Thomas Asmuth is an educator/artist currently living near the Gulf of Mexico. His projects are primarily interested the intersections of science and art, identity, and robotics.
Thomas Asmuth is an artist and an Assistant Professor at the University of West Florida where he teaches courses in digital and experimental media at the UWF Department of Art. Asmuth utilizes science and technology as method and media to explore culture, aesthetics, social practices, and performance. Asmuth is an alumnus of the CADRE Laboratory for New Media at San José State (MFA 2009) and holds a BFA in Painting (2000) from the San Francisco Art Institute.
Asmuth’s process is a complication of disciplines that often defies categorization. In 2003, a physicist friend encouraged Asmuth to reincorporate scientific and technological media into his art. That year he built a series of meditative chambers that included home-made particle physics instruments which unveiled subatomic processes like cosmic rays, Muon decays and Alpha particles for the viewer. The subjects of Asmuth’s current research include autonomous robotics, portraits and imaging of the ‘Space Race’, invisible spectra, voxel aesthetics, and wearable computing.
Asmuth’s works and collaborations have been exhibited in the United States and internationally including: NetArtizen, Thompson Gallery (San José State University), SECAC2013, Brick City Gallery (Missouri State University), 319 Scholes (NYC), turbulence.org (sic), the 17th International Symposium on Electronic Art (ISEA2011, Istanbul), the Laguna Art Museum (CA), 2006 Zer01 Biennial (2006, 2008, & 2012 San José, CA), Salisbury University (MD), and the Francis Tang Teaching Museum (Saratoga Springs, NY).
My work is conceptually driven and motivated by subjects such as the history of science and technology, popular culture, and theoretical discourse. Use of experimental media and transdisciplinary activity are key features to the work as well collaboration or collectivist production methods that push on the ideas of authorship.
My work often exhibits a personality of irreverence or humor. Depending on your viewpoint, this strategy or schtick offers audiences an accessible entry into the critical discussions at the heart of my work.
I see cultural manifestations at play throughout all forms of media. There is a fashionable notion that popular culture forms are absent of intellectual content, yet my work often reveals or manipulates subtexts found in these sources. Such as my piece “a message from /hug” (see in portfolio section), I repurpose these forms to create a critical dialogue and satire.
Warning: Trying to draw a connection between all my projects is a migraine inducing exercise. This motley crew: my projects, collaborations, artifacts, and performances emerge from a investigatory stupefaction. I am routinely awed by the way culture manifests in practices or disciplines. It surprises me; I say, “What the hell is that? Hey look! This is really strange.”
To boot, I admit my inherent geeky-ness; a technological, material, or conceptual challenge can be an equally motive force in these projects. Picking up a new skill or assembling teams of ‘the Right Stuff’ for each new project is just a part of the working method in some sort of strange mania otherwise known as enthusiasm.
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