Proposal essay (2ºdraft)

MA Digital Arts Camberwell College of Arts

Project Proposal

Susana Anágua

 

To: Andy Stiff

 

Losing your Way, Wasting Time.

 

Aims

What is Entropy?

Difficult to answer in a short way …

“Entropy is one of the most mysterious of all the concepts dealt with by scientists. The Second Law of Thermodynamics states that the entropy of a given situation cannot decrease unless there is a greater increase elsewhere. Thus entropy has the unusual property that it is not conserved, as energy is, but monotonically increases over time. The Second Law of Thermodynamics is often regarded as one of science’s most glorious laws. And also one of them the most difficult to understand.”(From MIT site)

In order to keep focused on this matter and try to look back on what I have done as final and visual work, in video or installation, my aim in this year of research is to find same of the true notions of Entropy and find out connections between human behaviours and Fisics .

London is probably one of the most riches cities in the world were I could think about this matter. Its funny that such a big city becomes so small after all it means comparing the fact that creates so many population groups from all over the world, and many different environments. It’s a very complex city, and for me constitutes a major challenge to travel around, and find out conceptual or visual inputs to do my work about Entropy.

The second law of thermodynamics includes a complex system that maybe can be similar to a social global behaviour, in particularly shown in the city of London. This system of unavailability of energy to do work could be reflected in a feeling of loss of Time that is produced by the big scale that city has. As a reaction to this, normally are created isolated systems. These are communities with spontaneous changes reflected in characteristics as temperature, pressure and density, in a metaphorical sense. Doesn’t mean, as J.Floyd said, that this disperse of energy only generates a chaos or disorder; actually the Entropy is more similar with the notion or measure the effort to do work. Those communities really create a work of survival inside the city.  These are same of the fundamental words and sequence that I would like to explore in my research and work.

 

Objectives

My main objective is to increase my work with a substantial contextualization and meaning.

Get in to a serious knowledge of what Entropy means in these days, and for that I really hope to have the help of same physicists in the field, so my research doesn’t have to be only personal. I would like to extend it to a team, if is that possible.

Create a relationship between concept and matter and experience in the field.

I pretend to explore another notions inside Entropy, like Time and Space. J.Floyd defends that Entropy is not propriety of matter, so I have to analyses this matter in a sense of the virtual. 

The main is reach to same visual answers to this questions: what is Entropy (in the meaning of several areas), what is Time, Space, how Entropy effect both? Energy and Effort and can we visualize or measure this effort of recovering time and lost space?

What I’ll do is to develop concepts that go further than scientific definition, which is really important, but I think only a dedicated physicist can do it professionally.

For instance, in the Philosophical analyses of the ninenghten century appears a notion of an order Time and direction of Time, so it will be important to reflect about all this definitions inside several areas of studies and try to approaches them in a comun point.

 

 

Rational

As a metaphor, Entropy starts by being a curious matter for many writers, artists, Philosophers searching for political and social sense in this world, but the true meaning arose in the field of physics during the nineteenth century. It’s a kind of measure of the equilibrium and evolution of thermodynamics systems. Two main views were developed but both approaches allowed a deeper insight into the nature and behaviour of microscopically unpredictable processes.

 

 

                          

The entropy diagram for steam is often convenient because it shows the relationship between

                                     Pressure, Temperature, Dryness Fraction, Entropy

 

 

 

 

The opinions about the subject are very diverse but for most writers, even specialists in Physics, the emphasis is on the second law of thermodynamics that simply states that energy tends to disperse, if it is not hindered from doing so. Some others claim that it says nothing about “orderliness”, and nothing about availability of matter.

 

                

 

 

There is another area where Entropy takes place, Computers Law. Directly connected with consumers and the market of the product or even the producers, you can also think about it inside software: like when you produce an image and how that image circulates inside the system, how much energy you spend with it and, more import, what part of this image you lose in travelling!?.

These are tree still images from a video “Digital Kaamos, Aurora Boreal”, that was made as the result of the capture from the videotape camera to software in the computer. During the reading of the tape the software was unable to read all the information so he did create an error without matrix. (pic 3,4

                

                                      Digital Kaamos, Aurora Boreal”, 2006 (video loop)

 

To contextualize this matter I found a page in the MIT site about their courses  (Electrical Engineering and Computer Science) that provides a very interesting questions and answers about the importance of understanding the meaning of entropy for a world of computers and new technologies in which we live today. I selected a few of them;

 

What is this course all about? 


Information and entropy. Information is a measure of the amount of knowledge; it is not that knowledge itself. Thus information is like energy, in the sense that knowing the amount of energy does not tell you anything about its nature, location, form, etc. The same is true with information. Entropy is a one kind of information. It is the information you do not have about a situation. 


