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March 31, 2007

New River: redesign and relaunch


Digital Writing

The New River is a journal of digital writing and art. Founded by Ed Falco in 1996, with help from Len Hatfield, a computer wizard then on the faculty at Virginia Tech, it is thought to be the first journal ever devoted exclusively to digital writing and art. After a period of dormancy, New River Journal has now been redesigned and reborn, complete with new works by some of today's leading digital authors, including Jason Nelson, David Herrstrom and Dan Waber.

Beginning with this number, The New River plans to post new issues twice a year, in December and May. The New River is currently hosted by Virginia Tech's Center for Digital Discourse and Culture.

Posted by newradio at 11:21 AM | Comments (0)

March 30, 2007

The Schism Around Voice:


Multicasting vs. Broadcasting

"Imagine that you would have an awesome technology that allowed you to create an universe you have just pictured in your mind, to the extent of detail you wish, and that you could get realistic characters walking around your universe, so perfect in its minutiae that their behaviour and looks would be completely impossible to distinguish from real human beings. Now imagine if that technology were available to everybody in the world and that anyone, anywhere could have access to it.

Actually, that technology does, indeed, exist. It’s even quite old, having first been developed over 6,000 years ago. It’s called a book.

Nevertheless, a “book” is not perfect — there is an author, and there is an audience. The author can do with their book whatever it wishes; but you, the reader, cannot. All you can do is read and imagine with the author, but not contribute to the book.

Enter the Internet, and its many social environments: from the old bulletin boards, through FidoNet, later the USENET, finally to IRC, and to webchats, we come to things like, well, Second Life. Here a new paradigm has emerged: the notion of a collaborative environment, where readers and authors alternate roles, and both contribute, at the same time, to a collective work. Early analysts of the “Internet revolution” have touted this as the primal change in the way we think about the ancient roles of author-editor-publisher-audience; the old “broadcasting” paradigm (one sender, many receivers) has been replaced, on the Web, by a new model: multicasting (all are senders and receivers) and the notion of collaborative environments, where all are readers and authors at the same time." Continue reading The Schism Around Voice: Multicasting vs. Broadcasting by Gwyneth Llewelyn.

Posted by jo at 05:58 PM | Comments (0)



Platform for Virtual Demonstrations

Each individual truth has as its origin an event, according to French philosopher Alain Badiou. An event is located within a certain situation. The locus of the event is the point of departure for a radical change. Every radically transformative action has as its origin one spot. The first spot in the space of marchonline is placed by an individual, defining and positioning themselves as the initiator of a march. This spot will/will not initiate the formation of a manifestation as a truth event.

www.marchonline.org – where every individual can initiate new or take part in existing virtual demonstrations. Demonstrations, i.e. marches, are created spontaneously or in an organised way, but they must always be launched by a user. They can be initiated as an opinion about or reaction to a current local or global problem, they can be an expression of a political will, they can affirm or protest, they can be a celebration or an uprising. It is possible to have pro and contra demonstrations at the same time.

www.marchonline.org does not express its ideological position within a given situation, but offers itself as a space for organising the public, where this position is taken by users.

Posted by jo at 05:25 PM | Comments (0)

Lev Manovich


Deep Remixability

"During the heyday of debates on post-modern, at least one critic in America noticed the connection between post-modern pastiche and computerization. In his book After the Great Divide (1986), Andreas Huyssen writes: "All modern and avantgardist techniques, forms and images are now stored for instant recall in the computerized memory banks of our culture. But the same memory also stores all of pre-modernist art as well as the genres, codes, and image worlds of popular cultures and modern mass culture." [1] His analysis is accurate - except that these "computerized memory banks" did not really became commonplace for another fifteen years. Only when the Web absorbed enough of the media archives it became this universal cultural memory bank accessible to all cultural producers. But even for the professionals, the ability to easily integrate multiple media sources within the same project - multiple layers of video, scanned still images, animation, graphics, and typography - only came towards the end of the 1990s..." From Deep Remixability by Lev Manovich, Piet Swart Institute, 2005/06.

Posted by jo at 03:44 PM | Comments (0)

March 29, 2007

Outside <> Inside:


Lygia Clark

Lygia Clark is known for her body and cloth related work which tried to transform the relation we traditionally establish. The interesting artist has been working and exchanging ideas and thoughts with the other famous brazilian artist Helio Oiticica >> Lygia Clark and Hélio Oiticica: A Legacy of Interactivity and Participation for a Telematic Future. The work of both has been shown in Europe during Documenta X in 1997 and more recently under the title ‘Tropicalia’ – the name of the 1960s the brasilian art movement.

Just recently I came across some texts and a website written and published by Suley Rolnik, whose texts provide a profound insight into the work of the artist by looking at the trans-generational relations between the ably andonment of the museum space by the artist Lygia Clark, and more generally connecting her work to the fluid inside/outside movement now practiced by politically oriented artists in Brazil. (see on multitudes)

The following is a short excerpt from S. Rolnik’s interpretation of L. Clark’s work and it is worth to follow this link to explore the whole essay:

... Without divorcing itself from aesthetic preoccupations, Clark’s project clearly attempts to escape from the limits of art. It remains a singular phenomenon in that through one and the same movement, it pretends to leave behind both representative language and the institution of art, which seems to be so close to the market in the modern episteme …

... [This] Her therapy did not promote the establishment of rational, adaptive, or behavioral patterns; what it healed in this case was not at all the verbalization of some original trauma, but rather a programmed encounter with the non-identical: the placeless place of a body whose limits are those of the world….. [blogged on mind the _GAP*?]

Posted by jo at 05:14 PM | Comments (0)



Pure Mediality in Serres and Agamben

"What is a Medium or, what do the means mean? Isn't it strange that our desire for newer and ever more dazzling media machines is equaled only by our wish to escape them? From mathematical perspective to the camera obscura, from photography to cinema -- television, the internet, virtual reality environments and all the more far-out sorts of artificial intelligence -- innovations in media have always been driven by the desire to overcome mediation. Whether it is the frame, the wire, location, bodies or simply physical presence that it eliminates, each new device promises to deliver the same content as its predecessor, only more immediately, which is to say without the clumsy medium in which the signal had been trapped. Jay Bolter and Robert Grusin have shown how this desire to escape media by means of media has developed according to a logic that they call "remediation." Television gives us everything film offered, but without the apparatus of the projector and the centralized theater. The laptop accomplishes what the portable computer was supposed to do, just as the PDA puts us in touch with everything the laptop promised but failed to deliver. And now wireless technology promises to accomplish all of this without the restrictions of any centralized location at all.[1]" From Noises and Exceptions: Pure Mediality in Serres and Agamben by Stephen Crocker; CTHEORY: 1000 Days 053 :: 28/03/2007 :: Editors: Arthur and Marilouise Kroker.

Posted by jo at 02:57 PM | Comments (0)

ZKM | Museum of Contemporary Art


ReMix / Broca II (Letters / Numbers)

The multimedia installation ReMix / Broca II (Letters / Numbers) will open the international exhibition tour of the work of Mischa Kuball (*1959), a light and media artist from Düsseldorf, Germany, at the ZKM | Museum of Contemporary Art. The exhibition will be open from March 31-May 13, 2007.

Kuball has worked conceptually with light for more than twenty years, and in a unique way has linked light, which is otherwise largely considered an aesthetic medium, with social and political statements. Within his complex and multifarious work, the pieces that confront human communication form a specific concentration. "I am interested in language as a function of a code—that is, in the sense of coding and de-coding," says Kuball. Presented for the first time is the new, extensive multimedia installation ReMix / Broca II (Letters / Numbers), which is a further development of his earlier work, broca'sche areal. With both of these works, Kuball refers to the eponymous brain region, which forms language capability, and thereby the basic conditions for human communication.

Taking six different rotating projectors as a point of departure, in ReMix / Broca II (Letters / Numbers), letters and numbers are cast on the walls of a room. This leads to the chance overlapping of a multitude of connections of meaning from various semantic areas, which generates the need to construct meaning. In addition, sculptural elements in the room reflect the light of the projectors; these sculptural elements are the artist's digitized brain waves transferred to three dimensions. In this way, grasping, expressing, and representing thoughts are all connected on different levels as the preliminary stage of communication. "When language and light come together, the basic elements of knowledge are present" (Kuball).

Artist Talk On 31 March 2007 at 4pm in the ZKM_Lecture hall there will be a discussion on "Art and Science" with Mischa Kuball, Peter Weibel, and Gregor Jansen and the artists represented in the related exhibition My Gene, It has Five Corners...

Posted by jo at 02:18 PM | Comments (0)

[iDC] Art, Lifestyle & Globalisation


"...Big Brother goes inside..."

Dew Harrison wrote:

Digital media and new technology is reconfiguring our relationship with the world and is also affecting how artists relate with their public. Now, new locative technology can position art in the everyday of people's lives and activities outside the gallery space. Although psychogeography and mobile media enable the 'interactive city' for artists to key into, they also promote ideas of corporatised play in an urban space and tend to be interventionist and intrusive. 'Big brother' media and cctv surveillance allows for few informal, ungoverned social meeting places. This means that artists are having to find interstices between the formal constructed and observed social spaces where unorthodox art can happen to engage with its audience. Just how is such practice being supported within the neo-liberal economic structures of globalistation? Julian Stallabrass suggests that this only produces artists (in Brit Art particularly) who posture as edgy, risky individuals but who are in real terms busy establishing market positions for themselves. The answer lies somewhere in the inter-related issues of art, lifestyle and globalisation.

In the 1960s Marshall McLuhan predicted a technologically enabled 'global village' and issued the warning -"Instead of tending towards a vast Alexandrian library the world has become a computer, an electronic brain, exactly as an infantile piece of science fiction. And as our senses have gone outside us, Big Brother goes inside. So, unless aware of this dynamic, we shall at once move into a phase of panic terrors, exactly befitting a small world of tribal drums, total interdependence, and superimposed co-existence."

I would be extremely interested in your thoughts on the extent to which we are 'aware of this dynamic' and offer some questions which might help probe the territory -

Corporations are rebranding themselves around lifestyle, is this influencing creative practice or vice-versa? How do the principals and aesthetics of open source and democratic media sit alongside corporate products (iPod etc)? How should arts organisations and institutions respond to open networking and ideas exchange, what is a node and a network in cultural terms? Are artists the software for the corporation hardware, or the activists in sheeps clothing? Where does government funding for the arts sit in the global cultural mix, or is corporate money driving the cultural agenda?

With thanks and kind regards,

Dew Harrison

Alan Clinton wrote:

A couple of thoughts here related to the questions you have posed. First, the rhetoric of purity (is there an outside of capitalism?) can be, I think, an endgame producing the sort of corporate artists Stallabras describes and those who are overly concerned that they may make a mistake with their art (or their theory)--no one wants to be called a hypocrite.

The problem of artists, intellectuals, and capitalism is a real one. Should I refuse to teach at the Georgia Institute of Technology because of its ties to the military industrial complex? If I had refused, when I was just out of graduate school, I would have had little opportunity to critique the system in anything resembling a full-time way--I wouldn't have had those impressionable students either. But then, if I had gone too far in my critiques, I would have been fired. Artists, it strikes me, are in a similar position. How to survive in an organism long enough to destroy or recreate it?

Rather than attempting to start from a position of purity, perhaps we should recognize that people will find themselves starting out from various positions of impurity within the system. And, there will be many ways of working against this system, of speaking to it in ways that I call, borrowing one of Derrida's metaphors, "Tympanic Politics":

"In his elucidation of marginalia as a discipline unto itself, Derrida gives a poetic anatomy of the tympanic membrane and its surroundings. The ear is swirling, labyrinthine, and cavelike. Penetrating its depths presents a difficult, frightening prospect. In addition to traversing a maze of passages, one must confront the wall of the tympanum which has the capability to muffle the loudest of noises. If normative discourse / art does not reach the inner ear with the proper sense of volume or urgency, then how is one to suggest the political or historical importance of a particular issue? For the alternative would be to shock the system in such a way as to puncture the tympanum altogether, effectively dismantling the apparatus so that nothing can be heard at all. It would be as if Constantin Brancusi, on the verge of rejecting Rodin's method of clay modeling with taille directe, had shattered The Craiova Kiss with the first hammer strike into formless stone. Derrida's answer to such questions, of course, is always a more specific anatomy of the situation at hand. He suggests that since the tympanum is oblique with respect to the ear canal, its subversion requires an oblique approach as well (taille indirecte?), some form of rhetorical ambush. How does one 'unhinge' something that cannot be shattered?"

Alan Clinton

Cecil Touchon wrote:

If artists are to engage in any dialog of a public nature such as exhibitions, publications, performances and whatnot, how shall they build enough wealth and capital to sustain their activity and carry on a home life (support a family)? Capitalism as in produce objects to be sold? The public dole? Maintain poverty? Work for a corporation?

If artists wish to engage in helping to shape the world to come, toward what are they moving in terms of a desired result?

Is it enough just to complain about, point out the problems of, or screw with the things you don’t like? Assuming the answer to be no, what else should one’s time be spent doing in order to feel that one is making a difference or helping to move the world in a better direction?

I notice that universities are training a lot of people to work for corporations and show them how to find ways to screw the general public out of small enough amounts of money to avoid calling it criminal behavior, yet we all know it is and are being screwed over regularly.

How do we train ourselves and our children to shape the world into a place we are not afraid to live in?

How do we establish and honor higher standards of living our lives so as to generate joy and peace?

What ideals should we establish among ourselves that we can all support together?

Why should we merely accept the ideals that organizations and governments and corporations want to instill in us for their benefit?

Why do we allow ourselves to be thought of as corporate consumers and properties of a state?

What would it be like if artists decided to shape a world where artists would want to live in? What would be important to them? How would they do it?

Cecil Touchon

Howard Rheingold wrote:

If people did not produce objects to be sold, we'd all be working very very hard to food, house, and transport ourselves. All too often, intellectuals who have never had to meet a payroll -- or face failure to meet a payroll -- fail to distinguish between a multinational corporation and a mom and pop store.

Howard Rheingold

Simon Biggs wrote:

Rheingold's statement is West Coast liberalism at its worst! Furry Capitalism.

In Europe and elsewhere we have lived for two generations within a rather benevolent context. If it was not for a socio-economic system where relatively generous arms length state support for the arts, and other non-industrial means of production, was default we would have seen a very different development in the arts and society since the mid 20th C.

Post Object art, performance and most media art, much of conceptual art...in fact most of what could be described as post modern practice, would not have become the dominant forms of our time. That much of the impetus for this has come from Europe is not coincidental. Such paradigms of work are only possible when value is ascribed in ways not afforded by the sort of socio-economic model on which the US is predicated and which Howard is suggesting should be default not only there but globally. One could also argue this using the example of food production. McDonalds versus artisinal food production.

I found Cecil's plaintive call for a different model both sad and uplifting. Sad that after two generations of profound social change in Europe, generally for the better, some of the same calls for change are made now as in the 1960's. Uplifting, as you do not hear enough of these sorts of calls anymore, perhaps because we have all become so cynical as a result of persistent partial failure. Perhaps we expect to much of our social systems?

My life maps almost entirely to the social democratic model. As a young artist my first professional activities were made under the fledgling but nevertheless very beneficial wing of the Australia Council (founded 1972), Australia's national agency briefed to fund the arts through peer review. The effect the Oz Council had on the creative arts in Australia was profound. Within a few years we had moved from an object based private gallery dominated model, where a handful of collectors established taste and the careers of a handful of artists, to a situation where thousands of artists were producing all sorts of crazy things (and often nothing at all) and showing this work in a diversity of artist run and non-profit spaces, or simply in the street or on the beach. It was a very creative and healthy time and in many respects resembled the joyful situation that Cecil calls for.

In the UK this sort of system was also in place from even earlier, with the Arts Council of England as a very early example of social beneficience. Other European countries, Canada, New Zealand and a number of unusual suspects, had similar models in place. Even in the US, at state level, there were similar arrangements and, for a short time, even the NEA managed to make a decent attempt at being a national arts agency run for and by artists.

The sort of model that Howard is promoting is based on a mean perception of human nature, predicated on an undertsanding that people are only motivated by their own need and where profit can only be gained at the expense of others. This is the logic of capitalism. It is also the logic of the criminal mind.

So, I read Cecil and the innocent idealism makes me cringe; but I read Howard and I get angry because what he espouses is the same ethic that amoral corporations are trying to export to the world under the moniker of Globalism. An ethic that has brought us to such a bad place in world history and now threatens the social compacts and contracts that have underpinned the relatively enlightened social models of a number of countries since the Second World War.

Rheingold articulates an anti-intellectualism that compounds his sins. Anti-intellectualism is of course a common symptom on the right of politics. I find this interesting as in this Howard is denying his own roots.



Cynthia Beth rubin wrote:

I find the use of capitalist terms to describe what we do as artists intriguing. If we go this route, we have to recognize that everything that we do as artists and intellectuals is the result of surplus capital- otherwise we would be in the fields growing corn.

In North America, we not only have surplus monetary capital, we have surplus intellectual and educational capital. We know things and think about things that are far removed from our own lives.

How do we use our surplus educational capital? And how does this play out for activist artists? Do we get to indulge in making the art that we want to make, get it recognized in galleries and through sales, and then call ourselves activists because the subject matter echoes harsh realities that are written about elsewhere?

Or are there other ways to be activists. Like volunteering to teach computer skills to adults in desperate need of a new career. Or doing page lay-outs for non-profits? It may not be an either or situation, but can we reap the benefits of the system without getting into the trenches? What really is the best way for artists to make the world a better place?

Cynthia B Rubin

Dmytri Kleiner wrote:

Cynthia Beth Rubin wrote:
> I find the use of capitalist terms to describe what we do as artists intriguing.

We have started a new group based here in Berlin called the Art & Economics Group. Let me know if you want more info.

> If we go this route, we have to recognize that everything that we do as artists and intellectuals is the result of surplus capital- otherwise we would be in the fields growing corn.

Surplus _value_. You can not eat capital.

> In North America, we not only have surplus monetary capital, we have > surplus intellectual and educational capital. We know things and think about things that are far removed from our own lives.

Education and Technical Skill that result from education are sometimes called Human Capital, however the main impact of surplus human capital within a capitalist mode of production is lower professional wages. However, this surplus human capital could also be applied toward mutual capitalizion and mutual rent capture, IMO, this is a potential basis for the method of worker's struggle I call venture communism.

> How do we use our surplus educational capital? And how does this play, out for activist artists? Do we get to indulge in making the art that we want to make, get it recognized in galleries and through sales, and then call ourselves activists because the subject matter echoes harsh realities that are written about elsewhere?

The Art & Economics group is investigating another way, the art bond. We believe that this captures the marginal value of art production untapped by mercantile or patronage based systems.

The basic idea is that we will issue bonds to fund our project, and the value of our artistic production will be measurable by comparing the demand growth, redemption rates and interest rates of our bonds to market rates.

We had our first issue in Berlin last Thursday, starting with a modest 20 2€ bonds, that earn 10% interest. We will issue more quarterly.

> Or are there other ways to be activists. Like volunteering to teach computer skills to adults in desperate need of a new career. Or doing page lay-outs for non-profits?

Both the above are good so long as the activist has some other means of support, which obviously is not the case for most.

> It may not be an either or situation, but can we reap the benefits of the system without getting into the trenches? What really is the best way for artists to make the world a better place?

Make revolution irresistible. But most importantly, avoid making capitalists richer by selling them your labour (selling them your product is ok).

(and I do mean revolution, not insurrection)

Dmytri Kleiner

Michel Bauwens wrote:

Dear Simon:

I find your contribution of the important role of state-funded very valuable.

However, I am surprised that from a short paragraph by Howard explaining why some people need to work in the market economy for a living; you deduce that he is a hardcore apologist for market only approaches. This is not the Howard that I know; and neither is the anti-intellectualist ...

What I think he is referring too is the kind of intellectual who has lived so long with public support; that he can no longer imagine that not everybody gets this support; and hence is forced to use market economy means to support his family.

Conclusion; though I believe Howard does aim to work and live from with the U.S. context, and makes various adaptations to his social situation, that is different from being a hardcore neoliberal apologist,

Michel Bauwens

Joe Rabie wrote:

Le 1 avr. 07, ą 19:21, Cynthia Beth Rubin a écrit :

> I find the use of capitalist terms to describe what we do as artists intriguing. If we go this route, we have to recognize that everything that we do as artists and intellectuals is the result of surplus capital- otherwise we would be in the fields growing corn.

The relationship between art and capital is fundamental. If capitalism is all about the creation of value, then art is probably the most successful product around. One can't really imagine any product that has seen its value rise over time as much as a Van Gogh, for example (value which the original producer saw nothing of, unluckily for him).

People buy food to fill their gut, and art to symbolise their social status, or their personal power. The possession of art externalises the possession of money.

The desire of artists to be subversive in our need to portray the world is a source of unease for those who need us, whether our patrons be political or financial. We must be allowed to produce value, but our irrepressible desire to express ourselves must be kept strictly under control.


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Posted by jo at 02:02 PM | Comments (0)

April 3 + 4 Upstage Walk Through


+ 070707 Matchmaking Event

hi everyone,

this month we're doing something different with the regular UpStage walk-through, in response to discussions about the difficulty in finding collaborators: it's going to be a "matchmaking" event, for those of you who are keen to collaborate on a performance for the 070707 UpStage festival and need to find collaborators.

if you've got an idea, come along ready to pitch it. if you don't have an idea, come and see if there's a project for you to get involved in, and meet potential collaborators. we'll also answer questions that you may have about the festival and about creating your show.

you can also attend as an audience member to have a look at UpStage & see what it's all about - come to http://upstage.org.nz:8084/stages/swaray at the time below ...

and we're going to have a different time for a change, which means the walk-through will be on tuesday 3rd for some of you and wednesday 4th for others. here are some times (there will be a link to a time convertor on the Open UpStage foyer page (http://upstage.org.nz:8084) soon:

california: tues 3rd, 1pm
new york: tues 3rd, 4pm
uk: tues 3rd, 9pm
western europe: tues 3rd, 10pm
australia (nsw): wed 4th, 6am
new zealand: wed 4th, 8am

(if this time is no good for you but you're keen to do a show and/or looking for collaborators, please email & we can make another time to meet you in UpStage)

the deadline for proposals for the 070707 UpStage festival is 31 march - this saturday - but if you're in the same position as marischka and want to find a collaborator or two before you put in your proposal then we'll accept your proposal after the matchmaking walk-through.

as usual, if you're going to come to the walk-through please email me for a log-in.

see you on tuesday/wednesday,

helen : )
helen varley jamieson
UpStage project manager

UpStage, a web-based venue for live online performance.

Posted by jo at 09:29 AM | Comments (0)

March 28, 2007

OurFloatingPoints 4: Participatory Media


Log on Tonight!

Emerson College and New Radio and Performing Arts, Inc./Turbulence.org present OurFloatingPoints 4: Participatory Media: McKenzie Wark and David Weinberger :: DATE: March 28, 7 pm :: VENUE: Emerson College, Bordy Theater, 216 Tremont Street, Boston :: STREAMED LIVE online and BROADCAST TO SECOND LIFE :: FREE AND OPEN TO ALL!

McKenzie Wark: “Gamer Theory from Screen to Page” :: GAM3R 7H30RY 1.1 / “Gamer Theory” was created to investigate new approaches to writing in the networked environment, and to see what happens when authors and readers are brought into conversation over an evolving text. Wark will discuss the issues and questions that came up in the process of designing, writing and publishing the book, due out this month from Harvard University Press.

David Weinberger: “Everything is Miscellaneous” :: The digital revolution has created billions of shards of knowledge and information. Now we are inventing processes and techniques for pulling them together, unconstrained by the physical limitations that have silently guided our traditional principles of organizing ideas. From Britannica to Wikipedia, news media to blogs, the Dewey Decimal system to "folksonomies," we are overturning the old assumptions about who is an authority, who is an expert, and who gets to decide what's worth knowing.

MCKENZIE WARK is an Associate Professor of Media and Cultural Studies at the New School for Social Research and Eugene Lang College in New York City. He is the author of several books, including A Hacker Manifesto (Harvard University Press) and Dispositions (Salt Publishing).

DAVID WEINBERGER, Ph.D. is a fellow at Harvard's Berkman Center for Internet & Society. He is a co-author of the best-selling “Cluetrain Manifesto”, and the author of “Small Pieces Loosely Joined.” Weinberger has written for Wired, Salon, The Guardian, The NY Times, USA Today, Harvard Business Review and many others. His new book, “Everything Is Miscellaneous,” will be published in May by Times Books.

For more information about the series, please visit http://institute.emerson.edu/floatingpoints/
Contact: jo at turbulence dot org

Posted by jo at 06:03 PM | Comments (0)



Feel the Breeze

WindMaker is an ambient weather widget that applies the current wind conditions to your Web site. First, it uses a United States ZIP Code to grab local conditions from the Yahoo Weather RSS feed. Second, it parses your Web site into individual pieces such as text blocks and images. Finally, WindMaker sets the pieces in motion according to the strength of the wind.

Add WindMaker to your own Web site in one step. Insert the following JavaScript into your HTML just before your closing BODY tag. WindMaker does the rest. [via]

Posted by jo at 03:59 PM | Comments (0)



Reviewing the Future: Vision, Innovation, Emergence

THE PLANETARY COLLEGIUM MONTREAL SUMMIT - 2007 :: "Reviewing the Future: Vision, Innovation, Emergence" :: Montreal, Canada, 19-22 April, 2007

The first International Planetary Collegium Summit will be held in Montreal from April 19 to 22, 2007, on the premises of University of Quebec in Montreal's Coeur des Sciences. Among the speakers are many internationally recognized artists, thinkers and researchers, such as Roy Ascott, founder of the Planetary Collegium, transdisciplinary artist Victoria Vesna, astrophysicist Roger Malina, nanotechnologist James Gimzewski, philosopher Pierre Levy, culture theoretician Derrick de Kerckhove, media artist and theoretician Bill Seaman, and many others.

Entitled Reviewing the Future: Vision, Innovation, Emergence, the summit will allow 65 presenters from fifteen countries to share the results of their latest works and researches with their guests, and with the Quebec media arts and technologies community. The Summit will be an occasion for members of the different nodes of the Collegium (Plymouth, Beijing, Milan and Zurich, which will soon be joined by Seoul and Sao Paulo), along with several members pursuing their research on an individual basis as part of this international network, to get together. Many of these are amongst the best known artist / researchers of their fields.

Through mostly transdisciplinary research, calling upon artists, scientists, engineers, philosophers, educators and communications specialists, the Collegium is contributing to the production of new knowledge in the field of media arts and to the transfer of this knowledge to other fields. Computer science, communications, research on consciousness, biotechnologies, cognitive sciences, hypermedia, variable environments, robotics are but a few of the disciplines whose development feeds and informs the Collegium research in all artistic disciplines : performance, dance, architecture, new narrative forms, music, installations, design, performing arts and the arts of the screen. Although the Summit is first and foremost an occasion to come in contact with unique artistic approaches, which cannot be classified into traditional fields and are at the cutting edge of contemporary practice, several presentations will discuss the theoretical, cultural, social, educational, museological and environmental stakes of these practices. For further information and registration: http://summit.planetary-collegium.net.

The Planetary Collegium

The Planetary Collegium is an international community of researchers, thinkers and artists dedicated since 1994 to research/creation. Through its network of nodes in Europe, South America and Asia, it also offers a unique research program leading to the University of Plymouth PhD. Although its members meet regularly in various places around the world, the Montreal Summit will be the first large scale meeting of its young history. It will offer the Montreal based artist/creators and the Montreal media arts community the opportunity to take notice of the projects, methods, tools and research projects that are amongst the more advanced in the field.

Posted by jo at 03:39 PM | Comments (0)

Interpolar Transnational Art Science Constellation



I-TASC FOR THE INTERNATIONAL POLAR YEAR :: Friday March 30, 2007 : I-TASC settles for two years at Espace :: Mendes-France, Poitiers, France :: Free entrance.

I-TASC (Interpolar Transnational Art Science Constellation) is an official project of the International Polar Year 2007-2008. I-TASC is a decentralized network of individuals and organisations working collaboratively in the fields of art, engineering, science and technology on interdisciplinary development and tactical deployment of renewable energy, waste recycling systems, sustainable architecture and open-format, open-source media. I-TASC is a lichen-like structure sharing and integrating local knowledge, resources and skills across six continents in order to symbiotically engage with common issues concerning the air, ocean, earth and space.

The science centre Espace Mendes-France and Ellipse join the I-TASC project to organize a series of events during the 2007-2008 International Polar Year. An I-TASC terminal will be installed in the Espace Mendes-France for the duration of IPY. It will provide information in real time on the activities of the I-TASC project and display environmental data collected by the Automatic Weather station deployed, by I-TASC since winter 2007, near the South-African base of SANAE in the Dronning Maud Land region of the Antarctic.


17h: presentation of the I-TASC initiative
Marko Peljhan (Slovenia), artist and initiator of the project
Stephen Kovats Canada), associate member and artistic director of Berlin Transmediale Festival
Ewen Chardronnet (France), associate and member of Ellipse

18h30: inauguration of terminal I-TASC
drinks and buffet

21h: Signal Territory performance by Mx&Nullo (rx:tx, Slovenia) In the Planetarium of the EMF http://www.rx-tx.org

Free entrance.

Access: Espace Mendes-France, 1 Place de la Cathidrale, 86000 Poitiers,
France; Contact: ewen[at]e-ngo.org

I-TASC in the Espace Mendhs-France of Poitiers is a co-production of Ellipse (Tours, Fr), Projekt Atol (Slovenia) and the EMF of Poitiers, France. The project is supported by EU Culture 2000 program.


What is I-TASC's first project?

Acknowledging that Antarctica and the Arctic are critical departure points in developing a complex understanding of common ground, I-TASC has proposed to establish in the Arctic and Antarctica the framework conditions for collaborative projects between artists, scientists, tactical media workers and engineers within three broad topical fields: migration, weather and communications. This is envisaged through the installation and maintenance of two mobile research stations in the Arctic and Antarctica between 2007-2009 and the construction and launching of a nano-satellite in a high sun-synchronous elliptical polar orbit to enable research and contact between the two stations and the sharing of sensor data with other IPY projects. The I-TASC stations in the Arctic and Antarctica will be solar/wind powered, zero-environmental impact communications, research and living units capable of sustaining up to 8 crew members for long periods of work in isolation / insulation conditions (60-180 days). Onboard renewable-energy systems, bioreactor / biological sewage processing, water recycling systems, satellite and HF communication systems and radar infrastructure will provide I-TASC crews with the tools/resources needed to conduct joint or independent work in remote polar field-research environments. The I-TASC base station for Antarctica has been given the name LADOMIR. It is named for the utopian poem of the same name written in 1920 by the Russian Futurist Velimir Khlebnikov, which describes the universal landscape of the future through the destruction of the old world and its synthesis in the new. The word is a combination of LAD, meaning both harmony and living creature, and MIR, both peace and world, universe. Adopting the related constructivist notion of FAKTURA, which can be understood as the conferring of tactile and sensorial qualities onto abstract elements, LADOMIR will be dedicated to producing readable / tangible surfaces which the public will be able to use to reflect on vague or otherwise invisible systems and environmental data from Antarctica and the Arctic. Communication, weather and migration are seen as three multiple-dynamic global energy systems which can be explored to understand how our planet functions on natural, social and technological levels, and the knowledge inherent in each can in turn be applied as primary sources for new cognitive and evolutionary strategies, with implications for global ecology and future human exploration of space.

The first I-TASC Reconnaissance and Communication Expedition (RECE) to Antarctica from Dec 2006-Feb 2007 was codenamed: GROUNDHOG. The objective of GROUNDHOG (translated from the Norwegian word Grunehogna) was to construct and deploy our first Automatic Weather Station, Remote Sensor and Packet Radio Unit in support of I-TASCs future operations in Antarctica from 2007 onwards. The expedition crew installed the solar and wind powered unit at 710 40.433' S 020 48.700' W in order to autonomously transmit daily environmental data via HF packet radio to SANAE IV base and from there to the I-TASC partner websites and IPY public via the internet. The site has been identified as the location for the installation and testing of the prototype I-TASC LICHEN mobile base station module in the 2007/2008 Antarctic summer season. The LICHEN module will test systems and train crew ahead of the installation of the I-TASC LADOMIR mobile base station at Grunehogna between Dec 2008 - March 2009 which will host artists, scientists and engineers conducting research and collaborative work in the Dronning Maud Land sector of Antarctica during the International Polar Year.

The first I-TASC expedition crew to Antarctica consisted of Amanda Rodrigues Alves (Brazil); Adam Hyde (New Zealand); Thomas Mulcaire (South Africa  expedition leader); Ntsikelelo Ntshingila (South Africa/Swaziland). The crew departed Cape Town harbour for Antarctica on 7 December on board the South African National Antarctic Program supply ship SA Agulhas and spent 42 days at SANAE base and on field reconnaissance expeditions in Dronnig Maud Land.

Posted by jo at 12:48 PM | Comments (0)

Vectors: Journal of Culture and Technology


Call for Fellows

Vectors: Journal of Culture and Technology in a Dynamic Vernacular is pleased to announce its fourth annual summer fellowship program to take place June 18-22, 2007 at the University of Southern California's Institute for Multimedia Literacy. We are seeking proposals for projects related to upcoming issues devoted to the themes of Reading (vol. 4 no. 1) and Noise (vol. 4 no. 2). Vectors publishes work which need necessarily exist online, ranging from archival to experimental projects.

We invite you to consider submitting an application or to circulate this email to your peers and graduate students. Vectors' fellows not only attend our summer workshop but also have the opportunity to work over several months with a world-class design team in realizing the scholar's vision for online scholarship. You may download the Call For Proposals for the 2007 Vectors Summer Fellowships here.

Posted by jo at 09:44 AM | Comments (0)

March 27, 2007



Transcultural Change and Translation

[Image: Patrick Lichty, Cicci, virtual avatar, digital print on paper, 2007] CROSSMEDIALE 2 :: Gosia Koscielak Studio & Gallery, 1646 N. Bosworth Ave., Chicago, IL 60622 :: T.847.858.1540 :: info[at]gosiakoscielak.com. CROSSMEDIALE 2 will also be at Gosia Koscielak Studio & Gallery’s Booth # 12 at Bridge Art Fair Chicago; April 27-30, 2007. For more details on Bridge Art Fair Chicago.

An exhibition of American and International art in new media curated by Gosia Koscielak :: April 13 – May 12, 2007 :: Opening reception: Friday, April 13, 6-10 p.m. :: Second Saturday Special Event: April 14, 6 – 10pm :: An electro-audio-visual performance by La Bande Sans Fin, a Chicago-based multimedia artistic team formed by David Zerlin and David Blum.

CrossMediale 2 focuses on the concept of transcultural change and translation in a broader sense. As a continuation of the ongoing curatorial Transcultural Projects initially developed by Gosia Koscielak Ph.D. in 2000 (which was exhibited at the Hyde Park Art Center in 2001 and at the National Museum in Szczecin, Poland in 2002), Crossmediale 2 continues to investigate how complex identities, a multimedia reality, and the multicultural mosaic of humanity create the Global-Local world and GLOCAL identity through a variety of local and international artistic responses. Ultimately, the artworks featured change our understanding of transcultural society, and thus change our understanding about human existence.

