Creativity and technology collide at USC Art Gallery

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Briony BARR Drawing on complexity (The Experimenta series) 2017 Photo: Theresa Harrison © the artist

The public is invited to experiment with their human senses at a new exhibition at USC Art Gallery.

Experimenta Make Sense: International Triennial of Media Art will open on Friday 12 July at 6pm as part of Sunshine Coast Council’s annual Horizon Festival.

Manager of USC Art Gallery Megan Williams said the installation was a collision of creativity and technology.

“Visitors can be submerged inside the sonic sounds of a breaking wave, step into the shoes and eyes of a stranger using a virtual reality headset or explore how bodies have adapted to sensory deprivation and extreme isolation,” she said.

“Harvard biologist E.O. Wilson has said a challenge for 21st century humanity is that, ‘we have Paleolithic emotions, medieval institutions and god-like technologies’. We humans still ‘make sense’ of our world through our physical selves and our cultures.  

“This exhibition of leading international and Australian artists – including Judy Watson, Robert Andrew, Liz Magic Laser and Andrew Styan – engage directly with this conundrum.

“We are thrilled to be bringing a taste of the most innovative new media art being made in Australia and abroad to the Sunshine Coast during Horizon Festival, which is a premier multi-arts festival.”

Experimenta Artistic Director Jonathan Parsons said the exhibition would express the “disconcerting and delightful” digital age. 

“Both playful and thought provoking, this exhibition asks audiences to immerse their senses into a ‘thinking, feeling and doing’ contemplation of what it is to be human in an age of technological acceleration,” Parsons said.

Among the exhibits is Anna Munster and Michele Barker’s pull, a commission by Experimenta and the Australian Network for Art and Technology (ANAT), which is a walk-through installation which submerges the audience into the sonic and visual sensations of a wave breaking. 

Also featured is virtual reality innovator Jane Gauntlett’s My Shoes: Intimacy, which challenges audience members to partner up with strangers and experience three encounters that explore the power of human connection. 

Experimenta is Australia’s pre-eminent media arts organisation, showcasing dynamic contemporary art at the nexus of digital media, science and technology, and design. 

The USC Art Gallery is located at USC’s Sunshine Coast Campus on Sippy Downs Drive, Sippy Downs. It is open free to the public from 10am to 4pm Monday to Saturday and closed Sundays and public holidays.
 

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