SCI-ART LAB

Science, Art, Litt, Science based Art, Research where Science helps Art

Artists ask me several interesting questions. Whether they really want to learn about scientific way of understanding things or just want to test me is anybody's guess.
But I never felt I cannot answer them. In the first part I added a few questions and my answers to them. And here I am adding a few more:

Artist ( Mr. X):
‘Probably science has been trained and domesticated me- both in physical and artistic life. I usually think art and science are strongly associated and such relationship will help man to observe things in the universe and on our planet earth sensibly and compassionately. Is my observations are meaningful?’

‘Why nature, avidly modified humans into more intelligent beings compared to other species?
And why humans fervently acquire automobiles rather than art works, and arms rather than flowers?’ Kind regards!

My answers:
Thanks for the questions, Mr. X
Yes, when you have both art and science in a single mind, your outlook will definitely be different. I find this really interesting.
Artist's depend mostly on "their thoughts, ideas, beliefs and personal views" for their work whereas scientists' base their work on natural laws and facts and how to fit their informed ideas into these laws to creatively invent or discover something. The imagination of a scientist is based on reality. A scientist has to get his imagination right to succeed where as the artist need not do it right to move forward. In fact, the inadequacies of artists' imagination are what moves the art world forward!
I will give an example here. When artists, writers and poets look at the moon they see it as a silver ball in the sky and describe it or paint it in this manner. I even read some stories where the crescent moon was described as a jewel in the hair of a God! This thinking reflects in their creativity ( metaphor and fiction). Now scientists think in terms of a rocky, dusty satellite that moves in space around the earth trapped in its gravity field when they think about the moon and they use their creativity to take the help of the gravity of the moon to accelerate space ships or change their course to send them to other planets to save fuel and time - the mechanism is called "gravity assist " ( fact). In that way artistic creativity differs from scientific creativity.
Artistic creativity makes me relax and breathe easy while my mind gets over burdened with scientific creativity. Changing the gear then will really be helpful.
Both science and art are compassionate when taken in the right perspective. But somehow as scientists we were told and trained to put emotions at bay as soon as we enter our work places as they interfere with critical thinking. It is difficult for scientists to come out of this mold. In art there are no such restrictions and therefore artists seem more humane and emotional.
However, anyone who knows how a nervous system works during pain processing can do no physical harm to any living being. And anyone who knows how the brain really works at the emotional level will never try to harass another living being. Any person who has seen how the scientific rules are followed universally in a given set of conditions, and understood its beauty can never think in local terms and can never come under the influence of artificially created races, castes, groups, communities or citizenships. He sees all the living beings as his own images - following universal rules of life and as citizens of this universe.
I learned all about human existence, morality, humane nature, universal brotherhood, secularism, tolerance, inner strength and everything a human being should be from science! It gave me answers to several of my questions - including the most testing ones like - how to be calm in the most trying circumstances, how to have peace of mind when everything around you is falling apart. In that way both art and science are both humane and meaningful.
I have already answered your third Q in one of my art works titled " Choice is yours". Some people complain that science also brings with it a few bad things like commercial GM crops, nuclear bombs etc. along with the good it does to the mankind. But according to the scientific community – science is like a knife. A knife can be used to cut throats and spill blood. It can also be used for good purposes like cutting fruits and vegetables. It depends on the person who uses it. Likewise science can also be used for the benefit of living beings as well as for their destruction. Which way it goes is in the hands of the person who uses it. The choice is definitely yours.
Science doesn't ask people to use guns. The ultimate truth is that no nation has gone to war with another about whose laboratories or technologies are better. Human history is instead replete with wars over religion or the egos of kings. It is true that science has provided the tools for war and given a false or a short term sense of confidence to nations, but it has never, ever suggested war. So associating war with science is like associating horses with war – science has provided the wherewithal for more violent wars but never, ever demanded a war or subjugation of other people. That has been done by kings and leaders claiming to be agents of god generally driven by greed or a sense of personal glory.
Again if you ask why this ego and personal glory are present  - I would say when the chemicals ( of aggression and reward like testosterone and dopamine ) that control the emotions of human beings become uncontrollable, their minds go heywire. There is a difference between animals and human beings. I created an art work based on the theme too titled "MIND OVER MATTER"
It says:
A mentally weak person says: “You can’t escape your Biology” or “It is impossible to overcome your Biology”. Right? Wrong!