The exhibit focuses on new media works as well as on artworks that relate to this curatorial concept in a variety of media – including photography, video, drawings, side specific installation, virtual animation, website artworks/project, and virtual performance.

Participating artists in Crossmediale 2: Annette Barbier (Chicago); Hans Bernhard (Vienna); Drew Browning (Chicago), David Blum (Chicago); Scott Kildall (San Francisco); Lizvlx (Vienna); Erik Olofsen (Amsterdam); Silvia Malagrino (Chicago), Pat Badani (Chicago); Galina Shevchenko (Chicago), UBERMORGEN (Vienna); Patrick Lichty (Chicago), Susan Sensemann (Chicago), Richard Purdy (New York); Silvia Rozanka (Chicago); Ben Chang (Chicago); Deborah Boardman (Chicago); Janell Baxter (Chicago), Tracy Marie Taylor (Chicago): David Zerlin (Chicago); and La Bande Sans Fin (Chicago).

Some highlights from the exhibit include:

Chicago digital artists Annette Barbier and Drew Browning’s collaboration in Stream-ing, an interactive installation about the interdependent relationship of people and the environment. The Illinois Waterway, which includes the Chicago and Illinois rivers and runs from Chicago through Peoria, operates as both the metaphor for interconnectedness and the subject of data collection in this interactive installation that surrounds participants with a responsive aural and visual environment including a 30 foot long projection on the floor that viewers/visitors must navigate.

Scott Kildall’s video, Something To Remind Me, works at the intersection of cultural memory and the psychology of time. Seeing himself as a gatherer, creator and editor, Kildall’s stitches together media such as voicemails from personal ads, “in-between” cinematic moments and found landscapes from Second Life, and weaves them into architectural structures and sculptures.

Patrick Lichty, a Chicago based new media artist, curator, and lecturer, presents animation work and digital prints from the project, Reconstructing Cicciolina: A Virtual Reality Opera. Lichty performs in the online virtual reality world as La Cicciolina, a virtual avatar who appears as a Lady Godiva of sorts, and in the process explores whether this artificial being is any more or less constructed or real than the artist himself.

Susan Sensemann will present her drawing Scan, an abstract interpretation of the scan of the human brain which transcends the physicality of the BRAIN image. Sensemann’s translation of this high tech scan through her hand and into the more intimate medium of drawing shows how the artist can transcend the physicality of the BRAIN, by convert a technological product into a metaphysical experience.

UBERMORGEN will present a photo series from The Chinese Gold Project, a web based project in which artist mixes up the real "virtual" (the game) with the virtually "real" (money). Also UBERMORGEN’s paintings from the ART FID (2005) series will be on display. These digital prints on canvas portray the structure of round RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) chips, mini identification systems that can be attached to a person or a product to collect diverse information about the product or person and continue and which are a terrifying reality of the future.

Richard Purdy’s encaustic paintings on wood wrestle with quantum mechanics, cosmology, computer programming, and fractal geometry. This work combines the use of computer-generated imagery with children's drawing implements like the Spirograph. While inevitably coded, these images make themselves accessible to people of diverse backgrounds.

An electro-audio-visual performance by La Bande Sans Fin, a Chicago-based multimedia artistic team formed by David Zerlin and David Blum, will take place at the opening reception.

Posted by jo at 02:34 PM | Comments (0)

Vague Terrain



vague terrain: locative: Why is location interesting? Several years ago, I inherited a broken television set from my grandmother. I had little use for a TV that displayed everything in shades of green, and so it stayed in the attic. It was only when I was later preparing to move that I decided to turn it on. What I found when I turned the dial to the highest UHF channel was that the TV picked up what sounded like eight simultaneous cordless phone conversations. I could barely decipher anything in the cacophony, but it did make me wonder who these people were, where they were standing as they were speaking these words, if these conversations were passing through me, and if they knew I was listening.

I have to thank both Greg J. Smith and Neil Wiernik for inviting me to be the first guest editor. Neil and Greg have both done an enormous amount of work on the journal since its inception. Their efforts are creating an amazing archive of the state of the arts during this nascent period of technological curiosity and exploration.

Even though the digital age has been around long enough that we possess theorists' interpretations of its implications, it's almost as if artists are only just wending their way through these new ways of communicating, and it's this excitement of exploration that's palpable in the art work. Projects that begin with an exclamation of "oh, neat!" quickly give birth to perspectives that come to reshape our understanding.

When I was first asked to edit the journal, it was to be on the subject of mobile technology due to my experience with projects such as the Warbike, an artwork that creates music from WiFi networks through which a cyclist rides. But to consider mobile technology is not to marvel at the ability to watch TV on one's cell phone—merely shifting content created for one medium to another—it is to consider the implications of our new-found ability to take it with you. Watching TV on the subway is not the same thing as watching TV in your home.

The latest PDA and cell phone developments are easy targets for theorising about mobile technology, but a device as simple as Sony's Walkman in 1979 drastically altered the ways in which people communicate in public. Although it innocently allowed you to take your music out of the home, it actually created an entirely new set of communicative gestures using headphones: disregard for others by playing music too loudly, taking headphones off to signal an openness to engage verbally, putting headphones on to avoid contact in public.

What changes when we take it with us? The parameter is space, or place. The term locative, in many ways, gives one the impression of a device with some artificial intelligence that allows the little thing—if I'm forgiven to personify our cute gadgets—to know something about the space in which it's situated or moving through. Of course, artificial intelligence, especially confined to the current power of mobile processors, is nowhere near smart enough to truly understand anything about space. It cannot contextualise the same way that you or I would if placed in a foreign space. What it does do is give us information based on the space according to the parameters and design that we've set up for it. It doesn't give us information outside of the media we've chosen, but this still allows for a great amount of surprise and discovery.

The renewed interest in space generated by mobile technologies such as the cell phone, and location-specific technologies such as GPS, has spread to areas beyond the high-tech. People are finding connections between their perceptions of space and those of the Situationists in the twentieth-century, and the wanderings of the Surrealists before them. Communities are forming psychogeography societies to explore their urban surroundings. Civic interest and concern in urban centres is not only healthier than ever before, but gaining momentum.

Several of the projects in this issue deal solely with the radio spectrum and eavesdropping as a means of understanding the human facet of their immediate surroundings. This is a technology that has existed for decades. But the discourse generated from the interest in more sophisticated technologies has allowed us to contextualise the implications of older technologies and our perceptions of space, especially the blurring of public and private spaces.

Each of the projects featured in this issue deal with space in several manners. It's the synthesis of the experiences and understandings created by many focussed projects that allow us to understand not the gadgets' relationship to space, but our own.

The explorations of ssim-el and Sawako's 2.4Ghz Scape examine the invisible layer of communications that passes through public space unbeknownst to us.

The Context Photography project follows a traditional approach to locative technologies: using the technology to help us better understand aspects of the space. Evamaria Trischak's 4816 also touches on this, as well it and and Patricia Rodriguez's cell phone videos explore technology as medium for our conduct: although it provides insight, at the same time it imposes limitations through its structure that may hamper our ability to understand space.

Mobile technology is also an enabler, either helping to create new forms of narrative not previously possible, as with knifeandfork's Hundekopf, or to foster community and civic interest, as discussed in my interview with Īle Sans Fil's Michael Lenczner.

Finally, the articles of Marc Tuters and Jeremy Hight question our definitions and understandings of the field of locative technology, its possibilities, and its future.

Thank you very much to all of the contributors who made this issue possible not only through their projects, but also with their co-operation in compiling all of the information. Feel free to send any comments my way to locative [at] vagueterrain [dot] net, and please let the contributors know how their work engaged you.

david mccallum

Posted by jo at 01:31 PM | Comments (0)

Dispersive Anatomies


Call for papers

Dispersive Anatomies :: Call for papers :: Guest Editors: Sandy Baldwin, Alan Sondheim and Mez Breeze :: Editorial Guidelines :: Discussion Group: leadispersive-subscribe[at]googlegroups.com :: Deadline: 31 May 2007.

The Leonardo Electronic Almanac (ISSN No: 1071-4391) is inviting papers and artworks that address dispersion - dispersion of bodies, objects, landscapes, networks, virtual and real worlds. A fundamental shift in the way we view the world is underway: the abandonment of discrete objects, and objecthood itself. The world is now plural, and the distinction between real and virtual is becoming increasingly blurred, with troubling consequences within the geopolitical register. This shift is related to a cultural change that emphasizes digital deconstruction over analog construction: a photograph for example can be accessed and transformed, pixel by pixel, cities can be taken apart by gerrymandering or eminent domain, and our social networks are replete with names and images that problematize friendship, sexuality, and culture itself. One issue that emerges here: Are we networking or are we networked? Are we networks ourselves?

LEA is interested in texts and works that deal with this fundamental shift in new and illuminating ways. Specifically, anything from essays through multimedia through networks themselves may be considered. We're particularly interested in submissions that deal with the incoherency of the world, and how to address it.

Key topics of interest

Topics of interest might include (but are not limited to):
- Networked warfare in real and virtual worlds.
- The wounded/altered body in real and virtual worlds.
- Transgressive sexualities across borders, sexualities among body-parts, dismemberments and groups, both real and virtual.
- Critical texts on the transformation of classical narrative - from its emphasis on an omniscient narrator and coherent plots/characters, to literatures of incoherency, dispersed narrations, and the jump-cut exigencies of everyday life.
- Deleuze/Guattari, TAZ, and other phenomena at the border of networking.
- Internet visions and their abandonment or fulfillment.
- The haunting of the world by ghosts, virtual beings, dreams and nightmares that never resolve.
- The geopolitical collapse of geopolitics.
- Military empires as scattershot entrepreneurial corporations.

Dispersion has two vectors: the breakup or breakdown of coherent objects; and the subsequent attempt to corral, curtail, or recuperate from this breakdown. How do we deal with networks that are constantly coalescing and disappearing? Where are we in the midst of this? In an era of pre-emptive culture, is guerilla warfare to be accompanied by guerilla culture as the order of the day?

Want to be kept informed?

For the latest news, updates and discussions, join the LEA Dispersive Anatomies Mailing List. Email: leadispersive-subscribe[at]googlegroups.com

Publishing Opportunities

As part of this special, LEA is looking to publish:
- Critical Essays
- Artist Statement/works in the LEA Gallery
- Bibliographies (a peer reviewed bibliography with key texts/references in Dispersive Anatomies)
- Academic Curriculum (LEA encourages academics conducting course programmes in this area to contact us)

LEA encourages international artists / academics / researchers / students / practitioners / theorists to submit their proposals for consideration. We particularly encourage authors outside North America and Europe to submit essays / artists statements.

Proposals should include:

- A brief description of proposed text (200-300 words)
- A brief author biography
- Any related URLs
- Contact details

In the subject heading of the email message, please use *Name of Artist/Project Title: LEA Dispersive Anatomies Special - Date Submitted.* Please cut and paste all text into body of email (without attachments).

Editorial Guidelines: http://leoalmanac.org/cfp/submit/index.asp
Deadline for proposals: May 31, 2007
Please send proposals or queries to: Sandy Baldwin, Alan Sondheim, Mez Breeze leadispersive[at]astn.net

Nisar Keshvani
LEA Editor-in-Chief

Posted by jo at 01:25 PM | Comments (0)

Franklin Furnace Retrospective


A Franklin Furnace View of Performance Art

Franklin Furnace presents a retrospective: The History of the Future: A Franklin Furnace View of Performance Art :: One Night Only - April 27th, 2007.

Franklin Furnace, the internationally-acclaimed incubator of the avant-garde, is proud to present a one-night only benefit event on Friday, April 27th at 8:00 PM: The History of the Future: A Franklin Furnace View of Performance Art, to take place at the Harry de Jur Playhouse of Henry Street Settlement (located at 466 Grand Street, Manhattan). For this unique evening, Patron tickets are $500 and $100, and are available through Franklin Furnace, or call 718-398-7255. General Admission tickets are $20, and are available through www.theatermania.com, or call 212-352-3101.

The benefit will be co-curated by C. Carr, critic and author of On Edge; RoseLee Goldberg, scholar and author of Live Art: 1909 to the Present; and Martha Wilson, Founding Director of Franklin Furnace, and will contain both video footage of historical performance works and live performances by some of the most influential artists of our time. This program will serve as an overview of performance art works which changed art discourse over three decades.

The History of the Future will include live performances by Karen Finley, Murray Hill, Ishmael Houston-Jones, Tom Murrin, Julie Atlas Muz, Reverend Billy, Alba Sanchez, Michael Smith and Martha Wilson.

Artists whose recorded work is represented in the event include Moe Angelos and Peggy Healy, Ron Athey, Blue Man Group, Eric Bogosian, Patty Chang, Nicolas Dumit Estevez, John Fleck, Coco Fusco and Guillermo Gomez- Peńa, Grupo 609, Tehching Hsieh, Holly Hughes, John Jesurun, Joshua Kinberg and Yury Gitman, The Kipper Kids, Ana Mendieta, Tim Miller, Mouchette, William Pope.L, Martha Rosler, Sapphire, Stuart Sherman, Annie Sprinkle, Jack Waters, William Wegman and Man Ray, Wooloo Productions, Adrianne Wortzel, X-Cheerleaders and Ricardo Miranda Zśńiga.

The History of the Future will honor Marina Abramovic, Simone Forti, Claes Oldenburg, Yoko Ono, Yvonne Rainer and Carolee Schneemann for their pioneering performance work and Judson Memorial Church for its role as a cradle of experiment.

It has been 30 years since Franklin Furnace was founded to present, preserve, interpret, proselytize and advocate on behalf of avant-garde art, and 10 years since Franklin Furnace "went virtual," taking its website as its public face. Here’s an historic outline of seminal FF events:

--February, 1981: Eric Bogosian's first performance in New York, "Men Inside," is presented by Franklin Furnace.

--February 1984: Franklin Furnace is reprimanded by the NEA and dropped by several corporate sources for presenting Carnival Knowledge, an exhibition and performance extravaganza that questioned if there can be such a thing as "feminist pornography." Annie Sprinkle makes her artist debut in "Deep Inside Porn Stars."

--May, 1985: Franklin Furnace creates its Franklin Furnace Fund for Performance Art, which allows emerging artists to produce major work in New York. The panel selects three of the "NEA Four" artists before they were so identified (Karen Finley, Holly Hughes, John Fleck) along with many others who have gone on to change the world: Papo Colo, Kaylynn Two Trees Sullivan, William Pope.L, Jennifer Miller, Andrea Fraser, Peggy Pettitt, Kim Irwin, Keith Antar Mason, Murray Hill, Pamela Sneed, Tanya Barfield, Deborah Edmeades, Patty Chang, and Stanya Kahn, among others.

--February, 1988: Franklin Furnace and Thought Music produce Teenytown, a multimedia performance by Jessica Hagedorn, Laurie Carlos and Robbie McCauley with film by John Woo and choreography by Jawole Willa Jo Zolar, which examines how racism is embedded in popular culture and entertainment.

--May - August, 1990: Franklin Furnace's performance space is closed by the New York City Fire Department for being an "illegal social club," and the organization is demonized for presenting Karen Finley's installation, "A Woman's Life Isn't Worth Much." Inquiries and audits are conducted by the Internal Revenue Service, the New York State Comptroller and at the request of Senator Jesse Helms, the General Accounting Office. Cathy Simmons is the first artist in Franklin Furnace's performance program "in exile," at the Kitchen.

--January, 1992: Franklin Furnace's Visual Artists Organizations grant from the NEA is rescinded by the National Council because of the sexually explicit content of a 1991 performance by Scarlet O. The Peter Norton Family Foundation replaces this $25,000 grant.

--November, 1993: The Museum of Modern Art acquires Franklin Furnace's collection of artists' books published internationally after 1960, the largest in the United States, forming the Museum of Modern Art/Franklin Furnace/Artist Book Collection.

--February, 1997: Franklin Furnace launches its website, www.franklinfurnace.org, as the Board determines that access to freedom of expression and a broader audience for emerging artists through new media will be a prime program focus.

--January, 1998: Franklin Furnace's first netcasting season of ten artists including Lenora Champagne, Alvin Eng, and Patricia Hoffbauer is mounted in collaboration with Pseudo.com.

--January - December, 2000: The Future of the Present 2000 is redesigned as a residency program in collaboration with Parsons School of Design in order to give artists access to the full range of digital tools, and to exploit the Internet as an art medium and venue.

--May, 2006: Franklin Furnace receives notification of $124,030 from the National Endowment for the Humanities for a two-year grant to digitize and publish on the Internet records of performances, installations, exhibits and other events produced by the organization during its first ten years. This project will create electronic access to what are now the only remaining artifacts of these singular works of social, political and cultural expression.

--June, 2006: ARTstor and Franklin Furnace announce a collaboration agreement, ARTstor's first with an "alternative space." Digital images are fast replacing slides and slide projectors in the teaching of art and art history. To respond to these changes, Franklin Furnace is working with ARTstor to digitize and distribute images and documentation of events presented and produced by Franklin Furnace, with the goal of embedding the value of ephemeral practice into art and cultural history.

Posted by jo at 01:15 PM | Comments (0)



Bridging the Gap

New from MIT-Press (Leonardo Book Series): MediaArtHistories, Edited by Oliver GRAU :: with contributions by Rudolf ARNHEIM, Andreas BROECKMANN, Ron BURNETT, Edmond COUCHOT, Sean CUBITT, Dieter DANIELS, Felice FRANKEL, Oliver GRAU, Erkki HUHTAMO, Douglas KAHN, Ryszard W. KLUSZCZYNSKI, Machiko KUSAHARA, Timothy LENOIR, Lev MANOVICH, W. J. T. MITCHELL, Gunalan NADARAJAN, Christiane PAUL, Louise POISSANT, Edward A. SHANKEN, Barbara Maria STAFFORD and Peter WEIBEL.

Digital art has become a major contemporary art form, but it has yet to achieve acceptance from mainstream cultural institutions; it is rarely collected, and seldom included in the study of art history or other academic disciplines. In MediaArtHistories, leading scholars seek to change this. They take a wider view of media art, placing it against the backdrop of art history. Their essays demonstrate that today's media art cannot be understood by technological details alone; it cannot be understood without its history, and it must be understood in proximity to other disciplines--film, cultural and media studies, computer science, philosophy, and sciences dealing with images.

Contributors trace the evolution of digital art, from thirteenth-century Islamic mechanical devices and eighteenth-century phantasmagoria, magic lanterns, and other multimedia illusions, to Marcel Duchamp's inventions and 1960s kinetic and op art. They re-examine and redefine key media art theory terms – machine, media, exhibition – and consider the blurred dividing lines between art products and consumer products and between art images and science images.

Finally, MediaArtHistories offers an approach for an interdisciplinary, expanded image science, which needs the "trained eye" of art history.

Oliver Grau is Professor for Image Science and Dean of the Department for Image Science, Danube University Krems (Austria). He is the author of Virtual Art: From Illusion to Immersion (MIT Press, 2003), editor of Mediale Emotionen (2005) and founder of the pioneering international digital art archive http://www.virtualart.at

Posted by jo at 10:54 AM | Comments (0)

Institute for Infinitely Small Things


Transferring Patriotism

Transferring Patriotism is a new work by the Institute for Infinitely Small Things now on sale at Evolution de l'Art Gallery. The Institute is selling its patriotism to any interested buyers. Once the sale is made, the full transfer of our patriotism to you will occur in the following way:

Two members of the Institute will fly to your country. We will meet you and a witness from your country at the border between your country and the US Embassy or Consulate. We will set up a table with four chairs. We will sit at half of the table on American territory and you will sit at half of the table on your country's territory. We will then proceed to share an American beer. Then we will share a drink from your country. We will repeat those drinks until we are all drunk. At that point, the transfer of patriotism will be complete.

Price: Cost of two plane tickets from Boston, MA, USA, to your country plus additional logistic costs. Sale handled via Evolution de l'Art Gallery.

The gallery Evolution de l’Art arises from a collaboration between SPACE (Juraj Carny, Diana Majdakova and Lydia Pribisova) and Cesare Pietroiusti. Evolution de l’Art is a gallery for contemporary art which only sells artworks that are immaterial, with no physical residue, and it does not release certificates of authenticity, nor statements or receipts. EdlA will represent, on a non-exclusive basis, artists whose artwork is, at least in the case of some specific projects, alien from any physical-material component. Beyond this condition, there will not be any other limitation or requisite for represented artists in terms of medium or technique.

Posted by jo at 10:20 AM | Comments (0)

Anne-Marie Schleiner and Luis Hernandez



Chispitas is an exhibit of experimental game art pieces by Luis Hernandez and Anne-Marie Schleiner, and collaborators of theirs. Included is an arcade-like interactive sculpture :: Opening: Thursday March 29, 2007, 8:30 p.m. :: Galeria Sector Reforma, Guadalupe Victoria 398, Entre Analco y Nicolas Bravo, Guadelejara, Mexico :: T/ 36 18 88 10.

"Corridos" a car driving music game inspired by the Mexican/US Border. Also showing is "Oversaturation", an abstract game rooted in Mexico City's urban problematics, and "Heaven711" a hip hop poetry game in four languages. Chispas also shows a number of "Machinima" remixed game art videos, such as "Riot Gear for Rollartista", a series of short videos dealing with European police abuse of Islamic immigrants, shown on small screen PSP's. Some other pieces are OverMachinima and OUT, an urban intervention in America's Army. "Chispitas", a name suggested by guest curator Rene Hiyashi, is a variation of slang for Mexican game arcades, which are popular spaces of play and public social interaction in many parts of Mexico.

Posted by jo at 09:37 AM | Comments (0)

March 26, 2007

An Event for a Conversation


'fancy a skype chat?'

An Event for a Conversation celebrates social networking and is designed to explore the social and technological aspects of communication through experimental events and conceptual research. This experimental and research process will develop towards, and inform the final interactive and relational ‘Event for a Conversation’.

The first event ‘fancy a skype chat?’ took place yesterday (March 25); ‘fancy a skype chat?’ invited people to an online, social event hosted by the artist Rebecca Gamble. Gamble's goal was to re-create the pub-like environment of informal chat around a table over a drink, by inviting people to ‘bring their own’, ‘log on’ and start chatting over Skype. Through this event, the artist hoped to connect people and their different environments through online conversation, in a virtual environment. It was documented through the texts of the ‘Group Chat’ on Skype, from screen grab images of the artists’ desktop at 10-minute intervals, and in other ways the participants added to it. The conversations themselves were not recorded.

Posted by jo at 10:24 AM | Comments (0)

March 25, 2007

1001 nights cast



1001 nights cast: Daylight Savings ended in Australia and started in Europe on Sunday March 25. Performance # 644 on March 26 is at 6pm from Sydney, that is: 4pm in Perth, Hong Kong and Tokyo; 9am in London; 10am in Madrid, Paris and Berlin; 11am in Beirut, Jerusalem and Istanbul; 4am in New York, Toronto and Bogota; 1am in Los Angeles. And then will get earlier with each passing day. If in doubt, wait for the "Performance # xxxx begins in XX:xx hrs/mins" countdown clock on the Today Now page.

New writers always invited to contribute. Story submission deadline is always 3 hrs before performance time (sunset).

Posted by jo at 05:23 PM | Comments (0)

New Media Art in a Control Society


Transcript from a Performance

Adam Trowbridge: New Media Art in a Control Society :: Transcript from Performance :: The Hunter Museum of American Art, Chattanooga, TN, USA
March 22, 2007 :: video stills here

As noted in the transcript, the majority of the statements read were not original and instead shamelessly stolen (edited and unedited) from various sources: theoretical texts, artists' statements, manifestos and paranoid rambling. Transcript:

This is...a performance and new media art...or maybe not. [video begins] [text below is read]

- - Gilles Deleuze said "Maybe speech and communication have been corrupted. They're thoroughly permeated by money and not by accident but by their very nature. We've got to hijack speech. Creating has always been something different from communicating. The key thing may be to create vacuoles of non-communication, circuit breakers, so we can elude control." End quote.

- - The phrase "new media art" is pointless.

- - The selection of medium is not the selection of a wardrobe for an idea. We are well past ideas and communication. Medium should be selected like legal and illicit pharmaceuticals: where do you want to go today?

- - What is a digital painting? Idiotic.

- - Contemporary art is both scattered and networked, always in motion. Medium, if anything, is a measure of speed and distribution. Is the texture of an oil painting that different from that of flypaper? Video is faster and shedding the weight of the poetic yet precious medium of film. Photography is a film still. Internet-based art is faster but still flails, lashed down by too many examples of bad information design masquerading as art.

- - THEY create DELIRIOUS RULES and sell you free access to their BACKSTAGE if you follow these sick rules. YOU KNOW IT.

- - Deleuze and Guattari's rhizome has been falsely represented as a metaphor for a network and for networked art. Deleuze and Guattari did not deal in metaphors.

- - Rhizomatic action is a force relationship in which power is distributed then scattered before it can begin to collect. This is not a metaphorical description but a plan of action.

- - Over 650,000 Iraqi civilians were killed by military intervention in Iraq and we are here to discuss...what?

- - Images can shatter the old order leaving nothing the same as before.

- - All hoarding, speculation on art, must cease and be seen for what it is: usury and exploitation.

- - In the beginning, you enjoyed it. You were caught in the middle of the WAR between THEM and THE OTHER SIDE, and you were trying to help THEM win the war.

- - All true language is incomprehensible, like the chatter of a beggar's teeth.

- - Six billion worldwide population, all living, have a Computer God Containment Policy brain bank brain, a real brain in the brain bank cities on the far side of the moon we never see.

- - Marketing has become the center or the "soul" of the corporation. We are taught that corporations have a soul, which is the most terrifying news in the world.

- - Human beings are not fully conscious of their real life...usually groping in the dark...at every moment groups and individuals find themselves confronted with results they have not wished.

- - Control is short-term and has rapid rates of turnover, but is also continuous and without limit.

- - New media art involves people who make watering plants more complex than it needs to be by using cell phones that call the Internet when the plants need water.

- - If you can talk about it, why paint it?

- - The Dia: Beacon is a tomb for the last gasp of studio art, let it be a monument and move on.

- - Man and machines can make symbiotic art.

- - Psychogeography: The study of the precise effects of geographical setting, consciously managed or not, acting directly on the mood and behavior of the individual.

- - Inevitability of gradualness. Usually, in a few years, you are made string bean thin or grotesquely deformed, crippled and ugly, or even made one foot shorter or one foot taller, as the Computer God sees fit.

- - In the future we will have foreign genetic material in us as today we have mechanical and electronic implants. In other words, we will be transgenic. However, there's no excuse but marketing for purchasing a glowing rabbit.

- - Users of the world are presented with fresh, owned content every day. We have the technology, the precedents, and the duty to make new art out of this owned content.

- - A lot of people say that new media is revolutionary. They say the net is subversive. But how subversive can you be in an exclusive club where it costs $1,000 for a computer and $50 a month to connect to the Internet.

- - The main function of Art is to distinguish rich people from poorer people.

- - Many young people strangely boast of being "motivated"; we re-request apprenticeships and permanent training. It's up to us to discover what we're being made to serve, just as our elders discovered, not without difficulty, the ultimate end of the disciplines.

- - Personal expression and human and artist centrality can be abandoned.

- - Complex machines are an emergent life form in the masturbatory fantasies of those siding with control. I distrust transhumanists but I want to be friends with a computer.

- - Any moralistic or spiritual pretension or representation purposes for art must be abandoned.

- - Primarily, based on your lifelong Frankenstein Radio Controls, especially your Eyesight TV, sight and sound recorded by your brain, your moon brain of the Computer God activates your Frankenstein threshold brainwash radio lifelong, inculcating conformist propaganda, even frightening you and mixing you up and the usual, "Don't worry about it."

- - Professionalism in the arts (and the accompanying stratification of skills) must be abandoned in favor of a progressive (class-less) artistry of both a personal and collective nature.

- - Over the last decades, using positions of power in your STAGE-WORLD reality, THEY introduced their key words and also their sick DREAMWORLD- TO-SELL key ideas in every aspect of culture in the STAGE WORLD society where you live : songs, movies, humor, even propaganda.

- - Derive: An experimental mode of behavior linked to the conditions of urban society: a technique for hastily passing through varied environments.

- - The economic and cultural exploitation of the artist has reached appalling proportions. The individual and/or collective artist, whose work is plagiarized as commercial 'technique', or exported as cultural commodity, has little control over these conditions.

- - Consciousness is not exclusively restricted to the brain. Human bodies have no boundaries.

- - The artist must be concerned with the moral relationship that his/her endeavors have to the institutions within which he/she expresses his/her work.

- - The majority of what I've read has been shamelessly stolen from various sources: theoretical texts, artists' statements, manifestos and paranoid rambling. They stand as a collection of connections and disjunctions. I am, we are, a manner of speaking.

- - Art is not knowledge.

- - Art does not communicate.

- - There is nothing here for you.

- - Gilles Deleuze said that new situations could "...at first express new freedom, but they could participate as well in mechanisms of control that are equal to the harshest of confinements. There is no need to fear or hope, but only to look for new weapons".

[via nettime]

Posted by jo at 04:12 PM | Comments (0)



Workshops + Events

Audio and video Streaming Workshop, dis-organized by /Code31/ and led by Arjen Keesmaat :: March 31-April 1, 2007.

During the second workshop within the framework of Code31's xmedk online research, we'll present a two day crash course in audio and video streaming. What does it take to send a live video stream from your desktop to the whole world. We'll learn how to configure a streaming server, take a look at different kinds of broadcasters. Deal with the technicalities: Which protocols to use? What is the difference between udp en tcp? What is with all these codecs?

We'll start low level but in a further stage, dive deeper into the technicalities of streaming: How to configure your network and deal with protocols? How your video imagery gets compressed to those coded bits and bytes? The people at rambla.be are giving us an introduction in getting your streams out in the open, reliably streaming to the bigger public.

:: partcipants :: The workshop is free and open for anyone. If you're interested in participating, send an email with short bio and motivation to ef4db at code31.lahaag.org

non-physical: This workshop is a testcase for the Code31 online research, so those who can't make it to the workshop can follow online, details will be provided on the code31 site. We will provide a live video stream and a moderated chat channel. We're looking for participants who want to join and also evaluate the setup! So, if you're interested, point your fingers to ef4db[at]code31.lahaag.org

Arjen Keesmaat is an interaction designer and media artist, graduated at the Utrecht School of Arts (The Netherlands), faculty of Art, Media and Technology, now active developing media-installations, from in concept to realisation.

Former collaborator at waag.org in the Sensing Presence - (KeyWorx, Connected / Anatomic) and the Creative Learning (ScratchWorx) departments, conducting workshops, technical realisation and development.

:: location ::

OKNO -- Koolmijnenkaai 30/34 -- 1080 Brussels -- Belgium
metro: Graaf van Vlaanderen/Comte de Flandre -- Tram18
dates/data: saturday 31/03 -- sunday 01/04 from 10am till 5pm Free coffee, tea and soft drinks.


With the support of / met de steun van / het VAF (Vlaams Audiovisueel Fonds) the .x-med-k. workshop series is a collaboration between okno, nadine and foam.


OKNOPUBLIC #3 :: from 4 -> 7 april 2007

OKNOPUBLIC #03 is the result of the collaborative effort of different organisations (http://code31.lahaag.org; http://so-on.be; http://societyofalgorithm.org), initiatives, artists and residents Alejandra Perez Nunez and Dusan Barok.

During 4 days it brings together people who have an interest in looking at new ideas for creative work, willing to question their own practices. We hope some are interested in working together after these days in a context where some network based artworks can be made, from different geographical and ideological places and from different content based approaches.

The program is structured along 4 thematic days with cross-overs, and consists of project presentations and public debates, workshops, performances and an installation. Detailed program on: http://www.okno.be/?id=1053

Day 1: wednesday 4/4: from 2pm -> 6pm
Tales of a Connected City - (the last mile is the network)

The network as truly social : your neighbours stay your neighbours. A look at local mesh networks: what makes the difference between connected places and non-connected ones. What are we connecting to? A discussion about collaboration, content and techniques, setting up new structures and developing new practices for creative work.

With: Riseau Citoyen, okno, Citymine(d), bna-bbot, Rotor, An Mertens. Introduced by Pieter Heremans and Annemie Maes, moderated by Givan Bela and IRC Alejandra Perez Nunez.

Followed by a bombolong install-party: get onto the riseau citoyen!

MAI - interactive installation by Isjtar and Masato Tsutsui, daily between 7pm and 9pm

performances : from 9pm -> 11pm
Day 1: Sarah Washington and Knut Aufermann, Justin Bennett, Haraldur

Day 2 : thursday 5/4: from 2pm -> 6pm
on public space and sound practices

Well examine and discuss audio networks in public space. Artist networks reappropriate public space by means of sound, and comment and annotate public space by soundtags. Can we speak of hybrid transmission spaces? Do these mobile modes of exchange provoke new creative practices?

With: Tapio Mdkeld, Justin Bennett, Sarah Washington and Knut Aufermann; moderated by Annemie Maes and IRC Dusan Barok.

MAI - interactive installation by Isjtar and Masato Tsutsui, daily between 7pm and 9pm

Day 3: friday 6/4: from 2pm -> 6pm
on the reinvention of everyday practices

We will gather ideas around creativity and the reinvention of social practices. We will explore how the interest in the transformation of society can initiate the reinvention of practices that become conceived as tactical. In the Practice of Everyday Life Michel de Certeau emphasizes the particular status of ways of using and operating in the social practice or "everyday practice". He differentiates between strategies: the tools of the powerful and tactics: the art of the weak. In this meeting we will be reflecting on various approaches.

With: Apo33, Barb Huber, Alejandra Perez Nunez; Moderated by Tapio Mdkeld, and IRC Givan Bela.

performances: from 9pm -> 11pm
Day 3: Jens Brand, Apo33, elpueblodechina

MAI - interactive installation by Isjtar and Masato Tsutsui, daily between 7pm and 9pm

Day 4: saturday 7/4: from 2pm -> 6pm
A = particles-waves-streams

Can our networks become a new playground where we can meet to show-and-tell, invent, share and toy around with creativity till it becomes something to admire while there, and wonder about later... we will try to percieve how people work with audio and visual data, and how structure emerges through interaction, and build on communication to become visible and heard as a thing of shared beauty that can be different from what flikr and tube give us...

With: Haraldur Karlson, Jasna Velickovic, Bojan Fajfric, Vesna Madzoski, Jens Brand, Todor Todoroff, Maja Kuzmanovic, Nik Gaffney Moderated by Givan Bela and IRC Dusan Barok.

