July 16, 2007

Case contributes talent and research to the 2007 Ingenuity Festival


Case Western Reserve University is contributing both talent and research to this year's Ingenuity Festival of Art and Technology, taking place July 19-22 in downtown Cleveland.

Founded in 2005, Ingenuity celebrates Cleveland's diverse arts and technology communities and shows how the two genres complement each other. James Levin, the festival's cofounder and a 1979 graduate of the School of Law, said that the university's involvement with the festival is a natural fit.

"Case is involved at the exhibiting and performance level, as well as the infrastructure and technology. When thinking of arts and technology, one of the first places I'll go to is Case," he said. "It's an opportunity for the university to showcase the creativity and innovation taking place in Northeast Ohio and we're pleased that they are participating."

Levin said that Lev Gonick, the university's vice president for information technology services, and Thomas Knab, chief information officer for the College of Arts and Sciences, have played an integral role in the Ingenuity Festival. "In the first two years, we had a little bit of technology and a lot of art. Lev suggested that if we were showcasing creativity, why not showcase more of the technology and how it works? So we've really opened up the gates this year," Levin explained. As far as Knab's role, Levin said that he has been instrumental in helping organizers develop the telecommunication events.

Gonick emphasized that art and technology go hand in hand. "I don't think there's a separation of art from technology; technology is a form of art, and likewise, art is a form of technology. One of the most popular dual majors at our university is engineering and music. When it comes to new media and performance art, the fusion of the two is emerging as one of the most exciting genres in art."

Although people might not initially think of art and technology coexisting, Gonick said popular examples include computer gaming software, 3D imaging and streaming video.

A demonstration from the Cavani String Quartet and the Cleveland Functional Electrical Stimulation Center is another example of how art and technology work together. The quartet will perform as part of the festival's Friday night lineup. To enhance the performance, the center will apply electrodes to the musicians so that the audience can graphically chart the musicians' movement.

"The audience can see what's happening in their bodies in real time. Visually, the graphics are very beautiful," Levin said. The Functional Electrical Stimulation Center is a collaboration between Case, the Cleveland Louis Stokes Department of Veteran Affairs Medical Center and Metrohealth Medical Center.

Other university connections to this year's Ingenuity Festival include:
  • Jared Bendis, creative director of New Media for the Freedman Center at Kelvin Smith Library, collaborates with Cleveland artist/photographer Rita Montlack for Found in a Crowd, which combines art, technology and community. Images of festival-goers' faces will be captured in a photo booth then incorporated into a video on a large plasma screen. The faces will be animated and seem to dance on and off the screen, and will change every time a new face is added.
  • Fred Collopy, chair and professor of information systems at the Weatherhead School of Management, is the creator of the Rhythmic Light Ensemble, a computerized dance experience, scheduled for July 20.
  • Alexis Abramson, assistant professor in mechanical and aerospace engineering, and Kenneth Singer, professor of physics and macromolecular science, have collaborated on a nanotechnology exhibit.
  • Peter Whitehouse, professor of neurology, is conducting an interactive video storytelling installation related to the intergenerational school he has created. Whitehouse works with people diagnosed with early stage Alzheimer's disease and encourages them to share their life stories.
  • The Center for Layered Polymeric Systems or CLiPS will be on display in the Technology Village.
  • The Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing will be exhibiting The Art and Soul of Nursing, a series of photographs by Nannette Bedway, for the duration of the festival.
  • NetWellness—a nonprofit consumer health Web site that has been in operation for more than 10 years—will be on display. Medical and health professionals from Case, the University of Cincinnati and Ohio State University oversee the Web site.

Some Ingenuity events are free, while others require paid admission. An Ingenuity day pass costs $5, while an entire festival pass is $15. Read more for a complete list of activities or to purchase tickets.

For more information, call Kimyette Finley at 216.368-0521.

Posted by: Marsha Bragg, July 16, 2007 11:21 AM | News Topics: Alumni, Collaborations/Partnerships, Collaborations/Partnerships, Collaborations/Partnerships, Events, HeadlinesMain, Provost Initiatives, Technology

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