Hive-Minded Swarm On Exhibit

Via Bruce Sterling’s Wired blog comes this interesting bit on a collaborative art effort called “The Minded Swarm“. From the press release:

The artists have met for some years in a science fiction reading group, absorbing SF’s mode of fantastic speculation into their own practice. Assuming the model of a Gestalt Organism (Theodore Sturgeon, More than Human, Vintage, 1998.) where individual capacities merge to create a single distributed intelligence, the artists have enacted a state-change, adopting a communal consciousness (Olaf Stapledon, Starmaker, Wesleyan University Press, 2004 (1937), p. 271.) as a means of artistic production.

If you’re in the LA area, the exhibition runs through Sunday, 4 September 2005.

This reminds me a little of the early efforts of a European collective called Workspace-Unlimited A few years back when they popped up on the radar they were attempting to use the Quake 3 game engine to create a virtual artistic community (it appears they’ve morphed into something else now perhaps). They got off to a really nice start with the game engine, and the possibilities to do something like a virtual “hive mind” project seemed within reach. But as some of us pointed out, they probably ran into licensing issues and the like. It does look like they have something else “virtual” going on though. Something to check out when I have a minute…