B = the complexity of collaboration / b22f#4 / from 7pm -> 8pm An hour of topological itudes for network pieces

MAI - interactive installation by Isjtar and Masato Tsutsui, daily between 8pm and 9pm

performances : from 9pm->11pm
Day 4: the society of algorithm, Isjtar, Masato Tsutsui and Jeroen Uyttendaele


31/1 and 1/4: streaming workshop by code 31, arjen keesmaat and rambla

During the second workshop within the framework of Code31's xmedk online research, we'll present a two day crash course in audio and video streaming. What does it take to send a live video stream from your desktop to the whole world: we'll learn how to configure a streaming server, take a look at different kinds of broadcasters. Deal with the technicalities: Which protocols to use? What is the difference between udp en tcp? What is with all these codecs?

We'll start low level but in a further stage, dive deeper into the technicalities of streaming : How to configure your network and deal with protocols. How your video imagery gets compressed to those coded bits and bytes. The people at rambla.be are giving us an introduction in getting your streams out in the open, reliably streaming to the bigger public. Info and subscriptions: http://www.xmedk.be/index.php?id=676

4/4: riseau citoyen install party by riseau citoyen

For a detailed program and schedules : http://www.okno.be/?id=1053

okno public01 onsite
04 > 07 april 2007, daily from 2pm > 11pm
@ okno, koolmijnenkaai 30/34, 1080 Brussels . Belgium
metro Graaf van Vlaanderen / Comte de Flandres ::: tram 18

oknopublic#03 online @ http://okno.be; audiovisual streaming & IRC chats, daily from 2pm > 11pm. Check site for streaminglinks and program updates info: okno[at]okno.be

okno is supported by the Flemisch authorities, the VAF (Flemisch Audiovisual Fund) and the VGC (Vlaamse Gemeenschapscommissie)

Posted by jo at 01:55 PM | Comments (0)

Listening to the Archive I: Memoires de Sourds


A Workshop

Listening to the Archive I: Memoires de Sourds :: A workshop around Les Immateriaux :: Date: 30 March 2007 :: Venue: Auditorium, Jan van Eyck Academie, Academieplein 1, 6211 KM Maastricht, Netherlands :: Contact: Antony Hudek at ahudek[at]hotmail.com.

The first in a series of public workshops analysing the impact of Les immatiriaux, the exhibition co-curated by Jean-Frangois Lyotard and Thierry Chaput at the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris, in 1985. Workshop participants Luca Frei, Marysia Lewandowska, Emily Pethick, Antonia Wunderlich and Peter Zeillinger will address Les immatiriaux as a sum of archives, from the show's two catalogues to the sound records transmitted via headphones during the exhibition. In a bid to rethink Les immatiriaux as an unprecedented phenomenological reflection on excavation, memory, and translation, the workshop will call upon, among other references, Lyotard's late essays (Chambre sourde, La confession d'Augustin), Jacques Derrida's Mal d'archive and Mimoires d'aveugle, as well as contemporary artistic practices concerned with participatory forms of aesthetic engagement.

Posted by jo at 01:41 PM | Comments (0)



Ideas + Survey

Generic Infrastructures [2] by Rob van Kranenburg: Today we are in the worst situation imaginable. Our global and undisputed computing paradigm posits that computing processes are successful only in as much as they disappear from view. Our design focus is ever more following Philips untenable but seductive ‘sense and simplicity’ resulting in the-bug-as-a-feature-design of the Ipod Shuffle. Our educational system is following this systemic hide-complexity strategy that favors the large industrial labs, IT conglomerates and above all their clinging to notions of IP and the patent that are firmy tied to their notions of doing business and making money. And our users, us? We are YOU, the most influential person of the year 2006, according to TIME Magazine. You fill the Wikipedia entries in your spare time, you blog your daily activities, you co-bookmark on de.l.i.c.i.o.u.s, upload your photos to flickr, you buy mating gear in Second Life, and mark your position on Plazer or Google Earth. You fill out the forms. Isn’t it time you start questioning the principles behind the formats? And, to make matters even worse, your naļve ideas of sharing are corrupting notions of privacy, transparency and informational architecture symmetry.


Ludium II - Synthetic Worlds and Public Policy by Edward Castronova: Synthetic worlds – million-player online environments with genuine markets, societies, and cultures – are exploding in size and significance. Real world governments around the globe are beginning to grapple with their implications in the areas of taxation, intellectual property laws, consumer rights, addiction, violence, and more. Should synthetic worlds be controlled by developers, or by governments, or both? What about the rights of users? What general norms should legislatures and courts follow? More NOEMA >>

Posted by jo at 01:33 PM | Comments (0)

March 24, 2007

Convergence: The International Journal of Research into New Media Technologies


Call for Submissions

This is a general call for submissions to Convergence: The International Journal of Research into New Media Technologies. Convergence is published by Sage Publications, and is one of the longest-standing journals in new media studies.

Regular readers and subscribers will know that, apart from two annual special issues, Convergence publishes two numbers a year which are open to any submissions that fall within our remit. This is an open call for papers for Volume 14, number 2, which will appear in May 2008. For this issue, papers would need to be submitted by 30th May 2007.

Papers in areas including the following are welcome: Video games, Cable and telecomms, Mobile media / content, Internet studies, Digital / new media art, Digital photography, VR, Control and censorship of the media, Copyright / intellectual property, New media policy, New media industries / institutions, New media history, New media in cross-cultural/international contexts, new media products, Digital TV, DVD, Digital music – recording, production, distribution, file formats / file sharing, Cinema, and gender and technology.

Submission details: Electronic submissions are preferred via email (Macintosh Word98 compatible) These should be sent to the editors with the following information attached separately: name, institution and address for correspondence, telephone, fax and email address. Papers should be typed on one side of the sheet with endnotes in accordance with Sage referencing style (see our website at http://www.luton.ac.uk/Convergence). Refereed articles should be between 5000-8000 words, ‘Debates ‘ pieces should be between 1000-3000 words and Feature Reports should be approximately 4000 words, Authors should also enclose a 50 word biography and an abstract.

Proposals for articles or completed papers should be sent to: convergence[at]beds.ac.uk

Please note NEW author-date style for Convergence

Convergence: The Journal of Research into New Media Technologies
Editors: Julia Knight and Alexis Weedon
Editorial assistant: Jason Wilson
Associate editors: Jeanette Steemers (Europe), Rebecca Coyle (Western Pacific), Amy Bruckman and Jane Singer (North America)
Published quarterley. ISSN 1354-8564
Copyright of Convergence articles rests with the publisher
Editorial e-mail: Convergence@beds.ac.uk
Editorial website: www.beds.ac.uk/convergence
SAGE http://con.sagepub.com

Jason Wilson, Reviews Editor - Convergence

Research Institute for Media, Art and Design
University of Bedfordshire
Park Square
United Kingdom

T +44 (0)1582 489144
F +44 (0)1582 489212
M 07828482604

Posted by jo at 05:10 PM | Comments (0)

March 23, 2007

Evolution de l'Art


No Physical Residue

Evolution de l'Art :: Bratislava, Slovak Republic :: March 21 - April 22, 2007.

The gallery Evolution de l'Art arises from a collaboration between SPACE (Juraj Carny, Diana Majdakova and Lydia Pribisova) and Cesare Pietroiusti. Evolution de l'Art is a gallery for contemporary art which only sells artworks that are immaterial, with no physical residue, and it does not release certificates of authenticity, nor statements or receipts. EdlA will represent, on a non-exclusive basis, artists whose artwork is, at least in the case of some specific projects, alien from any physical-material component. Beyond this condition, there will not be any other limitation or requisite for represented artists in terms of medium or technique. EdlA offers the possibility of becoming contemporary art collectors to the widest possible audience. Therefore the gallery will offer artworks at a range of very different prices, including some that can be purchased for a few Euros. Purchases can be made at the headquarters of the gallery (Lazaretska 9, Bratislava) or through the website.

On the gallery website, anyone can find the updated list of artworks for sale, with their price list, as well as a list of all those that have been already sold, including the buyers' names (unless anonymity is requested).

Participating artists (among others):

A Constructed World /AUS/
aiPotu /NOR/
Lara Almarcegui /NL/
Ayreen Anastas /USA/
Erik Binder /SK/
Ondrej Brody - Kristofer Paetau /CZ/
Joanna Callaghan /AUS-UK/
Juraj Carny /SK/
Asli Cavusoglu / TK/
Carla Cruz /PT/
Nemanja Cvijanovic /KR/
Catherine D'Ignazio Institute fo Infinitely Small Things/ /USA/
Roberto De Simone /I/
Stanislao Di Giugno /I/
Andrew Duggan /IR/
Esculenta (Raffaella Spagna e Andrea Caretto) /I/
Emilio Fantin /I/
Petra Feriancova /SK/
Ulrika Ferm /FIN/
Stano Filko /SK/
Harrell Fletcher /USA/
Michael Fliri /I/
Viktor Fucek /SK/
Rene Gabri /USA/
Liam Gillick /GB/
Ellen Harvey /USA/
Nina Hoechtl /A/
Philippine Hoegen /NL/
Christoph Hoeschele /A/
Per HC Iain Kerr & Morgan J. Puett /CAN-USA/
Sharon Kivland /F/
Eva Kotatkova / CZ /
JiEC- Kovanda /CZ/
Jaroslav Kysa & Radovan Cerevka /SK/
Gareth James /GB-USA/
Pedro Lasch /Mex/
Otis Laubert /SK/
Pia Lindman /FIN/
M+M /D/
Antonino Musco /I/
Angel Nevarez /USA/
Giancarlo Norese /I/
Boris Ondreicka /SK/
Adam Page & Eva Hertzsch /DE/
Eugenio Percossi /I/
Jorge Peris /E/
Jenny Perlin /USA/
Alessandro Piangiamore /I/
Cesare Pietroiusti /I/
Giuseppe Pietroniro /I/
Mira Podmanicka /SK/
LC=dia PribiE!ovC! /SK/
Ben Readman /UK/
Ruth Sacks & Robert Sloon /SA/
Dorota Sadovska /SK/
Scanner /UK/
Michael Schumacher /USA/
Rudolf Sikora /SK/
Shelly Silver /USA/
Wolfgang Staehle /D-USA/
Janos Sugar /HU/
Barry Sykes /UK/
Valerie Tevere /USA/
Jan Triaska /SK/
Enzo Umbaca /I/
Nikola Uzunovski /Macedonia/
Marcella Vanzo /I/
Roman Vasseur /UK/
Kamiel Verschuren / NL /
Cesare Viel /I/
Dusan Zahoransky /SK/
Danielle van Zuijlen /NL/
Mary Zygouri /GR/

Evolution de l'Art
c/o Space
Lazaretska 9
811 08 Bratislava 1, Slovak Republic

Posted by jo at 06:16 PM | Comments (0)



One Week Left to Apply!

Comp_07: MIXED REALITIES :: Juried International Networked Art Competition :: Call for Proposals :: Deadline: March 31, 2007.

MIXED REALITIES: (1) a competition and series of simultaneous exhibitions that engage users in three discrete environments: the Internet (Turbulence), an online 3-D rendered environment (Ars Virtua), and physical space (Art Interactive); (2) works that evaluate the concepts "virtual," "simulation", and "real"; (3) a series of experiences in which participants connect with one another and contribute to the creation of the work. Five commissions @ $5,000 (US) each. More >>

APPLICATION GUIDELINES: Proposals MUST BE in the form of a web site. More >>. NOTE: While collaborative projects are preferred they are not a requirement. We have set up a FORUM for applicants to ask and answer questions and seek collaborators. GO TO FORUM >>

JURORS: MICHAEL FRUMIN, Technical Director Emeritus, Eyebeam; NATASHA KHANDEKAR, Director, Art Interactive; JAMES MORGAN, Director, Ars Virtua; TREBOR SCHOLZ, Founder, Institute for Distributed Creativity; HELEN THORINGTON, Co-Director, Turbulence. See bios >>


Proposal Deadline: March 31, 2007
Notification: Winners will be contacted after May 15, 2007
Delivery: Works must be completed by February 2008

This project is supported by a generous grant from the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts.

Posted by jo at 06:06 PM | Comments (0)

pay attention to the dance


Storytelling on the Web

Sean Stewart and Elan Lee, creators of two of the most successful alternate reality games to date, gave the keynote speech at this year's Arg-Fest-O-Con, a conference of the alternate reality gaming community. The whole video is over an hour, but well worth a look; the theme of the speech is 'trust'.

When I wrote a little while ago about ARGs as an emergent genre of storytelling entirely native to the Web, I identified some ways in which an ARG differs from the conventions of fiction in print form. In particular, part of the pleasure of an ARG is that it blurs the line between fact and fiction. There is a strange thrill to not knowing whether the latest link in the trail is fact (out of game) or fiction (in-game). It is also participatory and collaborative: the story does not unfold unless readers (players) collaborate to follow the trail of puzzles, hidden clues and hints. And though the story itself is 'authored' – the sites are prepared ahead of play, the story is worked out, and the whole operation is meticulously planned – it is always in a sense improvisatory. If the players pick up on a mistake, the 'puppetmasters' (game creators and operators) will work as fast as they can to incorporate it into the story if possible, so as not to destroy the fabric of the game.

Stewart and Lee describe the process of unfolding an ARG as a dance between players and puppetmasters, in which players are invited to suspend their disbelief for the duration of the story. Within the invitation, they explain, is a promise that you won't be made to feel stupid for playing along. And behind all this is trust on both sides.

This is important, he says, because no-one really knows how this genre works. Printed books bring with them a whole host of familiar protocols around how you read. People are familiar with the physical conventions of a book and the formal conventions of particular genres of book, and hence the experience is codified in a way that allows for a degree of detachment between producer and consumer. In contrast, ARGs as a genre are (in their current form, at least) less than ten years old and have very few established generic or formal codes. So in lieu of a tradition, the genre needs trust between participants.

It's also important because in an ARG suspension of disbelief works very differently. Whereas I know my novel stops being 'real' when I put my book down, an ARG inserts itself into my life in a much less clear-cut way. The game might phone you up, email you, post things to your house; all these events would be part of the story. Unlike a novel, it does not have edges. This lack of edges is typical of the Web. A blog is never finished, there is always a new link, and so on. But for fiction, this poses problems: if I'm suspending disbelief so I can enjoy the story, I want to know that I'm not going to be made to feel stupid for going along with it. I also need to know at what point to snap out of it and start taking things literally again. So it is no surprise that two prominent exponents of a kind of storytelling with no formal boundary-markers (no proscenium arch, if you will) emphasise the importance of trust between creators and participants in such a story.


The late Susan Sontag's recent piece in the Guardian is a passionate plea for the cultural and moral importance of novels. Narratives, she says, are of vital importance in helping humans make sense of their reality. I am one hundred per cent with her on this. However, she confines this faith in the improving power of stories specifically to the novel, while managing to sidestep both the cultural specificity of novels as a form, and role of oral storytellers, court poets, bards, folk tales and the countless other narrative traditions throughout history.

In the course of her rallying-cry for the novel (also, incidentally, a phillippic against those claiming the book to be dead), she inveighs against television (which rant I rather liked), and also proposes 'the hypernovel' as her main example of why fiction on the Net will never work. This 'hypernovel' as she describes it, is characteristically multiple-choice, notionally endless, possibly multi-authored and directionless narrative with none of the salutary benefits of stories that have a beginning, a middle and an end. And this, she implies, will simply not do. Readers like stories.

Given the ahistoricity of her approach to stories in general, it seems likely to me that Sontag takes for granted the established model of print authorship. This by necessity assumes a writer radically severed from its readership - which, as it is a paper book, cannot join the conversation - by a complex and time-consuming book-production process. The way she discusses debates around 'the hypernovel' clearly assume an equivalent level of detachment between the this notional hypernovel's creator and its consumers. But the model of separation between author and readers simply does not work on the Web, a medium characterised by minimal publication lead time and a conversational dynamic. However, this does not mean that, on the Web, storytelling is impossible. Nor does it mean that that nothing is ever authored. It just means it works differently.

The Web is a young medium. And ARGs are - by its enthusiasts' own admission - a very new genre. I would be very surprised if it did not evolve much further. But I'd be interested to know what Sontag might have made of a genre of storytelling that used not print but the Web; and yet, was not directionless or multiple-choice but collaboratively played out; that was authored, but with room for improvisation; and that took as its founding principle a delicate consensual suspension of disbelief rooted not in clear boundaries between 'fact' (the world outside the book) and 'fiction' (the world inside it) but in trust between all participants in the story. [posted by Mary Sebastian on if:book]

Posted by jo at 05:20 PM | Comments (0)

Speculative Data and the Creative Imaginary


Shared Visions between Art and Technology

Speculative Data and the Creative Imaginary: Shared Visions between Art and Technology :: June 4 – August 24, 2007 :: Open weekdays, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. :: National Academy of Sciences, 2100 C St NW, Rotunda Gallery.

This group exhibition of work by artists, designers, architects and computer scientists will present projects based on manipulating data to explore speculative inquiries, imaginary scenarios, and real-time phenomenon. The works will address the malleable matter of data in a number of spaces from outer space to cyberspace, n th dimensional space; urbanized space; public space; virtually embodied space; constructed space; language space; environmental space; and collective space. Contributors to this exhibition include: Sheldon Brown; Christa Sommerer and Laurant Mignonneau; Nell Breyer and Jonathan Bachrach; Ernest Edmonds; George Legrady; Techla Schiphorst; and many others.

Posted by jo at 04:50 PM | Comments (0)



A Programming Handbook for Visual Designers and Artists

Processing: A Programming Handbook for Visual Designers and Artists by Casey Reas and Ben Fry, with a foreword by John Maeda.

It has been more than twenty years since desktop publishing reinvented design, and it's clear that there is a growing need for designers and artists to learn programming skills to fill the widening gap between their ideas and the capability of their purchased software. This book is an introduction to the concepts of computer programming within the context of the visual arts. It offers a comprehensive reference and text for Processing (www.processing.org), an open-source programming language that can be used by students, artists, designers, architects, researchers, and anyone who wants to program images, animation, and interactivity.

The ideas in Processing have been tested in classrooms, workshops, and arts institutions, including UCLA, Carnegie Mellon, New York University, and Harvard University. Tutorial units make up the bulk of the book and introduce the syntax and concepts of software (including variables, functions, and object-oriented programming), cover such topics as photography and drawing in relation to software, and feature many short, prototypical example programs with related images and explanations. More advanced professional projects from such domains as animation, performance, and typography are discussed in interviews with their creators. "Extensions" present concise introductions to further areas of investigation, including computer vision, sound, and electronics. Appendixes, references to other material, and a glossary contain additional technical details. Processing can be used by reading each unit in order, or by following each category from the beginning of the book to the end. The Processing software and all of the code presented can be downloaded and run for future exploration.

Casey Reas is Associate Professor in the Design | Media Arts Department at the University of California, Los Angeles.

Ben Fry is Nierenburg Chair of Design in the School of Design at Carnegie Mellon University, 2006-2007.

Posted by jo at 04:43 PM | Comments (0)

The Aesthetics of Net Literature:


Writing, Reading and Playing in Programmable Media

The Aesthetics of Net Literature: Writing, Reading and Playing in Programmable Media; Peter Gendolla, Jörgen Schäfer (eds.)

During recent years, literary texts in electronic and networked media have been a focal point of literary scholarship, using varying terminology. In this book, the contributions of internationally renowned scholars and authors from Germany, USA, France, Finland, Spain and Switzerland review the ruptures and upheavals of literary communication within this context. The articles in the book focus on questions such as: In which literary projects can we discover a new quality of literariness? What are the terminological and methodological means to examine these literatures? How can we productively link the logics of the play of literary texts and their reception in the reading process? What is the relationship of literary writing and programming?

With contributions by Jean-Pierre Balpe, Susanne Berkenheger, Friedrich W. Block, Philippe Bootz, Laura Borrąs Castanyer, Markku Eskelinen, Frank Furtwängler, Peter Gendolla, Loss Pequeńo Glazier, Fotis Jannidis, Thomas Kamphusmann, Mela Kocher, Marie-Laure Ryan, Jörgen Schäfer, Roberto Simanowski and Noah Wardrip-Fruin.

Peter Gendolla (Prof. Dr. phil.) is Professor of Literature, Art, New Media and Technologies at the University of Siegen. Jörgen Schäfer (Dr. phil.) is Assistant Professor at the "Forschungskolleg Medienumbrüche" at the University of Siegen. www.litnet.uni-siegen.de

Posted by jo at 03:26 PM | Comments (0)

MediaRuimte + LAb[au]


B.I.O. Project + EOD02

B.I.O. Project _ Gangpol und Mit [ wwilko / fr ] + mik.musik.! [ pl ] :: B.I.O. project is an original music & visuals project, kind of encounter between two groups of Polish and French artists across a trip in the city of Budapest. Catchy electro or crooner songs, colorfull cartoon or street shootings visuals, every original material you'll hear or see in this project comes from their work in this incredible city of Budapest: traditional anthems, radio sampling, video, slides or super8 shootings, short street happenings, local toys bending, scratches from hungarian second-hand records, vocals from hugarian learning method.

This special european encounter project started with workshop in Budapest (Hu), will continue with workshop in Poznan (Pl), then will be on tour both in France (february) and Poland (march), as a 30 minutes original creation adding to regular sonic and visual lives by Gangpol & Mit, Deuce & Marcin Zazeka, and Gilou DJ set. More info >>


LAb[au] + Frederik De Wilde won the Prix Médiatine with EOD02! The 20 year-old Médiatine Prize rewards innovative contemporary art, no matter their thematic or artistic discipline. It is selected by a professional jury and is organized and hosted by the art center of Woluwe Saint-Lambert.

EOD02 is a new media installation founded on special species of fish that perceive, electro-sense, their environment and communicate with each other by emitting electric signals, either in pulses or waves. The project explores the normal communication mechanisms of electrical fish, including JAR (the means by which a fish avoids attempts by other fish to jam its frequency) and thus investigates communication and non-communication between individual fish as well as between fish and people.

The installation is based on four aquariums of taintless mirror, each presenting a specific composition of fish producing different electric signals. In each aquarium antennas allows capturing the fish signals which are directly related to four speakers transforming these signals into sound, what we hear is the fish's electric signals_ their communications. Further under each aquarium a light bulb is placed pulsing according to the intensity, rhythm, of the emitted signals of the blind fishes. In this manner the electrical impulses of the fishes drive sound and light, an entire audiovisual space.

EOD02 will be exhibited from 28.03 until 11.04 at La Médiatine.

Posted by jo at 01:46 PM | Comments (0)

ambientTV.NET's Faceless


A CCTV Sci-Fi Thriller

FACELESS (UK/AT 2007, 50 min), a CCTV sci-fi thriller directed by Manu Luksch; soundtrack by mukul; piano music by Rupert Huber; co-produced by Amour Fou and Ambient Information Systems; languages: English / German.

In an eerily familiar society, the reformed RealTime calendar dispenses with past and future, and all citizens are faceless. A woman panics when she wakes up with a face. With the help of the Spectral Children she unveils the lost power and history of the human face and begins the search for its future.

FACELESS uses CCTV images obtained under the terms of the UK Data Protection Act as 'legal readymades (objets trouves)'. Legislation requires that the privacy of other persons be protected when data is released. For CCTV recordings, this is typically done by obscuring their faces. Much of FACELESS is driven by the 'Manifesto for CCTV Filmmakers'. The manifesto states, amongst other things, that additional cameras are not permitted on location, since they are rendered redundant by omnipresent video surveillance.

The soundtrack of FACELESS is composed for surround systems.

ambientTV.NET is a crucible for independent, interdisciplinary practice ranging from installation and performance, through documentary, dance, and gastronomy, to sound and video composition and real-time manipulation. Techniques and effects of live data broadcasting and transmission provide theme, medium, and performative space for many of the works.

Posted by jo at 01:40 PM | Comments (0)

XL Terrestrials



The XL Terrestrials present "THE TRANSMIGRATION OF CINEMA" :: A screening program ranging from art flix to mainstream movies to guerrilla media to ubiquitous online effluvium, all presented in an open forum theater as an interactive and self-diagnostic application that will tell us if we are still connected to human consciousness, and how might we still access a customized and liveable "Operating System" based on un-programmed desires, community and individuation.

The XL Terrestrials, a team of unlicensed psycho-media analysts and illegitimate art practitioners from San Francisco, Berlin and beyond, present this cinematic, theatrical and ecological examination of movies, mass media, the internet, and You, the human species, in the midst of an epic-scale virtual migration.

Recently back from their eastern Europe and Balkan region research expedition, the XL Terrestrials bring you an incredible collection of "no border" cinema in combination with strategies for disengaging the "OS - Spectacle 2.0" in times of war, hypermarkets, and virtual cul de sacs.

Posted by jo at 01:29 PM | Comments (0)

Interview with Gazira Babeli by Tilman Baumgärtel


My body can walk barefoot, but my avatar needs Prada shoes

Tilman Baumgärtel: Is Gazira Babeli your real name? If not, tell us a bit about your existence outside of SL.

Gazira Babeli: Yes, it's my real name in Second Life but most of people call me Gaz'. Outside SL, my existence is not so different from yours... drinking, eating, sleeping, meeting people, looking at a computer monitor and working the least possible.

Tilman Baumgärtel: You mess around with the code in Second Life. Can you give me a non-technical description how you insert your code into the system?

Gazira Babeli: Codes are just instructions, imperative verbs. An example: PUSH-IT-FAR... a box, a Museum, a Church, an avatar-person... or an entire avatar audience. The result could be spectacular and/or create social troubles. I found it easier to call these instructions "performances" or "actions". It makes sense in SL frame-space 'cause the results look more like a sensible real space than a computer output.

Tilman Baumgärtel: Why do it at all? Isn't Second Life fun enough as an imitation of the real?

Gazira Babeli: Yes, imitation is fun, but it's only the "background color" of every possible behavior. I'm exploring that.

Tilman Baumgärtel: Why intervene into Second Life, if there is a whole world out there. What is difference between a performance in SL and in the real world?

Gazira Babeli: I would say that the term "whole world" itself is more or less virtual. There's a whole world of people working in call-centers and one hand-making shoes. There's a whole world considering itself privileged because it can have access to information and spends a great deal of its life idling on Office or on a Web Browser. We keep forgetting that what we call Real Life has been a virtual frame for a long time. Second Life offers the chance to build and deconstruct this space in the form of a theatre performance. What's the difference? I'm trying to find out. For the moment I like to say: my body can walk barefoot, but my avatar needs Prada shoes.

Tilman Baumgärtel: Are you familar of the net.art of the 1990s, and is your work influenced by the likes of Jodi et al?

Gazira Babeli: COME.TO.HEAVEN actions are inspired by Ives Klein and JODI. Weird mix, don't ask me why. I also loved Alexei Shulgin 386DX shows and some extremely conceptual stuff by Florian Cramer. RTMark net.prankster projects was really weird. It has been a very meaningful scene. For me net.art is like a wild middle-age of Internet.. Second Life seems to offer a Renaissance Perspective.

Tilman Baumgärtel: Do you create any work outside of SL? Have you shown your work in the real world and if yes how?

Gazira Babeli: This is an interesting problem. First: I cant get out of Second Life because I exist only thanks to Second Life. Two: I saved thousands of high-resolution images and videos that some people, in the physical world that u call RL, are willing to publish. An interesting solution would be the one I experienced with the PEAM festival. I simply offered the curator the digital images and a very detailed license with all the print specifications. At present Im finalizing the shooting of a movie which draws inspiration from "Simon of the Desert" by Bunuel and from the early Buster Keaton. The set is a portable desert, as big as 16 regions, and very likely the title is going to be "Gaz' of the Desert". I hope it will reach somehow physical world, because the only thing I really cant stand in SL is going to the movies. I find it very disturbing for an avatar who is already living in a film-like environment.

Tilman Baumgärtel: Did Linden labs approach you or even try to kick you out due to you actions, especially the "Grey Goo" performance? Or did the builders of the Virtua Art Center come down on you?

Gazira Babeli: During "Second Jesus", one of my first performances, I have been contacted by a Linden. I believe it only wanted to understand if my aim was to offend Christian beliefs; I did not want to offend anyone, of course. "Grey Goo" was a trivial trick, quite amazing but totally harmless. Media probably misunderstood some information, spreading the "grey goo bandits" panic. I do not believe Lindens want to interfere as "virtual cops", they have more substantial problems and aims. I think Lindens would prefer residents to solve their internal troubles instead of filing a "Report Abuse". The Artwork "DONT say" is the result of this consideration: it allows to register those words we consider abusive and when someone pronounces them is seized by a tornado and shaken up until he apologizes. The effect is very cartoon-like.. Wile E. Coyote and Road Runner. After "Singing Pizza" (the symbolically abusive installation in Ars Virtua), the director Rubaiyat Shatner wanted to talk to me, he was worried and amused. We became friends though maintaining different views on SL-Art. Most SL residents believe they can build only visible "objects", but the range of behaviours and the margins of freedom are wider than most people think.

Tilman Baumgärtel: Most of your works seem to focus on manipulation of the technology of SL rather than e.g. intervening into the social conventions. Why?

Gazira Babeli: It's strange.. some people asked me the same question reversed. From my point of view, we are talking of two elements which are complementary, not divisible. SL is a complex society and without a univocal final aim. It includes heterogeneous social forms and conventions. The social-symbolic exchange is generally based on a sort of parody of the consumer-oriented western world... in brief, gadgets on which to build up one's identity. This happens in a fairly anarchic and pacific way, thanks to a "dictatorship" of the technologic protocol, strictly defining properties and utilization concessions. Now we consider Google as a friend but even Google is a strange phantom-dictatorship on information. It this good or bad? Try to imagine internet without Google. Now, SL is a smaller environment compared to the Web, but I think it is a step ahead. My art consists in experimenting in an ironic and "pop" way the complementary and often contradictory aspects of a "whole world" which, despite being inhabited by "puppets", it hosts at least a million people. Real people.

Tilman Baumgärtel: A lot of people are put off exactly by the consumerist or capitalist leanings of SL, and - unlike you - not every body sees them as a satire, but rather as a confirmation of the status quo. Can you imagine a more utopian system (without money, without exchange value, without work...), and would you prefer it?

Gazira Babeli: We are mixing up two different issues: anthropological observation and ethical judgement. Of course Id love to login in a space called "First Utopia"! I can even imagine it but only from a technical point of view peer-to-peer protocols taught me a lot. Would I prefer it? I honestly cant answer to this question, first I should live in it a few months. Second Life, on the contrary, is an accomplished fact. If I like SL? I never said that and I dont want to say it. You talk about satire, I repeat parody. The distorted and conscious imitation of a model is something concerning theatre or literature.

If you have grandeur manias you can buy a castle and crown yourself King even if you are connected from a small flat in the suburbs; if you feel antisocial you can become a black box there are the headquarters of the French National Front and of the Anti National Front. The majority of the people I met are aware of this imitation-distortion the parody of what we call real life. ["My body can walk barefoot, but my avatar needs Prada shoes" Interview with Gazira Babeli by Tilman Baumgärtel via nettime] Related 1, 2.

Posted by jo at 01:18 PM | Comments (0)



Free OS dedicated to Real Time A/V Processing

pure:dyne has been created to provide a complete and ready made environment for artists and developers who are looking for a free operating system dedicated to real time audio and video processing. The pure:dyne project provides tools and an optimized platform to try out and work on a large range of applications. It comes with optimized and tested software such as Supercollider, Icecast, csound, Packet Forth, fluxus and much more, including of course Pure Data and a great collection of essential externals and abstractions (PDP, PiDiP, Gem, GridFlow, RRadical, PixelTango ...). The Studio "classics" have not been forgotten (Ardour, LADSPA, seq24, Audacity ...) and numerous essential graphics software are also bundled (Inkscape, Gimp, Blender ...).

The pure:dyne project is a growing community effort maintained by media artists for media artists. It is an ideal platform for audiovisual performances, installations and FLOSS+Art workshops and courses.

Key Features:
- Jack oriented GNU/Linux distribution
- Complete FLOSS Home studio solution and live performance system
- No bloat ! fast minimal desktops (fluxbox, evilwm, dwm)
- Live Distribution (works the same on CD, HD, USB, ...)
- UnionFS system and multiuser support
- Low Latency Kernel (Ingo Molnar's -rt kernel patches)
- Support for Firewire audio devices (FreeBoB inside)
- Optionnal support for NVIDIA and ATI evil blobs
- mmx + sse gcc optimisations applied when relevant
- Compatible with any dyne:II modules
- Easy installation, maintenance and update
- SDK tools (dynesdk + milkman) and gcc included for customisations
- International Languages support
- Mactel support
- More modules available via direct download

Website/Doc -> http://puredyne.goto10.org
IRC server -> irc.goto10.org #pure:dyne
MailingList -> http://lists.goto10.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/puredyne


Direct Download mirrors
Torrent (thx to Mute public library)

pure:dyne developers are :
Aymeric Mansoux - http://320x200.goto10.org
Chun Lee - http://sonicvariable.goto10.org
Antonios Galanopoulos - http://stereocilia.goto10.org
Karsten Gebbert - http://krgn.net
Rob Canning - http://www.robcanning.info

GOTO10 would like to thank jaromil (http://rastasoft.org) for providing a very nice base system to work on and on which we can grow pretty things. We would also like to thank everyone on the pure:dyne mailing list for their constant help, feedback and support.

Posted by jo at 01:05 PM | Comments (0)

070707: UpStage Festival


REMINDER! Call for Participation

070707: UpStage Festival, a festival of live online performances to celebrate the launch of UpStage 2: you are warmly invited to create your own original cyberformance and perform it to a global audience, using UpStage. DEADLINE: MARCH 31.

Purpose-built for live interactive performance events, UpStage is easy and fun to use. It works via a web browser so you don't need to download or install anything to create or attend a performance. The UpStage team can help you to learn how to use the software and give advice on devising work in UpStage and creating graphics.

To learn more about UpStage, come to the next open session: Wednesday 7 March, 9 pm New Zealand time - check here for your local time.

To submit a proposal, email the following information to info[at]upstage.org.nz:

o working title of your cyberformance and 3-4 sentences about it;
o names and locations of people involved;
o brief background/bios (not more than 300 words);
o preferred time(s), in your local time, for presentation on 070707;
o contact email and postal address.

Performances can be on any theme or topic - adapt a stage classic, tell your own story or go for the avant garde! The only rules are it must be no longer than 21 minutes, and must be created and performed in UpStage.

The deadline for submissions is MARCH 31 2007; selections will be made shortly after this and you will be advised as soon as possible. The festival will take place online in UpStage, and screened at the New Zealand Film Archive, Wellington, NZ, on 070707 (7 July 2007). There is no entry fee; participating artists will be listed in a printed programme and on the UpStage web site, and will receive a DVD of the festival and copies of promotional material.

The development of UpStage 2 has been funded by the Community Partnership Fund of the New Zealand Government's Digital Strategy; project partners are CiityLink, MediaLab and Auckland University of Technology.

For futher information, email info@upstage.org.nz or visit www.upstage.org.nz

helen varley jamieson
UpStage project manager

Posted by jo at 10:54 AM | Comments (0)

March 22, 2007

Upgrade! Boston



UPGRADE! BOSTON: Eric Gordon + Show-n-tell :: WHEN: March 22, 7 pm :: WHERE: Art Interactive, 130 Bishop Allen Drive, at the corner of Prospect Street, Cambridge. Free parking in the lot on the corner or take the T to Central Square and walk 1 block OR please join us for live broadcast (4:00 pm SLT) from Emerson College Island (182, 112, 23), Second Life.

