Lucia Santaella, Director, Research Center in Digital Media, São Paulo Catholic University, Brésil.

Lucia Santaella is professor of theoretical and applied semiotics and Director of the Research Center in Digital Media at São Paulo Catholic University in Brazil. She is honorary President of the Latin American Semiotic Federation. She is also the Director of the Brazilian side of the Research project Brasil-Germany (Capes/DAAD 2000-2004) on Word and Image in the Media. Her recent research interests are turned toward Cognitive Semiotics and Cyberculture. She organized the edition of 7 books and published 23 books which include Arte e cultura. Equivocos do Elitismo (1982). A percepção. Uma teoria semiótica (1993). Estética: De Platão a Peirce (1994), A teoria geral dos signos (1995), Cultura das mídias (1996), Imagem: Cognição, semiótica, mídias (with Winfried Nöth, 1998), Semiótica: bibliografia comentada (with Winfried Nöth 1999), Matrizes da linguagem e pensamento: Sonora, visual, verbal (2001, Jabuti Prize), and the most recent Culturas e artes do pós-humano. Da cultura das mídias à cibercultura. Da cultura das mídias à cibercultura (Ed. Paulus, 2003).



Art and science: The controversial field of bioart

The relation between art and biology is examined from four perspectives: (1.) the transformations of the human body as a result of the hybridization of carbon and silicon, which I call “the biocybernetic body”; (2) computational simulations of life, such as they appear in artificial life and robotics; (3) macrobiology of plants, animals, and ecology; (4) genetic microbiology. – In the relation between art and biology, a bold step was taken when biotechnology began to be incorporated in works of art via the neurosciences, genetics, molecular engeneering, and nanotechnology. The emergent forms of bioart with their highly problematic questions of bioethics, have provoked many controversies. My own position is based on Charles Sanders Peirce’s idea of the “admirable,” which is a key concept in Peirce’s aesthetics.