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Nydia Pineda de Avila (UC San Diego) & Ale de la Puente (Creative Disturbance)

*Aligning with UC San Diego’s COVID policies, this talk is hosted entirely online. Please register via Zoom.

UPDATE: New Zoom registration link created for this event.

Wednesday, February 9, 2022 at 4:00 P.M.
Remote via Zoom

Abstract:

From the Sky to the Ocean Floor
Prompted by a set of instructions for the recording of a lunar eclipse predicted to occur when 19 June 1581, Ale de la Puente and Nydia Pineda started a project to transform an imperial mapping enterprise of collective data gathering into a creative process based on shared observation. This talk will present a reconstructed scientific log book that collates the experience of 65 observers who enacted these historical instructions in Mexico, California and China. The words and images that resulted from this process resignify abstract diagrams of space and time as unregimented spaces of affect, intimacy, physical labour and social interaction. Most importantly, these enactments inform future imaginations of a celestial spectacle that should happen in April 15232.

Biography:

Nydia Pineda de Ávila (MX) is Assistant Professor in the Department of History and the Science Studies Program at UC San Diego, and currently Fletcher Jones Fellow at the Huntington Library. Born in Mexico, she studied a BA in French Literature at Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México and went on to complete a Masters in Research and a PhD in English at Queen Mary, University of London. She has been an invited scholar at University Ca’ Foscari, Venice, and the John Carter Brown Library, RI, where she co-curated the digital exhibition Constellations: Reimagining Celestial Histories in the Early Americas. Nydia works at the intersection of the History of Science, History of the Book, and Visual Studies and her research broadly interrogates the gap between practice, theory and representation in images of space and time in early modernity. Her work is informed by the study of historical archives and libraries, as well as through practice-based research. She is completing a book manuscript that reveals the changing values of moon maps as visual experiments, technical instruments and commodities in the early phases of the development of the telescope. Interdisciplinary collaboration is central to her research methodology.  She is engaged in the construction of a knowledge base of astronomical images and a data visualization project with a historian of science in Brazil, and computer scientists and designers in Mexico. She is also the initiator and coordinator of the international and interdisciplinary documentary project “American Skies”, with members in Chile, Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Mexico, the U.S, Britain and Italy. Since 2018 she has developed celestial observation projects with visual artist Ale de la Puente.

Ale de la Puente (MX) is an artist with a diverse background and continuum studies, including design, boatbuilding, navigation, astronomy, physics, and philosophy. She is known for her poetic and conceptual explorations of time and space across a wide field of mediums, ranging from installations and sculptures to drawings, photography, and video including art&science expeditions in the search of symbolic natural phenomena, how we signify them, and how we relate to the given meaning. Ale had been awarded Honorary Mention Collide@CERN 2013, she has been a fellow of the National System of Arts Creators (Sistema Nacional de Creadores, FONCA) from the National Council for Arts Funds in Mexico. She has developed art projects with Roscosmos, and the Astronomy Institute, Nuclear Science Institute of UNAM, and Kosmica Institute; collaborating with scientist to carry out several projects, among them: La Gravedad de los Asuntos (Matters of Gravity), and; Los pies en el agua y la mirada en las estrellas, esperando el relámpago. (Feet in the water, staring the stars, expecting the lightning.) which includes the outcomes of her research and visits to CERN: …buscando el centro, -in the search of the center,- and …dividirse en el tiempo, -(to be) …divided in time,-. She has exhibited her work in international venues such as Museo de Arte e Historia de Guanajuato, Laboratorio de Arte Alameda, Museo de Arte Carrillo Gil, Museo de arte actual Ex-Teresa, Museo de Arte Moderno MAM, (Mexico); Polythecnic Museum (Moscow); KSEVT (Slovenia); Rubin Center (EUA); Centro Cultural Montehermoso,Vitoria- Gasteiz; Museo Reina Sofía, Madrid, (Spain); Bass Museum of Art, (Miami, Florida); Tokyo Wonder Site, (Tokyo, Japan) Mosaicon Gallery, (Lodz, Poland); TCNJ Art Gallery, New Jersey; MALBA, (Buenos Aires, Argentina); Museo de Arte del Banco de la República, (Bogota, Colombia); amongst others. Her work is part of public and private collections.

About:

Design@Large is a speaker series hosted by The Design Lab at UC San Diego, where each quarter we examine a topic in society and the relevance and implications through the lens of human centered design.

Our theme this quarter is “Winter Polar Reversals ~~~ from the Future to the Past~~~~ from the Sky to the Ocean Floor”.

Follow along as speakers in ocean media, maker, and mapping cultures shift your geopolitical orientation. It’s cold on Zoom. Bring your life jacket. Hourlong lectures will be followed by workshops, walks, immersive experiences, and/or hands-on making and doing, to be performed on Zoom when pandemic circumstances bring us together remotely.

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