Eric Gordon will present “The Digital Possessive: Private Spaces in Public Space.” Gordon is an assistant professor in the Department of Visual and Media Arts at Emerson College in Boston. His work focuses on technology in public space, perceptions of place in synthetic worlds, and social software in teaching and learning. His book The Urban Spectator: Emerging Media and the Consumption of the American City is forthcoming from Wayne State University Press.

Show-n-tell will present “webAffairs,” her book about an adult video web community and her story of being both an observer and a performer. Show-n-tell was trained as a graphic designer and artist. She has been designing personal work for the Web practically since its inception the early '90s. She grew up in Turkey and upon graduation from high school came to the U.S. to continue her studies. She currently teaches and resides in the Boston area.

Upgrade! Boston is curated by Jo-Anne Green for Turbulence.org in partnership with Art Interactive. It is one of 22 nodes currently active in Upgrade! International, an emerging network of autonomous nodes united by art, technology, and a commitment to bridging cultural divides. If you would like to present your work or get involved, please email jo[at]turbulence.org.

Posted by jo at 07:00 PM | Comments (0)




AURORA PICTURE SHOW PRESENTS MEDIA ARCHEOLOGY: BELOW-FI :: APRIL 19-21, 2007 :: 800 Aurora Street, Houston, TX 77009 :: Aurora Picture Show, recognized as the most innovative microcinema in Texas, presents the fourth annual Media Archeology Festival April 19-21, 2007. Featuring live audio-visual events at three Houston venues, the festival highlights artists who use found and original electronic media to produce live multimedia performances that combine film or video projection, theater, and music.

This year’s festival is titled Media Archeology: Below-Fi and features a number of internationally recognized multimedia artists who eschew computers in the creation of time-based audiovisual work. Curated by New York musician and curator Nick Hallett, the 2007 festival includes performances by Bruce McClure, Ray Sweeten, Dynasty Handbag, Nautical Almanac, Tristan Perich, Quintron and Miss Pussycat, and visuals by Mighty Robot.

“For anyone interested in the future of moving image art, Media Archeology is a must-attend annual event,” explains Aurora Picture Show Founding/Executive Director Andrea Grover.

Curator Nick Hallett has programmed for The Kitchen, New York Underground Film Festival, Ocularis, Monkey Town, Portland Institute of Contemporary Art's TBA festival, Scope Art Fair Hamptons, Artists Television Access (San Francisco), Pacific Film Archive and All Tomorrow's Parties rock festival in addition to his regular series in New York: Harkness A/V (time based media salon), Darmstadt (contemporary music), and Maison Du Chic (multimedia "cabaret"). Hallett's creative projects range from composing music for film and theater to installation and performance. He originated the band "Plantains," which from 2000 to 2003 operated as a live multimedia act, with electronic music and video.

Media Archeology: Below-Fi venues include Aurora Picture Show, Domy Bookstore, and The Orange Show Center for Visionary Art. For program dates and times visit www.aurorapictureshow.org or call 713.868.2101.

Media Archeology Schedule

Bruce McClure :: Thursday, April 19, 8:30pm :: Aurora Picture Show, 800 Aurora Street :: Tickets are $10 per show ($8 for Aurora members) or $15 for a festival pass ($10 for Aurora members) and are available by contacting Aurora at 713.868.2101 or aurora[at]aurorapictureshow.org.

Bruce McClure uses the tools and occasion of film projection to create a visceral hybrid of vaudeville, installation and cinema. Drawing on the experience of Harold Edgerton's stroboscopic flash and the flicker films of recent decades, McClure applies his formal training as an architect to construct mind-altering, multi-projector works of light and obstruction accompanied by optical sound.

Ray Sweeten :: Thursday, April 19, 8:30pm :: Aurora Picture Show, 800 Aurora Street :: Tickets are $10 per show ($8 for Aurora members) or $15 for a festival pass ($10 for Aurora members) and are available by contacting Aurora at 713.868.2101 or aurora[at]aurorapictureshow.org.

Ray Sweeten extends the tradition of experimental- cinema pioneer (and Houston native) Mary Ellen Bute with his use of the oscilloscope–an instrument which charts the flow of electrical impulse on an x and y axis–to generate lush, geometric animations. Though its main applications are in the scientific research field, Sweeten uses the oscilloscope to visualize compositions for sweeping electronic sound, creating unique sculptural patterns.

Dynasty Handbag :: Friday, April 20, 8:30 pm :: Domy Bookstore, 1709 Westheimer (rain location: Aurora Picture Show) :: Tickets are $10 per show ($8 for Aurora members) or $15 for a festival pass ($10 for Aurora members) and are available by contacting Aurora at 713.868.2101 or aurora[at]aurorapictureshow.org.

Born out of the San Francisco experimental rock scene, Dynasty Handbag is the one-woman/portable/electro/performance/music vehicle created and executed by "crackpot genius" (Village Voice) Jibz Cameron. Her elastic physicality, miraculous timing, minimalist melody arrangements combined with an over the top stage persona make for a piece of art comedy that is the expulsion of all things serious in a young woman.

Nautical Almanac :: Friday, April 20, 8:30 pm :: Domy Bookstore, 1709 Westheimer (rain location: Aurora Picture Show) :: Tickets are $10 per show ($8 for Aurora members) or $15 for a festival pass ($10 for Aurora members) and are available by contacting Aurora at 713.868.2101 or aurora[at]aurorapictureshow.org.

Nautical Almanac is the duo of Baltimore-based artists Carly Ptak and Twig Harper. By breaking apart amateur electronic devices, guitar pedals, stereo components, and children's toys, the two have created an arsenal of original musical instruments, from which they generate their explosive and genre-defying sound.

Tristan Perich, 1-Bit Music :: Saturday, April 21, 8:30pm :: The Orange Show, 2402 Munger (rain location: Aurora Picture Show) :: Tickets are $10 per show ($8 for Aurora members) or $15 for a festival pass ($10 for Aurora members) and are available by contacting Aurora at 713.868.2101 or aurora[at]aurorapictureshow.org.

Tristan Perich’s 1-Bit Music project harnesses the most basic form of digital sound to complex, electrifying effect. Incorporating original minimal techno music which has been programmed and implemented into simple circuitry available in the form of a CD jewel case, Tristan accompanies his art-cum-music devices with live drumming and 1-Bit video.

Quintron and Miss Pussycat :: Saturday, April 21, 8:30pm :: The Orange Show, 2402 Munger (rain location: Aurora Picture Show) :: Tickets are $10 per show ($8 for Aurora members) or $15 for a festival pass ($10 for Aurora members) and are available by contacting Aurora at 713.868.2101 or aurora[at]aurorapictureshow.org.

Direct from the 9th ward of New Orleans, organ player and inventor Mr. Quintron, along with his partner-in-crime, Miss Pussycat, deliver a frenzied musical experience featuring "swamp tech" beats played on the Drum Buddy, a mechanically-rotating, five-oscillator, light-activated drum machine. As Mr. Quintron fingers boogie woogie basses and gospel chords on his nightclub organ (built out to resemble a car) and spins the Drum Buddy as a DJ scratches a record, Miss Pussycat plays maracas and performs avant-garde puppet theater.

Visuals by Mighty Robot A/V Squad: Mighty Robot are Brooklyn’s legendary visuals team, using the techniques of the 60s Psychedelic Lightshow as their starting point to create an hybrid of expanded cinema, synesthetic improvisation, and general mayhem. “The Mighty Robot Audio Visual Squad were on top form this night and the stage was constantly washed in waves of color and texture”— Punkcast

Ticket Information

Tickets to each individual show are $10 per show ($8 for Aurora members) or Aurora fans can purchase a $15 festival pass ($10 for Aurora members) to all performances. Tickets are available by contacting Aurora at 713.868.2101 or aurora[at]aurorapictureshow.org.

About Aurora Picture Show

Founded in 1998, the Aurora Picture Show is the only facility of its kind in the Southwest. Art in America has called it “one of the most interesting and unusual new spaces in Houston.” Housed in a 1924 converted church building in the Heights this 100 seat theater is part of the micro-cinema movement that began in the mid-1990’s. Aurora supports non-commercial independent and artist-made film, video and new media artists through fifty programs a year. Aurora’s human scale promotes a meaningful and community-oriented exchange between artists and audiences.

Aurora Picture Show is funded by its stellar membership, Houston Endowment, Inc, The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, the Brown Foundation,Inc., Oshman Foundation, Nightingale Code Foundation, Texas Commission on the Arts, The City of Houston through the Houston Arts Alliance, and National Endowment for the Arts. Aurora Picture Show is a proud member of Fresh Arts Coalition.

Contact: Delicia Harvey
Phone: 713.868.2101, Fax: 713.868.2104

Posted by jo at 01:07 PM | Comments (0)



at De Balie Amsterdam

Announcing PLAYING THE URBAN, 31 March 2007, De Balie Amsterdam :: MOBILE LEARNING GAME KIT with Jan Simons (Associate Professor New Media Studies, University of Amsterdam); PLASTICITY: A GAME FOR URBAN PLANNING with Mathias Fuchs (Senior Lecturer, Programme Leader in Creative Games, University of Salford) and Steve Manthorp (Special Project Manager, Bradford)

This presentation introduces a recently developed game for urban planning. The game, based on the architectonic visions and challenges of British architect Will Alsop is demonstrated, its features are explained, and a variety of planning processes, strategies and problems are shown in detail. LOGO PARC (Danikl van der Velden, Katja Gretzinger, Matthijs van Leeuwen, Matteo Poli, Gon Zifroni) Logo Parc is a research project on design and publicspace, carried out at the Jan van Eyck Academy,

Maaike Lauwaert
University of Maastricht
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences,Department Of History
P.O. Box 616
6200 MD Maastricht


Reservations and additional Information: Mediastudies-fgw[at]uva.nl
Info: debalie.nl
TEL. +31(0)20 55 35 100

Posted by jo at 12:52 PM | Comments (0)

Soundscape: Boston


Call for Contributions

As part of the Soundmarks exhibition at Art Interactive, June 8 – August 18, 2007, new media artists Zach Poff + N.B. Aldrich are seeking audio recordings of the Boston metropolitan area for their work Soundscape: Boston. The submission deadline is April 1, 2007.

The artists are asking local residents to contribute audio recordings of meaningful elements of their acoustic environment, whether extraordinary or commonplace: from the stories of loved ones to the hiss of the morning coffee pot.

Soundmarks is comprised of five site-specific sound and video installations by Amy Stacey Curtis and the collaborative team of Zach Poff + N.B. Aldrich. Employing both new media and traditional technologies, the artists experiment with the ways in which art can serve as a catalyst for common experience and a site for community exchange.

Please visit the website for more complete information about the project and for instructions on donating your recordings. Soundscape: Boston can only work with a community-donated database of sounds, so please contribute!

Posted by jo at 12:11 PM | Comments (0)

Remote Presence: Streaming Life



CALL FOR PARTICIPANTS: LIVE PERFORMANCES OR REMOTE VISUAL / SONIC STREAMERS :: Remote Presence: Streaming Life workshop, part of the Pixelache 2007 "Architectures of Participation" Festival is looking for participants to their final event / happening / party :: MUU galleria, Lvnnrotinkatu 33, 00180 Helsinki, Finland, +358 (0)9-625 972.

Neoscenes invites your incoming audio (mp3, ogg) and video (QT) streams for local playing, re-broadcast on the net, and re-mix. local participants in Finland are also welcome to bring sonic and/or visual set-ups to plug in to the mix and join the party. PLEASE EMAIL John Hopkins at jhopkins[at]commspeed.net with your proposal or for further information.

2000 - 2400, Saturday, 31 March 2007, Helsinki (EET) GMT+2 ** 1900-2300, Saturday, 31 March 2007, Berlin (CET) GMT+1 1:00-5:00 PM, Saturday, 31 March 2007, NYC (EST) GMT-4 10:00 AM - 2:00 PM, Saturday, 31 March 2007, Los Angeles (PST) GMT-7 0300 - 0700, Sunday, 01 April 2007, Sydney (EST) GMT+10 [Go to http://www.timeanddate.com/worldclock/ for times in other locations]

And, we will also have an IRC chat open on:
network: irc.freenode.net
channel: #neoscenes
this will be projected during the event...

Posted by jo at 11:37 AM | Comments (0)

Diapason Gallery NYC presents


OptoSonic Tea

Diapason, gallery for sound and intermedia presents... OptoSonic Tea @ Diapason NYC :: Tuesday, March 27, 8:30pm :: Live sets by: Janene Higgins (video mix) with Mari Kimura (violin and interactive computer) and Jennifer Reeves (dual 16mm film projection) with Anthony Burr (music) :: Invited artist: Tony Dove :: Suggested donation: $7 :: Organized by Katherine Liberovskaya and Ursula Scherrer.

OptoSonic Tea is a new regular series of meetings dedicated to the convergence of live visuals with live sound which focuses on the visual component. These presentation-and-discussion meetings aim to explore different forms of live visuals (live video, live film, live slide projection and their variations and combinations) and the different ways they can come into interaction with live audio. Each evening features two different live visual artists or groups of artists who each perform a set with the live sound artists of their choice. The presentations are followed by an informal discussion about the artists' practices over a cup of green tea. A third artist, from previous generations of visualists or related fields, is invited specifically to participate in this discussion so as to create a dialogue between current and past practices and provide different perspectives on the present and the future.

Janene Higgins' videos and digital media have been presented internationally at numerous festivals and galleries, including The 2006 New York Video Festival; Documenta in Kassel, Germany; Museum of Contemporary Art, Lyon; City of Women Festival, Slovenia; The Chelsea Art Museum, NYC; MAD '03 in Madrid; Art Institute of Chicago; Experimenta Festival in Buenos Aires; and at The Impakt Festival in The Netherlands. Using laptop, mixers, tapes, and camera, she developed a technique for live video performance, and has collaborated with many of New York's pre-eminent composers and improvisors of new music, including duo performances with Elliott Sharp, Ikue Mori, Alan Licht, Okkyung Lee, Aki Onda, Nurit Tilles, and Zeena Parkins. Higgins is a frequent artist-in-residence at the Experimental Television Center, and is a recent recipient of their Electronic Arts grant. She has given workshops on her approach to video performance at A.I.R. Gallery and the Chelsea Art Museum, NYC, and at the Watson Festival at Carnegie Mellon University.

Mari Kimura: Hailed by The New York Times as "a virtuoso playing at the edge,"composer/violinist Mari Kimura is widely admired for her revolutionary extended technique "Subharmonics" and for the solo performances of diverse programs including her works with interactive computer music. She has won numerous awards both in her native Japan and in the U.S., and has been invited to give solo performances in international festivals around the world including Spring in Budapest, Other Minds Festival in San Francisco, International Bartok Festival, Festival Cervantino in Mexico, ISCM World Music Days, and at IRCAM, Paris. Ms. Kimura's works have been supported by grants including Jerome Foundation, Arts International, Japan Foundation, the New York State Council on the Arts, and the New York Foundation of the Arts. Since September 1998, Ms. Kimura has been teaching a graduate class in Computer Music Performance at The Juilliard School in New York City.

Jennifer Reeves (b. 1971, Ceylon) is a New York-based filmmaker whose films have shown the world over, from the Berlin, Sundance, Vancouver, London, Toronto, New York, and Rotterdam International Film Festivals to Princeton, MOMA, and the 2006 Whitney Biennial. Reeves' debut feature film THE TIME WE KILLED (2004) won the FIPRESCI Critics prize at the Berlin Film Festival, Outstanding Artistic Achievement at OUTFEST, and Best NY, NY Narrative Feature at the Tribeca Film Festival. The Village Voice Film Critic9s poll honored TWK with votes for: Best Film, Best Cinematography, and Best Performance. As director of TWK Reeves was nominated for a 2005 Independent Spirit Award.

As a clarinetist, Anthony Burr has enjoyed a distinguished career as an exponent of contemporary music performing, often solo, with many leading groups, including Elision, Klangforum Wien, Ensemble Sospeso, and the Chamber Music Sociey of Lincoln Center. Among the composers with whom he has worked are: Alvin Lucier, Helmut Lachenmann, Brian Ferneyhough, and Magnus Lindberg. Burr has performed widely outside the classical arena with artists including Jim O'Rourke, John Zorn, Mark Feldman, Chris Speed, Jim Black, Ikue Mori, Tim Barnes, Ted Reichman, Mark Dresser, and Briggan Krauss. As a composer Burr has specialized in the creation of epic scale mixed media pieces often in collaboration with other artists. Burr has produced and/or engineered records for Charles Curtis, La Monte Young, and Ted Reichman. New releases include the music of Alvin Lucier on sigma/antiopic and a trio album with Chris Speed and Oscar Noriega.

Toni Dove is an artist/independent producer who works primarily with electronic media, including virtual reality , interactive video installations, performance and DVD ROMs that engage viewers in responsive and immersive narrative environments. Her work has been presented in the United States, Europe and Canada as well as in print and on radio and television. Projects include Arxheology of a Mother Tongue, a virtual reality installation with Michael Mackenzie, Banff Centre for the Arts (see the book 3Immersed in Technology2 from M.I.T. Press) and an interactive cinema installation, Artificial Changelings, which debuted at the Rotterdam Film Festival, and was part of the exhibition: Body Micanique, at the Wexner Center for the Arts, Ohio, at the Institute for Studies in the Arts at Arizona State University International Performance Studies Conference, in "Wired" at the Arts Center for the Capital Region in Troy, N.Y., Book-Ends Conference. Her current project under development is Spectropia, a feature length interactive movie performance for two players also to be released as a linear feature film. It previewed as a work in progress at Lincoln Center in Scanners, the New York Video Festival 2006. A DVD ROM, Sally or the Bubble Burst, an interactive scene from the Spectropia project is distributed on the Cycling '74 label and has toured as an installation. Dove has received numerous grants and awards, including the Rockefeller Foundation, the Greenwall Foundation, the Langlois Foundation, New York State Council on the Arts, National Endowment for the Arts, New York Foundation for the Arts, The LEF Foundation, and the Eugene McDermott Award in the Arts from M.I.T.

1026 6th Avenue, 2S
New York NY 10018
(212) 719-4393

Avenue of the Americas between 38th and 39th Streets,
two blocks south of Bryant Park.
Subways: 1, 2, 3, 9, B, D, F, Q, N, R, W to Times Square/42nd Street

Posted by jo at 11:24 AM | Comments (0)

Upgrade! Sćo Paulo


Silvia Laurentiz

Martha C C Gabriel will launch Upgrade! Sćo Paulo on April 18, 2007 with a presentation by Silvia Laurentiz :: 7:30 pm @ i-People: Av Vergueiro 727, next to the Vergueiro Subway Station.

Cybernetics in Art: From Theory to Artworks by Silvia Laurentiz: The Cybernetics realized a big conceptual leap in the 1960s, emphasizing the information and organization processes. It meant that the focus would also be in the questions of language that would allow communication between different systems, for it was a science of the communication and control in the human being and machines. However, the definition of cybernetics was widening until it became what it is today: the study of systems -- or organisms -- complex and adaptive. The idea of programs, models, mathematics calculations and formulations, mobility, chance, networks, emergent patterns, multiple perspectives, generative structures, procedure authorship, semantic events and labyrinth, began to take part of artistic propositions. This talk will present four artworks that use some mechanisms introduced by cybernetics and the notion of system in the digital poetry that demonstrate the narrow relationship between poetics and the codes of the computational logic.

Silvia Laurentiz is professor at the department of Fine Arts of the School of Communication and Arts of the University of Sćo Paulo. PhD in Communication and Semiotics from PUC/SP (Pontifķcia Universidade Católica de Sćo Paulo), Master's Degree in Multimedia from State University of Campinas (UNICAMP) and Bachelor of Arts. Graphics and multimedia designer and art & new technologies researcher, she has developed works in virtual reality, multimedia and web art, participating of several international exhibitions and conferences.

Upgrade! Sćo Paulo was founded by Martha C C Gabriel.

Posted by jo at 10:34 AM | Comments (0)

Batteries Not Included: Mind as Machine?



Batteries Not Included: Mind as Machine? CALL FOR ENTRIES :: DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSION: MAY 5, 2007 :: The 6th Shrewsbury Open will be taking place between 14 July and 2 September 2007 and will once again be linking its theme to the annual 'Darwin Summer Symposium' which this year will be exploring Artificial Intelligence or a-life.

"From the pioneering work of artists such as Edward Ihnatowicz in the 1970s to today's evolutionary robotics and generative artworks, the field promises autonomous intelligence that will be capable of existing in hostile and alien environments and learning as they go" Paul Brown, artist and writer, Chair of the Judges.

Whilst the Darwin Summer Symposium provides a context for the selection of the exhibition, the theme is intended to provoke a wide range of responses from artists who may choose to interpret this theme is many different ways.


Download submission details and entry forms or email openinfo[at]shrewsbury.gov.uk

Artists awards and prizes include #3000 first prize, #1000 prize, #500 People's Choice prize and a new #500 Bang & Olufsen of Shrewsbury prize.

Judging panel chaired by Paul Brown, artist and writer, visiting professor University of Sussex, artist Shirley Chubb, Meroe Candy Arts Project Manager at the Wellcome Trust and Catherine Mason, art historian and researcher into the early development of the computational arts in the UK.

Further information about the Darwin Summer Symposium.

Posted by jo at 10:32 AM | Comments (0)

Introducing The Artmob (beta): Benjamin Thomas


Subscribe Now!

The Artmob is pleased to announce its pilot project from artist Benjamin Thomas. Benjamin's work on OBFAT introduces "Original Advice and Inspirational Phrases" to the public under a Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike licence. Phrases are sometimes matched with typeset and graphics by Benjamin.

For 30 days, Benjamin Thomas will be broadcasting phrases, graphics, and calls for participation via SMS/MMS direct to subscriber's mobile phones through The Artmob. To find out more and subscribe please visit TheArtmob.net.

The Artmob is a new project currently in its pilot stage. We are devoted to curating and commissioning art for mobile devices. Artmob will also provide resources for artists to create mobile content in effort to expand the dialogue on mobile media into the artist realm. For more info and contact information please visit TheArtmob.net.

Posted by jo at 10:07 AM | Comments (0)

Upgrade! Lisbon


Adriana Sa

Lisboa 20 Arte Contemporanea welcomes next Thursday, March 29th @19:00, Upgrade! Lisbon’s monthly gathering featuring artist Adriana Sa. Entrance is free and drinks will be served.

Having studied Music and Fine Arts, Adriana Sa is a transdisciplinary artist, a composing/improvising performer. She has been presenting her work throughout Europe, USA and Japan since the 90s. Her creative processes include the design and construction of the instruments. sound can be articulated with light, architecture, movement, weather or words. Part of the instruments have an architectural scale and they're designed to develop new properties everytime they are installed- you have to enter it to experience it. Space becomes reactive. Adriana Sa's work, whether created with architectural or portable instruments, connects musical performances to specific contexts involving place, memory and person.


Sensations are a contextual product. before arriving to consciousness, sensations are subjectively "selected" by the individual's body, through an orientating reaction - a biological function existing to protect us from sensory over-stimulation. Adriana Sa is interested by these physical criteria, by this bodily intelligence. working with sound in a provocative way, she plays with the transitions between several physical states. Her graphical scores coreograph mainly texture, density, dominance and sequencing.

For her presentation at Upgrade! Lisbon Adriana Sį will present her project THRESHOLDS and from it her sonic light instrument, its versatility (also recurring to previous projects such as data projection + audio playback) as well as some technical/artistic limitations in its present state of development. She will also present some ideas through which those limitations can be overcome.

Posted by jo at 09:08 AM | Comments (0)

Rhizome 2007 Commissions


Open Now!

Rhizome is pleased to announce that in 2007 we will commission eleven new works of Internet-based art with awards ranging from $1000-3000. The deadline for proposal submission is April 2! This year, we are funding in two categories: (1) New Works of Internet-based Art and (2) A Community Project. In the first category, the works may manifest offline, in an exhibition space, on a handheld device, or on other media, but must use the Internet as a primary source. The second commissions category is new this year and will be awarded to one artist or group whose project will benefit our community by enhancing communication, participation, or the user experience on the Rhizome website. The commissions are awarded both by jury and by Rhizome Members through a community voting process. In addition to receiving an award, the commissioned art works will be exhibited on Rhizome.org, installed at the New Museum of Contemporary Art for a celebratory event, and archived in our ArtBase archive of digital art. We encourage you to get involved and spread the word!

Posted by jo at 04:00 AM | Comments (0)

March 21, 2007

Virtual actors take to the stage


"Beamed" from Florida to Illinois

"Actors working in real time from remote locations have been beamed onto a stage where they performed with live, in-the-flesh actors, US researchers say. The broadband-enabled experience allowed the audience to watch a seamless, 3D performance, according to the University of Central Florida. The technology could mean future theatergoers might attend plays where one or more actors are working outside the venue, even in a different country, or from their own homes. "We are not talking about holograms yet or the kind of imagery that requires funky glasses," says Professor John Shafer, a member of the cast. "[But] what we have done for this production has indeed pushed the envelope significantly. The production is a small historical step forward on several levels."

Shafer was hooked to a receiving and transmitting broadband-connected computer that can pull 130 megabytes of data in an instant. Although he performed in Florida, his body was 'beamed' onto a stage at Bradley University in Illinois, where he performed 'with' live actors there, as well as with actors beamed in from the University of Waterloo in Canada. Both 3D and 2D sets consisting of multiple screens and special-effects lighting that helped to give the impression that all the actors, remote or not, existed in a single space." Continue reading Virtual actors take to the stage by Jennifer Viegas, ABC Australia News In Science. [via]

Posted by jo at 08:41 AM | Comments (0)

March 20, 2007

Eva and Franco Mattes' re-enactment of Joseph Beuys'


7000 Oaks

Eva and Franco Mattes (a.k.a. 0100101110101101.ORG) are reenacting Joseph Beuys' "7000 Oaks" in Second Life :: Beuys' project began on March 16, 1982, at Documenta 7, in Kassel. His plan called for the planting of seven thousand trees, each paired with a columnar basalt stone. Beuys intended the Kassel project to be the first stage in an ongoing scheme of tree planting to be extended throughout the world as part of a global mission to effect environmental and social change.

The Mattes planted the first virtual tree on March 16th, 2007, exactly 25 years after the original oak was planted. The 7000 basalt stones have been stacked on Mattes' island in Second Life: Cosmos Island. The diminishing pile of virtual stones will indicate the progress of the project, which will go on until all 7000 oaks and stones will be placed. Second Life inhabitants will have the chance to take part to the performance, placing stones and trees in their lands.


This work is part of Eva and Franco Mattes series of "Synthetic Performances": reenactment of historical performances inside synthetic worlds where body, space and time can be completely reinvented. The series started at the beginning of 2007 and will feature works by artists like Vito Acconci and Marina Abramovic.

"Joseph Beuys' 7000 Oaks" is commissioned by Centro de Arte Juan Ismael, Fuerteventura (Canary Islands, Spain), for the exhibition "Deambulatorios de una jornada, en el principio y el proyecto Tindaya", curated by Nilo Casares.

Posted by jo at 03:00 PM | Comments (0)

[iDC] In The Presence of Networks


A Meditation on the Architectures of Participation

In The Presence of Networks: A Meditation on the Architectures of Participation by John Hopkins (for the Pixelache 2007 festival publication), Helsinki, 17 March 2007

Architectures of Participation is a compelling phrase that attempts literally to frame a deeper fundamental of human existence. This text is a preliminary meditation on that existence and its profound presence.

On the immediate surface, the phrase suggests the grandiose, the monumental, and the static and rigid hegemony of brick-and-mortar -- a suggestion that appears to contravene the deeply dynamic nature of the broader continuum of human relation. This continuum, generated in part through participatory actions, is a far more fundamental space that circumscribes much of our passing presence in this world. We will have to dig deep to find the foundations.

Participation is one reductive descriptor that applies to the infinite range of personal energies expressed and shared during our lived be-ing. Participation is a condition that does not leave our lives until we leave our lives. Participation starts when life starts with the participatory synergy of reproduction. This prototypical participatory act is phenomenal in that the energies of two human beings combine to create the presence of a third human being. Participation is the root of life. Participation follows life in the synergies of parent with child, friend with friend, partner with partner, colleague with colleague, stranger with stranger. We participate in life, in living, every moment.

In the search for another way to understand participation, and to understand the dynamic of social collaboration, it is critical to leave materialism behind. Or at least leave the limited understanding of material expression as a defining Cartesian and mechanistic concept and move instead into a universe defined by and indeed comprising a dynamic configuration of energized flows. This is the basic assumption underlying the following thoughts.

Without this shared human presence, life would be a desert of phenomenal natural events each more alienating in its unpredictability than the previous. It is through the challenging dialectic of human relation that we find understanding, and, ultimately, some meaning in our brief presence in this world.

Social systems frame or perhaps even comprise this fundamental participatory nature of life. These systems are characterized by dynamic constellations of Selves desiring relevant interaction with Others -- most apparently to enhance physical survival. When the system functions properly, the body wins the battle for a time; but what happens to the spirit?

Individual isolation within or as an affect of social systems applies at least a patina of madness to one's presence in the world. It is primarily the a-social or the mad who retreat voluntarily from all human contact -- along with those who are in pursuit of the greater-than-social spirit. The yogi, the hermit, the vision-quester all retreat to isolation in the desert or on the mountain -- to those special places where the brute energy flows of physical nature actively drain the ordering life energy from the body system. This at the same time the chaotic natural flux allows the human spirit to expand almost without limit, but at the definite expense of bodily degeneration. The spirit wins the battle for a time; the body loses.

So, while some humans withdraw to the empty places to watch stars and clouds, let the spirit expand, and listen to the creaking groans of the earth, the rest of us are left elbowing each Other in order to get to the head of the queues for mating, food, and shelter. We fall back to the body fighting for dominance over the inevitable change of dissolution and final death.

Along with the jostling and elbowing for position, small groups gather to share their energy-draining experience and calculate the relative benefits of coordinated survival. Safety seems to inhabit numbers, and numbers add up to enhanced reproductive odds. Numbers also frame the abstracted domain of technology and machines. Machinic devices seem to help guarantee the dominance of one small group over another by supplying some slight edge on reproductive viability. These social constellations create or mandate structures of human relation which pool labor -- the cumulative expended energy of individual lives -- while endeavoring to create survival-technologies that will prolong the life of the collective.

A life-time is a limited period of organized organismic existence that each of us is endowed with by means of some indeterminate process. A primary characteristic of life-time is its absolute and unconditional limit: it runs out. We apparently do have some degrees of freedom to choose how we spend that life-time, so it becomes a question of which pursuits, interests, necessities, and diversions should populate our days. We often forget the absolute limit to it all, and proceed as though there is an unlimited amount of time. There is not. Each moment is a unique passing-through of experience, expenditure of time, and, more importantly, expenditure of energy. Each moment represents a small incremental dissolution in the organized structure of our embodied presence, entropy gnawing at our bones, energy flowing outwards. Each moment's survival is an expression of energy flowing from our bodies. Yes, we spend more or less time ensuring that we take energy into our systems to help maintain the necessary order, but it is never enough: the battery slowly runs down. With this in mind, how then do we choose how to expend our life-times, our dwindling energy stores? Do we value every moment as we should?

Time moving (there is no Other time!) is energy (which is motion) is change (all is) creativity (the foundational expression of energy) is life (the Self is limited but desires immortality and, indeed, is immortally transcendent).

One major choice we face is how much energy to expend in the course of interacting with the Others who populate our lives. How much face-time/energy do we spend on each human we come across. How much time do we spend on those remote Others we cannot see, or cannot hear, or cannot touch? How much time on those many Others who populate the social system we live in. The ones we cross paths with in random and determinate movement? The ones who forcefully find our paths and deflect them from their natural trajectory? The ones who, by their gravity or Light, attract or repel us?

It is this process of giving and receiving energy that is the very fabric of life-time, it accumulates to be the essence of our presence and our life.

Starting from the unitary encounter of the Self with the Other, there is, in the dynamic of the encounter, a sensation of flow (and of a lack of flow). Many terms and instances in language and social structure frame this sensation. It is clear that when there is an open and bi-directional flow between any two individuals that out of the encounter comes an excess of energy -- a condition of in-spiration following the encounter. In the opposite case, in a situation of blockages between the Self and the Other, the encounter is often a loss of creative inertia -- where there is a direct relationship between the sustained intensity of the engaged flow and the creative possibilities coming from it.

If one looks at an accumulation of these binary human systems, each with a potential energy surplus, there begins to appear two structures. The first is a simple network, where individuals in a limited system are connecting, engaging, and being energized by those encounters -- each encounter generating a surplus of energy. The network becomes the source of a powerful collective energy.

The second structure is an evolving social structure, which, by nature, seeks to harness those energies, the energies generated from these individual encounters, for the collective 'good.' The imposition of defined social pathways controls and harnesses the movement of energy between individuals. The fabric of a social system is the accumulation of these proscribed pathways or mediations. Some of the energy invested in the process is tapped off into the social system when the Self and the Other engage with each other through these mediated pathways. Each encounter mediated by the imposed pathways is drained to a greater or lesser degree of its vitality, at the same time that the social system is strengthened by the accumulated energies.

What is this web of interacting flows that together are the accumulated and energized field of a social system? What is the relationship between the individual, the engaged pair of humans, and the collective in this space of flows? Moreover, again, why do we as individuals participate in this system, giving up major fragments of our life-times to it?

By spending one's life-time in the labor of common good, the duration of life time is apparently increased, statistically. By giving life-time to the social system, the social system reciprocates by making available collective, though temporary, solutions to the problem of death. The process of many individuals surrendering their own life-times to the collective creates a pool of energy that can then be expended based on the desires of those who control the social collective. This energy bank, as it were, allows the collective to engage in energy-intensive activities to secure its common survival (though clearly the survival of any particular individual with in the system is secondary!). The larger and more complex that the social system is, the greater the demands on the life-times of those who chose to participate in it. The pathways through which the social system draws these energies from the individual become ever more pervasive, and, at the same time, they recede into near-invisibility compared to the over-riding issue of the survival of the social system.

Does this process actually increase the quantity of life overall? If energy can be neither created nor destroyed, then the energy bank represents a concentration of energy while a relative scarcity of energy remains the condition of the individual. Concentration and rarefaction.

There are more things to meditate upon regarding the relationship between the Self, the Other, and the social, but to close this short text, and to return to the original phrase Architectures of Participation, a few more questions should be posed among the many possible.

What does it mean to participate? Does it mean agreement in action? Does it assume surficial homogeneity of intent? Is there a reciprocal exchange implicit in a participatory system? What characteristics do the prototypical participatory events in life exhibit? What mechanisms exist to guarantee the auspiciousness of participation? Is intuition a key filter in the process of energized participation. Can the individual life-energy contributed to the social system by recalled? Is there a collective means whereby the social energy can be tapped to insure the good of each individual (versus the corporate collective)?