Is entropy useful outside of thermodynamics? 


All physical systems obey the laws of thermodynamics. The challenge is to express these laws in simple but general forms so that their significance in, for example, a biological system gives insight. Besides, laws similar to the Second Law of Thermodynamics are found in abstract systems governed more by mathematics than physics — two examples discussed in the course are computers and communications systems. In these contexts the “information” part of “Information and Entropy” is important.

http://ocw.mit.edu/OcwWeb/Electrical-Engineering-and-Computer-Science/6-050JInformation-and-EntropySpring2003/Syllabus/

 

During the 20th century Artists also did talk a lot in their work of Entropy.  In the 50s they seamed to celebrate what Dan Flavin calls “inactive history” or what the physicist calls “entropy” or “energy-drain.” They bring to mind the Ice Age rather than the Golden Age, and would most likely confirm Vladimir Nabokov’s observation that, “The future is but the obsolete in reverse.” In a rather round-about way, many of the artists have provided a visible analog for the Second Law of Thermodynamics, which extrapolates the range of entropy by telling us energy, is more easily lost than obtained, and that in the ultimate future the whole universe will burn out and be transformed into an all-encompassing sameness. Most of them create a new realthinship with monument, and tend to increase the production of sequences immortal hybrid objects. Or built their monuments to or against entropy.

Some of the ironies lies in Pop art could reflect this theme to. The consumer of the new and the infinite desire that humanity has of processing and reproducing objects brings us the chaos and disorder of loosing more energy than produce.

As a reaction of the “The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction” like Walter Benjamin name it, starts the concerns about the ecologies world and all the energy transform in product we through away.

 

So entropy was been used to a true reflection by many artists in the 70s, with the appearance of Land Arts and all questions about a work of Art made by natural materials be exposed to Time and extending to a natural environment. This brings to object of Art his own death.

Artists such as Richard Long, Robert Smithson, Hamish Fulton etc, that brings to the work of Art more than a White Cube presentation way. They selted free the object from the grids of space, instead, they offer freedom of scale. But this freedom brings death of the body in the same time.

 

 

 

 

 

Methodologies

 

For start understanding better the definition of Entropy is my major objective. I must collect as much information I can get in books, interviews and researches from those who are specialists in the areas of physics, philosophy or social sciences. I would like to extend the concept to non-truth information or teorical scientific books, like for instance; the work of so many artists or as an example, to include in my research the “Invisible Cities” of Italo Calvino.

It will be important to go to Greenwich and research all about the histories of that place. Greenwich could be a place that brings me some outcomes. Located at 0 degrees of longitude and being a Universal reference of Time it is definitely a good place to start a visual research and obtain a good archive of moving images. Located there is a Syrup Industry that I would like to visit and look for some connections.

The presentation of these research themes should be done through the media of Video or installation. 

To get the final work my methodologies normally focus on a fixed camera recording a moving image from a selected place, environment or machine. This camera just stay still, like a viewer contemplating and action that runs at distance from its own body. All the plan process is made before recording, the space or creating the scenario to film, but when the camera is on, it’s just a technical open eye recording the action. Even I stay still, just watching time and action finish.

However, in other moving images the camera could follow a route looking for the way, searching, it will depend the objective and potential achievement of local.

 

 

Risk assessment

 

The risk assessment consistes in have the  permission to visit Industries and areas. In general if the image is taken from the outside environment, I will be accompanied in this works to present some difficult situation.  On the street should be a little bit more important to look for secure places to film .

One of the places that will interests me will be crowed one , in order to look for same social representation of Entropy , like Waterloo station or London Bridge path from the tube or even Piccadily Circus.

 

 

Timetable

So as a  timetable  my intentions so far  are :

 

 

 

 

Dec

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apri

May

Jun

MON

01

 

 

 

 

 

 

TUE

02

 

 

 

 

 

 

WED

03 SYRAL

Visit Request (e-mail)

 

 

 

 

 

 

THU

04

 

 

01

 

Lecture day at Chelsea

Lecture day at Chelsea

Lecture day at Chelsea

Lecture day

at Chelsea

FRI

05 Library Day

02

Galp Project

(A. J.Romana)

 

Reading/Writing

day

Library Day

Reading/Writing

day

Library Day

SAT

06

Exhibitions

 

03

Galp Project

(A..J.Romana)

 

 

 

 

 

SUN

07 Exhibitions

04

Galp Project

(A.J. Romana)

01

 

 

 

 

MON

08

Plan the Interim show

05

Galp Project

(A.J.Romana)

02

 

 

 

 

TUE

09 Greenwich

06

ESAD

Uni/Mac update

03

 

 

 

 

WED

10

Lecture day

07

Meeteing

J. Silva

Phisiscist

04

 

