CULTIVATING ARTSCIENCE COLLABORATIONS THAT GENERATE INNOVATIONS FOR IMPROVING THE STATE OF THE WORLD
Todd Siler and Geoffrey Alan Ozin
There’s an art to catalyzing collaborations and a science to developing innovations that are naturally connected by the all-purpose process of creativity. This versatile process encompasses critical thinking, real-world problem-solving, discovering, inventing and innovating. The ArtScience collaboration described in this White Paper, the “ArtNano” Project, shows how two collaborators, a visual artist and a pioneer Nanochemist, integrate their exploratory work and empirical research using one-and-the-same process of creative learning and idea-generation. The ArtNano project considers the potential of numerous practical innovations in the field of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology that are designed to meet today’s global challenges and our collective quest to invent a sustainable future. It also reveals the difficulties of communicating complex information to a worldwide public—in particular, the myriad strategies and technological means by which human beings ingeniously manipulate matter on an atomic and molecular scale to produce the smallest, multi-purpose functional structures and systems ever conceived. The collaborators reflect on their personal experiences conceptualizing the artworks for this project, providing some essential lessons learned from combining their complementary practices of connecting and transforming information (data, knowledge, ideas, concepts, theories, etc.). Additionally, they offer some recommendations for moving beyond common roadblocks to collaboration that form from self-imposed mental barriers, as well as our compartmentalized ways of knowing the world, and representing our knowledge.