SCI-ART LAB

Science, Art, Litt, Science based Art & Science Communication

Here is a criticism from an artist about science:

There is a problem with a purely scientific mindset...the tendency to categorize and label to aid in understanding which can create a myopic view of one's universe(??!!- Krishna) What we do to help us understand our environment actually minimizes the environment too much and may actually cause incorrect hypotheses which therefore endanger the entire scientific/otherwise experiment
Invalid assumptions yield invalid conclusions
Equivalent to "Always/Never" generalizations which are almost always never true.

 It seems that Science substantiates a reality with the dissection of pieces or with measurements to substantiate findings/represent perceived truths/guaranteed truths and that Artwork presents a reality with a visual description of the pieces/whole...both present a given reality...discovery in both is embraced in certain circles but science is seen as mandatory and art is often seen as frivoulous or entertainment and often not understood by the masses nor does it need to be to still be artwork. Science is used to describe the physical world and often in language to be appreciated and understood by the masses.


My Reply:

To categorize anything and label it helps us organize things in a better manner. Let us imagine a room full of  books and newspapers on various topics dumped on one another like rubbish in a dust bin. If you want to  consult an art book, imagine how much time it will take to search for it from the heap of books. If you categorize books , label them and keep them in an alphabetical order, it would save both time and energy. Even a child knows this. Science wants to make things easy for you. If you want to live in an disorderly world that is okay with us. why blame science for putting some wise advise into your head?

Science never asks you to spoil the environment. It tells you, what is what and what you should or shouldn't do. If you cannot utilize the knowledge properly and blame science for all the ills, it is like a bad worker blaming his tools for the mishaps that he causes!

Science isn't cold and impersonal and dry and dull. It doesn't remove the mystery out of life. Knowing how something works doesn't make it boring. Quite the contrary! Things are far more fascinating to me since I started studying science. Nothing seems like it's been torn down. Oh, well, maybe temporarily, while we reduce big bits to easier-to-understand-bits, but we don't leave the pieces lying around after. We put it all back together, and with this new understanding, the thing we're studying becomes far more fascinating than it was before. The truth is more complicated, far stranger, more wonderful than anything our paltry imaginations could come up with. The world without science is a place of destitutes . It's just a shame so many folks never realize what a wealth of knowledge awaits them.

Making anything into pieces or several parts and studying it is part of simplifying things which science endorses.. Sometimes it would be better if you study things in separate parts, try to anylyse each part's importance individually, then combine them to understand the whole process. It is simplifying things! Can you understand the whole process of a system at a time without understanding the role played by each part separately? It confuses people more! That is making simple process complex!

Copyright 2012 Dr. Krishna Kumari Challa.

All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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Replies to This Discussion

SP: I'll give you an anecdote that might give you the difference between the mindset of the scientist and the humanities scholar. I once went to an interdisciplinary conference with scientists and humanities professors. At the end of a talk exploring a painting, the speaker said: "Well, I hope to have complicated the subject matter in several ways." I thought, that's the difference between a scientist and a critic – the scientist would say: "I hope to have simplified the matter in several ways."

http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2012/dec/02/science-writing-debate-...

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