Christa Sommerer and Laurent Mignonneau
Christa Sommerer and 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 in Cambridge US, the Beckmann Institute in Champaign Urbana, IL, USA and the in Tokyo.
Sommerer originally studied biology (botany) at the University of Vienna and modern sculpture and art education at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna (masters degree) .
Mignonneau studied modern Art and Video Art at the “Ecole des Beaux Arts” in Angouleme, France where he received his masters degree. Sommerer and Mignonneau completed their PhD degrees from CAiiA-STAR, University of Wales College of Art, Newport, UK and the University of Kobe Japan, respectively.
In 1992 Sommerer and Mignonneau met at the Institute for New Media at the Staedelschule in Frankfurt where they teamed up and started their collaboration in the area of interactive computer installations. Mignonneau and Sommerer’s artworks have been called "epoch making" (Toshiharu Itoh, NTT-ICC museum) for developing natural and intuitive interfaces and for often applying scientific principles such as artificial life, complexity and generative systems to their innovative interface designs.