Week_5_Midterm_Blog_Travis_Johnson

This class can be summed up by its title: Art, Science, and Technology. We have explored various ways in which art, science, and technology have been used together to create some of the most spectacular pieces of work ever made. Throughout the weeks, the main theme of the class has remained the notion of art working with science, science working with art, technology be utilized by both, etc. It has not so much been about emphasizing that art and science can be used synonymously but instead how they are a package deal; where there is science, there is art, and vice-versa. Through readings and lectures, we have seen how art and science have both made use of innovative technology, including many movie clips from numerous science-fiction films. Each week’s respective topics have all been related to those of past and subsequent weeks, connecting to one another through this primary theme.

From the beginning of the course, the structure of this class has mirrored that of a funnel. We began in Week One discussing the two cultures that seem to have emerged around the world, especially here at UCLA, of art and science. The emphasis has been, however, that we cannot force them apart and must prevent a mass separation from happening. The following weeks dealt very much with narrowing the scope from “art over here and science over there” and showing how they are very much related and interconnected. Week Two was attributed to providing examples of art’s progression over time and how mathematics have contributed to the develop of perspective and dimensions in art. We really began to see, for the first time, the beginnings of art and science working together to improve upon previous work, showing how the two cultures discussed in Week One really cannot separate science and art. Week Three entered into the world of robotics, kinetics, and digital reproduction. This was the first time in which we could fully see technology’s role in the art-science culture. We saw that science can develop technology, which can then be used to create art. Heading into Week Four, we really had a sense of how the two cultures cannot at all be separated but instead must very much interact. Plastic surgery was the main topic of Week Four, which is nearing the climax of the fusion between art, science, and technology: enhancing the human body using art, science, and technology. The first four weeks have demonstrated the many aspects of life depend on art, science, and technology, as does the basis of my midterm.

My midterm topic builds on the ideas of Weeks Three and Four, but because all four weeks are interconnected with one another, my midterm deals with all four weeks. The point of my midterm is to fuse art, science, and technology (wipe away the two cultures) and build upon the human body. In my midterm, I suggest the idea of taking the scientific and technological advances of prosthetics and combine them with the artistic developments of artificial limbs to create robotic limbs that are more efficient than human limbs. We discussed in Week Four Section how robots, even those who are programmed to dance, are still far from being human, the main reason stemming from the lack of emotions, thoughts, and feelings in robots that humans possess. In my proposal, I would take the mechanical superiority of robots and mix it with the human mind to create a human robot. We have seen many movie clips in class that have dealt with humans capable of more than normal human functions, such as the Replicants seen in Blade Runner. Many of these clips seem to be unrealistic and outside the realm of possibility, but I believe that if art, science, and technology work together, we may one day see human robots roaming the earth. In conclusion, DESMA 9 has explored the idea of art, science, and technology not living in separate cultures but instead creating one society in which they each depend on and build upon one another. In order for my midterm proposal to work, this is a necessity. This class has proven that art, science, and technology have always been interconnected and interdependent and will continue to be so for the many years to come.

- Travis Johnson

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