Too Big To Scale: On Scaling Space, Numbers, Time, and Energy

Too Big To Scale: On Scaling Space, Numbers, Time, and Energy


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The twenty-first century has been marked by our almost boundless ability to imagine things at a larger, or smaller, size; at a faster speed; capable of solving complex problems using less energy. Our imagination on the topic of scale has driven technological progress, but it has also long inspired the creation of art. With the onset of industrialization in the nineteenth century, experimentation with scale across almost all disciplines accelerated to an entirely different dimension.

The result of a 2015 symposium at Zurich University of the Arts, Too Big to Scale brings together essays by a diverse interdisciplinary group of artists, designers, engineers, and scholars who explore the significance of scale within their respective disciplines. The contributions take as their point of departure the camera, which combines three pathways for scaling—film speed, lens size and speed, and frame rates for fast and slow motion. The possibility of copying images adds a fourth variable, replication. The camera, as the contributors show, does not merely depict our world but can also be seen as actively producing our thoughts and imagination.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9783858817938
Publisher: Scheidegger and Spiess
Publication date: 09/15/2017
Pages: 208
Product dimensions: 5.60(w) x 7.80(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Florian Dombois is a Zurich-based artist and scientist. He is professor and head of research on transdisciplinary studies at Zurich University of the Arts. Julie Harboe is an art critic and curator. She is a lecturer and researcher at Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts.

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