AURA/AURORA

Bettina Schülke and Nina Czegledy in collaboration with Marton Andras Juhasz, Laszlo Kiss and Daniel Barber.

Aura/Aurora is the most recent phase of an ongoing art & science project presenting an interactive interpretation of the Polar Lights. The project is based on Aurora Borealis and Australis, the magnificent, mysterious and dynamic natural spectacle that has retained a near-mythical status in most cultures over centuries. The dazzling geo-specific phenomenon, typically observed in the Polar Regions is not only a brilliant natural spectacle but it also
makes dramatically visible the invisible world of electromagnetic activities.

Aura/Aurora is a real-time audio-visual installation combining visuals, sonic and on-line internet-linked components. It has been argued that an artwork can hardly compete with the actual experience of a natural phenomenon, therefore we attempted an alternative approach by developing an installation with a range of components aiming to engage active audience participation. A series of large-scale visual images are also included in the exhibition. These digital prints mounted on aluminum represent experimental installation elements in form of abstract enigmatic fields of color. In addition documentation of the project development process is also presented.

Aura/Aurora the interactive light-installation (LED RGBs) is ideally situated in a distinct dark space. On entering this space, little is visible in the dimmed light; the spectacle of the moving lights is initiated through the physical movement of the visitor by motion sensors that trigger the lights and sound by tracking the visitor's movements. There is only some, but significant scientific evidence about the sounds of the Aurora. Resonating ambience design should support the installation by creating the audiosphere as an artistic interpretation of the natural phenomenon. A collage of nature sources in electronic transformation along with synthesizer-generated sounds should enhance the visitors' senses to the big picture in eyes and ears. The ultimate aim is to create a seductive and intense experience for the visitor to evoke a real or imaginary experience of the Aurora.

Aura/Aurora round table discussions on the art& science aspects of the theme are also considered at each venue.

Aurora Dreams
The on-line component of the project presents descriptions of the Polar lights, submitted by SMS or web-posting in various languages which passed via a database to a web accessible flash movie. The visual aesthetic of an animated word presentation (contributed by site visitors) evokes the sublime experience of viewing the colorful and rhythmic undulations of the Aurora. By organizing descriptive keywords site allows a comparison of how the Aurora is perceived across diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds. The flash movie can be viewed locally on a projected screen, or globally using a web browser. This visualization, whether experienced as an onsite projected installation or a web-based animation, encourages an interactive intercultural exploration of the Aurora.

artists:

Bettina Schülke is an Austrian artist and Ph.D Researcher at the University of Lapland. Her research theme is "Transaction" (Phenomenology of Space and Time Dimensions). She has exhibited widely at internationally prominent venues like the 2nd Thessaloniki Biennale, GR, Shunt Lounge, London, GB; De Winkelhaak Design Museum, Antwerp, BE; Kemi Art Museum; Lume Mediakeskus, Helsinki, FI; the MAK-nite (Museum of Applied Arts), Vienna, AT, textile works at the Austrian Pavilion at the 8.th International Architecture Biennale in Venice, IT. Schülke has lectured at the University of Fine Arts in Vienna, AT, the University of Lapland and the Kemi/Tornio University of Applied Science, FIN.

Nina Czegledy, artist, curator, educator and writer works internationally on collaborative art& science& technology projects. She has exhibited widely, won awards for her artwork and has lead and participated in workshops, forums and festivals worldwide. Czegledy curated and presented numerous international touring projects and published extensively. Aura,Aurora, Areosphere/Atmosphere (with JanineRanderson), What will you do to cool the earth? (with Greg Judelman and Daniel BarberÍ)and The Visual Collider are recent collaborations. The Visual Collider (together with Marcus Neustetter) premiered in Korcula and was shown in New York and Banff. Czegledy is a Senior Fellow, KMDI, University of Toronto, Associate Adjunct Professor Concordia University, Montreal, Honorary Fellow, Moholy Nagy University Budapest, member of the Leonardo/ISAST governing board.

Daniel Barber is founder of Aleph1, a creative studio that produces narrative rich experiences across a wide range of media. As a devotee of art, technology, mathematics and political theory he believes that there is a polymath within all of us. During his career he has produced art installations, video games, music videos, and design strategies. His work has been exhibited in Toronto's Nuit Blanche, New Zealand and Helsinki, and he has produced projects for Adobe, CBC, and Teletoon, Daniel's work has been recognized by Applied Arts magazine, Marketing Magazine, New York Festival, and the New York Times.

Laszlo Kiss was born in 1981 in Hungary and got obsessed with sound and technology in his teens. He got his degree in Creative Music Technology from Anglia Ruskin University in Cambridge in 2009. At university he started to search the possible connections between human, sound, light and machine through interactive installations. He is a sound designer, electronic musician, programmer and co-producer of an weekly electro-acoustic radio show on Radio Periszkop called Szinusz (sine wave). After many years of waiting tables to suppert himself he currently works az a researcher in Kitchen Budapest. His latest obsession is minimalist electronic music. His recent works include LANdelion (interaction and sound design), Reading Umbrella (product concept), Music for Spaceports (generative music composer) and Levitation (sound design and composition).

Marton Andras Juhasz, was born in 1983 in a small Hungarian city near the Austrian border. Marton's father is an electronic engineer, his mother a nurse, so he became involved early in the sciences. He got his first computer while in primary school in 1990, his first milestone was writing his own ascii art demo 3 years later. He learned programming, electronics, biology early, but also loved to play guitar and take photos. At 17, he won the 1st prize of the Innovative Science Fair in Hungary and became a university student at Universitat Scientiarum Szeged. During these years he patented some of his ideas including nervous system controlled artifical limbs and played in a rock band. Marton had several photo exhibitions, simultaneously teaching biorobotics and running a computational biology laboratory in the Hungarian Academy of Sciences. Since the summer of 2008 Marton is a researcher and coordinator in Kitchen medialab Budapest. His favourite works are Murmur study, iGarden, Where is your art.