 

 

 

THU

11

Lecture day at Chelsea

08

UNICER

Beer company

05

 

Lecture day at Chelsea

Lecture day at Chelsea

Lecture day at Chelsea

Lecture day at Chelsea

Lecture day at Chelsea

FRI

12

Plan the intermiew

Show spac

09

UNICER

Beer company

 

06

Lecture at TATE

Reading/Writing

day

Library Day

Reading/Writing

day

Library Day

Reading/Writing

day

SAT

13

Flight to Lisbon

10

07

 

 

 

 

SUN

14

11 Flight

London

08

 

 

 

 

MON

15

CAMJAP

CCB

 

 

12

Interim

show

09

 

 

 

 

TUE

16

Images

Presença Galerie (duratrans)

13

Review

Proposal essay

10

 

 

 

 

 

WED

17

Gelweiller

Company images

14

Paul Teebs

Reunion

11

ARCO

Madrid

 

 

 

 

THU

18

Daniel Isidoro

(Portfólio)

15 Lecture day at Chelsea

12

ARCO

Madrid

Lecture day at Chelsea

Lecture day at Chelsea

Lecture day at Chelsea

Lecture day at Chelsea

FRI

19

Pinhol

Company Photos

16

Library Day

13

ARCO

Madrid

Library Day

Reading/Writing

day

Library Day

Reading/writing

day

SAT

20

Pinhol

Company Photos

 

17

Exhibitions

14

ARCO

Madrid

 

 

 

 

SUN

21

 

18

Exhibitions

15 Reading/Writing 

day

 

 

 

 

MON

22

Compasses

CAMJAP

19

reading

16 Reading/Writing 

day

 

 

 

 

TUE

23

Compasses

CAMJAP

20

reading

17 Reading/Writing 

day

 

 

 

 

WED

24

21

10.45

Tutorial

18 Reading/Writing 

day

 

 

 

 

THU

25

22

 Simon After Efects

Lecture day at Chelsea

19

Lecture day at Chelsea

Lecture day at Chelsea

Lecture day at Chelsea

Lecture day at Chelsea

Lecture day at Chelsea

FRI

26

Pinhol

Company Photos

 

23

Library Day

20

Reading/Writing 

day

Library Day

Reading/Writing 

day

Library Day

Reading/writing

day

SAT

27

Studio Day

24

Exhibitions

21 Reading/Writing 

day

 

 

 

 

SUN

28

Studio Day

25

Exhibitions

22 Reading/Writing 

day

 

 

 

 

MON

29

Compasses

CAMJAP

26

Galp Project

Final cut

23 Reading/Writing 

day

Manchester

Manchester

Final Cut

 

 

TUE

30

Compasses

CAMJAP

27 Galp Project

Final cut

24

Essay

(Paul)

Manchester

Manchester

Final Cut

 

 

WED

31

28 Galp Project

Final cut

 

25

 

 

 

 

THU

 

29 Lecture day at Chelsea

26

Lecture day at Chelsea

Lecture day at Chelsea

Lecture day at Chelsea

Lecture day at Chelsea

Lecture day at Chelsea

FRI

 

30

Library Day

27

Reading/Writing

day

Library Day

Reading/Writing

day

Library Day

Reading/writing

day

SAT

 

31 Galp Project

Final cut

28

 

 

 

 

SUN

 

31 Galp Project

Final cut

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Visit (photograph and video session) Central producer of Beer, Alverca do Ribatejo, Lisbon.

“In fermentation, the word’s fermentable sugars are the nutrients required by a micro-organism called yeast. The cooled down and aerated worth is then inoculated with the yeast before being sent out to the fermentation tanks, where it remains for approximately 7 days, during which period there is a strict temperature control”.

 

 

 

 

Bibliography

 

Books

Scientific physics:

Guillen, Michael, Five Equations That Changed the World

Ba, Demba Elimane , Nonlinear transform coding with lossless polar coordinates, (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2006)

Forney, G. David, The concepts of state and entropy in quantum mechanics, (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1963)

Andreas Greven, Entropy,Gerhard Keller, & Gerald Warnecke

Robbel, Philipp, Exploiting object dynamics for recognition and control, (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2007)

Le Floch-Yin, François T. (François Thomas) Entropy generation in fluid mixing, (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2006)

Callen, Herbert B, on the theory of irreversible processes, (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1947)

Philosophy:

Hokikian, Jack, The Science of Disorder: Understanding the Complexity, Uncertainty, and Pollution in Our World, (Hardcover – May 2002)

Horwich, Paul, Asymmetries in Time: Problems in the Philosophy of Science (Paperback, 1987)   

Other:

D.Baley, K, Social Entropy Theory: An overview.

Arnheim,Rudolf , Entropy and Art,An Essay on Disorder and Order .

