“The Medium is the Data”
On August 12 Chicago Reader contributor Aimee Levitt spotlighted Data Viz Collaborative, displayed in the LeRoy Neiman Center lobby through October 4. The exhibition showcases three collaborative projects between students at SAIC and Northwestern University aimed at producing constructive, comprehensible visuals from big data. "It's imperative that we create more useful and compelling ways of communicating the data," says participating instructor and SAIC professor Michael Golec (Art History). “Most forms of data representation date from the late 19th or early 20th century. Only now are we inventing new ways of depicting data." Though “beautiful,” as Levitt points out, the students’ work extends beyond visual value. "I think calling it artwork doesn't do it justice. It's the aesthetics of information,” Golec argues. “It's not just something that looks good. It has an affective quality. It changes the way you look at the world."