Amplifier for Art, Science and Society

Photos: Julien Gremaud

Photos: Julien Gremaud

Light-Oriented Ontologies — The Beginnings

Alan Bogana

How did sensitivity to light evolve and shape ancestral living beings on Earth? How can we understand our relationship to light by looking back at the evolutionary roots of this relationship?

The installation Light-Oriented Ontologies – The Beginnings explores these questions in a speculative and imaginative way. Alan Bogana’s work reflects on the earliest roots of vision, sensing and converting light into energy and information. Circadian rhythms emerged through sensitivity to the electromagnetic spectrum and the predictable geophysical environment of day and night. Temporal organisation optimised the possibility to harvest this invaluable source of energy, which is inextricable from the functioning of complex life forms.
The installation is inspired by techniques that the artist became familiar with during his residency, such as the photopolymers used in cutting-edge 3D printing techniques, microfluidics techniques, as well as research on organoids and cell-free synthetic biology.

The installation consists of an ensemble of translucent objects presented on a custom pedestal and a video essay. The objects are direct solidifications of light propagating through photosensitive resin. They are crystallised light beams stemming from the interactions with different types of optical components and spatial movements generated by motors and manual manipulations.

These objects constitute an open ensemble of shapes, ambiguously reminiscent of simple living organisms and organic-looking inorganic structures found in nature.

A driving interest for this research was to imagine the development of the earliest photosensitive cells (soon-to-be photoreceptors) on the earliest living organisms of the planet, as well as fictional developments of living entities born from direct interactions with light.

A speculative video essay complements these objects and include live footages, computer-graphics sequences as well AI-generated footages. This video freely articulates various narratives at the core of this ongoing research.