Innovative, engaging, entrepreneurial…. cool… these are the words that ran through my head as I settled down at a table in Flour in the South End with Alberta Chu, on a wet thursday afternoon. Alberta Chu is the Producer, Writer and founder of Asklabs, a documentary film company based out of Boston’s South End that produces science programs and films. The tea was hot and the conversation was scintillating as Chu, who presented at Nerd Nite last September, talked me through some of the finer points of everything from #SciArt to education to social media. (edited for length… sort of)
JS: People have this idea that you can either be a scientist or an artist and I feel like that’s kind of frustrating because there is a disconnect when you start isolating things like that.
AC: Yea, well today people really have to specialize in things. Like, if you’re an artist you’re over here with the artists. Even if you’re a scientist there are all these different fields, everything is a specific subset within a field. There is a disconnect, but I think there is a bridge of intersection. Like, there are some scientists and some artists who kind of don’t see the boundaries. It’s really all about creativity and innovation, and there is a place in human nature that is you want to try something new and explore something new and discover something or explore something, and that’s really where the intersection is. Like scientists artists are, a lot of times, using the same process to make something or figure out how to make something or to investigate something but in a more philosophical way, and they kind of can feed off of each other.
JS: So would you say there are a lot of similarities between the creative and scientific process.
AC: Yea, a lot of the best scientists are really creative, they are creative like an architect. They are kind of creative within their field and they have to think out of the box.
JS: When we talk about this intersection I feel like we are talking about a lot of different things and lately i’m coming across the term “SciArt” a lot. Can you talk a little bit about exactly what “SciArt” is? Continue reading