INFLECTION POINT: exhibition by ASN2

Our four second year ASN students have just presented an exhibition, entitled INFLECTION POINT, as their end of semester project in our studio’s Tent Gallery.


The students, Cody Anderson, Natalia Bezerra, Luis Guzman Martinez and Rebecca Sutton, presented outputs, developed from their individual areas of research, which were compelling and intelligent responses.  

In his ongoing investigation into definitions of life, Cody Anderson this time turned his attention to computer viruses. Melissa, Sasser and I Love You are three of the world’s most infamous computer viruses which, due to advances in modern technology, are no longer able to live in the digital environment. Black Death is a macro computer virus created by the artist. In Welcome to the Island the viruses’ digital codes are converted into DNA, to create a form for the organisms; which are then preserved within the oil paintings where they are free to live in augmented reality. Scanning the paintings with a downloaded Augment app allows the viewer to see the viral life form ‘living’ in its own digital world.



Natalia Bezerra’s research is more directly linked to the global environmental crisis. One of a set of sculptural works, Growth/Decay, is a branch which has been entwined in wire and then burned. The fragments of carbon trapped in the wire frame, suspended above its own charcoal shadow. In the videoed, performative work 4:44 Protest the artist can be seen feeding a fire with newspaper cuttings of environmental news.

Luis Guzman Martinez presented a summary of three different research lines. Genetic Mosaic was presented on a free-standing small monitor as a visual representation of the human genome based on the translation of the nucleotides sequence (A, C, G, T) to binary code (00,01,10,11) and then in colour coded pixels. Each pixel represents a group of genes that together make up a portrait of the genome. Micro Ecosystem, was a small sculpture consisting of an environmental sample taken from the pond in Blackford Hill which has been sealed in a sculptural volume of beeswax. The idea being to isolate this small bacterial universe, to create a snapshot of the current state of that ecosystem. Along with these two pieces Bioarchitecture II was also presented, which is a further development of the work presented previously in the Tent gallery. Its purpose is to propose the sculptural form as an energy source for colonist organisms.

Our cinema space was transformed by the three-channel projection installation, Between Stillness and Motion 1, by Becky Sutton. Details of reflections on water, rippling across geometric forms, creating a calming space focussing on the liminal space, where water meets land. This was counterpointed by a set of mono-prints which referenced the same stretch of river, a wavering fragile line. The unpredictability of water and the changes that we are currently seeing at an alarming rate is a theme this work explores.



This significant group show allowed the students’ ideas to be tested in a public forum, prior to a series of one person shows, to be held next semester, which will be covered on this Blog site.

UMWELT: exhibition by ASN 1

Our studio and Tent Gallery were transformed to mount the exhibition, by the first year ASN students. Their title, UMWELT, means in ethology ‘the world as it is experienced by a particular organism’.

The exhibition showed a significant series of outputs based on research and the earlier fieldtrip to the Western Isles.

The exhibition presented the students the opportunity to create works and test ideas in advance of our forthcoming exhibition, TESTIMONY FROM THE ROCKS, to be held at An Lanntair Gallery, when the students return to Lewis in March.


Typical for the interdisciplinary approach of our programme, the exhibition featured a series of approaches and media.

The exhibiting artists were:

Andreas Papamichael

Kaixin Li

Pin-Erh Chen

Lilien Li

David Kramaric

Kaitlin Ferguson

Kharis Leggate

Claire Burnett

Ana Ceciilia Parrodi Anaya

Harmony Bury

Hsin Shyu

Pantea Armafar

Elizabeth Ogilvie visits ASN


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We were both delighted and honoured to have the artist, Elizabeth Ogilvie visit ASN recently in what was an inspirational day.

Liz is one of the most significant Scottish artists of her generation, working with a fusion of art, architecture and science, using ice and water as her main media and research focus to produce vast environments dedicated to water in various states.

As well as a general discussion and review of student work, we held a screening of her recent film project, OUT OF ICE, in our cinema space.

