Grad students to mix arts with science in April 26 presentations

Awardees of the University of Chicago’s 2012 Arts | Science Graduate Collaboration Grants will present the results of their projects from 5 to 6:30 p.m. Thursday, April 26, in the Performance Penthouse of the Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts, 915 E. 60th St. The event is free and open to the public. A reception will follow.

The Arts | Science Collaboration Grants encourage independent, cross-disciplinary research between students in the arts and sciences. The grants were launched by the Arts | Science Initiative in 2011 as a pilot program, with support from the Office of the Vice President for Research and for National Laboratories.


Each collaborative group consists of two or more graduate students, with at least one from the arts and one from the sciences, who have worked together since January to investigate a subject from the perspectives offered by their disciplines. Seven teams of students received 2012 collaboration grants:

Nicole Baltrushes, medicine, Carmen Merport, English, and Sravana Reddy, computer science, “Trauma Under the Microscope: Collected Perspectives on PTSD.” Baltrushes, Merport and Reddy are creating a website that will offer a nuanced picture of trauma and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, one that includes interactive space for a variety of perspectives, including the art and writings of survivors.

Stacee Kalmanovsky and Clare Rosean, visual arts; and Philippe Tapon, medicine, “El Shaddai.” Kalmanovsky, Rosean and Tapon are creating a book that tells the story of two real individuals, Manoj and Shannon, each of whom have endured trauma. The story will integrate a scientific medical narrative with interpretive collage and drawings.

Chris Eastman, visual arts, and Markus Kliegl, mathematics, “Archetypes of Reasoning.” In this project, mathematical proofs become the subject of art. Eastman and Kliegl are fabricating sculptures through 3-D printing technology that communicate mathematical reasoning by way of shape, material, texture, color and opacity. Each sculpture will identify with a specific method of proof.

Jared Clemens, biology, and Marco G. Ferrari, visual arts, “Opening.” Clemens and Ferrari will explore the nature of neuroscience through a nighttime video projection onto the Surgery-Brain Research Pavilion at 5812 S. Ellis Ave. The project will include a montage of original and archival materials relating to various brain processes.

Sukanya Randhawa, chemistry, and Artemis Willis, cinema and media studies, “Performing the Night Sky: Heavenly Bodies, Microcosms, and the Moving Image.” Randhawa and Willis are examining the centuries-long connection between cinema and the sciences. How do scientists balance accuracy and aesthetics in their visual presentations, and how have their representational strategies changed over time?

William McFadden, molecular genetics; Heather Harden, psychology; and Mariusz Kozak, music, “The Music of Movement: Harnessing Motion Capture Technology to Measure Synchronization in Dance.” This team is using accelerometers to study gestures, especially those of dancers. The project involves experiments of rhythmic movement as well as the live feed of accelerometer data into a novel motion-based musical instrument.