During the NIAS-opening of the academic year ‘An Intellectual Haven for All’ Micha Hamel and Robert Glas talked about artists and scientists working together.

The Netherlands Institute of Advanced Study celebrated the opening of the academic year in EYE Filmmuseum on September 2th. Society of Arts-member Micha Hamel and Robert Glas, former artist in residence at NIAS, talked about forms of knowledge and collaboration between the arts and science.

‘In the arts there is a lot of high quality knowledge, which is embedded in objects and practices. I’m not saying every project should be an artist/science project. But it can help to solve complex problems’, says Micha Hamel. Hamel is working on a project right now, trying to solve a complex problem with scientist and artists.

Keeping an eye on the outcome

Robert Glas: ‘Collaborations between scientists and artists are great. People find out they have something in common by working together.’ However, Glas does recognize the pitfalls during multidisciplinary discussions: ‘Having a discussion with a scientist about what artistic research means is difficult. Keeping an eye on the main goal, the outcome, is important.’

The outcome of a scientific and artistic project may be different. Hamel: ‘A high level outcome is the most important.’ While Glas emphasizes on another fact: ‘The outcome of a scientific and artistic outcome is different, especially in form. In the arts, a research paper isn’t necessarily the outcome of a project.’

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Are you interested in this discussion? View our webinar about art/science collaborations.