Participation is a set of actions, tasks that might occur back-to-back, face-to-face, or side-by-side. The physical placement of the bodies in relation to each Other gives fundamental characteristics to the participation. Whatever material form it takes, participation precipitates a deeply seated change in point-of-view, in internal energy states -- shifted by the energy of the Other. Participation affects an internal transformation that in turn changes the world.

http://neoscenes.net/travelog/weblog.php; new sonic work: http://neoscenes.net/aud-vid/audio/drift.html.

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Posted by jo at 02:49 PM | Comments (0)

Turbulence Commission:



Turbulence Commission: DISCO-NNECT: An Experimental Video Podcast by Abe Linkoln, with guest remixers Jimpunk and Subculture [Needs Quicktime plugin] :: "DISCO-NNECT" is an experimental video podcast that will broadcast weekly from March 20 to September 23.

"DISCO-NNECT" is a 2007 commission of New Radio and Performing Arts, Inc., (aka Ether-Ore) for its Turbulence web site. It was made possible with funding from the National Endowment of the Arts.

BIOGRAPHIES: Abe Linkoln (2001): Born on the Internet. Lives and works on the Internet. screenfull.net universalacid.net :: Jimpunk (bio) :: Subculture is artist Antonio Mendoza. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife, two children and five working computers. He is younger than Mouchette, sexier than Olia Lialina and more hermetic than jodi.org.

Posted by jo at 11:47 AM | Comments (0)



Support the Troops

Launched yesterday, on the 4th anniversary of the US invasion of Iraq, microRevolt's Stitch for Senate is an initiative of knit hobbyists making helmet liners for every United States Senator. The helmet liner pattern was adapted from a support-the-troops initiative for soldiers stationed in Iraq. All the senators will receive their own helmet liner, and Senators can opt to send helmet liners to a soldier once they receive the helmet. Charitable knitting during wartime has been a tradition since the American Revolution. The Stitch for Senate website will compile testimonies from knitters reviving this cultural trend, seeking to understand what knitters express through wartime knitting: charity, allegiance, patriotism, resistance, radicalism, etc. and use the tradition of political organizing within knitting circles as a space for storytelling, discussion, exchange and protest.

Other microRevolt news: Save the date for the Nike Blanket Petition workshop at the Museum of Arts and Design, NYC, MAY 12. Radical Lace and Subversive Knitting exhibit is on view Jan 25 - June 12, 2007 at Museum of Arts and Design, New York, NY; and Gender Stitchery at Carleton College Art Gallery in Northfield, MN, March 30 - May 6, 2007.

Posted by jo at 11:34 AM | Comments (0)

Interview with Julian Bleecker


On Digitizing Everything and More

"[...] Laminating the lives is an interesting point. Let's look a bit more closely at the current interactions between those worlds: so we have objects with social qualities, thanks to their net-savviness. On the other hand - so it seems - there's a movement to create the virtual realities we had been told about for decades, with Linden Lab's Philip Rosedale talking about "digitizing everything". Are those two discrete notions, or are they part of one process and if so, what kind of reality would it possibly lead to?

I think this notion of digitizing everything is a bit misguided. It presumes that most everything should be digital, without consideration as to what it means to have particular human experiences or activities transferred into digital form. It's a kind of digital-era imperialism or evangelization of the database gospel - "if it can be structured as data, put it on the Internets" - or something. It has so many things wrong about it, beginning with a lack of any sort of critical inquiry as to what it means, or why one would think it worth while, for instance, to have make digital shopping malls in Second Life.

If the project of the digital age is to make everything that we have in "1st life" available in 2nd life, then I think we're on the wrong path. Laminating 1st life and 2nd life isn't about creating digital analogs. It's about elevating human experience in simple and profound ways. This blogject project is an early manifestation of what I think we will start seeing as clever tinkerers experiment with creating meaningful bridges between 1st life and 2nd life in which ethics precedes doing something "just 'cause" it's possible. And those bridges come firstly in very simple expressions of 1st life activity in 2nd life, or 2nd life activity in 1st life.

Bruce Sterling has a great turn-of-phrase I once heard him speak - "we will get the future we deserve." And in this case it means if we want Gap Stores, shopping malls and advertising signage in Second Life, that's what we'll get. But I think many people want something that will yield more habitable worlds, not more efficient ways to market and get people to buy crap. We could create impacts and shape thinking and behavior with digital networks, particularly ones that speak to 1st life. We can create bridges that capture, share and disseminate the current, day by day state of the thinning northern ice cap. We can create a 1st life / 2nd life bridge that makes this condition as present, as impactful and as resonant as a dripping faucet in the next room, rather than an abstraction only occasionally brought to our mind through a newspaper article or cocktail party conversation..." From Sascha Pohflepp's Interview with Julian Bleecker on we-make-money-not-art.

Posted by jo at 09:08 AM | Comments (0)

March 19, 2007

Anne Galloway


Mobile Publics and Issues-Based Art and Design

"Starting with the 'problem' of the public, I look to select historical and philosophical understandings of publics and politics. Building on the work of early American pragmatists like Walter Lippman and John Dewey, I focus on a public that is fragmented and contingent but still very much capable of judgment and action. In order to delve deeper into the kinds of situations or events in which these kinds of publics can come-together I find inspiration in the carnivals and feast crowds so eloquently described by Mikhail Bahktin and Elias Canetti, as well as in Bruno Latour’s "parliament of things" or dingpolitik. I follow that discussion with an overview of recent research into the social and cultural aspects of mobile, context-aware and pervasive computing, and I question the senses of 'public' and 'private' at play. More specifically, following Mimi Sheller, I ask what a non-network model of mobility might look like. The kind of fluid and messy picture that emerges ends up pivoting on acts of coupling and decoupling, or gelling and dissolving, multiple publics and privates around shared concerns or difficult issues.

The chapter culminates in a discussion of what I call issues-based art and design, or those mobile and context-aware projects in which a 'public' is convened around a set of shared concerns or complex issue that cannot be adequately handled by more traditional means. More specifically, I look at mobile technologies being deployed in the interests of political and economic awareness and action, as well as environmental awareness and sustainability. Assessing the limitations and possibilities of these kinds of technological, artistic and design interventions, I conclude by asking where the most productive potentials for mobile publics can be found, and what it will take to actually mobilise them." From Mobile Publics and Issues-Based Art and Design (pdf) by Anne Galloway; form Sampling the Spectrum, edited by Barbara Crow, Michael Longford and Kim Sawchuck, forthcoming from University of Toronto Press.

Posted by jo at 05:26 PM | Comments (0)



Pattern Recognition of Hidden Logos

After investigating on 'semantic capitalism' and 'taylorisation of speech' with the project 'Google Adwords', Christophe Bruno reflects on the economic dynamics of collective hallucination. According to the French net artist "The Web, specifically in its version 2.0, is an implementation of control strategies in writing." On the contrary, the image can't be easily interpreted by a machine remaining a hardly accessible territory. Therefore, he created Logo.Hallucination, a software based on neural image recognition that continuously monitors images on the Internet, to track pattern similarities with corporate logos. The idea is to use image recognition technologies to detect subliminal logos or emblems forms, hidden (mostly involuntarily) in the visual environment or whole images on the net. The 'found' images can be accessed through a weblog, with an argued comparison between the original picture and the (supposedly found) original brand logo.

Like Cayce Pollard, protagonist of William Gibson's 'Pattern recognition', Bruno investigates to find brand loyalty secret that would become every marketing research gold mine. Clearly here there's a massive amount of irony. Every time a hallucination is detected, an email is then sent to the image owner - if the owner is known, to inform him that the "automated monitoring spiderbot has detected a potential infringement of Intellectual Property Law." Logo.Hallucination confirms Bruno's theory on the alliance between the society of control and the Web 2.0 spectacle: media corporations cannot measure their messages real effects and hence they need an additional control structure, like Google and the same Web 2.0. The role of this panoptic web part, achievement of the society of control, is to scientifically analyze the message effect and observe its deviations. The resulting outcome will be sold back to media corporations, so to continuously optimize the whole process in loop." -- Valentina Culatti, Neural.

Posted by jo at 04:40 PM | Comments (0)

Something about Future Appearances in Space



Something about Future Appearances in Space: AN EVENING OF SOUND / VISUAL / DIGITAL / POETRIES with Jim Andrews (from Victoria, BC), Crag Hill (Moscow, ID), Geof Huth (Schenectady, NY), & Nico Vassilakis (Alki Beach) :: WHERE: Nonsequitur CHAPEL PERFORMANCE SPACE at The Good Shepherd, located at 4649 Sunnyside North, just south of 50th Street in Wallingford. 4th Floor :: WHEN: 7:30 PM, FRIDAY, March 30, 2007 :: TICKETS: DONATIONS, $5, at the door :: PRESS CONTACT: Nico Vassilakis.

Subtext is pleased to co-present a special evening of SOUND / VISUAL / DIGITAL / POETRIES at the future home of the Subtext reading series, which is moving from Hugo House to the Chapel Performance Space in June.

Crag Hill has been exploring the world through the prisms of verbal and visual language since his re-birth in the 1970s. Writer of numerous chapbooks and/or other print interventions, including Dict (Xexoxial Endarchy), Another Switch (Norton Coker Press), and Yes James, Yes Joyce (Loose Gravel Press), he has also edited Score Magazine, a publication seeking the edges of writing since 1983. He co-edited, with Bob Grumman, Writing To Be Seen, the first major anthology of visual poetry in 30 years. Crag runs the blog SCOREPAD.

Jim Andrews is a poet-programmer and audio guy who has published Vispo.com since 1995, which is his attempt at creating an online body of literary work that can swim in the brine of the binary. He lived in Seattle 1997-2000 and now lives in Victoria. Recent projects include vispo.com/bp, a recovery of computer poems written by bpNichol in the 80's, and vispo.com/kearns, a binary meditation on the work of Vancouver's Lionel Kearns, a contemporary wreading of Kearns's work.

Nico Vassilakis lives in Seattle. Recent books include chapbook from BCC press, Askew and DIPTYCHS: Visual Poems available at Otoliths' bookshop online. Nico has a DVD of visual poetry titled Concrete: Movies. In 2006, his work was shown at the Wright Exhibition Space as part of the exhibition 5 Visual Poets. He recently STARED in a play about Morton Feldman in NY at the HERE Theatre. With compass and pencil he is drafting his way through dread.

Geof Huth is a writer of textual and visual poetry. Over the years, he has created visual and other poems in a wide variety of formats: lineated verse, prose, paintings, drawings, and films. He has been published in venues as diverse as The American Poetry Review, Dreams and Nightmares, Kalligram, Lost and Found Times, Modern Haiku, La Poire D'Angoisse, Prakalpana Literature, ZYX, and atop bandaids. His chapbook of visual poems, "Out of Character," will soon be published by Paper Kite Press. He writes almost daily on visual poetry at his blog, dbqp: visualizing poetics.

Posted by jo at 02:49 PM | Comments (0)

[ ESC ] : electronic social club


mixer & presentations

[ ESC ] : electronic social club mixer & presentations :: Thursday, March 22, 7 - 10 pm :: Hunter College, 695 Park Avenue, Black Box / Hunter North Room 543 :: / new media / experimental / video / installations / interactive / sound projects / media art /

Like a social club, [ ESC ] is formed around a common interest, activity or location. We bring together MFA students from across New York City to meet and showcase their graduate art work, and to form a common network around the theme of creating social dialogue through art and media. resentations:

freeformed by Catherine Colman, Megan MacMurray, Jadie Oh, Nanna Halinen, Yonatan Kelib (NYU ITP): A community-centred media sharing service for web and mobile phones.

Document by Karl Mendonca, Marcus Pingel, Charles Earl Love Yust (Parsons Design & Technology): An interactive installation that records situated history narrated by pedestrians in Washington Square Park.

Interactive performance by Sherrard Bostwick, Ann Adachi, Juliana Cope (Brooklyn PIMA): Images and sound will be projected into a space sculpted by transparent cloth and clear reflective plastics.

Interactive installation by Fabio Corredor (Hunter College): A multidisciplinary installation and experiment in augmented reality, centred on an iconic image of a prisoner of war from Abu Ghraib.

Video installation by Pilar Ortiz and Francisca Caporali (Hunter College): An experimental video on taxi cabs in New York, conceptualised in a master class with internationally acclaimed Iranian filmmaker Abbas Kiarostami.

ShiftSpace by Mushon Zer-Aviv, Dan Phiffer (NYU ITP): ShiftSpace creates a new public space on the Internet by adding an open source layer above any website.

Directions: take the 6 train to 68 Street; walk North to the entrance on 69th St. between Park and Lexington; Fifth Floor -Hunter North Room 543

for information: electronicsocialclub[at]gmail.com

Posted by jo at 12:55 PM | Comments (0)

Argos – Centre for Art & Media


Anachronism & The Otolith Group

Argos – Centre for Art & Media, Brussels announces two new exhibitions: Anachronism & The Otolith Group :: 27 March – 26 May 2007 :: Werfstraat 13 Rue du Chantier, Brussels 1000 - Belgium :: T: +32 2 2290003 :: E: info[at]argosarts.org

1. Anachronism looks at the work of artists from different generations who have insistently grappled with history, both personal and general, and related issues of nostalgia, retrospection, and temporality. More specifically, their work often refutes the image of history as a neat trajectory moving smoothly forward in time. They acknowledge instead the possibility of working against time—of creating works that deliberately counter received ideas of what the present should look like, what the past was, or what the future will be, and thus direct attention to the seams in the construction and presentation of history. Their alternate “histories” might thus be read as alternate readings of time, and a mode of showing the ultimate constructedness of the narratives we are given about the past as well as the problems inherent to late capitalism’s notion of an inexorably progressive and productive future.

The cinematic cut, spatial dislocation, formal repetition, appropriation, idleness, waste, idiosyncratic archiving, entropic undoing of the object: these are just some of the means these artists use to create the sense of disruption at the heart of the narration of history. In diverse ways, and through various media, their work is thus not so much or certainly not only about history or historical events as a reflection on and questioning of the temporalities implict in history’s unfolding—past, present, and future. And if the possibility of a genuine revolution according to Giorgio Agamben, lies above all in the effort to “change time,” the promise of these works is in their questioning of the temporality of history as it has been given to us so that we might all the better be able to read our present and possibly redefine the future.

Works by 18 international contemporary artists —with several in situ new productions, including a functional cinema built by Tobias Putrih — are featured against the exhibition’s backdrop of a continuous screening of La Jetée, Chris Marker’s historic cinematic meditation on the paradoxes of time and memory. The exhibition is curated by Elena Filipovic, an independent curator and writer based in Brussels.

Participating artists include: Boris Belay, Guillaume Bijl, Tobias Buche, David Claerbout, Babak Ghazi, Felix Gmelin, Aneta Grzeszykowska, Carl Michael von Hausswolff, Erwan Maheo, Chris Marker, Deimantas Narkevicius, Sophie Nys, Paulina Olowska, Roman Ondįk, Tobias Putrih, Pia Rönicke, Martha Rosler, and Bojan Sarcevic.


2. In its first floor exhibition space argos will present the film Otolith I, by the Otolith Group. The Otolith Group was founded in 2002 by the artist Anjalika Sagar and the cultural theorist Kodwo Eshun, who collaborated with the artist Richard Couzins to make Otolith I. The film essay probes the potency of archival images, exploring the poeticisation of mediated memory. Taking its name from otoliths, the minute particles found in the inner ear that help us to balance and to navigate our way across space, the film aims at reorienting our perceptions of the world by weaving personal and public histories together into a meditation upon the persistence of utopian aspirations.

“Earth is out of bounds for us now; it remains a planet accessible only through media”, the viewer is told at the beginning of the film, suggesting a post-nuclear future in which humankind is confined to outer space. Through prolonged space travel, the film tells us, otoliths have ceased to function, leaving homo sapiens unable to walk the earth. Instead the new mutants research images “sifting aging history from the tense present in order to identify the critical points of the twentieth century”. The film’s narrator is Dr. Usha Adebaran Sagar, a fictional descendant of Anjalika Sagar, living in space in the year 2103. The narrator looks back at several generations of women from the Sagar family, linking her own experiences with those of Sagar’s grandmother during the 1960s when she met Russian cosmonaut Valentina Tereshkova, the first woman to orbit the Earth. “For us”, the narrator declares, “there is no memory without image and no image without memory. Image is the matter of memory”. Her attempts to understand multiple dimensions of the historical, the terrestrial and the evolutionary bring together existing images of very different qualities and registers.

In addition, the new video by the Otolith Group, Otolith II, will premiere at Argos on Monday 14th May at 20.30 pm. Following the premiere of the film Anjalika Sagar and Kodwo Eshun of the Otolith Group will talk about the film and their work in general. From the 15th – 26th May, Otolith II will be screened in Argos’ Black Box.

The Otolith Group exhibition is co-produced by Argos and KunstenFestivalDesArts.

Otolith II is being co-produced by Argos, KunstenFestivalDesArts and If I Can't Dance.../Huis & Festival aan de Werf.

Anachronism is supported by:

The Brussels Capital Region
Agnčs B, Bruxelles
Tobias Putrih’s Functional Cinema has been made possible with the kind support of Galerie Almine Rech, Brussels

General support: The Flemish Authorities, the Flemish Community Commission of the Brussels-Capital Region

For more information contact Rebekka Baumann
T: +32 2 2290003
E: Rebekka[at]argosarts.org

Duration of exhibitions: 27 March – 26 May 2007
Exhibition opening times: Tuesday – Saturday 12:00 – 19:00

Posted by jo at 11:50 AM | Comments (0)

Vilnius Media Seminar


Strategies of Tactical Media: Noise Makes Sense

The second session of VMS (Vilnius Media Seminar) has taken place in Vilnius Art Academy on 19th of February (2007). The topic this time was Strategies of Tactical Media: Noise Makes Sense. At first during the seminar the tactical media as a concept was presented and then the significance of tactical media in Eastern Europe was discussed. The key speakers were Alexei Krivolap [BY] and Benjamin Cope [UK, PL]. The moderation was held by Vytautas Michelkevicius. At the moment we are publishing audio files and pictures from the seminar and in a meanwhile we are going to publish the presentations as a working papers here as well.

There were around 30 participants in this seminar. Alexei Krivolap presented the situation of tactical media in Ukraine and Belarus. He screened two tactical media pieces: the serial from Belarus "Web-master & Margarita" which is a remake of very popular russian soap opera "Master & Margarita" and tactical media pieces from Ukraine - "Funny Egs". Benjamin Cope has presented his experience in making radio shows to Polish radio stations. His experiences in travelling all around the country and interviewing local people without having good polish skills was very much of the tactical nature. You can listen to these presentations and discussion here.

Posted by jo at 11:28 AM | Comments (0)

Banff New Media Institute


Call for Applications

I'm very excited about my involvement with the Banff New Media Institute's first research-based Co-production Residency programme, Reference Check, taking place this summer in Banff, Alberta, Canada.

If you're doing graduate or post-graduate research on where art, technology and culture meet, and you fancy spending a month this summer in one of the most gorgeous places on earth, with excellent facilities, ten other researchers and three peer advisors, intensely thinking and talking and making and doing individually and collaboratively, then we want to hear from you!

The official call for applications is below -- note the dates and costs -- and if you have any questions or concerns about your proposed project or the application process, please feel free to contact me directly.

Reference Check: A Co-production Residency for Developing Researchers

Residency dates: June 24 to July 21, 2007
Application deadline: April 9, 2007

The Banff New Media Institute (BNMI) invites researchers working with new media at the masters, doctorate or post-doctorate level to spend four weeks at The Banff Centre this summer.

Join BNMI for its first independent research-based Co-production Residency program, bringing together a select group of researchers. Individuals and small networks who are working with art and new media as a research strategy are invited to explore the broader social contexts of technology and digital culture.

Participants will be supported to pursue their self-directed research. They will also be given the opportunity to reflect on the field of new media and contemporary issues such as creative pluralism and multiple modes of knowledge production.

Participants will have the opportunity to develop their research with a peer group of ten participants and the support and mentorship of BNMI alumni and Reference Check peer advisors. These advisors will work with participants individually and as a group to help focus their ideas, and suggest methodologies, collaborative and multidisciplinary forms, and ways of enhancing their work and impact in the world.

Peer Advisors:
Andreas Broeckmann (DE)
Anne Galloway (CA)
Sarat Maharaj (UK)

The total cost for this intensive, four-week residency program will be $1,369.80, (CND) plus applicable taxes. Nearly $7500 of additional in-kind support for each project will be provided by BNMI staff and the dedicated studio and production facilities at The Banff Centre’s Creative Electronic Environment.

More information and to apply

We're looking forward to hearing from you!
Labels: art, culture, research, technology

[posted by Anne on Purse Lips Square Jaw]

Posted by jo at 11:09 AM | Comments (0)

Dislocate 07 - Exhibition and Symposium - Tokyo


Call for Proposals

Dislocate 07 - Exhibition and Symposium - Tokyo :: 23rd July – 5th August :: Ginza Art Laboratory :: Deadline for Proposals: May 7, 2007 :: info@dis-locate.net

A mesh of infinite connections engulfs the very point at which we stand, longitude and latitude weave in and out, an entanglement in which our coordinates constantly shift and each footstep is one of endless displacement. Fibres of technology cocoon us in indeterminate spaces, layer our realities and transport us to elsewhere. Enveloped in our personal technologies, we are able to escape the limitations of our surroundings, but when we emerge from our enclosure do we know where we are?

2006 saw the launch of Dislocate a project exploring the relationship between art, technology and our locality. This year the events will focus on our ability to reconnect with our location, seeking to explore, question and debate how can technology be used to heighten our engagement with our surroundings instead of isolating us from our immediate space. When numerous places converge in one site, how do we navigate such space? How does our interaction within a given space formulate identity and how can this be communicated effectively to elsewhere?

Dislocate aims to explore the potential new media has to increase our awareness of our environment, enhance participation in our locality and community and transform our perceptions of the space we inhabit.

Does new media enable us to plug into our locality, or is disconnection inevitable?

As mobile and wireless technologies increasingly enable us to transcend space, our electrical roots are dug up, but are the roots which bind us with a place also cut?

Dislocate will call into question the necessity of an intermediary to our immediate surroundings, asking if mediation is a means of connecting or distancing, an expansion or an obstruction?

Dislocate offers the space to investigate the creative and social potential of new media to engage us with our direct locality and to ask what is the importance of where we are now?


Ginza Art Laboratory 7-3-6 Ginza Chuo-ku Tokyo 104 0061 
Koiwa Project Space 7-2-7 Minami-Koiwa Edogawa-ku Tokyo 133-0056

Taking place over two sites, of contrasting locality, this exhibition aims to present a particular relationship to its surroundings, revealing new perspectives of our immediate space, engaging with and investigating this site while also fusing with spaces beyond.

Works will include:

Installation, image, video, audio, performance, locative, mobile, interactive and web-based media and more. Dislocate is particularly interested in presenting works which extend beyond the gallery space.


Dislocate presents an international symposium with confirmed delegates from UK, Germany, Republic of Korea, Indonesia and Japan further contributing to the discourse surrounding the interplay of art, technology and location.

Artists and researchers will have the opportunity to present their recent projects but will be encouraged to relate this to a wider context and engage in a critical debate, relating their own perspectives on these issues.

Discussion and dialogue between all participants, both speakers and audience is key to this event.

This symposium aims to explore what is meant by ‘locality’, how does new media impact upon our notion of space, our interaction with our surroundings, and how this can be used to transform communities, both virtual and physical.

The conflicts and integrations which emerge as separate spaces collide in one site will be examined raising concerns of homogenization and de-contextualisation alongside the awareness of local identity and culture.

This will include a scrutinization of sensitive, meaningful exchange between different localities facilitated through new media and the manifestations which reconnection or further connection with our environment can take.


In a series of workshops to be held through these events artists will have the opportunity to present concepts and products to the public and investigate with them in an active form of research and collaboration.

The focus of these workshops will be upon the exploration of the surrounding environment, investigating its many layers and connections with other spaces.

Workshops will enable direct participation and engagement with the locality and may also draw attention to our simultaneous interaction with elsewhere.

How to submit

If you are interested to participate in any of the above events please send proposals to:

Ginza Art Lab
7-3-6 Ginza Chuo-ku Tokyo 104 0061 

Deadline is 7th May

Please state clearly in your application –



Phone Number:

Email address:


Project Title:

Outline of Project:

Technical Requirements: *moving image works should be sent in mini DV format or avi data DVD format

Please note we will not be able to support travel and accommodation costs.

Please contact info[at]dis-locate.net with any further enquiries.

Dislocate is supported by The Asia-Europe Foundation and The Sasakawa Foundation.

Posted by jo at 10:09 AM | Comments (0)

Upgrade! Skopje



Upgrade! Skopje: Home_video # 002 screenings series: "Videomart" [screenings + improv session of the band Martinki] :: Wednesday, 21.12.2007, 20.30 h :: Cultural center Tocka, Skopje :: organisation: Line I+M [initiative and movement] :: partners: Cultural Center Tocka, Skopje.

As part of the frontline [new initiatives], Line I+M kindly invites you to the screenings entitled Videomart from the Home_Video series of projections, at the Cultural center Tocka, Skopje. Between the projections there will be short music intermezzo, and after the ending there will be a half an hour improv session performed by the band Martinki, formed specially for this event.

In the second round there will be 5 authors presented: Vladimir Lukash, Gjorge Jovanovic, Ljubisha Kamenjarov, Vuk Mitevski and Edin Vejselovic.

Upgrade! Skopje is a monthly gathering of new media artists and curators. Upgrade! Skopje will organize presentations, exhibitions, workshops, discussions, sound performances, dj and/or vj gigs, video presentations… with general aim for promotion and development of new media art practices, through various kinds of exhibiting and performing. Meetings can take place on various locations in Skopje like: clubs, cafes, galleries or studios. We think that is very important to find different space, appropriate for each kind of event, building different type of audience, establishing collaboration with various scenes, building stronger scene, community and networking. Upgrade! Skopje is opened for every artist that is travelling this way to present their work here, get promoted and become introduced with the local scene with aim to develop collaboration / communication. Upgrade! Skopje is organized by Line – initiative and movement.

Posted by jo at 10:00 AM | Comments (0)

Locative Media Summer Conference


Call for Submissions

Locative Media Summer Conference :: Research Center "Media Upheavals" :: September 3-5, 2007 :: University of Siegen, Germany. Submissions should include 1) Title, 2) 500-word abstract 3) Selected bibliography and 4) 200-word CV for the presenter. These should be sent to thielmann[at]fk615.uni-siegen.de as pdf or doc attachments by May 15, 2007. Notification of acceptance will be provided two weeks later so as to allow adequate to make travel arrangements. Full papers for publication are due on December 31, 2007.

"Everything is related to everything else, but closer things are more closely related." (Waldo Tobler's First Law of Geography, 1970)

Nowadays everything in the media world gets tracked, tagged and mapped. Cell phones become location-aware, computer games move outside, the web is tagged with geospatial information, and geobrowsers like Google Earth are thought of as an entirely new genre of media. Spatial representations have been inflected by electronic technologies (radar, sonar, GPS, WLAN, Bluetooth, RFID etc.) traditionally used in mapping, navigation, wayfinding, or location and proximity sensing. We are seeing the rise of a new generation that is "location-aware". This generation is becoming familiar with the fact that wherever we are on the planet corresponds with a latitude/longitude coordinate.

The term "Locative Media", initially coined in 2003 by Karlis Kalnins and the 2006 topic of a special issue of the Leonardo Electronic Almanac, seems to be appropriate for digital media applying to real places, communication media bound to a location and thus triggering real social interactions. Locative Media works on locations and yet many of its applications are still location- independent in a technical sense. As in the case of digital media, where the medium itself is not digital but the content is digital, in Locative Media the medium itself might not be location-oriented, whereas the content is location-oriented. Can Locative Media like digital media thus be understood as an upheaval in the media evolution? This is one question we want to discuss at the Locative Media Summer Conference in Germany.

Locative Media can now be categorized under one of two types of mapping, either annotative (virtually tagging the world) or phenomenological (tracing the action of the subject in the world). Where annotative projects seek to demystify (see all the Google Earth Hacks), tracing-based projects typically seek to use high technology methods to stimulate dying everyday practices such as walking or occupying public space. The Japanese mobile phone culture, in particular, embraces location-dependent information and context- awareness. It is thus projected that in the near future Locative Media will emerge as the third great wave of modern digital technology. The combination of mobile devices with positioning technologies is opening up a manifold of different ways in which geographical space can be encountered and drawn. It thereby presents a frame through which a wide range of spatial practices that have emerged since Walter Benjamin's urban flaneur may be looked at anew. Or are Locative Media only a new site for old discussions about the relationship of consciousness to place and other people? In the early days of sea travel, it was only the navigator who held such awareness of his exact position on Earth. What would it mean for us to have as accurate an awareness of space as we have of time? In the same way that clocks and watches tell us the exact second, portable GPS devices help us pinpoint our exact location on Earth.

As we dig a bit deeper into how particular Locative Media projects negotiate local and global spaces, we see the increasing "technologisation" and commodification of urban and public spaces. Are Locative Media the avant-garde of the "society of control"? If this kind of media practice resides in pure code (tracklogs), what is the difference between Locative Media and software development? Or is the recent rise of Locative Media just a response to the disappearance of net art?

In reaching beyond art, many of us are becoming familiar with GPS units, such as navigation systems. GPS technologies now appear in mobile, location-aware computing games such as "Mogi" or "Tiger Telematics Gizmondo" which utilize GPS to enable players to see each other's locations. Most of the location-based games nowadays seem to emphasize collecting, trading and meeting over combat. Does this indicate a social trend in mobile entertainment? Do Locative Media generate more accessible than aggressive play plots? Can we say that the numerous distributed geotagging projects (Flickr, Geocaching etc.) unleashed have given rise to a new genre of collaborative "geocommunities"? Could these geolocated spatio-temporal web portals become a dynamic visualization matrix for all scales, from nano to astro, and incorporate interoperability standards for the biological sciences, the geosciences, history, economics, and other social sciences? And finally, are Locative Media a kind of manifestation of what Bruno Latour means by the "Internet of Things "? By geotagging objects instead of people, and having these objects tell us their stories, do we create what Jean-Jacques Rousseau called for, an awareness of the genealogy of an object as it is embedded in the matrix of its production?

This summer conference will attempt to give an overview of actual research on this topic, especially focusing on how Locative Media tackle social and political contexts of production by focusing on social networking, access and participatory media content including story-telling and spatial annotation. Participants from all relevant disciplines are invited, especially researchers in social science, IT design, urban, media and cultural studies. Project demonstrations are warmly encouraged, but the main objective is to move beyond presentation and to build conceptual and theoretical links and exchanges between disciplines. This kind of conference is meant a forum for the presentation of papers, further discussion, collective reading work and as a preliminary step for the publication of an edited volume in 2008.

Invited and confirmed speakers:

Prof. Dr. Lev Manovich, University of California, San Diego (USA) Prof. Dr. Stephen Graham, University of Durham (GB), Department of Geography Dr. Miya Yoshida, Malmv Art Academy, Lund University (S) Dr. Adrian Mackenzie, Lancaster University (GB)

For further information contact Tristan Thielmann: thielmann[at]fk615.uni-siegen.de. The summer conference is organised by the research group "Media Topographies"of the Collaborative Research Center "Media Upheavals", University Siegen, Am Eichenhang 50, 57076 Siegen, Germany.

Posted by jo at 08:17 AM | Comments (0)

Video Vortex Conference


Is corporate backlash eminent?

Video Vortex Conference :: November 30 and December 1 2007 :: Amsterdam

In response to the increasing potential for video to become a significant form of personal media on the Internet, this conference examines the key issues that are emerging around the independent production and distribution of online video content. What are artists and activists responses to the popularity of ‘user-generated content’ websites? Is corporate backlash eminent?

After years of talk about digital conversions and crossmedia platforms we are now witnessing the merger of the Internet and television at a pace that no one predicted. For the baby boom generation, that currently forms the film and television establishment, the media organisations and conglomerates, this unfolds as a complete nightmare. Not only because of copyright issues but increasingly due to the shift of audience to vlogging and video-sharing websites as part of the development of a broader participatory culture.

The opening night will feature live acts, performances and lectures under the banner of video slamming. We will trace the history from short film to one-minute videos to the first experiments with streaming media and online video, along with exploring the way VJs and media artists are accessing and using online archives.

The Video Vortex conference aims to contextualize these latest developments through presenting continuities and discontinuities in the artistic, activist and mainstream perspective of the last few decades. Unlike the way online video presents itself as the latest and greatest, there are long threads to be woven into the history of visual art, cinema and documentary production. The rise of the database as the dominant form of storing and accessing cultural artifacts has a rich tradition that still needs to be explored. The conference aims to raise the following questions:

How are people utilising the potential to independently produce and distribute independent video content on the Internet?

What are the alternatives to the proprietary standards currently being developed?

What are the commercial objectives that mass media is imposing on user-generated content and video-sharing databases?

What is the underlying economics of online video in the age of unlimited uploads?

How autonomous are vloggers within the broader domain of mass media?
How are cinema, television and video art being affected by the development of a ubiquitous online video practice?

What type of aesthetic and narrative issues does the database pose for online video practice?

conference themes

Viral Video critique
Vlogging Critique
Participatory Culture, Participatory Video
Real World Tools and Technologies
Theory & History of the Database
Narrative and the Cinematic
Database Taxonomy and Navigation
Internet Video: Art, Activism, and Public Media
Evening Programme / Exhibition

Viral Video critique

YouTube made 2006 the year of Internet video. The video content produced bottom-up, with an emphasis on participation, sharing and community networking. But inevitably like Flickr being consumed by Yahoo, Google purchased YouTube. What is the future for the production and distribution of independent online video content? How can a participatory culture achieve a certain degree of autonomy and diversity outside mass media? What other motives does Google have for Internet video in terms of searching and advertising? After the purchase of YouTube, Google was asked to remove a number of clips that breached copyright laws. What comparisons can be made between the Napster incident with audio and video-sharing websites?

Vlogging Critique

This section will deal with vlogging criticism. Is video blogging a form of text-based blogging with other means? How can we develop a form of criticism, and a critical practice, that is not derogative and yet surpasses the anecdotal diary level? Is vlogging the next stage of ego boosting of the blogger, who wants to raise his or her ranking status? What is a video diary and how can this emerging genre be shaped? Can there be sophistication in ‘vlogging’? How can we overcome the evangelical that stresses the possibilities of gadget features? And how can we overcome the amateurish aesthetics of this new genre?

Participatory Culture, Participatory Video

The Web 2.0 holds the promise to create a participatory culture that can renew the stagnated democracies in the West. In this utopian approach, the user has the historical task to overcome the old regime of top down broadcast media and create decentralised dialogues. To what extent can user-generated video content be energized by presenting the material as citizen journalism? Is the increased user participation really a sign of a new political culture or is it a mere special effect of technological change?

