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New UC San Diego Exhibition Envisages Future of Nanoparticles

Installations by Adriene Jenik and *particle group*

Atkinson Hall
University of California, San Diego
Map & Directions:

August 6 to October 3, 2008
Closing Reception: October 2 at 6 to 8 PM

August 6 through September 19:Wednesday - Friday: 11AM - 5PM
September 22 through October 3:
Monday - Friday: 11AM - 5PM

July 22, 2008


New-media art installations that caution visitors about a future when books
are relics of the past, and nanoparticles represent a pervasive threat to
human health, will be on display starting August 4 at the gallery@calit2 on
the campus of the University of California, San Diego.

The joint exhibition will present "SPECFLIC 2.6" by UC San Diego Visual Arts
professor Adriene Jenik, and "Particles of Interest" by *particle group*, an
art collective composed of independent and UCSD-based artists and writers.

The art installations ask the viewer to consider a not-so-distant future in
which individuals will be intimately connected to networks not only through
our computers, but via nanoparticles in or on our own bodies.

The gallery is part of the UCSD division of the California Institute for
Telecommunications and Information Technology (Calit2).


Today accessibility to information is a combination of video, image and
text, informed in large part by the language of film and the literary novel.
Adriene Jenik, in her ongoing project SPECFLIC, currently in version 2.6,
explores the evolution of film language as "Distributed Social Cinema."
Using multiple screens, from cell phone interfaces to large image projections, Jenik layers media and technology forms. SPECFLIC 1.0 premiered at the dedication of Atkinson Hall as Calit2's headquarters on the UCSD campus in 2005; SPECFLIC 2.0, hosted by the San Jose Public Library, was a
featured event at ISEA06/ZeroOne San Jose in 2006.

For the gallery@calit2, Jenik offers the public a speculative, futuristic
reality taking place in the year 2030, in which people access the
"InfoSphere" to learn about books that are only available to the public in
electronic form. In SPECFLIC 2.6, books exist as rare objects that can only
be described by the InfoSpherian, who is a rough equivalent to today's
reference-desk librarian. Gallery visitors will be able use their cell
phones to share their reflections on the future of the book and the library.

"Granted the opportunity for networked interaction within the gallery, for
SPECFLIC 2.6 I have rethought the installation to integrate audience
contributions," said Jenik. "So the project is very much evolving in
response to what I learn from each previous iteration, as well as the
opportunities afforded by the space, encounter with the audience, and
technological framework."

SPECFLIC 2.6 offers a plausible future that is in large part dependent on a
network with defined boundaries that are modeled after, or part of, the

Particles of Interest

In juxtaposition, "Particles of Interest" reflects on nanotechnology, which
has no clear boundaries because it links humans to machines in ways that are
beyond binary networks. Nanotechnology is an interdisciplinary field at the
crux of scientific research and corporate investment. Research on
nanoparticles has led to the commercial development of products such as
improved rubber tires, coating in glass that makes it easier to clean,
improved water filtration systems, sunscreen lotions and much more. At the
same time, there has been little consideration of the health implications of

The *particle group* installation allows visitors to learn about growing
concern with nanoparticles in public health. Illuminated particle poetry
videos on iPod nanos which trace the production of the nano_sublime, and
visitors can interact with sculptural devices to discover the dangers of
nanoparticles on people's skin or clothing.

Each iteration of the "Particles of Interest" project has been, as much as
possible, site-specific. "This version of the piece functions as an access
route to Calit2's gallery, so we became interested in the pedestal and the
host of scripts it serves in the gallery or museum," said the artists.
"Pedestals are used to elevate that which the institution has designated to
be of value... and here in the Nano3 labs at Calit2, we find the laboratory
cousin of the pedestal -- the clean white (or aluminum) counter, whose
contents may only be intimately accessed by professionals. Visitors to
Calit2's nanolabs are positioned to watch skilled nanolab professionals
perform a range of interactions with nanoparticles. In our piece, we wanted
our 'unskilled' visitors to perform this meeting with the untouchable in a
different way. We wanted to bring the clean room and the gallery pedestal
together, to see what they might have to say to each other."

Elements of "Particles of Interest" and SPECFLIC were on view recently at
the San Diego Museum of Art as part of its "Inside the Wave" exhibition,
which featured new-media works from Southern California- and Tijuana-based

Artist Bios

Adriene Jenik is a telecommunications media artist who lives in Southern
California. Her works combine "high" technology and human desire to propose
new forms of literature, cinema and performance. Career highlights include
works in live television, including EL NAFTAZTECA (w/Guillermo Gomez-Pena),
interactive cinema in MAUVE DESERT: A CD-ROM Translation, and the Internet
street theater of DESKTOP THEATER (w/Lisa Brenneis and the Desktop Theater
troupe). Her current research continues her interest in wireless community
media and new storytelling forms. Jenik is currently developing SOCIAL
SPHERE, a spatialized cinema program, and (with collaborator Charley Ten)
the performance platform "Open Dancefloor." An associate professor of
Computer & Media Arts in UCSD's Visual Arts department, Jenik is an
affiliated researcher with Calit2 and the Center for Research in Computing
and the Arts (CRCA) at UCSD.

