled a lot in rainforest research and self-taught hydroponics, and has developed a passion for "do-it-yourself" biology, citizen science, and open source learning. Since graduation, she has co-initiated a documentary web-series on DIYBio and Bioart called DIYSECT, analyzing the social-political uses of biotechnology through the lens of biotinkering. She now wavers between observer and doer, using documentary video to explore the worlds she's interested in.
Maryam Razi is a graphic designer and independent researcher based in Iran, with special interest in intersections of transdisciplinary Innovative projects involving art, science and technology. After her M.A. graduation with a focus study in parameters "flow" and "aesthetics" in immersive installations, she started extending her knowledge about convergence of science and technology in media art projects. Razi is passionate about building a transdisciplinary platform for Iranian media artists, scientists and all who believe in variable realities to join, collaborate and discover.
Mick Lorusso is a cross-disciplinary artist who interweaves musings on molecules, cells, societies, and environments. He creates images, cabinets of curiosity and interactions to address questions about energy, water, climate, and health. He has participated in interdisciplinary art residencies and programs such as ISEA, Kraftwerk Künstlerdorf, and Make Art with Purpose in countries including Germany, Mexico, Canada, and USA. He received an honorary mention in hybrid art at Ars Electronica in 2013 for the project “Microbial Schöppingen” made with microbial fuel cells. With early training in microbiology and education in art at Colorado College (BA) and San Francisco Art Institute (MFA), he has been a member of the UCLA Art|Sci Collective and an instructor for the UCLA Sci|Art Nanolab Summer Institute since 2014. Former Exhibition/Program Manager
Dr Miu Ling Lam is a media artist and researcher of robotics, interactive media and bioinformatics. Her most recent research focuses on 3D immaterial displays, visual-odometry-based robotic cinematography, and computational models for single molecule DNA profiling. Her work has been published in scientific journals and book chapters, such as Journal of The Royal Society Interface, Sensors and Actuators, IEEE Transactions on Robotics, and Journal of Laboratory Automation, as well as leading robotics and computer graphics conferences. Her earlier research includes multi-fingered robotic grasp, geometric algorithms for wireless sensor network deployment, and obstacle avoidance for redundant manipulators using neural network. In er postdoctoral fellowship she specialized in nanotechnology and art-science. She joined the School of Creative Media at Hong Kong CityU after her residency.
is a digital media artist, designer and assistant professor coordinating the Multimedia Art degree at the University of Lisbon. She is also a researcher at M-ITI - Madeira Interactive Technologies Institute, collaborator at CIEBA – Centro de Investigação e de Estudos em Belas-Artes, and founding member of AZ Labs hackerspace altLab. Interested in designing for a more sustainable world, Mónica is exploring real-time interactive systems at the intersection of Art, Science and Technology.
Originally from London, UK; Dr. Olivia Osborne is an interdisciplinary scientist and artist. Being a hybrid herself (English/Spanish); she has always been able to see multiple facets to her daily life and is able to integrate thoughts in an interestingly mutualistic way. Her passion lies in nature and tries to encompass that in every aspect of her life. She initiated her fervor for art at school where she took inspirational advantage of living in such a vibrant city that is London and was encouraged to exhibit and pursue her love for art. Science however, was the other main zeal in her life, which lead her to read Biological Sciences at the University of Exeter, specialising in ecotoxicology, developmental biology and environmental biology. During this time her environmental stewardship shone through as she undertook terrestrial conservation work in the jungles of Honduras and marine work in the oceans of the Bahamas. She then pursued and received her PhD in the ecotoxicology of nanomaterials from the University of Exeter, UK. Today- she swapped the quintessential picturesque Southwest England for the multifarious city of Los Angeles-where she is a postdoctoral scholar at UCLA working on the hazard assessment of nanoparticles in the environment. Her current research interests lie in environmental toxicology, nanoparticle hazard assessment and high throughput toxicity screening. Aside from being a dedicated research scientist, she keeps up her ardour for art perpetually experimenting with all forms of media, constantly exploring new ways to portray art in different forms.
