Who is The League of Imaginary Scientists?
The League of Imaginary Scientists is an inventive research collective. Drawing on the combined creativity of artists and scientists, the League conducts everyday experiments with average objects. Tin foil, barbecue pits, and bicycles become mega-media constructions of scientific mythologies.
In pairing science and art, the League seeks to formulate new methods for data expression, embodied through interactions that produce physical artifacts and accompanying scientific residues. The League’s process is interdisciplinary, drawing upon collaborators from the fields of art, science, technology, performance, and urban planning. Each imaginary science experiment brings together a new group of creative researchers with the League's four irregular mainstays listed below. League contributors range from neurologists to genomic scientists and synthetic biologists, and have included an idea therapist and an imaginary boy from Norway. League projects provide opportunities for the exchange of knowledge among collaborators, present and implement a methodology of “art as experiment,” and transform the process of intellectual inquiry into an interactive medium.
The League of Imaginary Scientists participated in the interdisciplinary science and art research endeavor, e-MobiLArt, and has recently worked on interdisciplinary projects in the Czech Repblic, Rome, California, Australia and Finland. League projects have received a wide range of support, including the support from the Norweigan consulate and Trondheim, a Lovely Weather commission and Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs grant. Works by the League are archived in libraries and institutions around the globe; multidisciplinary projects by the League exhibit globally. League projects have been presented at ACAC in Bototá, Colombia (2005), CalArts in Los Angeles (2006), Mutamorphosis in Prague (2007), Electrofringe in Australia (2006-2008), Århus Contemporary Art Space in Denmark (2009), and Lovely Weather in Ireland (2010). Collaborations with Aether9 have screened live at NetUser4 in Bulgaria, MAAC in Brussels, the Mapping Festival (2007, 2008), and BAC in Geneva. Public art projects include a 90-foot video mural for the Tom Bradley International Terminal in Los Angeles (June, 2009) by Dr. Stephan Schleidan and an interactive city-building project for Rome, Italy, (July, 2008), a participatory timeline of the childhood of an entire city in Trondheim, Norway (August, 2007), the urban installation “Climate Change is Happening” in Newcastle, Australia (March, 2006), and the conversion of an outdoor lighting system into a city’s nervous system at the University of California, San Diego (February, 2004).
The Junior League of Imaginary Scientists was recently formed ! and has its home base at "the Zoo," a house that is home to five child researchers who range in age from 6 to 16. News from their Discovery Room will be a future feature of the site...
Some leading imaginary scientists and their credentials are listed below.
Dr. L. Hernandez Gomez specializes in inverse biology – specifically, the external state of the internal organs. Hernandez Gomez’ inside-out and outside-in technique has brought mass appeal to the previously ill-considered innards. Connecting the Dots is the scientist’s recently published manual to the human body. Leading specialist Stephan Schleidan admitted in passing, “Connecting the Dots reduces all of biology to simple, interconnected lines – now a child of six could be a brain surgeon.” Dr. L. Hernandez Gomez received several advanced degrees from the University of Fernando Póo on the Island of Bioko.
Professor J. Johansen is an expert in bagology, a scientific field fraught with academic infighting and corporate speculation. The inventor of the non-wrinkling sandwich baggie, he has gone on to create a prototype of the bottomless paper bag. As published in Science Biweekly, his is “an advanced form of scientific origami.” In recognition of his early achievements, Harvard University predated his degree, granting him a PhD in 1973, the year he was born. In his spare time Professor Johansen contributes to the field of plastomology: his is the largest collection of plastics excreted by insects know to exist.
Professor William T. Madmann has spent his career battling teams of medical ethicists, and he’s come out ahead. A world-class evil genius, Professor Madmann asserts that the foremost thinking in science is incompatible with notions of “the greater good.” His seminal research on kitten asphyxiation won him the Josef Mengele award in 1973 and made him the most popular scientist among a small percentage of twelve-year-old boys, who, incidentally, strangled their cats. Professor Madmann conducts his research in a secret laboratory in or around the Bermuda Triangle with his cat, Muffin.
The illustrious Dr. Stephan Schleidan, founder of tunnel theory, is possibly a distant relative of Matthias Schleiden, founder of cell theory. The only scientist known to conduct his research from within a black hole – labeled a “black hole vigilante” by Science Tuesday – Dr. Schleidan leads government research on the exportation or “trash channeling” of green house gases. He is the author of Dirty Worm Holes, the definitive textbook on spelunking black holes. The force behind W.H. “Boss” Hoover’s decision to merge his appliance company with NASA, Dr. Schleidan specializes in reconstructing dematerialized matter inside a vacuum.
Professor L. Troubadour was abandoned as a child in 17th century Romania. Adopted by Gypsies, trained in music, poetry, and theatrical performance, his creative endeavors were rewarded with chewing gum. With the scientific curiosity of a young boy and a budding gum snapping virtuoso, he conducted experiments that would lead him to create a bubbling sensation in the quantum physics world, gum string theory. By attaching chewing gum strings to his mandolin, Troubadour materialized notes and rhythms in a manner unprecedented. One bright evening he poetically unleashed himself into a frenzy of rhythmic mandolin/gum snapping composition, and the stretchy strings from his instrument and mouth wove around him and imploded fundamental rules of physics: he was transported to the 21st century.