Great displays when art and technology meet research

From left: Professor Maria Garcia de la Banda, Associate Professor Alan Dorin and Cathrine Harboe-Ree.

(L-R): Professor Maria Garcia de la Banda, Associate Professor Alan Dorin and Cathrine Harboe-Ree.

Constellation is a generative visual electronic media installation currently on show at the Hargrave-Andrew Library, in an exciting new technological space where researchers can exhibit.

Software written by Associate Professor Alan Dorin of the Faculty of Information Technology is the medium used to create dynamic processes that form the artwork: it autonomously designs or “generates" the art. 

Constellation depicts a fascinating reflection on how organisms generate habitat used by other species. Associate Professor Dorin’s main interest is in using processes typical of biological systems, especially ecosystems. The work investigates symbiotic relationships in the context of a slowly growing and diminishing surface of tiny mosses and flowers.

The Deputy Dean of the Faculty of Information Technology, Professor Maria Garcia de la Banda,  opened the digital exhibition last week. She welcomed the opportunity to display Constellation in the Library, which more than 500,000 people visit every year. 

The work has already been displayed in exhibitions organised by Associate Professor Dorin’s research group for commercial and public galleries, and the British Science Festival.

“It is lovely to see it up and running in a space that has been so close to my activities, my habitat, for many years,” he said.

The Library aims to celebrate research excellence at the University by inviting faculties to present academic research in a visually arresting way on the new video wall, which was installed by eSolutions.

After three months another faculty will be able to mount an installation, and there is already strong interest in collaborating in such a future exhibition.

University Librarian Cathrine Harboe-Ree said she was delighted that a way had been found to collaborate with faculties and engage with academic staff that also enhanced the physical space.

“Students tell us that they want to be inspired when they are in the library," she said. "The digital exhibition is a stunning addition to the already significant artworks in the library from the Monash University Museum of Art collection."