Tell us about yourself and your work.
I’m a Colombian mathematican that has worked as artist, interactive data visualization designer and data scientist. I’m currently Data Chief Officer at Drumwave, a new company based in California.
Although I’ve worked as artist, designer and data scientist, I do not differentiate among these tasks: they are valid labels for they explain the context in which my work is presented, but do not define the essence of the work itself. I’ve always experimented, and even developed methodologies for experimentation.
I now create collaboratively, exploring new ways to interact with data to learn, understand and make decisions.
Where does the inspiration come from?
Nature, in all its forms, inspires me. I’m fascinated with patterns that emerge in very diverse phenomena and in extremely different scales, specially when new complexities are formed: in the creation of galaxies, proteins, multicellular organisms, or innovative ideas. All these dynamic processes also generate data, and information visualization is then a window to them. All these processes are also interactive –complexity emerges from the interaction of simplest parts–, so I explore how to mimic these interactions in the cognitive experience of the persons faced with the visualization interfaces. I see Nature as an inconceivable flow of information and interactions, and my work as an extension of it.
I’m also very much interested in cognitive psychology, because the artifacts I build involve humans and complex tasks.
Which is the need of your art?
I have a compulsion for modular construction (yes, I love to play with modular toys such as Lego, but not only). But I also feel an urge for working with things that resonate with real life. Pure abstraction or generativity bores and even frustrates me. I have also little interest in representation. Whatever I build should engage in complex processes with humans, foster feedback loops of information. The need of my art is to build meaningful connections.
Tell us about your experiences in art fairs, exhibitions and others.
I worked as artist, and presenting my work as art, only for a few years. In deep, it’s not different from any other work or economical context: it’s just people seeking to survive. People selling stuff to others. People wanting to be noticed while saying they don’t want to be noticed. People believing that what they do contain the keys for a better world. Speculation, places, opportunities, money for a few.
My personal experience was very good. I had the chances to make small but quite fun exhibitions, with the help of lots of interesting people involved, and without the pressure of selling. This happens mainly when I was living in Madrid. It was a happy time of my life.
At some point I started feeling that experimenting in art is just too safe, because experimentation is what’s expected. There’s no risk. Experimenting in business is less expected though, more risky. More interesting. That’s a nice paradox. There’s more art in doing art outside art.
What does it means the art for you?
A safe space. Let`s say “art” accepted you: you belong to an environment, you present work, you can survive doing your stuff.
The opposite of a safe space: is the need to build stuff: symbolic or material, one, two, three or n – dimensional, for you, for few, for all. Art, as it seems, is also whatever conversation there is about art. Art is the guy that never played again with Paul.
What do you think about the art system in your country?
I belong to a latin american country. That means that art is defined by two trends: copy whatever happens in Europe and USA, and helplessly try to find an identity (maybe to, some day, be accepted over there).
What is the future of art?
Art has no longer historical structure.
You can see my work at http://moebio.com