Real World Tools and Technologies

In this session we will investigate the progress that open source and free software initiatives have made in regard to the development of the codex and the player that can compete with the proprietary standards such as Microsoft Media Player. It is not enough to critique the corporate takeover of MySpace and YouTube and upload alternative content. Increasingly the intention of programmers shifts towards Peer2Peer solutions in order to create a truly distributed network in which content can freely float around without having to use centralised servers. In this session we will present projects such as;

Theory & History of the Database

Searching databases has become a dominant cultural practice. Instead of flipping through a radio and TV guide, the cinema programme or the library, we browse the Internet. In this session we would like to go back in time and investigate the history of the computer database. What are the ideological underpinnings of ‘taxonomy’? What do we search when we perform a search? Should the aim be to overcome the fragmented experience of our contemporary database culture and create overriding meaning structures that deepen our understanding without having to compromise on content diversity?

Narrative and the Cinematic

Do these fragmented video databases lead to new narratives and genres? Does a database like YouTube evoke a skill such as continuous partial attention, or a contemporary disease like the attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)? Against the medicalization, scholars have put the ability of users to reassemble short stories into larger new narratives as a reassuring alternative that replaces old media skills. The bricollage is assembled by the end-user, not the producer. Is there a new cinematic experience?

Database Taxonomy and Navigation

How do artists relate to the possibility of building large video databases? Is YouTube the future of video art? Traditionally, artists have always worked with found footage but nowadays it has never been easier to access. The remix culture, online video tools and increased server space make it possible to create large databases in which complex interconnected content can be offered to the viewer. What is the underlining information architecture? How does one navigate Steven Spielberg’s video archive of the holocaust survivors? Or take the Dropping Knowledge project in which 110 experts answered 100 questions of the audience, which can be accessed as a database. The same can be said of large museum collections.

Internet Video: Art, Activism, and Public Media

From 16mm film and video to the Internet and back, activists have always used the moving image to produce critical and innovative work. For many, the experimentation with visual language and critical content has been one and the same. In this session we will explore early examples of Internet video and investigate how artists and social movements have responded to the YouTube challenge. Is it better to integrate your message into large existing platforms or should we rather let a thousand blossoms bloom and each have our own video server? Online video databases like YouTube seemingly are the ideal artist portfolio online, with unlimited uploads and a massive audience. MySpace is inhabited by bands and musicians, but why don’t video artists and filmmakers occupy YouTube? If we look at the videos on YouTube, what aesthetics do we find? Is there a homogenous style that only builds on eyewitness tv and candid camera formats? And now that music videos and commercials increasingly resemble video art, can we define how exactly artistic practices influence the look of online footage? What would it mean to take YouTube Art serious? Is YouTube a medium and platform in itself for art works or is it merely used as a promotional device? Many have used YouTube to produce diary-type performances in which they either played themselves or pretended to be some character. What status do we give to such ego documents? Is YouTube used by artists as a tool to intervene in social and political issues? In this session we will present projects such as:

Evening Programme / Exhibition

Video Slamming: “Short, user-created videos are creating a new kind of watching experience, one more about ‘snacking’ than half-hour sitcoms.” (The Economist)

Much like poetry slamming the use of short video fragments has become a dominant mode in visual culture. Where are the video files found and how are they used and played with? Is ‘video slamming’ the new way of watching audiovisual files? This session is all about the new ways of watching, using, and playing with moving images: scratching, sampling, mixing, but also (meta) tagging, recommending etc. This session will feature performances, live acts and lectures.

Posted by jo at 08:05 AM | Comments (0)

DOUBLE VISION: To Futurism and Back Again


Hybrid World Lab

DOUBLE VISION: To Futurism and Back Again :: When: April 12-15 [Thur-Sun] 8pm* :: Where: Dance Mission Theater, 3316 24th St., San Francisco :: Cost: $15 :: Info/Tix: http://www.double-vision.biz / 415-287-0192 * Free Pre-show Piano Salon, 5:30-6:30, Sunday.

“To admire an old picture is to pour our sensibility into a funeral urn instead of casting it forward with violent spurts of creation and action.” -- F.T. Marinetti, 1909

Hailing from the bay that brought you the Grateful Dead, Emperor Norton, and the iPod, San Francisco’s intermedia performance group DOUBLE VISION continues to crank the cogwheel by presenting dance, video, noise, speed, energy, and seismic activity for stage. Works range from world premiers of Three Canons and Mise en Scénes and Video Action Painting, to reconstructions of the Futurist sintesi Macchina del 3000 (The Love of Two Locomotives for the Station Master) and Macchina Tipograpfica. Throughout the evening’s performance, DOUBLE VISION connects art from the Internet Age to the dawn of the automobile while posing the question…what’s next?

Performances will present live dance, music and intermedia works for the stage. Attendees can also immerse themselves in installations before and after the performances in the gallery. On Sunday, Brooklyn-based experimental pianist, Shawn Onsgard and San Francisco’s own Wild Bill Wolter will entertain guests with an informal Piano Salon at 5:30pm. Bill Wolter will be joined by renowned San Francisco musicians John Ingle, Eric Hoagland, Jen Baker and Matt Ingalls. The Salon will afford attendees plenty of time to enjoy dinner before the dance concert. Also, join the artists for a special reception following Thursday evening's show.

DOUBLE VISION, led by Sean Clute and Pauline Jennings, is a group of dancers, musicians, video-artists, and performers. By experimenting with different methods of collaboration through the adaptation of social systems, transvergence of scientific models, and mapping of algorithmic structures, DOUBLE VISION unifies multifaceted art forms and ideas to cultivate innovative performances and provoke communication.

Choreography and video by Pauline Jennings; music and video by Sean Clute; dance and performance by Ben Baker, Tiffany Barbarash, Blaine Bookey, Sean Clute, Amanda Crawford, Pauline Jennings, Jason B. Jones, Elisabeth Kohnke, Wendy Marinaccio, Cecelia Peterson, Ammon Torrence, Nicole Zvarik; lighting design by Ben Coolik; costumes by Andrea Campbell, Jason B. Jones.

Media Contact:
Tiffany Barbarash
1677 Sacramento Street #4
San Francisco, CA 94109
Tel: 415-287-0192

Posted by jo at 07:40 AM | Comments (0)

Spaces Speak, Are You Listening? Experiencing Aural Architecture


The Web Site

Barry Blesser and Linda-Ruth Salter's blog for Spaces Speak, Are You Listening? Experiencing Aural Architecture contains numerous articles, discussions, Podcast, reviews, and lecture notes on the subject. One can get a good idea about the basic issues without first having to get the book. From their introduction:

"We experience spaces not only by seeing but also by listening. We can navigate a room in the dark, and "hear" the emptiness of a house without furniture. Our experience of music in a concert hall depends on whether we sit in the front row or under the balcony. The unique acoustics of religious spaces acquire symbolic meaning. Social relationships are strongly influenced by the way that space changes sound. In Spaces Speak, Are You Listening?, Barry Blesser and Linda-Ruth Salter examine auditory spatial awareness: experiencing space by attentive listening. Every environment has an aural architecture."

Posted by jo at 07:01 AM | Comments (0)

March 16, 2007

The Museum of Lost Interactions (MoLI)


Left: The Zenith Radio Hat, 1952 Right: The Social Communicator, 1932

In 1952 the Zenith Radio Hat was the world's most portable radio of its time. It is a combined hat and walking cane. It allowed the user to tune in and listen to radio stations from around the world whilst on the move.

The Social Communicator (1932) was a simple and sophisticated piece of apparatus that made it possible to communicate with other users wirelessly. Using Morse Code technology, messages could be sent and received with ease. The Social Communicator was ideal for the busy hustle and bustle of city working.

From The Museum of Lost Interactions (MoLI).

Posted by jo at 03:16 PM | Comments (0)

Collective Thinking


by Kristóf Nyķri

[...] Raimondo Strassoldo employed less uncertain terms. As he put it: "There is a time for speaking and communicating; but there should also be a time for thinking, for meditation, for contemplation, for concentration, for reflection, for introspection, for internal talk within oneself and, perhaps, with the inhabitants of the self." Strassoldo observes that with the spread of the mobile phone people "only seem to be able to exist as nodes and terminals of communication networks". As he sees it, the young are ever less capable of becoming "autonomous, self-directed individuals", and he recalls David Riesman "denounc[ing] more than half a century ago the trend toward other-directedness". (6) Strassoldo's reference to Riesman is not entirely apt. The latter did in fact make the connection, in his 1950 book The Lonely Crowd, between the printed book and inner-directedness; (7) however, Riesman's notion of other-directedness is thoroughly bound up with the experience of centralized mass media. Networked communication of course provides one with very different experiences. Do we have reason to believe that the network individual's cognitive achievements (8) are in any way inferior to that of the inner-directed one? It was in the wake of Strassoldo's talk (9) that I decided, during the planning stages of the present conference, to dedicate my paper to the topic of collective thinking. (10) ... From Collective Thinking by Kristóf Nyķri [PDF] Also see Thinking with a word processor and The Networked Mind [PDF] by the same author.

Posted by jo at 02:58 PM | Comments (0)

Mediamatic workshop


Hybrid World Lab

Mediamatic organizes a new workshop--Hybrid World Lab--in which the participants develop prototypes for hybrid world media applications. Where the virtual world and the physical world used to be quite separated realms of reality, they are quickly becoming two faces of the same hybrid coin. This workshop investigates the increasingly intimate fusion of digital and physical space from the perspective of a media maker.

The workshop is an intense process in which the participants explore the possibilities of the physical world as interface to online media: location based media, everyday objects as media interfaces, urban screens, and cultural application of RFID technology. Every morning lectures and lessons bring in new perspectives, project presentations and introductions to the hands-on workshop tools. Every afternoon the participants work on their own workshop projects. In 5 workshop days every participant will develop a prototype of a hybrid world media project, assisted by outstanding international trainers and lectures and technical assistants. The workshop closes with a public presentation in which the issues are discussed and the results are shown.

Topics: Some of the topics that will be investigated in this workshop are: Cultural application and impact of RFID technology, internet-of-things. Using RFID in combination with other kinds of sensors. Ubiquitous computing (ubicomp) and ambient intelligence: services and applications that use chips embedded in household appliances and in public space. Locative media tools, car navigation systems, GPS tools, location sensitive mobile phones. The web as interface to the physical world: geotagging and mashupswith Google Maps & Google Earth. Games in hybrid space.

Trainers & lecturers: We are happy to announce that Timo Arnall, Matt Adams and Nicolas Nova all confirmed to be trainers and/or lecturers in this workshop. Others will be confirmed soon.

Posted by jo at 01:16 PM | Comments (0)

Ursula Endlicher News


Singing Website Wallpaper, Website Wigs + More

Opening on March 28: Opening @ MediaNoche, 161 East 106th Streeet, First Floor, New York, NY 10029 :: Ursula Endlicher is having a solo show with two web-driven installations: "Singing Website Wallpaper", which gives voice to html by re-interpreting the code on the fly as a musical score and visualizing the scales as printed patterns on wallpaper; and "html-movement-library" (*), an online database of video performances articulating html code through gesture, movement and dance, as an installation / environment in the gallery. Visitors are invited to contribute their ideas to the ever-expanding repository. Workshops, an artist talk, and a performance (a new sequence of "Website Impersonations") at the end of the exhibition will round up the program. The show will run from March 28 - May 12.

On view until March 31 @ Wood Street Galleries, 601 Wood Street, Pittsburgh, PA: Thread

Should you be visiting Pittsburgh this month, make a stop at Wood Street Galleries to see Thread, a group show curated by Michele Thursz. Ursula is showing six "Website Wigs" splayed out as a "networked" environment that spans across a large section of the gallery wall. Website Wigs are html code taken from Websites such as Google.com, Microsoft.com or Intel.com, and braided into hair, representing each Website's hypertext link structure as a hair-do. The wigs are interconnected in the form of a "hairy" diagram, showing how the sites link to each other online. For more info, videos - a peek into the installation - and reviews please go to her website: http://www.ursenal.net

(*) Ongoing call for submissions to the html-movement-library: The html-movement-libary is an ongoing project welcoming submission to its online database of video clips and images. Contributors to the library become instantly part of web-based participatory performances such as html_butoh and are co-choreographing performances such as the "Website Impersonation" series...

Check it out, read about it, participate, enjoy at: http://turbulence.org/Works/html_butoh. Read reviews for both, the html-movment-library and html_butoh, on my website: http://.www.ursenal..net

The "html-movement-library" is supported in part by a grant from Turbulence.org. "html_butoh" is a 2006 commission of New Radio and Performing Arts, Inc., (aka Ether-Ore) for its Turbulence web site. It was made possible with funding from the Jerome Foundation.

Posted by jo at 12:40 PM | Comments (0)

Begin your day with the Breakfast Blogs


Exploring the Political + Social Mission of Artistic Practice

BREAKFAST AT PAVILION (A PROJECT INITIATED BY PAVILION MAGAZINE IN THE FRAME OF BUCHAREST BIENNALE) :: BREAKFAST (online) is a series of blogs kept by theoreticians, political analysts, anthropologists, artists and curators. BREAKFAST explores on a theoretical level the political and social mission of artistic practice with its necessity of being contextualized. The blogs are written in English or Romanian depending on each participant`s option. The project has also a live form that includes public debates and conferences on the same issues within social political and aesthetic discourses as discussed online.

BREAKFAST seeks to transcend the traditional borders between research, education and presentation and looks for new ways of expression and communication trying to find new answers to some old questions related to politics, aesthetics and content and to reevaluate the conventions of everyday life. Considering all these, BREAKFAST investigates subjects like rhetoric, populism, technology, humanism, politics, relativism, solidarity, post colonialism or inclusion by means of curatorial, artistic and educational projects.

The first bloggers involved in BREAKFAST are Catalin Avramescu (Professor of Political Science, journalist and political analist), Eugen Radescu (theoretician, curator and co-director of Bucharest Biennale), Felix Vogel (theoretician and curator) and Razvan Ion (theoretician, artist and co-editor of PAVILION magazine). PAVILION magazine is developing its own blog as an informative platform / structure.

The project director of BREAKFAST is Andreea Manolache and the online version is technical designed by Alexandru Enachioaie (alexandru.e[at]gmail.com). Blogs available at http://blogs.pavilionmagazine.org

PAVILION is an international contemporary art & culture magazine whose name alludes to the relative temporary structure of contemporary art. PAVILION`s content varies from articles to essays, interviews and projects`presentations. It is not just a descriptive magazine, its mission is to intervene in cultural and socio-political life.


PAVILION, BUCHAREST BIENNALE & BREAKFAST are projects of artphoto asc.
office: +4 031 103 4131
mobile: +4 0726 789 426 | 0723 033 330
ym: artphotoro
skype: artphotoro
address: PO Box 26-0390 Bucharest 14800 Romania

Posted by jo at 12:22 PM | Comments (0)

Virtual Reality & Museums


Call for Papers

Virtual Reality & Museums :: Call for Papers :: Deadline: Friday April 27, 2007 :: Contributions are welcomed for a new book addressing the construction and interpretation of virtual artefacts within virtual world museums and within physical museum spaces. Particular emphasis is placed on theories of spatiality and strategies of interpretation.

The editors seek papers that intervene in critical discourses surrounding virtual reality and virtual artefacts, to explore the rapidly changing temporal, spatial and theoretical boundaries of contemporary museum display practice. We are especially interested in spatiality as it is employed in the construction of virtual artefacts, as well as the roles these spaces enact as signifiers of historical narrative and sites of social interaction.

We are also interested in the relationship between real-world museums and virtual world museums, with a view to interrogating the construction of meaning within, across and between both. We welcome original scholarly contributions on the topic of new cultural practices and communities related to virtual reality in the context of museum display practice. Papers might address, but are in no way limited to, the following:

* Authenticity and artificiality
* Exploration and discovery
* Physical vs virtual
* Representation/interpretation of virtual reality artefacts - as 3D spaces on screen or in a physical gallery
* Museum visiting in virtual space
* Representation of physical museum spaces in virtual worlds and their relationship to cultural definitions of museum spaces.

Please send a proposal of 500-750 words and a contributor's bio by Friday
April 27, 2007. Authors will be notified by Thursday May 31, 2007. Final drafts of papers are due by Monday October 1, 2007.

Please send your proposal to:

Tara Chittenden
Room 201
Strategic Research Unit
113 Chancery Lane
London WC2A 1PL

Or via email: tara.chittenden[at]lawsociety.org.uk

Posted by jo at 12:01 PM | Comments (0)

Giselle Beiguelman's nowhere/anywhere/somewhere


The Cinematic Experience of Space in Second Life

Yesterday, NOEMA opened its doors with Giselle Beiguelman's nowhere / anywhere / somewhere which highlights the cinematic experience of space in Second Life. The show runs until April 30, 2007. nowhere / anywhere / somewhere intensely exploits its resources of zooming, camera movements and ways of displacement in the environment. The visualization resources give / create / invent meanings for the artist's images. Fragments of daily life, captured with a mobile phone, the images in this exhibition are a permanent remix process, rendered by the avatars it interacts with.

NOEMA is the world's first nomad art gallery. Specialized in digital art, it is based on Second Life and promotes varied, different-size actions, in physical reality. NOEMA is cutting edge. It proposes a pioneering experience, connected with the boldest concepts of contemporaneity. It is cybrid, because rather than suggesting a media hybridization, Noema proposes (and performs) experiences among on and off-line networks, in concrete and virtual spaces. It is cinematic, because it is located in an immersive and interactive environment that allows new image constellations.

More than a hub of marketing and representation of artists and events, Noema is an innovative project, a creation plant that gathers from the start some of the major names in the digital art scene, such as Mark Amerika, Giselle Beiguelman, Lucas Bambozzi, Vera Bighetti, Gilbertto Prado and Rick Silva, among others.

Not just an exhibition venue, Noema is a space for the launching of films, DVDs and books, performances, lectures and workshops, acting in a partnership with audio/video streaming and e-business companies, which guarantee the quality of its actions.

Giselle Beiguelman is a new media artist and multimedia essayist who teaches Digital Culture at the Graduation Program in Communication and Semiotics of PUC-SP (Sćo Paulo, Brazil). Her work includes the award-winnings "The Book after the Book" "egoscópio" and Landscape0 (with Marcus Bastos and Rafael Marchetti). She has been developing art projects for mobile phones ("Wop Art", 2001), praised by many media sites and the international press, including The Guardian (UK) and Neural (Italy), and art involving public-access, by the web, SMS and MMS to electronic billboards like "Leste o Leste?" and "egoscópio" (2002), released by The New York Times, "Poétrica" (2003) and "esc for escape" (2004). Beiguelman's work appears in important anthologies and guides devoted to digital arts including Yale University Library Research Guide for Mass Media and has been presented in international venues such as Net_Condition (ZKM, Germany), el final del eclipse (Fundación Telefonica, Madrid), Desk Topping - Computer Disasters (Smart Project Space, Amsterdan) Arte/Cidade (Sćo Paulo), The 25th Sćo Paulo Biennial and Algorithmic Revolution (ZKM).

Posted by jo at 11:48 AM | Comments (0)

Art Since 1960 (According to the Internet)

Internet nerd that I am, I actually recorded some of last Thursday's lecture by Hanne Mugaas + Cory Arcangel titled Art Since 1960 (According to the Internet.) Count yourself lucky for not having to listen to that file though, as the documentation of two people surfing the web doesn't exactly translate well into aural sensation. Somewhat predictably, in lieu of this media I've chosen merely to summarize the most important point I got out of the lecture: There is less and less difference between canonical art works and any other cultural products on the web.

Countless examples reinforcing this point followed, most of which were at the very least entertaining, and often much more than that. The best video comparison cited came from a post Arcangel had curated on Hanne's blog early this January.

Don't let the length of the second video confuse you, as the relevant comparison of falling figures happens in the first few seconds of the video.

On some level, you either buy work such as this as a valid investigation of how art and culture merge on the web or you don't, but for those who are wondering why they just bothered watching those videos, I have to grant that it's not a bad question. That said, it's also unanswerable. Nobody knows precisely what this leveling of fields means for art or art history, which is why we have to pay really close attention to what's being made. If, as Warhol suggests, there really is little difference between the art of Jasper Johns and his lunches, then we at least need to be able to at least identify it.

Following the surfing talk, Hanne Mugaas + Cory Arcangel posted an intimidating list of links (with no anchors so lazy surfers such as myself complain about having to copy and paste these urls into their browser.) I recommend following as many as you can.

[posted by AFC on Art Fag City]

Posted by jo at 09:02 AM | Comments (0)

March 15, 2007

Public tribute for Jean Baudrillard on World of Warcraft


Ars Virtua will be holding a public tribute to honor the late social and political theorist Jean Baudrillard. Jean Baudrillard's criticisms and view on Simulation are influential to our discussions of the MMO. This short program will be held on the WoW Kilrogg server, 4-5pm PDT, March 17, 2007 near Orgrimmar. Please send tell to Zuluu upon arrival in-world for the location.

Ars Virtua is a new media center and gallery located primarily in the synthetic world of Second Life. It is a new type of space that leverages the tension between 3-D rendered game space and terrestrial reality, between simulated and simulation. Ars Virtua is sponsored by the CADRE Laboratory for New Media. for more information please email: thomas.asmuth[at]gmail.com

Posted by jo at 06:19 PM | Comments (0)

Trusted Servant by Garrett Phelan


The artist Garrett Phelan was invited and entrusted by curator Rachael Thomas and artist / curator Philippe Parreno to close the critically acclaimed exhibition '.all hawaii eNtrées /luNar reGGae' located at the Irish Museum of Modern Art. Parreno's approach, focusing on the notion of process, was to go beyond the real / physical space of the museum and as a part of this process Garrett Phelan has been entrusted by the curators to close this exhibition.

Trusted Servant also functions as part of Phelan's current exploration into the 'Formation of Opinion' (2003_ ongoing). Phelan becomes the gatekeeper of '.all hawaii eNtrées / luNar reGGae' with the removal of Trusted Servant from YouTube, at his discretion, marking the official end of '.all Hawaii eNtrees/lunar reGGae'.

Posted by jo at 01:04 PM | Comments (0)




Solar One's CITYSOL 2007 - OPEN CALL TO ARTISTS! :: July 12-15, 2007 :: DEADLINE: May 22 :: Citysol is a carbon neutral, 100% clean energy powered festival that aims to inspire interest and support for local sustainability initiatives through music, collaborative artistic installations, and numerous other elements meant to both entertain and educate. Held over a weekend in Manhattan’s Stuyvesant Cove Park, the festival will attract thousands of New Yorkers in search of innovative art, music and activism.

Solar One, Citysol’s lead organizer, is accepting project proposals related to contemporary environmental and sustainability issues. All visual and performing arts media will be considered including sitespecific performance, installation, sculpture, film and video, as well as experimental practices. We especially encourage installation proposal subjects to be chosen from a field of 5 policy/technical solutions that address different environmental challenges specifically affecting New York City’s quality of life:

CONGESTION PRICING: A market-based means of reducing traffic congestion, improving air quality, revitalizing pedestrian street life, increasing safety and saving the city billions of dollars annually, this policy levies a fee on vehicles that enter Manhattan’s central business district.

PLASTIC BAG TAX (or ‘PLASTAX’): This policy adds an additional cost to disposable plastic bags, thereby encouraging consumers to use reusable bags for their shopping needs. Ireland’s plastax has cut plastic bag use by 90%, decreased waste and pollution, and has diverted millions of liters of oil.

PHOTOVOLTAICS: Photovoltaic (aka PV or Solar) power is a promising clean energy application for the New York City area that could help mitigate our serious air quality, climate change and system reliability challenges. Yet today numerous incentives which could encourage greater implementation are lacking in our City and State.

GREEN ENERGY POWER PURCHASING: All New Yorkers who pay their own electricity bill can purchase green energy credits for a small premium from select providers. “Green-E” purchasing adds clean electricity to the grid from wind and hydropower sources, and encourages further investment in renewable technologies.

CARBON TAX: Charging American businesses and individuals a price to emit CO2 is essential for reducing U.S. emissions quickly and steeply enough to avoid the most severe consequences of climate change.

Installations will be featured at Stuyvesant Cove Park for the duration of the festival, July 12th-15th. A number of selected artists will receive project-based stipends from Solar One for their participation. Solar One is a young, but growing 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization dedicated to increasing energy and environmental awareness and inspiring action through public education and cultural programming.

*PLEASE NOTE that Citysol is a 100% renewable energy powered event and can offer a limited electrical capacity for artistic support and use. We encourage artists to explore self-sustained power methods for their works.

Proposals must be submitted by mail or in person by no later than May 22, 2007 to:

Solar One
24-20 FDR Drive,
Service Road East
New York, NY 10010

Proposals must include all of the following to be considered:

1. Artist CV with current contact information (address, phone number
and e-mail)
2. Brief project description and statement of the project’s critical objectives
3. Visual support materials
4. Technical diagram (including dimensions, materials, installation requirements, power/electrical requirements and all other technical information).
5. List of 3 preferred locations at our site
6. SASE if you would like materials returned


Winding along nearly two acres of the East River greenway between 18th and 23rd Streets, Stuyesant Cove Park is home to the only sustainably designed and managed park in the city. Occupying a former brown field site, Stuy Cove now supports all native plant gardens, approximately 13,000 square feet of outdoor blacktop space used for various recreational purposes, and a 500 square-foot solar-powered education and arts center.

*Works may be proposed for installation on blacktop area or in Stuyvesant Cove Park (provided no structural damage to the park occurs).


For further information about each installation subject area, artists are strongly encouraged to contact Solar One for resources (including sustainable building materials and power-generating ideas) and guidance. The festival coordinators are available to meet with artists up to May 22, 2007. During the second half of March, information sessions will be presented on each subject at Solar One’s office in Stuyvesant Cove Park (which is also the venue for Citysol). Sessions are free and open to all prospective submitters of proposals (Contact Chris Neidl for the scheduling of these events).

Tours of the site can be scheduled with Solar One staff on an ongoing basis throughout the spring. Artists residing outside of the NYC area should email Citysol’s organizers for further information.

Stephen Lichty, Curatorial Advisor

Jenn Su, Project Coordinator

Chris Neidl, Outreach Coordinator

Please visit www.solar1.org or call 212.505.6050 for more information about Solar One.

Posted by jo at 11:40 AM | Comments (0)



NO SOcial Networking

NOSO is a real-world platform for temporary disengagement from social networking environments. The NOSO experience offers a unique opportunity to create NO Connections by scheduling NO Events with other NO Friends. These “NO” events, called NOSOs, take place in designated cafés, parks, libraries, bookstores, and other public spaces. Participants – whose identities remain unknown to one another – agree to arrive at an assigned time and remain alone, quiet and un-connected, while at the same time knowing that another “Friend” is present in the space. NOSOs are scheduled by users through the NOSO website. They last for a duration of 1 - 30 minutes, after which participants disperse and return to their regular activities.

NOSO is produced by Glowlab’s Christina Ray as a commissioned project for the ongoing SoEx Off-Site, Southern Exposure’s yearlong series of public art and related programs investigating artists’ strategies for exploring and mapping public space. For NOSO, Ray has invited artistic collaborator Kurt Bigenho to participate in the development of the project. Ray and Bigenho work together as The Organizers, and recently produced The Sams for Fountain Miami.

Posted by jo at 11:29 AM | Comments (0)

March 14, 2007

Universe by Jonathan Harris


New Constellations

Universe, by Jonathan Harris, presents an interactive night sky, composed of thousands of twinkling stars, which then connect to form constellations. Each of these constellations has a specific counterpart in the physical world -- a story, a person, a quote, an image, a company, a nation, a mythic theme. Any constellation can be clicked, making it the center of the universe, and causing all other stars to enter its orbit. Universe is infinitely large, and each person's path through it will be different. For an explanation of how it works, read "Stages". For a longer discussion of the ideas behind the piece, read "Statement".

Universe was inspired by questions like: if we could draw new constellations in our night sky today, what would those be? What are our great stories? What are our great journeys? Who are our heroes and heroines? Who are our Gods and Goddesses? What is our modern mythology? Universe tries to answer these questions through analysis of global media coverage, as construed by Daylife.

Start exploring, get lost, find something amazing, and make your own mythology.

Posted by jo at 04:01 PM | Comments (0)

The Living Script


Collaborative Playwriting

A new collaborative playwriting project, The Living Script, has just been launched by Chicago area artist Brett Hanover. The Living Script uses wiki technology to create an online, user-editable theatrical script.

Users of Wikipedia will be familiar with the format, though here the intent is to create a work of art constantly in flux - a script that never reaches its final draft. While collaborative writing projects have utilized wikis in the past, this is the first time the format has been used to create a stage play. Whatever develops from this unique process will be available for performance under a a free-media, Creative Commons license.

About Brett Hanover: A product of the burgeoning Memphis independent film scene, Brett Hanover debuted in 2005 with the short documentary "Above God," winner of Best Documentary at both the Indie Memphis and Atlanta Underground film festivals. This was followed by the experimental film "SCHIAVO," featured both at Indie Memphis and the 2006 Spun from the Web exhibition in Chicago. Since that time, he has directed numerous productions, including the critically acclaimed performance "S4TYR PL4Y," (2006) the first theatrical work to deal with anthropomorphic identity. Hanover currently attends the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and is working on a feature documentary, "Bunnyland," set for release in '08. CONTACT: thelivingscript[at]gmail.com.

Posted by jo at 03:47 PM | Comments (0)

Upgrade! Paris



Upgrade! Paris #7: BENOIT DURANDIN :: Moderator: Philippe Morel, architecte, EZCT :: Saturday, March 17th at 7:00 pm :: ARS LONGA: 67, avenue Parmentier, 75011 PARIS :: Metro: Parmentier (3) or Saint-Ambroise (9).

Benoīt Durandin will present Highdensity. Highdensity is a world without preliminary vacuum, without gravity. By successive compressions of the matter, faults are open and closed, spaces do connect, split up, and rearranged themselves. These void to emptiness, erosion to stratification contamination processes, are the parameters from which even the negligible changes of states come to model this nerved based and fragile world. A world that constantly threatened to fold up on itself. Highdensity was produced with the help of Numériscausa and Music to Eyes.

Upgrade! Paris sessions are organized by Incident.net. They are public and monthly. Artists, researchers, architects, theorists present during one hour their recent work. Partners: CITU, Ars Longa, Upgrade! International.

Posted by jo at 11:07 AM | Comments (0)

Upgrade! Johannesburg


The Art of Sound - James Webb

Upgrade! Johannesburg is proud to present: The Art of Sound - James Webb presents his major gallery installations and radio projects :: March 16, 15:00 - 17:00 :: Convent Seminar Room, University of the Witswatersrand, Johannesburg :: All Welcome!

James Webb is a leading South African sound artist with a growing international reputation. He will discuss the challenges of his large-scale sound installations including Prayer (2002); The Black Passage (2006) and Autohagiography (2007); his collaborative radio projects including A Compendium of Imaginary Wavelengths (2004) and works in progress such as Beau Diable (2007).

From the profile of James Webb by Carinne Zaayman on www.artthrob.co.za: "James Webb is a pioneer of sound art in South Africa. But his production extends far beyond that of gallery installations. Webb also works as a sound designer, curator and teacher. A keen collaborator, Webb is always involved in a number of projects where his expertise on sound as well as project coordination is invaluable.

Highlights of his career include the co-curation of the YDETAG and YDEsire events, participation in the 2002 Ars Electronica festival, his collaboration with James Sey for 'A Compendium of Imaginary Wavelengths', and his two-part solo exhibition 'Phonosynthesizer' at the US gallery in Stellenbosch and the NSA in Durban. His sense of pop and eroticism characterise many of his works, especially in two of my favourites, thesexworks, a telephone artwork, and Wa, an elaborate spoof on our celebrity-mad pop culture and our romance with all things Japanese.

It is, however, his ingenious conception of the way in which sound permeates our world and thinking that defines Webb's magical oeuvre. His work never simply revolves around the playback of sound files. Instead, there is always careful consideration of the physicality of context and media, whether this is the installation of large speakers, or almost invisible interventions in public spaces. Process is further of prime importance for this artist, as his manner of sourcing sound is invariably already part of the way in which meaning is generated through his work."

Posted by jo at 11:03 AM | Comments (0)

Franck Ancel's Triptych


5/5 + 5C + 5G

5/5: In 2004, Franck Ancel completed a triptych on architecture, image and technology by projecting the words "Mobile Wireless Digital" onto the screen of the Montparnasse Tower in Paris. Today, under the title "5/5", he is projecting on the Théātre de l’Agora ą Evry, France his two projects "5C" and "5G", in connection with this line of research.

The trail presented here in the shape of a diptych challenges known and recognized limits, and the outdated boundaries of the past. These documents trace the use of a special form of GPS tracking based on a real experience, that of a separate journey, while also questioning virtuality in the age of world globalisation. Therefore, it is not about abandoning criticism of technological uses to technological uses of criticism. After all, it is through a person's very existence that the temptation to understand the space of his or her time arises, and this forms the focus of this presentation, in which a particular journey becomes an objective creation.

5 Continents (5C): Between 18:00 and 19:04 hours, Paris time, on Saturday 17 December 2005, the first artistic creation from an in-flight passenger plane took place. It was transmitted live over the Internet during a flight from Shanghai to Munich, at an altitude of 30,000 feet and at a speed of over 900 kilometres an hour. This live transmission at "X" moment was the culmination of a series of 5 communications "From Scenography to Planetary Network", for and on 5 Continents.The transmission was posted in real-time on our website, via a wifi satellite link relaying images and sound from the plane. This performance was made possible thanks to Lufthansa's offer to provide FlyNet with Boeing's in-flight online connectivity service, Connexion by Boeing.

This webcast makes a formal nod to the sleeper John Giorno, the poet of "Sleep", a legendary film for the Neo avant-garde art movement made by Andy Warhol in 1963, New York. This time round, a sleeper has left the Asian New York of tomorrow. This world first lasted 64 minutes. In the video recording 64 key words appeared in a combination of 12 interplays on five themes (five continents, colours, senses, elements, years), initiated with an eye to the forthcoming 2010 World Expo in China.

5 Guggenheims (5G): In 2006 we collected data in front of the 5 Guggenheim museums. The traces of this journey echo the possible virtual construction of a space on a planetary scale symbolised by these museums. The shift from a fluid virtual architecture to a constructed reality takes shape in the form of a 3D video animation created by Bryan Bey and a resin model created with 3D prototyping, made in collaboration with the IDO creation company from the elements we had gathered together. 5G is made up of photos and GPSb.

Posted by jo at 11:03 AM | Comments (0)

Wave Bubble


A design for a self-tuning portable RF jammer

[Image: Two Wavebubbles. Left is an earlier revision with the top removed and with external antennas. Right is v1.0 with internal antennas, fit into a pack of cigarettes.]

This website details the design and construction Wave Bubble: a self-tuning, wide-bandwidth portable RF jammer. The device is lightweight and small for easy camoflauging: it is the size of a pack of cigarettes. An internal lithium-ion battery provides up to 2 hours of jamming (two bands, such as cell) or 4 hours (single band, such as cordless phone, GPS, WiFi, bluetooth, etc). The battery is rechargeable via a mini-USB connector or 4mm DC jack (a common size). Alternately, 3 AAA batteries may also be used.