OUT OF ICE is the latest of Ogilvie’s many works that meld ice and water with ambient sound and refractive and projected light to create intense, immersive experiences bringing fresh perspectives on the fundamental significance of our relationship to landscape.

The film documents her numerous visits to Ilulissat in north west Greenland and can be viewed here…

ASN Programme Director, Donald Urquhart, visits Brazil

ASN Programme Director, Donald Urquhart has recently returned from a visit to São Paulo in Brazil.


He was a speaker at the Congress XI, Aesthetics & Art History at the

Museu de Arte Contemporânea da Universidade de São Paulo, where his paper discussed the role of ASN in ecological art practice.

Earlier this year, Dr Evandro Carlos Nicolau from São Paulo was an academic visitor to Art, Space + Nature.

GRIKE: Sculpture as Resistance in the Anthropocene Luis Guzmán and Diego Estrada.

Natural Signs is a Chilean art studio, comprising ASN student Luis Guzmán and Diego Estrada, which is dedicated to exploring the intersection of art and ecology, with an emphasis in bio-architecture. insta4

They have recently presented works in Tent, which were developed from Natural Sign’s residency at the Burren College of Art in Ballyvaughan, Ireland, undertaken last summer.

The residency involved field research as an investigation into the geological, social and biological characteristics of the place.

As well as the works developed for Tent, they installed a permanent work, ‘GRIKE’ in the Burren landscape. The work is made from polycaprolactone (polymorphic biodegradable polymer) and is designed to enhance the ecosystem by replacing soil lost during five thousand years of human intervention. 


The residency experience, including the research process and the work on site, was presented in a documentary film, which has now been distributed to two hundred schools in Chile, as a way to foster the dialogue between art and natural sciences in the art education curriculum.

Interviews with Dr. Eamon Doyle, geologist of Burren Geoparks and Nuala Mulqueeney, Director of Ailwee cave, were also presented in video format in the exhibition. 


The sculpture, ‘GENERATIVE’, was developed for the exhibition in relation to the site-specific work, ‘GRIKE’.  This piece consisted in an enclosed polycaprolactone structure which supported the growth of plants and fungi, as a way of incorporating living systems in sculptural proceses.

ASN Fieldtrip to Lewis & Harris


claire5The ASN students have just returned from one of our annual field trips.
We visited the islands of Lewis and Harris in the Outer Hebrides, where the students looked at numerous aspects of the islands’ physical and cultural landscape.

Initial ideas will be tested in a forthcoming exhibition in Tent gallery, before a more substantial exhibition in An Lanntair Gallery in Stornoway next year.





Newton Harrison visits ASN Studio

“The Deep Wealth of This Nation, Scotland” is an exhibition by the environmental art pioneers, the Harrisons currently on display at Edinburgh College of Art (ECA). The show is a collaboration between the Center for the Study of the Force Majeure (CFM) in California and the Barn in Aberdeenshire, along with the James Hutton Institute, Aberdeen. It is presented at ECA in association with Art, Space + Nature Masters Programme (ASN).

Following a public presentation and discussion to accompany the ECA exhibition on Thursday evening, we were honoured to have Newton Harrison visit the ASN studio on Friday. We were treated to a two-hour discussion and career overview from the internationally renowned artist and pioneer of the global ecological art movement. The collaborative team of Newton and his late wife Helen Mayer Harrison (often referred to simply as “the Harrisons”) has worked for almost forty years with biologists, ecologists, architects, urban planners and other artists to initiate collaborative dialogues to uncover ideas and solutions which support biodiversity and community development.


“The Deep Wealth of This Nation, Scotland” is an original vision to see how one small country can mobilise as a nation to be the first industrialised country to move past the carbon cycle and become the first nation to give more to the global environment, which the Harrisons call the Life Web, than it consumes.  This vision which takes form as a poem, transcends political and social boundaries and encourages the possibility of collective action at all levels in society.

For more details visit