Christa Sommererat University of Arts and Industrial Design Linz
Christa Sommerer and her partner, Laurent Mignonneau are internationally renowned media artists working in the field of interactive computer installation. They are Professors at the University of Art and Design in Linz Austria where they head the Department for Interface Culture at the Institute for Media. Sommerer and Mignonneau previously held positions as Professors at the IAMAS International Academy of Media Arts and Sciences in Gifu, Japan and as Researchers and Artistic Directors at the ATR Media Integration and Communications Research Lab in Kyoto Japan. They also were Visiting Researchers at the MIT CAVS in Cambridge US, the Beckmann Institute in Champaign Urbana, IL, USA and the NTT-InterCommunication Center in Tokyo. Sommerer and Mignonneau have collaborated since 1992, and their interactive artworks have been called "epoch making" (Toshiharu Itoh, NTT-ICC museum) for pioneering the use of natural interfaces to create a new language of interactivity based on artificial life and evolutionary image processes. Sommerer and Mignonneau created interactive computer installations such as "Interactive Plant Growing" (1992/93), "Anthroposcope" (1993), "A-Volve" (1994), "Trans Plant" (1995), "Intro Act" (1995), "MIC Exploration Space" (1995), "GENMA" (1996), "Life Spacies" (1997), "Life Spacies II" (1999), "HAZE Express" (1999), "VERBARIUM" (1999), "Industrial Evolution" (2000) and "PICO_SCAN" (1999/2000) and "Riding the Net" (2000).They have won major international media awards, the "Golden Nica" Ars Electronica Award for Interactive Art 1994 (Linz, Austria), the "Ovation Award" of the Interactive Media Festival 1995 (Los Angeles, CA, USA) and the "Multi Media Award '95" of the Multimedia Association Japan. Sommerer and Mignonneau have published numerous research papers on Artificial Life, interactivity and interface design and lectured extensively at universities, international conferences, and symposia. Sommerer is an International Co-editor for the LEONARDO Journal, MIT Press.