The Living Classroom

Nano Art
cris orfescu

NanoArt is a new art discipline at the art-science-technology intersections. It features nanolandscapes (molecular and atomic landscapes which are natural structures of matter at molecular and atomic scales) and nanosculptures (structures created by scientists and artists by manipulating matter at molecular and atomic scales using chemical and physical processes). These structures are visualized with research tools like scanning electron microscopes and atomic force microscopes and their scientific images are captured and further processed by using different artistic techniques to convert them into artworks showcased for large audiences.

NanoArt should not be confused with photomicrography which is performed using an optical microscope with a photographic camera attached to it and renders flat images at low magnification. The depth and three dimensions achieved in NanoArt sets this imaging process apart from Photography where images are created by photons (particles of light) rather than by electrons (electrically charged particles) as in NanoArt. The electrons penetrate deeper inside the structure creating images with more depth, more natural 3D-look than the photographic images. Due to the quality of images obtained by studying the nanostructures, most people perceive them as artistic objects. One of the aims of creating NanoArt is to communicate with students and to familiarize people with the omnipresence of the nano world and raise the public awareness of the impact of nanotechnology on our lives. There are legitimate concerns about nano products from health and environmental point of views, and nanotech companies should develop their products responsibly. NanoArt can be considered one of the best vehicles to promote a responsible scientific and technological development to the general public.

Some artists alter the scientific images using traditional painting or sculpture, animation, digital drawing (Chris Robinson), and paper collage as well as video (Hugh McGrory), installation art (Victoria Vesna and James Gimzewski), etc.  

At STEAM3, Cris Orfescu will have a mini lab set up. He specializes in using multimedia as well as fractals, digital collage, digital painting and manipulation. His structures are visualized with powerful research tools like high-resolution scanning electron microscopes and atomic force microscopes and their scientific images are captured and further processed by using different artistic techniques to convert them into artworks showcased for large audiences.


In mathematics education, ethnomathematics is the study of the relationship between mathematics and culture.[1] Often associated with "cultures without written expression",[2] it may also be defined as "the mathematics, which is practised among identifiable cultural groups".[3] It refers to a broad cluster of ideas ranging from distinct numerical and mathematical systems to multicultural mathematics education. The goal of ethnomathematics is to contribute both to the understanding of culture and the understanding of mathematics, and mainly to lead to an appreciation of the connections between the two.


The Installation

The artwork called Capacities is installed.The gallery space becomes a live emergent sculpture to wander through. The changing life in the real time city creates all the changes one experiences in the gallery space. The leads, the wires,and cables are incorporated into the artwork to look like a city map.' Capacities' looks "designed" like a piece of urban design, a city surveyed and controlled.  The whole gallery space becomes one large artwork made from real time city information and data. The moving objects, fans,  changing  lights, motors, noises, that you encounter in the gallery are all responding to changes in temperature, light, pressure, noise, and the sound of the city outside. The aesthetic and feel of the space looks like an electronic city.  The city is made of units, grids, repetition, building blocks.

In The City

The sensor network is laid out across the city (or gallery) to collect and monitor the data ie temperature, light, pressure, noise, and the sound of the city (or gallery) .


The artwork is a responsive installation with embedded interactive elements. It is responsive to the live environment via sensors and interactive with its embedded CCTV systems. The artwork gathers data from the city (environment) via a custom made wireless sensor network. This is then represented virtually and then this virtual city is represented as this artwork installation. The work becomes a manipulation of data, that ‘powers’ all the ‘events’ 'actions' and 'processes' in the installation.


The art of gathering environmental data. This project leverages the real time space using data gathered using new sensor technologies and connecting spaces. The artwork explores new ways of thinking about life, emergence and interaction within public space and how this affects the socialization of space. The project uses environmental monitoring technologies and security based technologies, to question audiences experiences of real time events and create visualizations of life as it unfolds. The interactions of all this data are re-formed and re-contextualised in real time artwork.
We understand the 20thc in terms of atoms, molecules and gases that move. Our world is now a world of numbers and changing data and information. This art installation manipulates these numbers and the data from the living real world; all of this affects the installation ie the artwork in the gallery space and all the changes occur in real time. The real world is made virtual and the virtual is made real again and exposed in the process. This whole piece is a living and breathing artwork. The project focuses on the micro-incidents of change, the vibrations and sounds of the environment using wireless sensor based technologies.

