HuBs, links, and connectors
Alternating across disciplines and scale, CONNECTED is a multimedia exhibition investigating networks to comprehend virality, group dynamics, and social trends that connect us all. Based on a network-centric view of modern society formulated by systems of contagion, navigation, coordination, communication and trade, CONNECTED explores the infinite forms of networks that exist within and around us. This series also activates online social networks and in-person group collaborations to elaborate on behaviors of networks in real-time, to form emergent, networked results.
This body of work originates from Networked Life, a 365-day art project depicting hundreds of network structures for one year. Given the lengthy duration of this project, networks became a new way of seeing and experiencing the world. The more networks examined led to similar network formations appearing in all forms of life. These common structures include branching, meshing, radial, astral, transportation-based, vectral, and web-like networks. These forms are illustrated in literal and abstract mixed media expressions, unified by common structural properties such as hubs, links, and clusterings.
Visual and behavioral patterns emerge when molecular systems, social networks, neural pathways, freeways systems are compared to one another. Organizational charts in business models mimic the tree-like structures of brain neurons. A firework’s explosion looks like the radial cloud of faces mapping Facebook contacts. River deltas match the branching vascular system inside the body. Were these visual congruences a coincidence external to scientific research or a product of empiricism? What began as as a study of visual patterns no longer solely a visual fascination, but a discovery of a relatively new academic field called Network Science.
CONNECTED features an interactive puzzle, a computer game, a fractal-like sculpture, etchings, and oil paintings. By detecting networks in everyday life, we realize that nothing exists in isolation. By incorporating playful explorations of form to science-based undertakings, this collection marvels at the digital, physical, and universal patterns that connect all things. Whether formulated in a complex puzzle with interchangeable parts in Networked Life or providing visual comparisons of networked structures in Navigation Set and Micro/Macro Systems, these artworks give meaning to one another via systemic relations. This series reveals infinite networks binding us to one another and our surroundings.