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Taiwanese artist Yen Tzu Chang presents an artist talk followed by her Whose Scalpel performance.

Whose Scalpel is a sound performance combined with visuals and a 3D printed installation, realised with a framework for medical image processing. Mixing several methods from art and science, it is an imagination of the future and presents issues of the relationship between humans and machines through simulated heart surgery. The concept is developed out the application of sound in medical science, coronary artery bypass surgery and machine learning. The background story of the performance is based on the assumption that in the near future a surgeon works with the machine which can give advice during surgery. The installation is built according to the performer's real heart from MRI scans and is enlarged from its actual size. It is designed to interact when the performer plugs in audio cables and bridges connections, much like the method of coronary artery bypass surgery. During the performance, the storyline is lead by the sound and video of medical images and live performance from the webcam. The video and the sound also present the machine which gives instruction to the performer as a physician. The patient (the heart) who is operated on symbolises human’s conscience and faith. The performance asks a question relating to the issue of the machine and human: “If machines can reason even better than human, will we as humans lose some abilities and even not believe ourselves anymore?”

The project was developed during the residency STEAM Imaging designed by Fraunhofer MEVIS and hosted together with Ars Electronica within the European Digital Art and Science Network.

Yen Tzu Chang (b. 1991, TW) is a Taiwanese media artist who lives and studies in Linz, Austria. She holds a bachelor's degree from the new media art department of the Taipei National University of Art. Since 2014, she has been studying for her master's degree at the Interface Culture department of the Kunstuniversität Linz. Until now, she has given performances and exhibited her works in many international conferences and festivals, such as Ars Electronica Festival, roBOt 08 Festival, Linux Audio Conference, ISEA, Digital Design Weekend in London and etc. She had a touring performance with Renick Bell and Calum Gunn in Japan in 2016. Recently, she is participating an interdisciplinary project organized by Ars Electronica and Fraunhofer MEVIS, which including an art residency program and cooperating with the scientist - Sabrina Haase to bring the STEAM workshops for German and Austrian pupils. The residency artistic outcome has been presented at the Ars Electronica Festival 2017.

This event is curated by Lucia H Chung (Happened) as part of her residency with Music Hackspace, which aims to promote and give visibility to artists from Taiwan working with sound. Throughout July, August and September, four Taiwanese artists chosen by Lucia will be taking up short term residencies at Music Hackspace and delivering workshops, artist talks and performances. Lucia’s residency will culminate with a final night of performances in late September.

Doors for this event will open at 18:30. The performance will begin at 19:00, followed by a talk and Q&A. Drinks will be available from the bar next to the entrance to the New Wing of Somerset House.

The venue is located on the ground floor of Somerset House and is fully wheelchair accessible with an accessible toilet. If you have any access requirements, please let us know and we will do our best to accommodate them.

This event is supported by the National Culture and Arts Foundation in Taiwan.



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