Culturegraphy by Kim Albrecht

  • Culturegraphy by Kim Albrecht 

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    Understanding the World Through Networks

    Exhibition by Kim Albrecht (Boston, USA)

    Kim Albrecht is a visual researcher & information designer: he’s interested in networks, time, power, processes to explore visual representations for these topics to produce and represent knowledge. Currently based in Boston USA, Albrecht is working at the Center for Complex Network Research as a visualization researcher. In this exhibition, Albrecht shows two interactive works and two printed ones.

    Culturegraphy investigates cultural information exchange over time also known as ‘memes’. These networks can provide new insights into the rich interconnections of cultural development. The graphics represent complex relationships of movie references by combining macro views summarizing 100 years of movie influences. The macro view shows the rise of the self-referential character of postmodern cinema, while the micro level illustrates differences between individual movies, when they were referenced and by whom. The visualizations provide views that are closer to the real complexity of the relationships than aggregated views or rankings could do.

    Atlas of power-laws is inspired by the work of Albert-Laszlo Barabasi, an Hungarian-American physicist, best known for his work in the research of network theory. The idea that there are similarities throughout social, technological and natural networks inspired Albrecht to visualize the diversity of the power laws behind them. This project tries to answer the question: can network science guide us to a more unified view of the world?

    Analysis of Space reveals and visualizes the design process behind a mapping project of undiscovered areas of Cape Town. After taking pictures in the area of research, Albrecht uploaded them on Amazon Mechanical Turk, asking people around the world to tag the images. The outcome was a network of words, a tag cloud, that described the content of the images and thus mapped the location. Albrecht also tagged the images himself, creating two overlaying network structures that reflected his personal subjective view and compared it with the objective view from the cloud. A physical space became a network of words describing it.

    Network Universe is the first visualization of the largest known network structures of the Universe. Each point represents one galaxy and the connections between the points show the attractions between the galaxies, the filaments of the universe: thread-like formations that create the so-called superclusters.

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