Output power is .1W (high bands) and .3W (low bands). Effective range is approximately 20' radius with well-tuned antennas. Less so with the internal antennas or poorly matched antennas. Self-tuning is provided via dual PLL, therefore, no spectrum analyzer is necessary to build this jammer and a single Wave Bubble can jam many different frequency bands - unlike any other design currently available! To reconfigure the RF bands, simply plug it into the USB port of your PC and type in the new frequencies when prompted. Multiple frequency ranges can be programmed in, each time the device is power cycled it will advance to the next program in memory.

While the documentation here is both accurate and complete (as much as possible), the construction of such a device is still an advanced project. I would not suggest this as even an 'intermediate' skill project, considering the large amount of difficult SMT soldering (multiple TSSOP and SOT chips, 0603 RC's), obscure parts, and equiptment necessary to properly construct and debug.

This design is not for sale or available as a kit and never will be due to FCC regulations. Please do not ask me to assist you in such matters.

All original content for this project is distributed open source under Creative Commons 2.5 Attribution / Share-Alike.

Posted by jo at 09:39 AM | Comments (0)

Networked Proximity - Section 7:


Virtuality and the Near

"[...] The fact is that the opposite of the virtual —as we will see— is not the real, but the actual. But before getting into that, we should acknowledge that setting up virtuality as a threat to reality has served an important function in critical theory. As part of a discourse on the shortfalls of modernity, virtuality has served as a powerful metaphor for describing the detachment we feel from ‘real’ life, the desire to reintegrate to a reality that seems to have been lost in the midst of simulations. Virtuality has frequently been the scapegoat for the anomie and alienation that accompany the lack of opportunities for meaningful social participation. But impugning virtuality in this way has prevented us from realizing its true value. Virtuality, as I intend to show with help from the work of Gilles Deleuze (b. 1925, d. 1995), can be employed to affirm the real, not devalue it —increasing our understanding and therefore our engagement with it. Furthermore, I also intend to show that networks do not really promote virtuality by creating a separate online social realm, but in fact obstruct references to virtuality, which can only be recuperated through the paranodal." Continue reading Networked Proximity - Section 7: Virtuality and the Near by Ulises Mejias.

Posted by jo at 09:04 AM | Comments (0)

HEATHER BURSCH: The Singer Not the Song


Between Group Identity and Self

Heather Bursch’s three screen projection, The Singer Not the Song, uses custom software to convert video into virtual, automated stadium card displays. Video of her hands moving a 15” X 20” red card to catch a range of light values is presented in a 32 X 32 grid format. The cards animate video from pre-rendered sources, referring to the card animations that celebrate unified vision in the stadiums of totalitarian states and at sporting events in the US. The mediating structure of the individual cards, as well as the moving images they collectively animate, highlight the relationship between group identity and an individual self.

Projected onto the center screen is an iconic performance of Mick Jagger at a concert in Hyde Park in 1969, just five months prior to the disillusionment invoked by the violent eruption at Altamont. Shot at a pivotal time in 20th century idealism and utopianism, this footage marks a moment in western culture that suggested tremendous possibility for social change. The side panels consist of contemporary video of public spaces, invoking a feeling of static, mechanized surveillance where individuals move quietly through institutional spaces.

The center and side screens function in opposition to each other, both positioning the viewer as a member of a unified crowd and as a detached surveyor of the other. This attempts to ask, what can the viewer’s position in relation to media of the past and the present suggest? How do these various ways of seeing ourselves reflect who we are as individuals and members of a larger cultural matrix with assumed, shared beliefs? And how do we as viewers participate in the generation and dissemination of cultural messages? The title, The Singer Not The Song suggests a double reading. The iconic image of Mick Jagger as auteur and vehicle for a social message is rendered mute, actively replaced by the transmitting framework of the crowd and recording device of the camera.

Heather Bursch, born in 1971, lives and works in Los Angeles, CA. She received her BFA in painting from the San Francisco Art Institute and is currently pursuing an MFA in Experimental Animation and Integrated Media at the California Institute for the Arts.

Posted by jo at 08:51 AM | Comments (0)

SXSW Xcript: Joi Ito and Justin Hall


Difference Between Simulation and Metaphor

"[...] Richard Bartle thought audio shatters the fantasy of MMOs. The fact of the matter I believe is that the fantasy is already broken. We used to have this notion of being in cyberspace or being in the real world, but there is no difference any more. The game is just a common activity we do in this community, my guildies IM me, I have guild chat on my speakers in my house. I don’t think separating that out as a fantasy is practical any more.

One criticism of 3D is, text is better because in 3D there’s nothing left to the imagination. Steven Johnson, who wrote a book called Everything Bad is Good For You, responded to that in this way: Is it better to sit in your bedroom and imagine going to Paris, or actually go to Paris?

Difference between simulation and metaphor: Second Life is more simulation. WoW, where you have 40 people gathering to enter Molten Core here, has nothing to do with real life, but being together and the leadership involved is metaphorically similar to those same things in the real world. John Seely Brown uses the word ensemble: when you’re playing music together and get in the zone, etc.: Shows video of boss fight set to Strauss waltz. This feeling of it just working and having all those hours of time pay off is a reward you get. Really young people who have never been in a group like this suddenly understand why they’re doing what they’re doing. You tell them in church to be quiet, they don’t know why, and it’s hard to explain. If you’re trying to get ready and prepare for a fight with a dragon, they know why..." [blogged by Mark Wallace on 3pointD]

Posted by jo at 08:40 AM | Comments (0)

inmerso [foro.lounge]


ELOUT de Kok + Karras

INMERSO [foro.lounge]: Cyberlounge at Museo Tamayo Arte Contemporįneo, México D.F. :: Opening Performance: ELOUT de Kok with Karras (live) :: Wednesday, March 14, 2007 :: Free admission :: Pixel Lab: March 14- June 18, 2007 :: Curated by Arcįngel Constantini.

Elout de Kok lives and works in Amsterdam. With his outstanding work as a programmer, Elout de Kok creates online interactive aesthetic experiences. His work is nourished from historical movements with roots in the Netherlands painting traditions like Impressionism and De Stijl, stimulus that he confronts with fiction-architecture as utopian spaces that expansions ourselves into the digital age.

Karra, pseudonim of Manrico Montero, is a sound artist based in México City. Karra creates organic sound landscapes, digi-acustic and intimistic microacustic structures.

inmerso [foro.lounge] is a space focus on net.art live performances and author interactive project presentations in a lounge environment at the Museo Tamayo Arte Contemporįneo.

Posted by jo at 08:39 AM | Comments (0)

Liz Lawley's Thoughts on Twitter


"P" is for "Presence"

I’m completely fascinated by Twitter right now—in much the same way I was by blogging four years ago, and by ICQ years before that.

If you haven’t tried it yet, Twitter is a site that allows you to post one-line messages about what you’re currently doing—via the web interface, IM, or SMS. You can limit who sees the messages to people you’ve explicitly added to your friends list, or you can make the messages public. (My Twitter posts are private, but my friend Joi’s are public.)

What Twitter does, in a simple and brilliant way, is to merge a number of interesting trends in social software usage—personal blogging, lightweight presence indicators, and IM status messages—into a fascinating blend of ephemerality and permanence, public and private.

The big “P” word in technology these days is “participatory.” But I’m increasingly convinced that a more important “P” word is “presence.” In a world where we’re seldom able to spend significant amounts of time with the people we care about (due not only to geographic dispersion, but also the realities of daily work and school commitments), having a mobile, lightweight method for both keeping people updated on what you’re doing and staying aware of what others are doing is powerful.

I’ve experimented a bit with a visual form of this lightweight presence indication, through cameraphone photos taken while traveling. A photo of a boarding gate sign, or of a hotel entrance, conveys where I am and what I’m doing quickly and easily. But that only works if people are near a computer and are watching my Flickr photo feed, and that’s a lot to ask.

I also use IM status messages to broadcast what I’m doing. My iChat has a stack of custom messages that I’ve saved for re-use, from “packing” and “at the airpot” to “breaking up sibling squabbles” and “grading…the horror! the horror!” But status messages have no permanence to them, and require some degree of synchronicity—people have to be logged into IM, and looking at status messages, while I’m there. Because Twitter archives your messages on the web (and can send them as SMS that you can check at any time), that requirement for synchronous connections goes away.

Blogs allow this kind of archived update, of course—but they’re not lightweight. Where one might easily post a Twitter message along the lines of “on my way to work”, a blog post like that wouldn’t be worth the effort and overhead.

I’ve heard two kinds of criticisms of Twitter already.

The first criticizes the triviality of the content. But asking “who really cares about that kind of mindless trivia about your day” misses the whole point of presence. This isn’t about conveying complex theory—it’s about letting the people in your distributed network of family and friends have some sense of where you are and what you’re doing. And we crave this, I think. When I travel, the first thing I ask the kids on the phone when I call home is “what are you doing?” Not because I really care that much about the show on TV, or the homework they’re working on, but because I care about the rhythms and activities of their days. No, most people don’t care that I’m sitting in the airport at DCA, or watching a TV show with my husband. But the people who miss being able to share in day-to-day activity with me—family and close friends—do care.

The second type of criticism is that the last thing we need is more interruptions in our already discontinuous and partially attentive connected worlds. What’s interesting to me about Twitter, though, is that it actually reduces my craving to surf the web, ping people via IM, and cruise Facebook. I can keep a Twitter IM window open in the background, and check it occasionally just to see what people are up to. There’s no obligation to respond, which I typically feel when updates come from individuals via IM or email. Or I can just check my text messages or the web site when I feel like getting a big picture of what my friends are up to.

Which then leads to one of the aspects of Twitter that I find most fascinating—exploring clusters of loosely related people by looking at the updates from their friends. There are stories told in between updates. Who’s at a conference, and do they know each other? Who’s on the road, and who’s at home. Narratives that wind around and between the updates and the people, that show connections. Updates that echo each other, or even directly respond to another Twitter post.

There’s more to it than that, but I’m still sorting it all out in my head. Just wanted to post an early-warning signal that I see something important happening here, something worth paying (more than partial) attention to.

(cross-posted from mamamusings; since comments have been unreliable here, any comments can be posted there) [blogged by Liz Lawley on Many-to-Many] Also see Twitter Tips the Tuna by Ross Mayfield.

Posted by jo at 08:24 AM | Comments (0)

March 13, 2007

from a land down under (myspace)


Being MTAA, Just for one Day...

Once upon a time, I made a site for MTAA on myspace. (Yeah, I know, I know.) Then, a person named “Penny” from Australia asked to be MTAA’s friend. So I, of course, said, “Yes”. Then she asked if I wanted to be part of a chain of email performances. So I, of course, said, “Yes”. (Yeah, I know, I know.) This is where it gets a bit complicated but stay with me. Penney made a list of performers. The person above MTAA name was to send us an artwork and the person below our name was to get an artwork. Now, the person above our name was Emily. Emily emailed that she thought that email was a bit impersonal (or at least I think that was what she thought), She asked if she could mail us some art. So I, of course, said, “Yes”. Today, in the mail, came Emily’s first project.

Wonderful right? If we get another one, I’ll post it on the blog as well.

Now, as for sending an artwork, the person we got was Penny (who, you’ll remember, also started the project.) What did we send her? We sent her a set of instructions for a performance on how to be “MTAA” that, if she completed and documented, would be the artwork. (Yeah, I know. I know.) Anyways, here is what we sent her:

Being MTAA, Just for one Day
To Be Performed by Penny Spankie

Dress in a black t-shirt, blue jeans, black boots, and a black belt. Perform any or all of the following artworks/ actions. Each performance attempted should be documented with 2 photographs or 2 short videos.

1. lying propped up in bed
2. checking your hair in a mirror
3. tossing a paper airplane out of a window
4. pointing at public sculpture
5. jumping over things on the street.
6. holding an open umbrella inside your home.
7. listening to music with headphones on.
8. drinking a beer not in a bar

So, guess what? She wrote back with this documentation of choice #2 (Checking your hair in the mirror)

Reply Video - for MTAA - Email Art - RCW

Reply Video - for MTAA - Email Art - RCW


So, If we get any more email myspace art, you’ll see it here. That’s all for now. Thanks Emily and Penney. [posted by M.River on MTAA-RR]

Posted by jo at 04:40 PM | Comments (0)

Areas of conflu(x)ence - Art, Space & Technology in the Digital Age


Call for Papers

Areas of conflu(x)ence - Art, Space & Technology in the Digital Age :: International Conference, Sibiu, Romania :: October 4-7, 2007 :: Call for papers :: Deadline for proposals: May 4, 2007.

Areas of conflu(x)ence proposes an international debate on the relationship between art and technology in the present digital era, focusing on the impact of the new media in our lives. Today's digital technologies have created a new model of understanding different aspects of reality. The change they produced compels us to reconsider the conditioning of our modern lives while their potential demands to be explored. Post-modernist syntax is today reevaluated and there are positions that support the thesis of a hyper-industrialized society.

Science and technology are expected to push forward the frontiers of knowledge, while art is asked to mirror these new experiences. The way we handle our lives and our expectations is changing continuously according to these new frontiers. The place we give to the different aspects of our lives and the spatial articulation of our activities are subjected to constant conceptualization based on a continuous flux of discoveries.

What kind of models are we using in perceiving and understanding our new environment? If the tools we use have an influence on the way we deal with our environment, how do we use their potentiality? What traps are to be avoided? What do we expect from technology? Should the new technologies be a matter of concern? By trying to answer all these questions, the conference intends to identify the present condition of our data driven lives and the factors that influence it.

On the basis of artistic and aesthetic experiences, we will study the ways in which image, sound and space are today affected by the digital technologies.

The international conference Areas of conflu(x)ence is organized by 2580 Association in partnership with Arscenic Association Paris, Czech Cultural Center Bucharest, Kibla Multimedia Center Maribor, Planwerk Association Cluj, Visual Arts and Design University Cluj, Tranzit Foundation Cluj and Gong Theater Sibiu.

Details concerning the registration and the full conference agenda will be posted as they become available to the website.

Call for papers

Our conference hosts papers and project presentations from any discipline, methodology or combination of different disciplines that address the following three areas:

I. Types of Imagery and Sound and Their Interaction: digital and new media art, techniques of representation, imaging technology, sound technology, sound visualizations, performance sciences.

II. Spacial Forms: physical and virtual spaces, space/place/territory, space and everyday life experience, private and public spaces, mobility and mobile platforms, utopian spaces, urbanism, landscape, space organization, cartography, topography, space policy, environment.

III. Types of Memory: archiving forms, data systems and models, memory and memories.

Papers and presentations will be selected from the submitted proposals on the basis of multiple blind peer reviews by the members of the Conference Committee. Authors will be notified on the results via email by June 1, 2007.

The conference will also include multimedia performances, an exhibit hall of innovative projects and tours of the art installations.

Working languages: English and French

The Conference Committee:

Inke Arns - Hartware MedienKunstVerein (Dortmund), Michael Bielicky - ZKM (Karlsruhe), Irina Cios - CIAC (Bucharest), Christian Denker - University of Vienna (Vienna), Ana-Maria Avram & Iancu Dumitrescu - CREMAC (Bucharest), Anne-Marie Duguet - Paris 1 Pantheon - Sorbonne University (Paris), Paulo Ferreira-Lopes - ZKM (Karlsruhe), Pierre-Damien Huyghe - Paris 1 Pantheon - Sorbonne University (Paris), Augustin Ioan - architect (Bucharest), Marko Kosnik - artist (Slovenia), Ciprian Mihali - Babes-Bolyai University (Cluj), Antonio Pinto Ribeiro - Gulbekian Foundation (Lisbonne), Zolta n SĆ©bok - C3 (Budapest), Bernard Stiegler - G. Pompidou Center (Paris) and Steina & Woody Vasulka - ZKM (Karlsruhe). The invited speakers are unconfirmed.

Important dates:

Deadline for abstracts (500 words) and biography (100 words): Mai 4, 2007
Notification of acceptance: June 15, 2007
Deadline for full paper submission (3000-5000 words): July 31, 2007

Submissions should be sent to papers[at]2580association.info in .doc or .rtf¯ format as attachments only.

For more information please contact Tincuta Parv or Barbu Bejan via email at: info[at]2580association.info

Posted by jo at 03:41 PM | Comments (0)

Alyssa Wright's "Cherry Blossoms"


Empathy + Tactical Media

We were filming a brief video segment at the Lab today, with journalist John Hockenberry, on some of the non-standard interpretations of assistive technologies our group is working on. The last segment was with Alyssa Wright, and Hockenberry strapped on her pamphleteer/ performance technology, Cherry Blossoms.

Alyssa began working on Cherry Blossoms last semester, wondering how to think about — and feel about — the civilian war deaths in Baghdad. She found an artist’s site that superimposed the map of Baghdad over San Francisco; it was a lovely project, but it failed to engender the empathy and sense of tragedy that remarkable works of art can. She felt this was important, because the average American believes that about 9000 Iraqi civilians have died so far in the war. The truth is very different.

Cherry Blossoms is a backpack that uses a small microcontroller and a GPS unit. Recent news of bombings in Iraq are downloaded to the unit every night, and their relative location to the center of the city are superimposed on a map of Boston. If the wearer walks in a space in Boston that correlates to a site of violence in Baghdad, the backpack detonates and releases a compressed air cloud of confetti, looking for all the world like smoke and shrapnel. Each piece of confetti is inscribed with the name of a civilian who died in the war, and the circumstances of their death.


Alyssa’s genius was in sacrificing herself. After all, it’s not an easy piece to perform. You don’t know when it’s going to blow. It’s shocking and loud, and one has no sense of how others will react. Of course, she won’t get hurt by the compressed air, but she might well be confused for a suicide bomber (or, more appropriately, a mooninite) and arrested.

I’m writing about the project because even though I knew exactly what was going to happen, even though I’ve seen test runs, even though I worked with Alyssa from the inception of the project, I was completely rocked, as was Hockenberry, when the backpack exploded. He was brave to wear it, but he was dumbstruck by the effect of it blowing. Lives, fluttering, pale and light as souls, covered him like ash.


Jean-Jacques Rousseau considered empathy the most primary, most basic human emotion; the one that allows civilization to exist. His Second Discourse was written, for the city of Geneva, to offer a moral basis for the abolition of slavery. It’s incredible to imagine the necessity of building a moral basis to oppose slavery, but at one time it was. It’s no less incredible that the average US citizen underestimates how many innocent civilians their tax dollars have helped to kill by several orders of magnitude. Our system of public media and government has developed in a direction that systematically helps reduce empathy. And, as a result, civilization is going elsewhere.

[blogged by Chris Csikszentmihįlyi on Edgy Products]

Posted by jo at 02:04 PM | Comments (0)

Erasing the delta:


Games that alter reality!

Here are my notes for my first Game Developers Conference talk, as part of a serious games summit panel on “Erasing the Delta - Games that Accomplish a Specific Task” The theme of the panel is about moving away from games that just prepare you to do something (learning/training games), or help you think about something (simulation games, persuasive games) and games that actually enable and indeed require you to do that thing, or to produce that thing, simply by playing them (games that work).

(Fellow ARG travelers Brian Clark and Brooke Thompson were there -- yay! we are so totally going to alter reality through play...)

(UPDATE: There's nothing that makes me post-talk happier than when multiple different communities take away ideas they're excited by. So I'm happy to see, for instance, some great responses to the talk at MTV, ARGN, and Destructoid!)

My spiel follows:

Erasing the Delta Gap is really about two different practices:

Making a new kind of serious game: Games that are designed as functions with an end result that is a measurable difference in the present state of reality. Serious games now are viewed as “resources” (for education, training, instruction, simulation) or “platforms” (for messages, persuasion). We must start to create serious games as “generative processes” or “solutions to problems”

Redefining what we define as a “serious impact”: We must move away from “preparation” and “knowledge” and “skills” and “rhetorical effect” as our only serious impacts. We can also consider for example “improved quality of life” and “better health” and “improved social organization” and “future resources produced”. In these terms, many games are already closing the delta gap, particularly in the area of health -- if we think of something like “reducing human suffering” as a serious impact (games for pre-surgery sedation) or intervening into the obesity epidemic (physical activity games) or, in the future, things like serving as a live suicide prevention resource (instead of calling 1 800 suicide) or facilitating global security through youth cooperation and co-immersion. So: What is the role of Alternate Reality Games in erasing the delta?

The new opportunities for ARGs to do work is best understood as a movement through different definitions of “realism” in gameplay

Realism in ARGs

1st wave ARGs: they’re so real! Real Life (embedded in real, working life): operational, everyday technologies, intimate
2nd wave ARGs: they’re so real! Real World (moving into real-world spaces): social, physical, face to face, everyday spaces, public
3rd wave ARGs: they’re so real! Real Impact (starting to solve real-world problems, for example: global relations/world peace, massively multiplayer science, quality of life, learning): intentional, effective. Games that alter reality!

Two factors that make this third wave possible:

Our culture is becoming more ARGlike (CI culture, participatory Web culture / 2.0, creative commons, science commons)

Our culture WANTS to be more ARGlike (the spirit of massive collaboration saving the world)

Examples of ARGs that start to erase the delta:

Past - Tombstone Hold ‘Em – putting live bodies back in cemeteries, creating a public culture for a dying public space
Present - World Without Oil – generating a massively collaborative map of potential, citizen responses to oil shock; constructing a database of lower-consumption practices that might prevent that shock from happening
Future - Massively Multiplayer Science – games with real scientific data embedded in them, and gameplay to collect, analyze and process the data in massive parallel.

[blogged by Jane McGonigal on Avant Game]

Posted by jo at 01:47 PM | Comments (0)

Digital marks


Augmented Realities

A little bit on digital marks, I selected a variety of them.

The semacode, a two dimensional code that encodes a URL. The picture (left) is the semacode of architectradure. Thank you Michael Surtees for the link! This tag embed the URL address of my blog, that can be read by your cell phone and send you to its page. I guess it avoids typing in the URL and you can rapidly go through a series of web sites using the respective tags.

It is especially useful for combining physical space to digital content. The Semacode's Software Development Kit has is developed for ubiquitous computing by creating visual tags for objects and contexts, and read them using a mobile camera phone. The physical Wikipedia called Semapedia, created by Alexis Rondeau and Stan Wiechers, allows you to add place tags on places and things to link them to the relevant Wikipedia articles.

digitalmarks2.jpg[images: trash can with a wikipedia tag] Semacode technical paper.

Urban Tapestries allows public mapping and sharing by combining mobile and internet technologies with geographic information systems. This system was linked to Natalie Jeremijenko's famous feral robots -open source robots for investigating contaminated urban sites- and called Robotic Feral Public Authoring: "Adding the sensor readings to online mapping tools, such as Urban Tapestries, suddenly brings the relationships between environment and home vividly to life. It enables people to feel they can learn about their environment and have the evidence to do something about it"

Yellow Arrow allows a community to tag places using arrows. You can post a message using the arrow and anyone could retrieve it using their cell phone. Another method to link digital content to a physical place. The community of yellow arrow is quite big. Their blog.


Elens allows anyone to create talking landmarks. Developed by the MIT Media Lab it allows anyone to tag a place by adding a sticker on a physical location, sticker that can later be scanned by a cell phone, in this case the Motorola A1000.

M-views developed at the MIT media lab in the interactive cinema group -media fabrics- with Glorianna Davenport, explores the "ideas, methods, and culture of mobile cinema, which is experienced in temporal and spatial narrative segments that can be delivered on context-aware mobile devices."

In 2002, I researched with Glorianna Davenport on technologies to allow digital information to communicate with the physical space. I worked on Passing Glances a system that enables users to create ambient urban interludes through the use of SMS text messages. Associated graphics and storytelling were projected in the urban space.
CHI'04 paper
Enarrative5 2003 paper

With these tags, the physical space is tagged to the digital space. One can think the other way around and tag the virtual space with physical content. That is what Josh Lifton told me he was working on the other day. Josh created a plug sensor/actuator network, called the dual reality lab, that links the MIT Media Laboratory space to a virtual lab space in the Second Life online virtual world.

[left: Location of the MIT Media Laboratory in Second Life] More info technical about the plug. [blogged by Cati Vaucell on Architectradure]


["Dual reality" is the concept of maintaining two worlds, one virtual and one real, that reflect, influence, and merge into each other by means of deeply embedded sensor/actuator networks. Both the real and virtual components of a dual reality are complete unto themselves, but are enriched by their mutual interaction. The dual reality Media Lab is an example of such a dual reality, as enabled the Plug sensor/actuator network that links our actual lab space to a virtual lab space in the Second Life online virtual world.]

Posted by jo at 01:30 PM | Comments (0)

An American in Iran: Kristen Alvanson's



The interactions of things, the undulation of entities in the space, the art of stitching events together, or in a word, cosmogenesis of all kinds requires abundant sewing work and notions artistry.

American Artist Kristen Alvanson, who relocated to Iran in 2006, has created a new website Artistry of Notions and Cosmic Drapery highlighting her current projects including Middle Eastern focused Maskh Project, Graveyards and Lumpen Orientalism as well as a section on the artist's forthcoming book entitled Lessons in Schizophrenia and her dESIRE Project.

Maskh Project: the connotation of the word maskh in Farsi is more than metamorphosis; it includes experiencing limits of one's identity or existence usually with the assistance of new independent vehicles of material and abstract articulation, as in the case of spirit possession. Maskh project is a visual compendium of drawings diagramming Alvanson's metamorphoses in the Middle East in the form of spells and maps.

Graveyards: project as a psycho-geographic exploration of Middle Eastern graveyards, entombments and post-mortem spaces escapes necromanticism or fascination with ruins by illustrating the cognition and encounters with space and time, and consequently the twofold of dwelling and thinking, in the Middle East.

Lumpen Orientalism: gathers the fragments of a lost civilization, the decaying parts of a once breathing animal. Named after a term suggested by China Miiville, Lumpen Orientalism is a photo-blog engendering an anomalous fascination with the Middle East in a similar way to the mongrel techniques of Gilles Deleuze, H. P. Lovecraft, Gaktan Clirambault and William Beckford for tackling this enigmatic monstrosity, the Middle East.

Lessons in Schizophrenia: is the artist's forthcoming book, based on real events which led her to leave the US for the Middle East in a cataclysmic process. It includes an introduction by the Iranian Philosopher Reza Negarestani entitled Epithemic.

The dESIRE Project: is an ongoing investigation on desire which includes artistic components; it is an attempt to reach concrete but not necessarily corporeal definitions of desire by tapping into its obscure formations. dESIRE Project is intertwined with the mathematics of natural numbers, countability / uncountability, pimp as a nomadic dissipater, stock market, legal contracts, intangibility and expendability of desires. Alvanson's dESIRES, both intangible and their photographic representations, are for sale on the Market section of her website.

Posted by jo at 01:29 PM | Comments (0)

Turbulence Artist’s Studio:


Michael Takeo Magruder

Turbulence Artist’s Studio: Continuum… by Michael Takeo Magruder :: Needs Flash Player 8+ plugin and stereo audio

Continuum… reflects upon the evolution of our collective history through the real-time analysis of global news information networks. As no event transpires in isolation, each moment of our existence is defined by the sum of an infinite number of interconnected occurrences. Given that no individual can absorb and process the totality of this information, how can we obtain an informed notion of the present?

"Continuum…" was commissioned by Oog online, a commentary and opinion platform for the online edition of De Volkskrant a major Dutch daily national newspaper.

Michael Takeo Magruder is an American artist based in the UK deploying New and Technological Media within Contemporary Art contexts. He is a long-standing member of King's Visualization Lab located in the Centre for Computing in the Humanities, King's College London. His artworks have been showcased in over 150 exhibitions and 30 countries. Artistically, his interests concern the simultaneous utilization and dissection of new technology as a means to explore the formal structures and conceptual paradigms of the digital realm. He seeks to create artworks in which there are no divisions between technologies, aesthetics, and concepts.

Posted by jo at 11:18 AM | Comments (0)

Jürgen on YouTube

So, Habermas comes to the interweb. Or does he? There are those who say he still doesn’t quite get it, but I think there is much in his more recent work that–perhaps against his will–allows for a non-broadcast, networked model of the public sphere and a re-evaluation of the importance of ephemeral communication within it, if not the decentring of Reason as its connective tissue.

Case in point: I found this video via David Berry, via Twitter. [blogged by Jean Burgess on Creativity Machine]

Posted by jo at 09:02 AM | Comments (0)



Seeks Curators for 2008

The SCAPE Biennial of Art in Public Space is New Zealand’s only international contemporary biennial dedicated to public art. 2008 is the fifth SCAPE Biennial for Christchurch and the 10 year anniversary of the Art & Industry Biennial Trust, who present the SCAPE Biennials.

The Art & Industry Biennial Trust (Art & Industry) is seeking your Expression of Interest (EOI) to be considered as one of two key curators for this important New Zealand biennial taking place between September - November 2008 in Christchurch. SCAPE is one of the largest producers of new contemporary art in Australasia; engaging local, national and international audiences with new artworks by leading New Zealand and international artists in public space through partnerships with industry.

SCAPE also has a significant partnership with the Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetu. An indoor exhibition, hub and public programme will be supported by the Gallery.

This exciting opportunity is for one New Zealand and one international curator. Once formed, the curatorial partnership will be responsible for reflecting Art & Industry’s Strategic Plan, relationships with stakeholders and partners as well as matches to industry resources. The curators will also be required to build on the existing profile of the event locally, nationally and internationally while delivering a distinctive programme which challenges the parameters of the public’s relationship with art.

Both partnered (national/international) and individual applications are welcome. Art & Industry is happy to broker relationships between interested curators.

For further details and/or to receive an application pack please contact Art & Industry: scapebiennial[at]xtra.co.nz. Final submission date for all applications is Friday 27 April 2007.

The Art & Industry Biennial Trust is supported by Creative New Zealand, the Arts Council of New Zealand and the Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetu.

Posted by jo at 08:58 AM | Comments (0)

2 Residency Opportunities



The properties of elements often reflect the properties of life itself - volatile, inert, lustrous, precious, brittle… Primo Levi

Allenheads Contemporary Arts (ACA) would like to receive proposals from artists interested in following a line of research into the earth's base elements. The project aims to explore in broad terms, how we comprehend and relate to the matter of our planet. Artists will be able to invite a collaborator from any field of the arts or sciences, to bring their knowledge and experience to the project.

These 2 residencies are the first in the Base Elements series, which will collectively present a broad picture of our complex relationship with planet earth. It is planned that the series will culminate in a conference, exhibition and publication. Each residency is for a flexible period of up to 3 months taking place between May and December 2007. Artist's fee £1800 pcm + travel, accommodation, studio and production expenses. Application deadline April 18th 2007.

FURTHER INFORMATION on the Base Elements residencies


Deadline for applications is Wed 18th April 2007.
Selections will take place during the week beginning April 23rd.
Each residency is for up to 3 months and can take place between 9th May - December 2007.
The residency period can be approached in a flexible manner. For example, 1x3 month stay or several shorter stays.


The artist will be paid a fee of £1800 pcm. This includes subsistence and some working materials costs.Expenses for 1 economy return trip from the artist's home to Allenheads will be provided. Additional travel costs will be the responsibility of the artist. A budget will be available towards materials for production, presentation and distribution of the artists work. This will be negotiated during the residency.


The Base Elements programme has a budget to cover the expenses of working with a collaborator. (Fee's, travel expenses etc.)
The artist may nominate a collaborator in his/her proposal, or work with ACA's help to seek the most appropriate person for their research.

Extended Programme

Artists will be expected to contribute to ACA's extended arts and education programme that may involve local and international audiences. This could be in the form of meetings, talks, presentations, exhibitions, publications, archival documentation etc. The nature of this contribution will be discussed during the residency to ensure it is appropriate to both artist and host venue.

Facilities at ACA

· Large open and versatile studio (10x10m)
· Access to workshop and digital studio for DVD editing and production
· DVD presentation with high quality projection and surround sound PA system
· Internet and TV for research purposes
· Basic comfortable private accommodation with bathroom and shower facilities
· Fully equipped self catering kitchen

About ACA

ACA is an independent contemporary Arts venue established in 1995 by Helen Ratcliffe and Alan Smith. Over the last 11 years it has commissioned, presented and distributed a diverse collection of innovative work by national and international artists. It is situated in the North Pennines in a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and at 1540 feet is England's highest village and is at the geographical centre of Britain. While based in a small rural village, its scope of interest and resources is much broader, connecting the local community and environment with geographical, political, personal and cultural concerns globally. Please visit ACA's other web pages for more information www.acart.org.uk

Allenheads village is accessible by car or by a train and bus connection. While artists entering this rural setting will need to demonstrate a personal desire and willingness to work in a remote area, their social, professional and creative networks will by no means be isolated.

Resident artists are treated as part of Alan and Helen's extended family often sharing meals and leisure time. Artists have their own private quarters for sleeping, cooking and working and there is an open policy that respects the need for both privacy and companionship. Allenheads has a welcoming community with a pub, café, heritage centre. Alan and Helen work and live in the building with their two young children. Professionally and socially they have regular contact with many regional and national artists and curators with whom they share ongoing projects and interests.


Please send:

· Written proposal (max 1 x A4 page) outling:
- Brief statement relating to recent work
- Line of research you are interested in pursuing at ACA
- Choice of collaborator (specific names not required at this stage)
- How you envisage this residency impacting on your work
· A current CV (max.2 pages)
· Visual material supporting your proposal:
- Slides (max 10. Clearly labeled - including your name!)
- CD-R (max 10 images. JPEG Format. 72 dpi)
- DVD Show-reel (max 5 mins)
- If relevant, details of web address
· An indication of your preferred dates and working schedule.
· The contact details of a referee who we may contact during the selection process.
· If you would like your material returned, please enclose a SAE with full postage.

Please send applications by post to: Allenheads Contemporary Arts, The Old School House, Allenheads, Hexham, orthumberland, NE47 9HR, UK

Any enquiries may be sent by email to helenheads[at]aol.com but please do not send any application material via email.

Posted by jo at 08:49 AM | Comments (0)

March 12, 2007

Barcamp Bangalore 3



Barcamp Bangalore 3: SocialTech, where technology meets society at large :: March 31-April 1, at the campus of the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore. At this event, we intend to share stories of technology implementations that affected society around us, and social norms that affected the course of technology.

We have stories of e-governance, electronic record keeping, and what it means for those without access; Indian copyright law and innovation in music; and celluloid, movies and the resultant shaping of society and culture. We’d love to hear more, perhaps on the application of technology to understand the human condition, or perhaps on the growing spread of personal communication technologies and the unexpected but undeniable shift in the landscape of mass media and governance.

Surely you’ve got a tale to narrate? A tale that escaped popular attention and deserves to be brought out and shared? A cautionary tale of how things may not always get better? Bring it to Barcamp. Help your fellow campers understand what it really means, beneath the surface of the narrative, and of how it affects our lives and what we should be prepared for.

For the regular Barcampers: this event may be somewhat different from what you may have come to expect. This time we’re not as interested in the tech itself as in what it means to the society that receives it. You’re welcome to continue to use the space for what you’re comfortable with, but requested to participate in expanding the presence and social impact of Barcamp, while retaining its technology flavour.

