Join the Life Art Science Tech (LAST) magazine

Calling for Volunteers to help Run an Art/Science/Tech magazine

The interdisciplinary LAST magazine aim at presenting a panorama of the culture of our times. It is produced by volunteers who are passionate about the intersection of art, science and technology (and many other things).

The LASER series (Leonardo Art Science Evening Rendezvous) is an international series of evenings, started in the Bay Area in 2008 by cultural historian Piero Scaruffi, that presents great minds from different disciplines in the same setting. Sister series are now taking place in more than 30 universities worldwide.

The L.A.S.T. festival (Life Art Science Teach) is an annual weekend-long event, also founded by Piero Scaruffi, that presents a science symposium and an exhibition of high-tech art.
LASERs in the Bay Area take place six times a year at USF and six times a year at Stanford. The LAST festival has taken place five times since 2014: twice in San Jose, once in San Francisco and twice at Stanford.
The LASER and LAST teams of the Bay Area started an online magazine that will cover these events, cover the careers of the artists and scientists who participate, cover similar events elsewhere and cover the development of new art/science/tech movements in general, and publish original feature articles.
This is an opportunity for students to engage in a project that benefits the public at large, to acquire knowledge about trends and state of the art (and of the science), and to familiarize with the work of artists and scientists, and to meet them in person.
We are looking for volunteers to help with
  • creative writing (reporting about these events, interviewing artists and scientists, writing original articles on innovative practices)
  • web graphic design and publishing (creating the actual online layout for the content)
  • spreading the word
  • looking for other passionate volunteers :-)

Volunteers can contribute remotely.
We make videos of all events so remote contributors can simply watch the sand then do interviews via Skype/Zoom.
Examples of articles that we currently would like:
  • Documenting LASERs and LAST festivals. If you attend in person, write a review of the preferred talks. Or watch the videos after the event and write the review.
  • Interviewing recent LASER speakers from Stanford, San Francisco and Berkeley. Follow-up on their talks with in-depth questions (maybe something that didn't come up in the talk but that you feel is important)
  • Updates on LASER and LAST alumni (e.g. exhibitions of their new work) with or without interview. "Where are they now?" Kine-tech Arts, Boodhoo, Blanton, Berry, Durie, Foucault, Modes, Spelletich, Kildall, etc.
  • Profiles of great centers of art/tech/science:
    • Stochastic Labs (interview the director and the residents)
    • SJSU CADRE (interview the old director, the current director, and some students)
    • UC Santa Cruz OpenLab (interview the director and some students)
    • UC Berkeley Center for New Media
  • Scholarly articles on art/science
  • Interviews with scholars/artists in the art/science/tech field
    • Trudy Myrrh Reagan, an art/science pioneer who just published a new book about her work
    • Alex Reben, roboticist and artist
    • Chemical engineer Curt Frank and his artist wife Sara Loesch who teach a class at Stanford
  • Retrospectives on influential interdisciplinary "clubs"
    • The Ratio Club in Britain
    • The Macy Conferences in the USA
    • Special issue of Stanford Humanities Review on A.I. and Humanities (1999!)
  • There are a number of important anniversaries in 2019 that could be inspiration for feature articles
    • 60th anniversary of CP Snow's lecture at Cambridge "The Two Cultures" (the lecture that started the whole debate on the gap between humanities and sciences)
    • 100th birthday of James Lovelock (of Gaia fame)(yes he's alive and well)
    • 40th anniversary of Lyotard's "Postmodern Condition" (no universal narrative in the postmodern world)
    • 500th anniversary of Leonardo's death
    • 30th anniversary of the Tianamen Sq massacre in China
    • 50th anniversary of the Woodstock rock festival
    Example of anniversary-related essays that we could write:
    • a survey of art/science organizations since 1959 (Leonardo ISAST, Djerassi, Rhyzome, Siggraph, several European events) interviewing people like Piero Scaruffi (founder of LASERs and LAST festival), Roger Malina (ISAST's former chairman and son of ISAST's founder), Carl Djerassi's son Dale, JD Talasek of the National Academy of Science, Victoria Vesna of Art/Sci Lab at UCLA, John Weber of Art/Science Institute at UCSC, etc on the state of "the two cultures"
    • an article on Gaia-inspired art and how Gaia is perceived now by scientists (David McConville is the man to discuss this)
    • interviews with Leonardo experts: Tyler, Kemp, Cocciardi...

Issue #1

(by Alexandra Morris Smith)

Issue #2

(Alexandra, Fra Tisci, Jeffrey Holmes, Johnathon Win)

If interested, contact "last at" or directly "scaruffi at"