Osman Trieu is a second year undergraduate NanoEngineering student studying at University of California, San Diego. He was a part of the Sci|Art program in 2014. When he is not hovering over textbooks during the school year, Osman loves to keep up to date with the latest technology news, ski, and travel around the world. He has worked with medical and innovation companies in the information technology field and research & development for the past two years, and will continue doing so with a major petroleum company this summer. He is interested in the incorporation of smart technologies into everyday lives, at both the nano and macro scale. Osman is very excited to return this year for his second time as a NanoLab counselor.
Her work examines the wars in which culture and institutional structures shape our knowledge and understanding of history, science, and the natural world. Appropriating medical imaging technologies and methods of collecting, documenting, and exhibiting scientific artifacts. Her work addresses how interpretation fluctuates between fact and speculation. Her installations, sculptures, photography and performances operate at the intersections between sensing and knowing, and order and affect. http://www.patriciaolynyk.com/
Rita Blaik is a multidisciplinary scientist and artist based in Los Angeles, California. Her life's goal is to find new and innovative ways of communicating science to people through interactive discussions, art, and other media. Since 2009 she has been an instructor for the Sci|Art Nanolab and from 2011-2012, was the Art|Sci Center Networking Outreach Coordinator. She had her first solo exhibition at the Art|Sci Center, Altered States, in Fall 2012. Rita received her B.S. in Materials Science & Engineering from the University of California at Irvine, and is currently pursuing a PhD in the same at UCLA. She is a proud fellow of the NSF IGERT Clean Energy for Green Industry fellowship and works with Professor Bruce Dunn on biological fuel cell systems and architectures.
I research and create inspirational experiences from health and biotech concepts. I like to fuse digital media, tangible hardware, and storytelling into something that makes life richer as well as longer. I'm also experienced in guiding teams through user-centered design and rapid prototyping to turn things and ideas into actions.
Sam Lilak is a first-year graduate student working for Jim Gimzewski at UCLA. Sam received a B.S. in chemistry at the University of North Dakota. His undergraduate background in chemistry was primarily oriented around analytical chemistry and the specific decomposition of lignin. The graduate work he now pursues is rooted in nanomaterial development and state of the art semiconductor research.
Samson Klitsner is an LA based designer with a focus on interactive environments, motion/video and sound. As a recent graduate of the Design | Media Arts program at UCLA, his work often embraces a playful multimedia approach that combines design thinking with interactive platforms.
Sanglim Han is an interdisciplinary artist who focuses on the dialogue in, on, and around bodies. She explores and looks closely at our bodies through creating installations that incorporate with video, 3D animation, virtual reality, and real-time media performance. Her works have been presented internationally in various festivals and galleries including IDFX; Matadero Madrid Contemporary Art Center; Biennial Symposium for Arts and Technology. She received her BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and is currently a candidate for the MFA at UCLA DMA and a student researcher at UCLA Art Sci.
Sarah Popelka studies cognitive science at UCLA and is interested in video games and films -- how they affect the brain, how to make them better, and how to play and watch them more.
I am interested in the cusp of disciplines and the dialog that arises at that juncture. Art and Science have long been thought to be completely divergent fields, but I believe that there is a lot to be discovered by blending the two, and by allowing scientists and artists to engage with one another.
Victoria Vesna, Ph.D., is a media artist and Professor at the UCLA Department of Design | Media Arts and Director of the Art|Sci center at the School of the Arts and California Nanosystems Institute (CNSI). She is currently a senior researcher at IMéRA – Institut Méditerranéen de Recherches Avancées in Marseille (2011-2013). Her work can be defined as experimental creative research that resides between disciplines and technologies. With her installations she explores how communication technologies affect collective behavior and how perceptions of identity shift in relation to scientific innovation. Victoria has exhibited her work in over twenty solo exhibitions, more than seventy group shows, has been published in excess of twenty papers and gave 100+ invited talks in the last decade. She is the North American editor of AI & Society and in 2007 published an edited volume - Database Aesthetics: Art in the age of Information Overflow, Minnesota Press and most recently an edited volume entitled Context Providers: Conditions of Meaning in Media Arts. (co-edited with Christiane Paul and Margot Lovejoy). Intellect Press, 2011.