[ISEA2018] Artists Statement: Byron Rich & John Wenskovitch — M-Ark (Microbiome Ark)

Artists Statement

Other Realities sub-programme

M-Ark is a project that tackles the prospect of a future in which humanity has rendered our planet inhospitable; a prospect made all the more possible with the United States pulling out of the Paris Climate Treaty. M-Ark uses the philosophically compelling theory of panspermia, the notion that life is spread throughout the universe by comets, asteroids, planetoids, or even artificially as its core concept. M-Ark is a small satellite that carries on board a human microbiome, capitalizing on the hypothesis that human evolution was guided in part by our microbiome. This small satellite is designed to crash back down to earth at such a point that climate conditions have once again become favourable, kick-starting panspermia and possibly altering the evolutionary journey of another species. byronrich.com

  • Byron Rich is an artist, professor and lecturer born in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. His work exploring speculative design, biology futures and tactical media has been widely shown and spoken about internationally. He pursued a degree in New-Media at The University of Calgary before finding himself in Buffalo, New York where he obtained an MFA in Emerging Practices at The  University at Buffalo.He was the runner-up for the 2016 BioArt & Design Award, and the recipient of an Honorary Mention at the 2017 Prix Ars Electronica. He now teaches Electronic Art & Intermedia at Allegheny College in Meadville, Pennsylvania, USA.
  • John Wenskovitch is a computer scientist and accidental artist, performing research in the fields of Information Visualization and Visual Analytics while also contributing to technology-enabled art. His artistic pursuits include communicating the role of science, the development of a brighter future, and exploring unique methods of interacting with technology. He is currently completing his PhD at Virginia Tech, USA.

Supported by Allegheny College, Science Gallery Dublin