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Film portraits of NOMIS Distinguished Scientist Awardees 2019

A visual storytelling collaboration between NOMIS Foundation and Camera Arts

The NOMIS Distinguished Scientist and Scholar Award is presented to exceptional scientists, supporting them in their exploration of unconventional academic paths, thereby inciting new directions in science. The foundation rewards innovative ideas and approaches that involve interdisciplinary collaboration and apply a broad range of methods, building bridges across the boundaries of the sciences and humanities.

All photos by the CA NOMIS team 2019.

For the third consecutive year, Camera Arts and other HSLU D&K students have collaborated with the NOMIS Foundation in making video portraits of NOMIS Distinguished Scientist Awardees. This year, we travelled to Princeton, Pasadena and Zürich to portray the 2019 awardees: Janet Currie, Antonio Rangel and Adriano Aguzzi.

Ranging from big-data research into child health, and exploring the algorithms the brain uses to make simple decisions, to figuring out the way proteins facilitate degenerative processes in Alzheimer’s disease, our team found themselves immersed in the fascinating world of science and foundational research. Two Camera Arts students, and students from Video and the MA Film collaborated on making three short movies, which will be presented at the award ceremony on October 10th in the Gottlieb Duttweiler Institute in Zürich. The team was assisted by D&K alumni illustrators and sound designer, and guided by Camera Arts’ transmedia teacher Max Bruinsma and German documentary film maker Christian Gropper and Evert Ypma (producer)

The NOMIS project offers participants a unique chance to travel, meet high-level scientists and develop visual languages to illuminate their explorations to a broader audience. A genre of contemporary visual storytelling, The project aims at bridging the gap between often highly abstract foundational scientific research and the public discourse on science’s impact on our daily lives. By not only describing the research, but also showing the personal motivations and characters of the researchers, the NOMIS movies stress the human and social value of curiosity, imagination and dedication.

Adriano Aguzzi

Professor of neuropathology and director of the Institute of Neuropathology at the University of Zürich, CH.

NOMIS research project: Exploring the Locales of Cognitive Decline: Cellular and Molecular 3D Atlases of Brain Pathology in Aging and in Neurodegeneration

Janet Currie

Henry Putnam Professor of Economics and Public Affairs at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University, USA.

NOMIS research project: Harnessing Big Data to Improve Children’s Mental Health Treatment

Antonio Rangel

Bing Professor of Neuroscience, Behavioral Biology, and Economics, and head faculty in residence at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), Pasadena, US

NOMIS research project: Using Triangulation to Characterize the Neurocomputational Basis of Simple Choice

CA NOMIS Team 2019

The team of students has intensively worked together on all three films. At the same time, three students were each responsible for the research, concept, interviews, filming and post-production of one of the movies.
Film portraits have been commissioned by the NOMIS Foundation in Zürich to Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts, School of Art and Design, BA in Visual Communication – Camera Arts.

Research, interviews, filming, editing and post-production:
Ayla Feridun-Dziedzic (Antonio Rangel)
Mauro Walker (Janet Currie)
Zoé Buess (Adriano Aguzzi)
Animation, filming: Mario Trachsel
Illustration: Flavia Korner and Natalie Neff
Music, sound design and mastering: Dani Hobi
Supervising editor, research, concept: Max Bruinsma (Amsterdam)
Supervising film maker, post-production: Christian Gropper (Darmstadt)
Assistant: Sarah Laura Hauenstein (Lucerne School of Art and Design)
Producer: Evert Ypma (Lucerne School of Art and Design)

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