Ryoji Ikeda

Using pure data as a source for sound and visuals, datamatics combines abstract and mimetic presentations of matter, time and space in a powerful and breathtakingly accomplished work. datamatics is the second audiovisual concert in Ryoji Ikeda’s datamatics series, an art project that explores the potential to perceive the invisible multi-substance of data that permeates our world. Projecting dynamic, computer-generated imagery – in pared down black and white with striking colour accents, Ikeda’s intense yet minimal graphic renderings of data progress through multiple dimensions. From 2D sequences of patterns derived from hard drive errors and studies of software code, the imagery transforms into dramatic, rotating views of the universe in 3D, whilst the final scenes add a further dimension as four-dimensional mathematical processing opens up spectacular and seemingly infinite vistas. A powerful and hypnotic soundtrack reflects the imagery through a meticulous layering of sonic components to produce immense and apparently boundless acoustic spaces. datamatics, alongside the recently released and critically acclaimed dataplex album, marks a significant and exciting progression in Ikeda’s work.

datamatics [ver 2.0] is the new, full–length version of Ryoji Ikeda’s acclaimed audiovisual concert. For datamatics [ver.2.0], Ikeda has significantly developed the earlier version of this piece (premiered in March 2006), adding a newly commissioned second part. Driven by the primary principles of datamatics, but objectively deconstructing its original elements – sound, visuals and even source codes – this new work creates a kind of meta–datamatics. Ikeda employs real–time programme computations and data scanning to create an extended new sequence that is a further abstraction of the original work. The technical dynamics of the piece, such as its extremely fast frame rates and variable bit depths, continue to challenge and explore the thresholds of our perceptions.

Computational music remixing and sharing as a tool to drive engagement and interest in computing

EarSketch engages students in computing principles through collaborative computational music composition and remixing. It consists of an integrated curriculum, software toolset, and social media website. The EarSketch curriculum targets introductory high school and college computing education. The software toolset enables students to create music by manipulating loops, composing beats, and applying effects with Python code. The social media website invites students to upload their music and source code, view other students’ work, and create derivative musical remixes from other students’ code. EarSketch is built on top of Reaper, an intuitive digital audio workstation (DAW) program comparable to those used in professional recording studios.

EarSketch is designed to enable student creativity, to enhance collaboration, and to leverage cultural relevance. This focus has created unique advantages for our approach to computing education:

EarSketch leverages musical remixing as it relates to popular musical forms, such as hip hop, and to industry-standard methods of music production, in an attempt to connect to students in a culturally relevant fashion that spans gender, ethnicity, and socioeconomic status.EarSketch focuses on the level of beats, loops, and effects more than individual notes, enabling students with no background in music theory or composition to begin creating personally relevant music immediately, with a focus on higher-level musical concepts such as formal organization, texture, and mixing.The EarSketch social media site allows a tight coupling between code sharing / reuse and the musical practice of remixing. Students can grab code snippets from other projects and directly inject them into their own work, modifying them to fit their idiosyncratic musical ideas.EarSketch builds on professional development techniques using an industry-relevant, text-based programming language (Python), giving students concrete skills directly applicable to further study.

EarSketch is a National Science Foundation-funded initiative that was created to motivate students to consider further study and careers in computer science. The program, now in its second year, is focused on groups traditionally underrepresented in computing, but with an approach that is intended to have broad appeal.

EarSketch was developed and is overseen by Brian Magerko, an Associate Professor in the Ivan Allen College’s School of Literature, Media, and Communication, and Jason Freeman, an Associate Professor in the College of Architecture’s School of Music.

The piece, "Viewpoints AI," is an Artificial Intelligence-based installation piece. 
Interactive Storytelling

Viewpoints AI is a heavily student-run project that has come out of multiple semesters of students in Dr. Magerko’s Digital Media Project Studio and College of Computing Expressive AI courses. Mikhail Jacob, a 2nd year CS PhD student, is the lead student on the project.

Dr. Magerko has also presented a single author paper that reflected on how to compare and contrast interactive narratives across digital and non-digital forms, entitled “The PC3 Framework: A Formal Lens for Analyzing Interactive Narratives Across Media Forms.”
Check out ADAM Lab’s current demo video of the installation piece.


Speech broken into phonemes, represented by unique glyphs made by language-trained chimpanzee "Panzee," which are translated into a schematic, provides the structure for artificial windpipes made into an installation called Thought Mouth.

While artificial windpipes are made to mimic vocal sounds, the windpipes used in Thought Mouth are not intended to directly correspond to the pitch and timbre of Panzee’s phonemes. Rather these windpipes translate the visual mark into the structure for the artificial windpipe. Mark making is translated into sound rather than subjectively recreating her voice.

Using one phoneme/windpipe as the basis of the installation, that windpipe is repeated to form an instrument. The instrument is voiced by two opposing oscillating fans. As the fans rotate around the sculpture the pitch and resonance of the instrument changes. As viewers interact with the space and move around the room, the sounds continuously evolve.