Yes, your genes control the way you behave & live – through biochemical reactions. Your nerves & pleasure points in the body & brain affect your behaviour too.

Harmones try to get involved in every thing you do. With all these strings attached to your life & affecting every move you make, how can you escape your Biology?

But, you can! The same life came with a mind & a thought process too. With a little bit of thinking – you can determine what is wrong & what is right, what is bad & what is good, what is pain & what is pleasure in the end. By tightly controlling this process & in turn the behaviour one can overcome one’s Biology. It is not easy & requires tremendous training of the mind. But if a person can do it, he can become a superhuman.
And "Why nature, avidly modified humans into more intelligent beings compared to other species?"
I think nature doesn't show any discrimination between living beings. One chemical reaction leads to another evolving a more complex system. A single dust grain becomes a complex structure of snow flake.
Watch here how a snow flake 'evolves' here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VYrF3sFBY20


Likewise a single cell organism evolved into several other forms of life. This evolution process lead to the most complex human beings. Such a complex system needs a sophisticated brain to survive. So the brain too evolved to deal with the complexity of human survival process and 'intelligence' is the result of such evolution. Unless we can analyse the surroundings we live in properly and act according to the demands of our surroundings we cannot survive. This thought process of how to survive successfully in the world we live in lead to intelligence. As we think more and more and put our capabilities to more tests, our intelligence evolves more and more by taking new routes.
And the 'intelligence' of any living being depends on its needs to survive in the environment it lives in.
Mr. X:

Dear Krishna, thank you so much for your meaningful and beautiful explanations on my questions. As a multi-talented person, your evaluation on life, art and science is fabulously proficient and novel. But about ‘emotion’, artists too are applicable to limitations because emotion is behaviour and its direct exposition possibly contributing different results on art (and precarious results in real life too). For example, Paul Rubens's ‘The rape of the daughters of Leucippus’ and Picasso’s Guernica. Both painting emanates extreme anguish and anxiety but Guernica is so imperturbable than ‘The rape of the daughters of Leucippus’.

My theory on life and human being:
'The universe deliberately created life in order to feel its own existence and nature purposely adopted and brilliantly designed human beings as an enormous ‘consumer’ to stabilize its bio symmetry. The nature constructed and adjusted human brain and body inaudibly and efficiently for creating and constructing technologies powered by fossil fuels- its basic elements or possessions littered beneath for millions of years in unconventional forms. Nature encourages a human more to buy an automobile than a painting because automobile consumes more fossil fuels than art. You cannot keep aside a single object untouched by fossil fuels in the contemporary life.'
(You can consider this as fictitious, but think about it. Kind regards!)
My reply:
Thanks, Mr. X. Science is still trying to understand why life came into existence and evolving in the way it is doing.
"Consume" is a relative word.
According to the laws of conservation of energy: Energy can neither be created nor destroyed.
All forms of energy exhibit mass & all mass is a form of energy.
Energy remains constant.
Energy can be converted from one form
to another i.e., if it disappears in one form
it reappears in another form
An atom that is a part of you now can become a part of a plant or a tree in your garden or your pet dog or a hill- while you are living or after your death. If it disappears from here, it reappears somewhere else. Everything came from cosmic energy & mass & returns to it in the end. This universe runs on mass & energy cycles- where life & death are relative terms & words like I & mine become meaningless. Here nothing-not even your body- is yours!
( My art work "Universal Philosophy" is based on this theme)
So when you consume a plant, the atoms and molecules or energy of the plant become yours. And when a tiger consumes you again you become a part of the tiger. When the tiger dies, all its energy and mass again return to nature and will be consumed by other organisms of nature. So mass and energy are constant and don't go anywhere - they just undergo various cycles.
But we are consuming or taking more than we should from nature and right now it is going out of balance. That is what scientists are worried and warning about.
Fossil fuels  came from plants and other living organisms that existed on our planet millions of years ago. And we are consuming them more fast than nature can make them! And utilizing them is polluting the planet and one day they would just disappear from the planet. Then? What would you do?
Again science has to provide the answers! It already is doing just that!