Smithson, Robert, The Collected Writings, 2nd Edition, edited by Jack Flam, The University of California Press, Berkeley and Los Angeles, California; University of California Press, LTD. London, England; 1996.

Calvino, Italo, The invisible Cities, 1990, 10ª Ed. (2006) Teorema.

Kifkin, Jeremy,Entropy , a new Worlds vision, (1981).

 

Scientific articles

Ben-Naim, Arieh (2007). Entropy Demystified. World Scientific.

Dugdale, J. S. (1996). Entropy and its Physical Meaning, 2nd Ed., Taylor and Francis (UK); CRC (US).

Fermi, Enrico (1937). Thermodynamics. Prentice Hall.

Kroemer, Herbert; Charles Kittel (1980). Thermal Physics, 2nd Ed., W. H. Freeman Company

Penrose, Roger (2005). The Road to Reality : A Complete Guide to the Laws of the Universe.

Reif, F. (1965). Fundamentals of statistical and thermal physics. McGraw-Hill.

Goldstein, Martin; Inge, F (1993). The Refrigerator and the Universe. Harvard University Press.

vonBaeyer; Hans Christian (1998). Maxwell’s Demon: Why Warmth Disperses and Time Passes. Random House.

 

Scientific Websites

Dr. Frank L. Lambert, Professor Emeritus (Chemistry) of Occidental College, Los Angeles

http://www.entropysite.com.

 

 

 

 


“ Northless (…) Ideas such as the loss of spatial references and the effort involved in recovering them are at the origin of this artistic proposal by Susana Anágua. 
In one of the videos we witness an insect’s experience while in reconnaissance of an inhospitable environment – a white sheet of paper – and looking for it’s way back into Nature. In another video, the radar at Lisbon’s airport gyrates uninterruptedly searching for and identifying coordinates. In a third work, a large panel of compasses confuses the viewer: a magnetic field of artificial magnets subjects the pointers to uncontrolled movements, thereby stripping them of their function and exhibiting a transgression of the magnetic polar laws (…)”

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Leonor Nazaré in http://www.camjap.gulbenkian.pt


(pic. Attach 1)

 

If entropy is so difficult, can a freshman really understand it?



Certainly. It’s all in how the topics are approached. It is true that the concepts involved here are not normally taught to freshmen. This is a shame, because they have the background necessary to appreciate them if approached from the point of view of information. Traditionally the Second Law of Thermodynamics is taught as part of a course on thermodynamics, and a background in physics or chemistry is needed. Also, the examples used come from thermodynamics. In this course, the Second Law is treated as an example of information processing in natural and man-made systems; the examples come from many domains.


http://ocw.mit.edu/OcwWeb/Electrical-Engineering-and-Computer-Science/6-050JInformation-and-EntropySpring2003/Syllabus/

 

Hans Reichenbach (1891-1953), “…We must distinguish between two different concepts which are fundamental to the theory of time, namely the order of time and the direction of time. Time order is definable by means of causality (see The philosophy of space and time). The definition is: event A occurs before event B (and, of course, event B occurs after event A) if event A can produce a physical effect on event B. When can event A affect event B? The theory of relativity states that it is required a finite time for an effect to go from event A to event B.

J. Floyd , a comment to a book of Jeremy Kifkin “Entropy , a “New Worlds Vision” “…This book is marred by a fundamental misunderstanding of thermodynamics(…)Entropy is an extensive property of thermodynamic systems. It is not a property of energy, and certainly not of matter. It is nonsensical to speak of “high- or low-entropy” energy. It is even more nonsensical to speak of “high- or low-entropy” matter. Better to speak of energy quality (“the sun provides us with high-quality energy, and low-quality energy is re-radiated back into space”). Entropy is used to measure the “concentration” (I use this term for illustration only) and hence the usefulness or availability to us of energy, within a given system of matter and energy. The second law of thermodynamics tells us nothing about the tendency of matter to become more or less useful or available to us. There is no thermodynamic basis for reading inevitable decay onto physical, biological or social systems., December 19, 2005

 

Roger Sperberg, “…The market for your computer product tends towards zero over time. You probably know this law expressed in the reverse form — Every year, when you buy software or hardware you either get more for your money or the same features or equipment for less money. As with gravity, we have learned this law from personal experience For twenty-five years, since we could each have our own personal computer, we’ve all experienced this law first-hand, but it has been in effect since the 1960’s and the first great transistorized computer, the IBM 360. The hardware side is related to Moore’s Law; why this is true with software I think is because of the way the cost of additional electronic copies tends towards zero. It even manifests itself on websites…”.

In http://www.teleread.org/blog/2005/08/22/publishers-and-the-law-of-computer-entropy/

 

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