About Craig Dongoski

Dongoski’s works currently employ his drawing-sound experiments and innovations in tandem with chimpanzees through the Language Research Center. He has been exploring and articulating the mark in its most basic form (both graphically and aurally) for much of his career. The intention is that through varied interpretations of the marks that a contribution is made to the art historical dialogue within the origin of human expression. He was twice nominated for a Ford/Rockefeller Foundation Fellowship in New Media. Dongoski also has released CD’s on Hydra Head Records and Aucourant Records. He is represented by WhiteSpace gallery in Atlanta, Georgia.

Artist Statement

  1. I am interested in the sounds of inscription made from drawing and writing
  2. I believe everyone has one idea. My idea rests on a question: Where does writing end and drawing begin?
  3. Robert Ashley is the most important artist to me in any medium.
  4. Jackson Pollock has been quoted saying he felt he had no skin. I’ve never been able to view his drip paintings without thinking of them as a nervous system exposed.
  5. My work attempts to expose the nervous system.
  6. In 2011, I fortuitously learned about The Language Research Center in Atlanta, Georgia where the focus is on communication between human and non-human primates.
  7. There I met Panzee, a language-trained chimpanzee who has an extraordinary ability to write (a hidden language possibly). Thus altering the context and content of my work.
  8. The work submitted here represents work coming from this relationship.
  9. My (and our) closest physical contact with Panzee are her writings.
  10. I copy Panzee’s marks just like one would copy characters to learn, internalize, metabolize any other language.
  11. I believe in this quote by Austin Osman Spare: ‘Art can contradict Science’
  12. Panzee was born in captivity on December 31, 1985. This is the date of Janus looking forward and backward in time. A duality also extended perhaps between the human and non-human realities.
  13. Panzee died this year on February 9, 2014. She was 28 years old. She was filmed performing trials her entire life. Two days before she passed she was filmed doing a writing. This was her last recorded document.
  14. Arnulf Rainer was the last Expressionist. Henri Michaux was the last Surrealist. I find myself thinking about this often.
  15. My greatest mistake I have made as an artist was choosing the lunatic fringe as my primary audience.
  16. The most defining and significant choice I have made as an artist was choosing the lunatic fringe as my primary audience.

About Mary Stuart

Mary Stuart was born and currently resides in Atlanta, GA. She graduated from the Sewanee, The University of the South in 2004 majoring in sculpture. She then received her Master of Art Education from the University of Georgia in 2013 and is currently working as an art educator. Mary Stuart’s work deals with the expression and construction of text as a moving object always in the state of becoming. Her work ranges from explorations of the symbolic to the representational mediation of text and its permutations.

Mary Stuart’s Artist Statement

While we may want to qualify art in terms of its object-hood, in reality the art is both of the object and outside the object; it exists in the experience every person has who interacts with it. Art does not live in the object; it lives in the stuff of everyday life made new. At its heart my work is both the result and pursuit of inquiry; the inquiry that drives a dialogue between my ideas and their physical manifestation. My work explores text as a construction and how a unique representation of text can add to or change the original content of the text. While our personal encounter with a work of art is constructed from our individual experiences, my work seeks to investigate the intersubjectivity that comes from that encounter and how an typically individual encounter with text can become a common experience.


A fine array of instruments will be on display for visitors whatever their skill level, to experiment with in order to experience the thought processes enjoyed by master improvising musicians.  The visitor will be able to engaged in improvised movement and sound production with visual overlays.  Martin is an Associate Professor of Music Education at Georgia State University. His primary area of research is the improvising brain and brain imaging with artist-level jazz improvisers investigating the neural basis of musical improvisation. 

Gil Weinberg is an Israeli-born musician and inventor of experimental musical instruments and musical robots. He is the founding director of the Georgia Tech Center for Music Technology, where he established the M.S. and Ph.D. programs in music technology. He is a professor in the School of Music and an adjunct professor in the School of Interactive Computing. Weinberg's research aims at expanding musical expression, creativity, and learning through meaningful applications of technology. His research interests include robotic musicianship, new instruments for musical expression, mobile music, and sonification.


Transform the educational experience with PencilCase

Create engaging mobile experiences for your students without needing to write a single line of code. With PencilCase, creating an app is as simple as importing designs and content into PencilCase: Studio and then adding interactions, transitions and animations using the powerful built-in tools. With one-tap publishing to PencilCase: Player, your students can be reviewing course material and interactive content instantly.

Introducing development concepts to your students? PencilCase: Studio allows students to create their first app quickly and instantly interact with it on their device.  A truly engaging, hands-on learning experience.

See PencilCase in action in the Living Classroom. Take a tour of our virtual chemistry lab and experience how proximity-based technology can take learning to the next level with responsive course material. Better yet, speak to the developers behind PencilCase to see just how easy it is to create your first app.