Artist Y:

Good morning Krishna thank you for your reply, to X's theoretical question, ..,

Pushkin let’s pick up on interesting point you rise to explore possibilities as a group to look at the works more closely by the two master’s Paul Ruben and Pablo Picasso drawing parallel of understanding the psychic nature of their emotions, could have played to effect the final results, as both the painters completed powerful works.

Paul Ruben's work, ‘The rape of the daughters of Leucippus’- 1618 a classical five figure painting an ancient mythical story in Baroque Era and Pablo Picasso’s Guernica -1937, A black & white symbolic painting depicting war & art, recording the truth behind the bombing of Guernica, and how technology plays a destructive role to mankind as whole.

Pushkin I would like to introduce a third painting by Ruben’s “The Consequence of War 1638-1639 done three hundred years earlier, as a direct reference and comparisons between the two artists to continuing our discussion on science and art.

My reply:

Like I have said before on this very thread, according to scientists, science and technology have been misrepresented as things that play a destructive role to mankind as a whole.
Quote-" Choice is yours" my work sums this up. Some people complain that science also brings with it a few bad things like commercial GM crops, nuclear bombs etc. along with the good it does to the mankind. But according to the scientific community – science is like a knife. A knife can be used to cut throats and spill blood. It can also be used for good purposes like cutting fruits and vegetables. It depends on the person who uses it. Likewise science can also be used for the benefit of living beings as well as for their destruction. Which way it goes is in the hands of the person who uses it. The choice is definitely yours.- Unquote.
Scientists toil day and night to bring benefits to mankind. It is the people who cannot understand what it is all about and fueled by greed, use the technology for destruction.
Science and technology are not at fault, the idea of using them for destruction is! 

Artist Y:

Thank you Krishna for your reconfirmation, I enjoyed X's analogy therefore wanted to introduce another perspective for the benefit of our art audiences seeking further clarification as I believe everyday we awake to explore possibilities of improving our creative minds and the environment that we live in.., question is how to maintain a happy balance?

If we could continue with our conversation on Science and Art, if other members around the globe including guests would ask a question to Krishna.

Artist X:

‘Manic Depression and Creativity’ –an interestingly discussed topic by prominent scientists recently and some of the famous artists were introduced during the discussion were Van Gogh, Rothko etc.

It will be interested if ‘Emotion in Artwork’ will be a subject. To me, an artist can’t materialise a creative desire if an emotional influence cannot be taken place. The emotional influence exists as different perspectives as peculiar, composed and mixed. For example ‘Tree of fluids (Body of a lady)’ (Jean Dubuffet) for peculiar, ‘Composition with Red, Yellow and Blue’ (Piet Mondrian) for composed, and ‘Autumn Rhythm’ (Jackson Pollock) for mixed (I strongly believes Pollock’s ‘emotion’ has been intertwined with his own ‘physical emotiveness’ too.) ‘Emotions in art’ is a significant subject and we can start a new Discussion on the ICAS’s profile later.

Krishna:

There are links between mental abilities and mental conditions. I have posted some of these papers on my network (group research).
You can also find some here:
http://www.fastcodesign.com/3026387/asides/science-you-think-crazy-...

http://english.cntv.cn/program/cultureexpress/20131018/101576.shtml

http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/beautiful-minds/2013/10/03/the-...

https://www2.bc.edu/sara-cordes/pdfs/YoungWinnerCordes_PACA2012.pdf

http://www.redorbit.com/news/science/1113089340/music-not-for-every...

