Digital Media · Public Space · Technology · Videos · Vital-Edible-Health

Digioxide: A Pollution Sensor that Converts the Results into Digital Art

This project aims to raise public awareness of the environmental pollution by artistic means. Digioxide is a portable wireless device equipped with sensors of air pollution gases and dust particles that is connected to computer via bluetooth. This allows a person with digioxide to freely move around a city, seek out ecologically problematic places and turn their data into digital artworks.

More info via vtol

Animalia · Bio · Human-ities · Science · Vital-Edible-Health

Smells Like Old Spirit

Older folks give off a characteristic scent that’s independent of race, creed, or diet. The Japanese even have a name for it: kareishu. Most people say they find the smell disagreeable, typically describing it as “stinky-sweet.” But in a new study, participants in a “blind sniff test” found the body odor of older people less intense and more pleasant than that of the young or middle-aged.

Sensory neuroscientist Johan Lundström has been familiar with old-person scent since his childhood in Sweden, where he sometimes accompanied his mother to her job at a nursing home. Decades later, as the head of his own lab at the Monell Chemical Senses Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, he gave a talk at another nursing home. “The same smell hit me again,” he says. Lundström wondered if there really are specific age-related odors that the human sense of smell can detect. Although research shows that animals can distinguish the ages of other animals based on their odor, no comparable studies had been done in humans.

Excerpt of an article written by Elizabeth Norton, at AAAS. Continue HERE

Bio · Performativity · Sculpt/Install · Videos

Smell the Artist: Peter De Cupere

By exploiting the subjective, associative impact of smells, in combination with visual images, Peter De Cupere generates a kind of meta-sensory experience that goes beyond purely seeing or smelling. Plastic artist De Cupere paints with scents, produces olfactory objects, soap paintings and sculptures, creates video and live performances, makes three-dimensional drawings and builds poetic smell installations.

Everyone who has ever smelt Peter De Cupere‘s work cannot fail to recognise that his works prompt quite a reaction. You either love it or you feel attacked via your nasal senses. If the latter is true it is often because the spectator adopts a reserved attitude at first as a result of being wary of the unknown. That is exactly why smells in art have been and are still positively avoided. People like to compare and want a return or recognition. This is difficult with smells because they act directly on the limbic system and don‘t give you the necessary time and chance to translate things like you do with „sight“. Smells act on your memory subconsciously and so you associate your own subjective feelings with a specific smell. Your attitude to the object is determined by the smell memory of a certain moment. Add then the combination with the visual aspect of the artwork and you get a mix that does not appear to be completely predictable. Alongside the pleasance of some smells there are also smells that warn us of danger though we do not always need these indications because of habituation. If you cross the street there are many damaging smells present because of pollution: exhaust fumes, rotting processes from discarded foodstuffs, toxic fumes from asphalt and other building materials that are freed by heat from the sun, polluted rain, sewers, etc. But the normal city person has become used to all the exhaust fumes and other air-polluting substances.

Smoke Room, 750.000 used cigarette butts.

Olfactiano: A piano-like instrument that emits different smells when played called ‘Scent Concerts.’

Smell Me Project.

Text via Peter De Cupere

First image above VIA

Art/Aesthetics · Bio · Science · Technology


Eduardo Kac: Aromapoetry is a new kind of poetry in which the compositional unit (the poem) is made up of smells. The poet “writes” the smells by conceiving the poem as an olfactory experience and then employing multiple chemical procedures to achieve his poetic goals. It goes without saying that, as in any kind of poetry, the reader is an active participant that interprets and thus ascribes his or her own meanings to the poem beyond the writer’s original motivations.

In my book Aromapoetry, the first book ever written exclusively with smells, readers find twelve aromapoems that range widely in their material structure and semantic resonance. While I composed some of my aromapoems with only one or two molecules, most of them are composed of dozens of molecules each. In some cases, a single poem has distinct olfactory zones on the page—each comprised of dozens of molecules each. In other words, the level of molecular intricacy of the works in Aromapoetry varies from the very simple to the extremely complex.

I composed the twelve poems in Aromapoetry so as to provide the reader with a broad field of aromatic experiences. The titles simultaneously delineate and open up the semantic sphere of each work. Each poem is a distinct and self-contained composition. At the same time, the book has a dynamic internal rhythm produced through the alternation of different or contrasting smells.

Every poem in the book Aromapoetry employs nanotechnology by binding an extremely thin layer of porous glass (200 nanometers thick) to every page, trapping the odorants (i.e. the volatile molecules) and releasing them very slowly. Without this nanotechnology, the fragrances would quickly dissipate and the smells would no longer be experienced after a few days. To ensure even greater longevity, a set of small bottles is integrated into the book, allowing the reader to recharge every individual page. With an eye to the distant future, the book’s summary presents key molecules used in the production of each poem.

Aromapoetry is a book to be read with the nose.