SOFAlab2 Explores How and Where Art, Science Overlap

Posted: April 22, 2010 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: April 22, 2010 at 8:01 am

Mason’s Center for Consciousness and Transformation (CCT), is sponsoring SOFAlab2, a second generation of the successful SOFAlab held last fall, on Friday, April 23.

The event will begin with a reception at 2 p.m. followed by a panel discussion from 3 to 5 p.m. in the Krasnow Institute for Advanced Study Conference Room and Great Room.

SOFAlab addresses how and where art and science — two seemingly disparate disciplines of intellectual inquiry — overlap.

The program explores similarities and differences in how scientists and artists use experimentation and visualization in their search for larger truths and making sense of the universe, and how the way in which these tools are used affects consciousness, understanding and outcome.

This dialogue is also designed to prepare us for a series of “laboratory/studio” exchanges in which artists will be invited to observe and participate in laboratory sessions and scientists will be invited into artists’ studios for collaborative projects.

SOFAlab’s panelist pairs are

  • Koan Jeff Baysa, medical doctor and curator, New York; and his collaborative partner Virgil Wong, artist, New York
  • Al Smith, art professor, Howard University; and James Lindesay, physics professor, Howard University
  • Giorgio Ascoli, professor of biochemistry and neuroscience, George Mason University; and Michael Iacovone, new media artist, Baltimore, Md.

Jim Olds, director of the Krasnow Institute, and Mark Thurston, director of the Center for Consciousness and Transformation, will welcome attendees.

Coordinators for SOFAlab are Helen Frederick, professor of art in Mason’s School of Art; Paul So, Mason associate professor of physics and astronomy, Krasnow Institute and Department of Physics and Astronomy;  and Shanti Norris, executive director of the Smith Farm Center for Healing and the Arts in Washington, D.C.

The Center for Consciousness and Transformation is an interdisciplinary research and teaching center whose mission is to understand the nature and effects of individual and group consciousness and its role in transformative learning and social change.

For more information, contact Paul So at or Helen Frederick at

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