Artist X:

A significant discussion. When I suggested for participating, few of my artist friends said science and art subsists on two different shores with dissimilar identities. May be such perception on science and art is personal but untimely because, except some few communities who live, or have lived, either choice or by circumstance, without significant contact with globalised cavitation located in densely forested areas in South America, New Guinea and India, the all other existing civilization now living under a single roof of ‘science’, assisted by safety pin to email and antibiotic to acrylic paints and candies to ballistic missiles! A factual fact!

Krishna:

How true! One artist once said, 'we don't need science in the art world' which made me smile. Because I told him, 'the moment you try to mix colours on a palette, you are dealing with chemistry. The moment you start appreciating a work of art, you are dealing with neuro-aesthetics.  Now say you don't need science in art!' He was silent since then.
You cannot escape science in any field now! This is a fact.

Artist X:As accentuated science’s prominence and contributions, artists’ stands and concerns too should be addressed. Carl Sagan once said that science is a two edged sword and both representing innovations and destructions. For example, Between 50 to 70 million people were killed by wars during the 19th century because of the lack of technologies and fuels 240 million people were killed in the 20th century by its wars because of widespread discovery and extraction of fossil fuels. Most of the technologies that emerged during the 20th century for wars and warfare depended on fossil fuels and that helped to make artilleries more sophisticated and accurate, more dependable and available; such artilleries butchered millions of wonderful humans for nothing! Artists constantly stood against such criminal intimidations and there are visibly reactions as ‘The Third of May 1808’ by Francisco Goya and the ‘Guernica’ by Picasso Etc. Artists too have reasons on science even if that supports their existence and profession more tranquil and easy.

Krishna:

You need not be an artist or a scientist to be a good person to realize that killing another human being is inhuman and bad. Recently I watched a discussion on BBC news channel where artists and scientists discussed the very things you have mentioned, Mr. Pushkin. Scientists are as much worried about these things as the artists. Some artists said in the discussion, scientific revolution brought all bad things to the world. But according to scientists artists fail to realize that even before 'science' came into existence some human beings killed other human beings using stones! Science has nothing to do with it. Hitler was an artist! Genocide happened because of him. Did you ever heard any scientist becoming a Hitler and killing people on a large scale using gas chambers? It is the kings, leaders and politicians who used weapons of mass destruction. Not scientists. No scientist, in the history of the whole mankind ever used a weapon of mass destruction 'on his own'. 
In the previous centuries the population of the Earth was minimum. Now as  population growth occurred to a tremendous scale, any weapon used will kill more people per square kilometer than in the earlier centuries. You cannot compare one with the other as equations are different now. 

Artist Z: G'Day Krishna, Creativity is the same, whether expressed as an aspect of science or as an aspect of art. Creativity is the way people solve problems. The problems typically solved (or attempted to) in science are different from those solved in art. The solutions are expressed as proof in science whereas in art they are a test of one alternative.

Artist Y:

Hello to Krishna & X thank you for providing an excellent perspective to our interview and debut on science and Art ...,
Welcome to Z, kind of you to join us and thank you for your comments, if I could ask Krishna to respond...,

We hope as a  global organisation we each continue to seek for answers to our own individual questions, hopefully some of them we covered during our responses. It’s been a pleasure and an privilege to have Dr Krishna Kumari Challa amongst our list of GICAS membership, multi talented she also brings with her years of experiences, a symbol of a person who has united and bridge the gap between science and art working in harmony.
I look forward to working together in join collaboration in areas that we could assists..,

Thank you for your lovely time in our VIP lounge, take this opportunity to officially welcome you as one of the  members.

Krishna:

Thank you so much!
I respect all the fields I work in equally although I think science is the toughest subject of all and need more effort to come up with solutions. Some perspectives provided by artists are really wonderful and enhance my capacity to understand the world in a better way.
Each artist thinks and sees the world around him in a different way. That variety makes the art world very rich. Sometimes I wonder without all the colours , varieties, different perspectives how would the world be? Dull and boring I suppose!

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Comment by Dr. Krishna Kumari Challa on March 8, 2014 at 7:38am

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