Why Media Lab?
After several years of independent work, central themes have emerged that span multiple disciplines and lead to the cross pollination of projects across different fields. For example: 1) My scientific research on biological networks inspired ways to show mathematically that the connectivity between electronic instruments and machines in the new Makers of Sense live show is more organic than other setups. 2) A project with the renowned minimal electronic music label minus that will result in a uniquely interactive collective show experience by using the audience’s smartphones will also produce data showing the collective dynamics of human crowds. 3) My work on active elasticity inspired an idea for a new type of active acoustic instruments using nanomachines and helped develop algorithms to control groups of autonomous robots. 4) A novel musical style that I recently introduced, binary music, resulted from a search for minimal musical pieces that can be more easily analyzed mathematically, and is helping us explore the dynamics of neurological processing.
During these years, I have also had the chance to spend time in several long-term collaborative visits, which have helped me place my project themes at the center of a set of global research and creative efforts. The number of groups with which I collaborate and the breadth of opportunities for cutting-edge joint projects with top-level artists and scientists around the world has greatly increased. I am privileged to work with artists, scientists, and engineers that are not only at the top of their respective disciplines, but are also extremely creative people who I admire and are proud to call my friends and colleagues.
These factors make me feel that I have matured my research and artistic work and connections in a way that gives me the opportunity to play a central role in advancing the themes that I have been developing. Building up my own group while continuing to have the liberty to explore these projects in parallel are essential requirements for any mode of work that will allow me to capitalize on these opportunities. In this context, Media Lab (and in particular the position offered) appears to me as one of the only organizations in which such creative program would even be possible. Its environment would not only be ideal for the kind of highly interdisciplinary group that could help me develop these ideas, but also the in-house expertise and potential for developing new collaborations with other members of Media Lab or the many research groups in the Boston area could lead to a whole new set of concepts and applications.