*particle group* has exhibited at ISEA (San Jose) 2006, House of World
Culture (Berlin) 2007, "Inside the Wave" at the San Diego Museum of Art
2008, and FILE (Brazil) 2008. It is a collective consisting of Principal
Investigators Ricardo Dominguez (an assistant professor of Visual Arts at
UCSD, affiliated with Calit2) and Diane Ludin, as well as Principal
Researchers Nina Waisman (Interactive Sound Installation Design) and Amy
Sara Carroll, with a number of others flowing in and out.

Ricardo Dominguez is a co-founder of The Electronic Disturbance Theater
(EDT), a group who developed Virtual-Sit-In technologies in 1998 in
solidarity with the Zapatista communities in Chiapas, Mexico. He was
co-Director of The Thing ( an ISP for artists and activists
from 2000 to 2004, as well as Senior Editor from 1996 to 1999. He is a
former member of Critical Art Ensemble. Ricardo's performances have been
presented in museums, galleries, theater festivals, hacker meetings,
tactical media events and as direct actions on the streets and around the
world. One of his recent projects (turistafronterizo) was
developed for the International inSite_05 ( Art Interventions
Festival in collaboration with Coco Fusco. Ricardo also collaborated with
artist Diane Ludin on ( which was presented at ISEA 2004 and
at the MadridMedia Lab (2005). Another of his recent collaborations is
( a speculative distributed cinema project with artist
Adriene Jenik (2006). His recent Electronic Disturbance Theater project
with Brett Stabaum, Micha Cárdenas and Jason Najarro the *Transborder
Immigrant Tool* (a GPS cellphone safety net tool for crossing the
Mexico/U.S border was the winner of "Transnational Communities Award",
this award was funded by *Cultural Contact*, Endowment for Culture Mexico
- U.S. and handed out by the U.S. Embassy in Mexico. He is an Assistant
Professor at UCSD in the Visual Arts Department and is also a
Principal/Principle Investigator at the new edge technology institute

Diane Ludin is a writer, media artist and educator. Born in New York, she
studied Drawing and Installation at the State University of New York at
Purchase (1989-1993) and Computer Art at the School of Visual Arts in
(1998-2000). As an artist, she has participated in exhibitions and events
such as New York Digital Salon 2001, Ars Electronica 2002, DEAF 2003, ISEA
2004 and 2006, Whitney ArtPort 2004, Medialabmadrid 2005 and Nomadic New
York in Berlin, 2006. Ludin has completed online commissions for The Walker
Art Center, New Radio and Performing Arts, Franklin Furnace, and The
Alternative Museum. She has held Artist Residencies for the World Views
program in 2000 and Harvestworks in 2004. She is currently a lecturer in the
MFA Computer Art Department of New York's School of Visual Arts.

Nina Waisman's work considers sonic and gestural forms of control and
communication, provoked by technology's disruption of the body's space and
time. Her production ranges from interactive sound-and-sculpture
installations to blind-embossed prints of weaponry morphing into modernist
form. She has exhibited in Los Angeles, Berlin, Yokahama, New York, San
Diego, Budapest, Dallas, San Francisco, Long Beach, and online. Currently
she is working on a piece for El Cubo, the new International Wing of the
CECUT in Tijuana, while finishing her MFA degree in Visual Arts at UCSD. She
has had a blast at UCSD, and at CRCA.

Amy Sara Carroll is assistant professor of Latina/o Studies in the English
Department and the Program of American Culture at the University of
Michigan, Ann Arbor; she received a Ph.D. in Literature from Duke University
(2004), an MFA in Creative Writing (Poetry) from Cornell University (1995),
an MA in Anthropology from the University of Chicago (2003), and an A.B. in
Anthropology and Creative Writing from Princeton University (1990). In
2005-2006, Carroll held a Mellon postdoctoral fellowship in Latino/a Studies
and English at Northwestern University. Her poetry has appeared in various
journals and anthologies such as Talisman, Carolina Quarterly, The Iowa
Review, among many others. She has served as either an artist- or
writer-in-residence at the Saltonstall Arts Colony in Ithaca, New York, the
Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and the Fundacion Valparaiso in
Mojacar, Spain. Additionally, Carroll translated and created subtitles and
visual poems for Claudio Valdes Kuri's theatrical production El automovil
gris (The Grey Automobile), which was performed at several venues, including
the Anglo Mexico Foundation, the Ebert Film Festival, and the John F.
Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.

Related Links

Particles of Interest

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