Discussion of this theme at http://jace.seacrow.com/archive/2007/03/09/barcampbangalore3

Posted by jo at 05:58 PM | Comments (0)

[iDC] Second Life wrap-up; thanks


On Gaming, Labor, and Education

[Image: Ulises Mejias speaking at Emerson College in Second Life, February 28, 2007 by John Craig Freeman] Johua Levy wrote:

Thanks all for a stimulating discussion about Second Life, gaming, labor, and education.

Who is manufacturing virtual worlds and MMOs? In response to Michel Bauwens question about this, Ana Valdes points out that the games market is almost 100 percent American, with these large companies having bought our smaller European companies over time. However, Julian Dibbell points to a chart that suggests that U.S. companies are in fact responsible for only 40-60% of worldwide games and the us market share is 61.3%. The question of market dominance vs. ideological dominance comes into play here. Ana argues that, even if the market share isn't 100%, most video games share an ideology with the U.S., though Michel says he witnesses in Thailand dominant themes from Korea and Japan.

And on to the big L, which inspired some of the best discussion on the cultural ramifications of virtual worlds, virtual labor, and virtual economies. Trebor opened the discussion by questioning the need to replicate the architecture of real-world sites within Second Life. "Why do we need a replication of our own campus? Why not rather build a Black Mountain College with a Bauhaus Annex? Why teach in this virtual environment? Will SecondLife become a 3D version of Wikipedia, a virtual knowledge bank that offers a playful and fun interface to participant-generated content? Will students simply demand such playful access to knowledge?" he asks. Eric Gordon offers a compelling argument for why he helped reproduce Emerson College's architecture in SL: "our decision to reproduce the architectural layout of campus and to recreate the Boston Common was deliberately made to correspond with our understanding of the platform's possibilities. We see Second Life as a way of creatively re-imagining the space. While, we're not able to screen student work in the physical Boston Common, it will be possible to do so in Second Life."

In addition to this recreation of material space, he finds that SL mirrors "first life capitalism" as well, that inequalities between labor and capital exist there as they do anywhere else in the world. Like historical relations between labor and capital, Trebor argues that users of sociable web media are not aware of their servitude towards the owners of those systems, though, like Michel, I take issue with his assertion that "many people in the US actually think that they are 'happy' and perceive this distributed labor of the sociable web as a fun leisure activity." We are not in a position to judge what many people in the U.S. think about their station in life, and to imply that the distributed labor of the sociable web simply provides gains for the owners of capital while pulling the wool over the eyes of the participants isn't fair towards either party.

Alan Clinton offers a refreshing take on the problem of virtual labor: "At the risk of revising Marcuse, couldn't we say that consciousness of servitude is not really the problem so much as providing strategies for political agency? People who are laboring know that they are laboring. People (and let's not dismiss the global south so quickly) who are suffering the violence of capitalism know they are suffering the violence of servitude. They may lack awareness of ways to name this violence or attack it, but they are not unaware of their suffering."

In response to the problem of proprietary systems like SL posing as open platforms, Andreas Schiffler suggests a radical, peer-to-peer system that involving shared servers and open source software that become a challenge to the "'Operating System + Deskop' metaphor sold by Microsoft and Apple." This setup could also provide an open source and peer-to-peer alternative to SL.

In response to Simon Biggs' provocation that "SL is a misnomer. It is not a second life but simply a kind of first life, as constructed by a dominant elite, represented in such a manner that it will function to further inculcate and embed its associated ideology on a global scale. It will sustain the fundamental ethic of consumerism...that we are all potential suckers or grifters (often both) and that nobody is responsible for what happens to anybody else. In short, it is another rip off culture," I would point him to a group that I'm involved with, RootsCampSL, progressive activists that use SL as a platform for their work. No one that I know there believes that their work stays in SL, but that it offers a unique space (in addition to other unique space) from whic to get the message out. I would agree that SL is not a second life but in fact an extension of first life, but I have failed to find a dominant ideology there and in fact find it a fertile training ground for almost any ideology at all -- kind of like first life. Of course, I could just be blind to my own exploitation...

And Charlie Gere helps us remember that terrorism, exploitation, or even rape in SL are not the same as their real-world counterparts. "Again imagine the reaction of someone who has been involved in attempting to build and sustain communities in, for example, Iraq or Palestine, listening to someone describe the problems of community building in SL. I think grasping and holding onto this distinction is incredibly important." We need to keep perspective when talking about these virtual worlds and to remember that, however they provide us with experiential or spiritual stimulation, they are still secondary to the actual life-or-death circumstances most global citizens face.

Looking forward to more discussion of this going forward; I trust that, in the face of so much media hype that inflates the economic and sensational aspects of SL, we can all provide an ongoing counter-commentary that provides a little more depth and context.

-Josh Levy

Trebor Scholz wrote:

You can now read Henry Jenkins' response to the iDC discussion about Second Life on his blog. To understand his comments in context go here (He invites you to leave comments).

Jenkins writes:

All of these examples work because Second Life does not perfectly mirror the reality of our First Lives, yet we could point to countless other more mundane and everyday ways that Second Life and other multiverses can and are being used to facilitate meetings in real world organizations, including those which result in all kinds of real world political effects.

That said, as Steven Shaviro notes on the iDC discussion list, there are some limits to the kinds of politics that can be conducted through Second Life at the present time:

Overall, Second Life is connected enough to "first life," and mirrors it closely enough in all sorts of ways, that we can pretty much do "there" the same sorts of things -- especially collaborative, social things -- that we do "here."... A protest against the Iraq war in Second Life is little more than an empty symbolic gesture; but one might cynically argue, especially given the tendency of the media to ignore them, that real-world protests against the war , however many people they draw, are at this point little more than empty symbolic gestures either.

On the other hand, I don't think that one could find any equivalent in Second Life of political organizing that takes place in "first life": if only because the people in Second Life are a fairly narrow, self-selected and affluent, group.

This goes back to the debate we've been having here about whether Second Life participants constitute a niche or an elite. Either way, the inhabitants of Second Life certainly are not a representative cross section of the society as a whole and there are many people who are excluded through technological or economic barriers to being able to participate in this world. These factors limit the political uses that can be made of SL: they make it hard for us to insure that a diversity of opinions are represented through the kinds of political deliberations that occur here; they makes it easy for participants to ignore some real world constraints on political participation, starting with the challenges of overcoming the digital divide and the participation gap; they make it hard to insure the visibility of online political actions within mainstream media.

That said, I don't think we can discount the political and personal impact that these online experiences may have on the residents of SL. We simply need a broader range of models for what a virtual politics might look like and need to understand what claims are being made when we debate the political impact of these virtual worlds.

Another list participant, Charlie Geer, goes a lot further in dismissing the value of Second Life. He takes issue with my claim that the participatory culture represented on SL is worth defending. Here's part of what he wrote:

It would seem to me obvious that trying to make some sense of and find ways of mitigating the violence and injustice in the complex world and culture we already necessarily inhabit, not least bodily, is far more pressing and considerably more worth defending than any supposed capacity to 'design and inhabit our own worlds and construct our own culture'. This seems to me to be at best a license for mass solipsism and at worse something like the kind of thinking that undergirds much totalitarianism, as well as an evasion of our responsibilities to the world as we find it. Such a fantasy seems to be at play in both the relentless construction and assertion of identity', a drive that militates against proper social solidarity, and thus plays into the hands of those sustaining the status quo, as well as the fantasy entertained by the Bush government that the Middle East can just be redesigned as if in some video game

Apart from anything culture is not something that can simply be constructed. It is something we are thrown into and which we can only at best try to negotiate our relationship with. Culture necessarily involves other people and prior existing structures. Has Jenkins considered what it would mean if everyone felt free to 'construct their own culture'. Even if such a thing were possible, it is certainly not desirable, especially if we have any hope to produce a properly participatory culture.

Frankly as far as I am concerned SL is really just a kind of cultural pornography, and is to the real business of culture what masturbating is to sex with another person. I like masturbation as much as the next man, or indeed woman, but I don't make the error of mistaking for something it isn't. Apart from anything else it lacks precisely the element that sex has, that of involving a proper, embodied, responsibility to someone else and to the potential consequences of the act itself.

There are lots of misperceptions embedded in these comments. To start with, I was not suggesting that we should be concerned with SL to the exclusion of concern with the real world. But I do see the struggle to preserve participatory culture as a fundamental political struggle in the same way that the right to privacy or the efforts to defend free speech are foundational to any other kind of political change. We are at an important crossroads as a society: on the one hand, we have new tools and social structures emerging that allow a broader segment of the population than ever before to participate in the core debates of our time. These tools have enormous potential to be used for creative and civic purposes. On the other hand, we are seeing all kinds of struggles to suppress our rights to deploy these new tools and social structures. Even as we are seeing a real promise of expanding free speech, we are seeing real threats to free speech from both corporate and governmental sources. We should be working to broaden access to the technologies and to the skills and education needed to become a full participant rather than having to defend the new communication infrastructure against various threats from government and business.

Gere understands what's going on in Second Life primarily in individualistic rather than collaborative terms. It would indeed be meaningless to describe a world where everyone constructs their own culture. Culture by definition is shared. But it is not absurd to imagine a world where everyone contributes to the construction of their culture. It is not absurd to imagine different projects in SL as representing alternative models for how our culture might work. Indeed, the virtual world allows us not only to propose models but to test them by inviting others inside and letting them consider what it might feel like to live in this other kind of social institutions. I think of what goes on there as a kind of embodied theory. And I think what is interesting is that these are intersubjective models that are indeed being taking up and tested by communities large and small.

In each of the examples I cited above, participants are learning how to work together with others through the creation of a shared virtual reality. We certainly need to spend more time exploring how we can connect what happens in these worlds back to our everyday lives but that doesn't mean that what occurs in a symbolic space is devoid of a real world social and political context.

Often, real world institutions and practices constrain our ability to act upon the world by impoverishing our ability to imagine viable alternatives. This is at the heart of much of the writing in cultural studies on ideology and hegemony. SL offers us a way to construct alternative models of the world and then step inside them and experience what it might feel like to live in a different social order. I think there are some very real possibilities there for political transformation.

iDC -- mailing list of the Institute for Distributed Creativity iDC[at]mailman.thing.net http://mailman.thing.net/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/idc

List Archive:

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Posted by jo at 05:52 PM | Comments (0)




UPGRADE! AMSTERDAM: [TAG & TRACK} :: When: wed. March 21st 2007 || start 20.30 hrs. / doors: 20.00 hrs. :: Where: Melkweg, Theater, Lijnbaansgracht 234 A, Amsterdam | free entrance | LIVE webcast: www.fabchannel.com

'Locative media' are hot: from cell phones to GPS, to other means of satellite communications. A world without the latter seems unthinkable, or perhaps even non-navigationable. Experiments with locative media within the arts have mostly focused on and taken place within an urban context. Upgrade! Amsterdam [tag & track] offers a counterbalance and highlights projects where the technology itself is not the main feature, but rather how their usage functions within specific contexts, and generates a multitude of meanings and experiences: from Fulani nomads in Nigeria to what the migration mapping of Montagu's Harrier brings about between ornithologists from Groningen and farmers in Mauritania.

Introduction to the theme by Assia Kraan: Recently Assia Kraan wrote an article on locative media for 'Open - magazine for art and the public domain', titled 'Public action through geo-annotation - social encounters by ways of locative media arts'. Her introduction to this Upgrade! [tag & track] will be a continuation of this article focussing on narrative possibilities of locative media and the sence thereof.

Nomadic Milk - Esther Polak - Michiel de Lange: Nomadic Milk is about mapping migration patterns of Fulani nomads as that of the diary industry their milk is processed by. Nomadic Milk visualises both social entanglements and mental maps of the two systems.

Capturing the migration of Montagu's Harrier - Ben Koks c.s. Not even as much the data produced by the tiny 7 gram satellite backpacks of migrating Harriers between the Netherlands and Mauritania, Senegal and Nigeria is of interest, but more the narratives arising from it among the Dutch ornithologists and farmers in Western Africa. http://www.grauwekiekendief.nl

After the presentations there will be a panel with Assia Kraan, Ben Koks, Esther Polak, Just van den Broeke and Michiel de Lange, moderated Lucas Evers. Just van den Broeke will be present at this panel since he has been involved in numerous projects working with a variety of locative technologies. http://www.justobjects.nl

UPGRADE! AMSTERDAM is a series of gatherings for and by new media aficionados, artists, geeks, media makers and breakers, and the generally curious. Point of departure is the premise: "No upgrade without a downgrade." UPGRADE! AMSTERDAM is organised by Nat Muller & Lucas Evers, is actively hosted by de Melkweg, and kindly supported by VSB Fonds and Mondriaan Foundation.

UPGRADE! is an international, emerging network of autonomous nodes united by art, technology, and a commitment to bridging cultural divides. Since April 1999, a group of new media artists and curators have gathered in New York City. The first meeting took place at a bar in the east village with Tim Whidden & Mark River [MTAA], Mark Napier and UPGRADE! founder Yael Kanarek.

Posted by jo at 12:33 PM | Comments (0)

Ars Virtua Gallery and New Media Center hosts CADRE Laboratory Salon


Sharon Daniel

Ars Virtua Gallery and New Media Center will be the in world host a series of salons held at the CADRE Laboratory for New Media. Sharon Daniel will be discussing her work at 6.30, Tuesday March 13.

Sharon Daniel teaches classes in digital media theory and practice. Her research involves collaborations with local and on-line communities, which exploit information and communications technologies as new sites for "public art." Daniel's role as an artist is that of "context provider," - assisting communities, collecting their stories, soliciting their opinions on politics and social justice, and building the online archives and interfaces that make this data available across social, cultural and economic boundaries. Daniel's work has been exhibited internationally at museums, festivals including the Corcoran Biennial, the University of Paris, the Dutch Electronic Arts Festival, Ars Electronica and the Lincoln Center Festival as well as on the Internet. Her essays have been published in books and professional journals such as Leonardo and the Sarai Reader. Daniel has recently presented "Improbablevoices.net" at SFCamerawork in San Francisco, the Fundacion Telefonica in Buenos Aires and at the conference "contested commons" in New Delhi, India. Her current research is supported by grants from the Daniel Langlois Foundation and the Creative Work Fund.

You must register at http://cadre.sjsu.edu/salons/ to attend in RL.

Ars Virtua is a new media center and gallery located in the synthetic world of Second Life. It is a new type of space that leverages the tension between 3-D rendered game space and terrestrial reality, between simulated and simulation. Ars Virtua is sponsored by the CADRE Laboratory for New Media.

Posted by jo at 12:23 PM | Comments (0)

Weathersongs at Thunderstorms 2007


Music Changed by Weather

Weathersongs, by Richard Garrett, will be installed at Thunderstorms2007 from April 24-29. It produces continuous unending ambient music that shifts and changes with the weather and the seasons, sounding slow and languid on warm, still days and wildly chaotic in times of storm. It is a music which both reflects prevailing conditions and blends with the sounds of its environment.

The installation comprises an automatic weather station connected, via a computer, to an electronic musical instrument. The program gathers data from the weather station regarding air pressure, temperature, rainfall, humidity, wind speed and direction and uses it to compose music in near real time. Thus, when the wind blows, phrases are generated whose pitch, intensity and statistical density reflect wind speed and direction; other notes change with the rise and fall of temperature or pressure; and random percussive events occur with changes in rainfall. While this is not a one-to-one sonification, the system does respond to dynamic changes in a representative fashion.


Thunderstorms2007, is a high level cultural event with the purpose of spreading scientific culture, with special regard to climate changes, extreme weather events and related risks. It is made up of a number shows, activities, exhibitions and educational events open to everyone. All the activities have been conceived not only for weather professionals but also for the public, and in particular for young people, students, people working in the field of land management, Civil Protection volunteers and mass media. All these events will take place during six days fully dedicated to meteorology, from April 24th to 29th 2007, and will draw a crowd of visitors and participants from all over Italy.

Posted by jo at 10:23 AM | Comments (0)

March 10, 2007

Other Stories


An Evening of Interactive Arts

Other Stories is an evening of interactive arts at the School of Interactive Arts & Technology, Simon Fraser University’s Surrey Campus :: 14 March, 2007 at 7pm :: The project will be streamed live.

‘Other Stories’ is a work in progress showing of a research project into motion capture, dance, and ethics. This project explores the strangeness of captured human motion. It is a live performance with two dancers in a Vicon motion capture system, the 3D computer tracking system most commonly used for creating video game avatars. Instead of building recognizable human shapes, the essence of movement is conveyed with dots, sparks, and lines, dissolving the human form but maintaining a sense of play, of pathos, and of bodies. When virtual bodies meet real bodies, which ones are the others? The stories are of grandmothers and angels, of fireflies and knitting.

The motion capture performance is a collaboration between Susan Kozel, Greg Corness, and visiting dancer/researcher Inka Valipakka; additional artistic content provided by Maia Engeli, Camille Baker, Jack Stockholm and Tamara Smyth.

The performance is supported by SFU’s President’s Research Grant and by the Academy of Finland. It is a co-production of The Escape Artists Society (TEAS) and Mesh Performance Partnerships.

Other events the same evening include:

4- 6pm: lecture by Professor Sha Xin Wei of the Topographical Media Lab, Concordia University (part of the SIAT Research Colloquium speakers’ series): room 3280

6-7pm: refreshments and undergraduate student installation projects in the campus mezzanine


How to get there: the easiest way is to take the Sky Train (Expo Line) to Surrey Central and walk 200 ft to the tall green building, SFU Surrey Campus is at the foot of the tower. For more details and driving instructions see http://www.surrey.sfu.ca/about/maps.html

Please contact Camille for more information, to request an interview, and/or to find out more about covering the event at camille[at]escapeartists.ca

The Escape Artists Society (TEAS) presents "other stories" capturing motion, telling tales, spinning yarns… (free for TEAS members showing membership). For more information on T.E.A.S. go to http://www.escapeartists.ca

Posted by jo at 04:41 PM | Comments (0)

March 09, 2007

Technology Expanding the Horizon:


A Reinterpretation & Investigation of the Landscape

Technology Expanding the Horizon: A Reinterpretation & Investigation of the Landscape: A symposium sponsored by the Battelle Endowment for Technology and Human Affairs, the Ohio State University Department of Art and the Wexner Center for the Arts.

In the past the landscape was understood as a physical place; the distance you could see to the horizon or the rows of corn needing to be plowed before sundown. Now, with ubiquitous Google Maps, the World Wide Web, digital photography and nanotechnology, the landscape, a physical place has been evolving into the landscape as a virtual place. As experimenters and meaning-makers, artists create an important dialogue about how technology impacts and changes our notion of the meaning of this landscape. To address these issues the Art & Technology area and the Photography Area within the Department of Art have invited artists, theorists, and scientists to participate in a free public symposium of art and ideas about today’s reinterpretation and creative investigations of the landscape. During the symposium there will be exhibitions and performances allowing the symposium participants, as well as the general public, to engage with the landscape of the Ohio State University and the city of Columbus.

Four panel discussions take place over this two-day symposium scheduled for March 29 & 30, 2007 at the Wexner Center of the Arts.

1. The Imaged Landscape / How Technology Changes Our Perception of the Land: This panel will consider how the imaged landscape has been used and continues to be used as a device for changing our perception of the land. An ongoing dialogue between truthful representation and fictional construction, the imaged landscape contributes to our understanding and perceptions of our environment.

Panelists: theorist videographer/photographer Peter Garfield, photographer Lori Nix, and author/historian Vicki Goldberg. Moderator: film historian, Ron Green.

2. Remapping Power: Action in Virtual and Physical landscapes: Artists are increasingly using electronic media to create, disseminate and research their projects, which has resulted in an expansion in the notion of public art and activism. The Internet audience is engaged in ways that cause a rethinking, and possibly a reconnecting to physical places, people and communities.

Panelists: cyberart activist Ricardo Dominquez and culture jammers The Yes Men, with performance philosopher Shannon Bell as respondent. Moderator: Amy Youngs.

3. Creating and Exploring Technological and Biological Nanoscapes: Nanotechnology, or working within the nano-scale, means grappling with a new landscape. Though it is much too small to “see” in the traditional sense, we are nevertheless confronted with an increasing number of images and narratives emerging from this realm.

Panelists: Russian theorist/biotech artist Dmitry Bulatov and nanotechnology scientist/artist James Gimzewski with Robert Davis, Director of Nanotech West OSU as respondent. Moderator: Ken Rinaldo.

4. Rediscovering Geography in the Everyday Landscape: Where do irrationality, spontaneity, and surprise fit into our daily existence? How do performance, sculpture, and architecture in the everyday environment disrupt notions of similitude? How can artists use geography as a canvas to introduce a new wildness in the city?

Panelists: architect/artist Vito Acconci and conceptual artist/ sculptor Erwin Wurm with art historian Martha Buskirk as respondent. Moderator: Robert Ladislas Derr.

All panels will be videotaped and available to the public as downloadable media on the symposium website: http://artandtech.osu.edu/simhorizon/


Technoscape - Hopkins Hall Gallery will be hosting an exhibition of artwork and writings by the invited panelists, with related student artwork in the corridor. Opening March 29th.

Re-Surfacing – A juried exhibition of new media performances, videos and installations, organized by graduate and undergraduate students in the Department of Art. March 26th – April 6.

Posted by jo at 12:05 PM | Comments (0)



Live and Online Today

Please join us for the livestream event of the "Lost Highway Expedition" in Rotterdam: TANGENT_BROTHERHOOD Friday March 09, 2007 (20.00 - 23.00 CET, 2 pm EST) at V2 Institute for Unstable Media, Rotterdam. As most of you will not be able to make it to Rotterdam you can follow the event over livestream (REAL MEDIA) and also join moderated IRC chat (server: irc.v2.nl / channel#:tangent).

TANGENT_BROTHERHOOD presents the Lost Highway Expedition as a model of open source and do-it-yourself collaboration in the form of a mobile, cultural and artistically charged, and collectively authored project.

Featuring (in order of appearance): Ana Dzokic and Marc Neelen (Rotterdam / Belgrade), Alenka Gregoric (Ljubljana, video stream), Yane Calovski (Skopje), Kristian Lukic (Novi Sad). In the space some of the Lost Highway Expedition works by Rotterdam and Amsterdam based participants will be on show: Arnoud Schuurman, Hugo Lammernik, Auke Towuslager, Artgineering, Stealth.unlimited.

Auke Touwslager made a map of the Lost Highway Extended Event Network that will be on show at the V2 event.

Who was there? Who should have been there? This map shows the extended network of organizations around the Lost Highway expeditioners by pulling out their URL co-links. By clicking on a node you can see to/from how many sites are they connected and also visit the corresponding URLs.

The software used is the Issue Crawler and locates and visualizes networks on the Web. It is used by NGOs and other researchers to answer questions about specific networks and effective networking more generally.

The map is now available at: http://www.informationlab.org/lhe/ - follow the instructions on the site.

the first source book works session
17-19 March 2007 in Rotterdam

After the Lost Highway Expedition (LHE) in August 2006, the next phase of the project called ‘Building Lost Highway’ is to start in March 2007. It is envisioned as a process that would last about half a year, with an idea to interlink and build upon expedition generated projects, art works, networks, architecture and politics based on the found knowledge.

A series of three work sessions is to spark this process towards a ‘source book’ from which a variety of interpretations and representations can be drawn for different occasions (a book, a symposium, an exhibition...) by those interested in the issues incited by LHE - not necessarily only by the participants of the process. The source book will be Internet based, collectively authored and later made into a printed draft.

The initial idea is that the source book is built around three lines of thought: Expedition as an experimental Society, Lexicon of the future (extracting concepts and notions that relate to the future or European territory that come from a positive interpretation of the notion Balkanisation) and individual Projects. It is likely that these three strands will start to intertwine along the process and that actual result would be a kind of combination of a lexicon and atlas. The idea for a source book resulted from discussions among expedition participants that took place in Tirana, Podgorica and Sarajevo.

In September 2006 - right after the expedition - Ana Dzokic, Marc Neelen and Kyong Park applied on behalf of Centrala Foundation at the European Cultural Foundation for funding to get the source book process running and make a draft print out of the product. We are glad to say that our proposal will be granted with 25.000 euro. This will be seed money to let some of the participants of the Expedition meet again at different locations - not only in the Western Balkans.

It is obvious that not all of the LHE participating organisations and individuals can participate in all of the meetings but the idea is to open the process to those interested to join in and contribute with content. Therefore the work sessions will be taking place in three different cities to allow for those local or near by interested to take part.

The first source book session will take place in Rotterdam from 17-19 March. This session is to set a direction towards the final result and also think how to (technically / online) involve a large LHE community. The idea is that the second and third session would take place in the region. Initial contacts have been made with Kuda.org (Novi Sad) and Press to Exit project space (Skopje).

The first session will be joined by Azra Aksamija (Boston/Sarajevo), Ivan Kucina (Belgrade), Srdjan Jovanovic Weiss (Basel/New York), Katherine Carl (Basel/New York), Ana Dzokic (Rotterdam/Belgrade) and Marc Neelen (Rotterdam) from the initial group, Yane Calovski (Skopje), Barbara Galassi (Belgrade/Rome), Vahida Ramujkic (Barcelona/Belgrade), Jaume Nualart (Barcelona/Vienna), and a group of LHE participants residing in Rotterdam and Amsterdam, Arnoud Schuurman, Hugo Lammernik, Wietske Maas, Auke Touwslager, Ursula Lavrencic and Emiliano Gandolfi, curator at The Netherlands Architecture Institute, Rotterdam. The session will take place in the Harbour #1350, Maashaven in Rotterdam, studio space of Stealth.unlimited.

After the first session is over we will inform you of the next steps and we hope to start building the content collectively and that some of you will be able to join at the next source book sessions.

More about Building Lost Highway initial idea from the time of the application to European Cultural Foundation is to find at: http://europelostandfound.net/node/890. Some things have changed, like the dates but the general idea is there.


After the Lost Highway presentation in New York in October Srdjan Jovanovic Weiss came up with an idea to make a LHE Photo book that would feature images by the participants. And we started looking for possibilities to make it happen. The Slovenian Ministry of Foreign Affairs decided to support the project (thanks Helena!) and Marjetica Potrc contacted Revolver publishers who are interested to be publisher and distributor. During the workshop in Rotterdam the group present will discuss the content of the Photo book after which we can start creating it (based on a Creative Commons license). Ajdin Basic, who designed the LHE reader, will design this book as well. The aim is to have the book ready for the opening of the LHE exhibition at Skuc in Ljubljana this September.


Alenka Gregoric, artistic director of SKUC gallery in Ljubljana is starting to work on the exhibition (containing works coming from the Lost Highway Expedition) which will take place in September. More on the draft idea will be posted soon.

Posted by jo at 11:50 AM | Comments (0)




[Image: Monolith[s] by Michael Takeo Magruder] DEADLINE: March 24, 2007 :: Submit your on-line 3D works to WEB3DART 2007, for inclusion in an exhibition of completely new works created by internationally regarded artists, architects, designers, students and creative 3D developers. The selection will showcase the foremost ideas and independent creations in all on-line 3D formats.

WEB3DART 2007 will be premiered at the Web3D Symposium, the 12th International Conference on 3D Web Technology, April 15-18, 2007, University of Perugia, Umbria, Italy. For more information: http://www.web3d.org/web3d2007/

WEB3DART was launched in 1999 at the VRML ART show in Paderborn; following shows at the 2000 VRML-ART Expo at the SIGGRAPH ART SHOW in New Orleans, WEB3D ART 2002 at The ICA London, the WEB3D ART 2003 in St.Malo and the Lab3D show at Cournerhouse in Manchester, WEB3D ART 2005 in Bangor, Wales, UK and at the 2006 WEB3D ART in Columbia, Maryland, USA and the Experimental Art Foundation, Adelaide, Australia.

SUBMISSION PROCESS: All work will be juried on-line and must be viewable on free browsers (available on-line). Send URL with application form, found at: http://www.web3dart.org to: info[at]web3dart.org Deadline is March 24, 2007. Only on-line submissions will be accepted.

QUESTIONS: ALL questions regarding submission procedure, gallery exhibition, or the jury process should be directed to Karel Dudesek info[at]web3dart.org, through March 24. 2007.

A signed release giving written authorization to link your work on-line, and copyright clearance for the Web 3D Symposium, must be received before your work will be confirmed in the program. This authorization form will be send to the final, selected artists/projects.

SELECTION CRITERIA: Keywords for the selection are art and design, imagination, and innovation. All 3D on-line projects must be complete and functional at time of submission. The selection will be made on-line by a jury listed in the submission form. Please see details on the website.

PLEASE FOLOW THESE CONDITIONS CAREFULLY: We will only accept applications which send attached to there application form by e-mail a short project description maximum 15 lines and 1-3 screen shots JPEG/PNG 500x300px of your work.

CATEGORIES (the jury reserves the right to assign or reassign a

- Artists and architects
- Scientific models
- Multi-user Worlds
- Product design and unique commercial applications
- Experimental works and studies by art and design students

We are looking forward to receive your works and wish you all the best for the upcoming celebration days.

The web3Dart team

Posted by jo at 10:36 AM | Comments (0)

X-Com: An Auditive Mapping-Project


Soundscapes as Cultural Artifacts

X-Com: An Auditive Mapping-Project by MACHFELD (aka Sabine Maier & Michael Mastrototaro) :: In cooperation with: Cityvarsity and Trinity Session, Johannesburg, South Africa.

In times of global networking MACHFELD (Sabine Maier & Michael Mastrototaro) and the Trinity Session (Marcus Neustetter & Stephen Hobbs) use digital and analog devices to create an auditive communication-soundscape. This soundscape will be transformed to a crosscontinental sub-room in form of an art-radio broadcast. Supported by students of the Cityvarsity we will analyse the phenomen of inter- and transcontinental communication and we will find an answer for the question: How are soundscapes related to cultural facts?

This audio mapping will be the starting point of a Ö1 Kunstradio Broadcast which will air in autumn 2007.

MACHFELD, international Arts and Culture Society, Max Winter - Platz 21/1, A-1020 Vienna.

Posted by jo at 08:19 AM | Comments (0)



A Project by CAPSULA

DAYS OF BIOART :: Centre d'Art Santa Mņnica, Barcelona :: Opening: 16th March, 8:00pm.

Days of Bioart is an ongoing project that intends to create a space of debate and exhibition dedicated to biological and living art that reflects the increasing interest around life sciences and the influence that they are having in culture and society. Created and coordinated by CAPSULA, Days of Bioart began in 2006 as a symposium and SymbioticA Tissue Engineering and Art Workshop.

This edition will reproduce in an exhibition space projects of artists and collectives that explore different formats in search of arising awareness on the techniques and discourses behind the new biotechnologies. It will analyse the performance potential and the laborious development of actions built around the domestication of concepts such as body architecture, semi-living, contestational biology or bioporn.

The projects and texts on show are by Critical Art Ensemble, subRosa, Guy Ben-Ary and Tanya Visosevic, Bioteknica, Stelarc and Nina Sellars, Kira O'Reilly, Marta de Menezes, Brandon Ballangee, Laura Cinti, Elio Caccavale, George Gessert, Adam Zaretsky, Julia Reodica, Jens Hauser and Dmitry Bulatov.

On the 16th of March at 1:30 pm the 'CD Days of Bioart 06' that documents the first edition that took place in February 2006 will be released. www.capsula.org.es/diasdebioarte

On the 7th of June the artist Adam Zaretsky will do a VIVOARTS LECTURE where he will be questioning with the public the uptake of certain techniques in modern molecular biology and the social and ethical implications they involve, including irreverent and demythologising experiences using methods such as Gooey Flesh Codex, Pure Germ Tech, Biotech Hobbyist and Body Mix, among others. Adam Zaretsky is a bioartist and lecturer. His projects can be found at http://emutagen.com This event will take place on 7 June at 8.00 pm at the Santa Mņnica Art Centre.

For further information: info[at]capsula.org.es


Posted by jo at 08:12 AM | Comments (0)

Resonance FM programme is number one podcast on iTunes


One Life Left

Number-one-rated gaming podcast Resonance Fm's One Life Left wins Europe's only gaming radio show, broke its own download records for the fourth consecutive week Wednesday and ended the day in the prestigious #1 slot on iTunes for the first time in history. Beating out commercially-produced internet broadcasting from 1UP, PC Gamer, Official Xbox Magazine, EGM and Xbox Live's Major Nelson, the One Life Left podcast - available for free here - has won critical acclaim by industry commentators worldwide for its brave use of soundwaves to communicate the thrill of videogaming.

The number-one-rated show's success is unprecedented for a traditionally-broadcast gaming radio programme; not exactly surprising, since there are only two traditionally-broadcast gaming radio programmes on the planet. But it also marks a victory for non-commercial broadcasting in general and British broadcasting specifically. The iTunes top twenty is dominated by American magazine, website and mega-corporation-sponsored podcasts. One Life Left is supported and broadcast by Resonance FM, an arts-council funded station in London, UK, and remains wholly independent.

One Life Left's content is original and unique to the show, produced completely from scratch by a host of famous and not-quite-famous-yet contributors. The record-breaking Show #33, subtitled 'The Danger of Words', features many of those regulars and includes reviews, gaming gambling and fast-paced gaming poetry, as well as two bona-fide industry legends in audio disguise.

About One Life Left: Commissioned by London's award-winning Resonance 104.4 FM in early 2006, One Life Left began its second season in January 2007 in a new prime-time evening slot, and has grown from humbling, terrified, fumbling beginnings to become one of the station's most valued shows. One Life Left broadcasts every Monday from 08:00 - 09:00pm on Resonance 104.4FM and streams at www.resonancefm.com.

Ste Curran, Robert Howells and Ann Scantlebury present One Life Left which without fail is always a sweet blend of light-hearted discussion, music, interviews and ridiculous features, One Life Left is unique in gaming and in radio. Guests and contributors include industry legends past and present, many of whom continue to contribute regular features to the show under assumed names. OLL has broadcast from the Develop Conference and Edinburgh Festival, as well as covering a variety of events national and international, and have many exciting secret plans for 2007.

Posted by jo at 07:57 AM | Comments (0)

March 08, 2007

Generative Social Networking


Connecting Made Easy

Generative Social Networking by xn croft & andrew schneider: ... Finding the right people to work with is hard. Finding the right people to work for you is hard. Making contacts is tough, and keeping them is tougher. Your old rolodex is getty dusty sitting on that desk, and those numbers aren't going to call themselves. The cell phone made it easier to keep your contacts about you - on your person - the babysitter can get called with the touch of a button, from where ever you might be. But with greater ability to store contacts comes a greater number of contacts to have to keep up with. Who has the time?

What if you could make your contacts work for you? The best thing about Generative Social Networking is that it does the work, literally! Our non-patented GSN system connects the dots, so you don't have to. Once you sign up (which you may already have!) our GSN team gets right to work quickly, carefully, and most importantly, discretely, collecting your private data to be implemented into generative network databases. Set your Bluetooth enabled phone to discoverable and we'll do the rest. Most clients are not even aware of the GSN team hard at work. You could be standing in line at the Starbucks and our GSN affiliates are collecting for you. We gather the entire contents of your phonebook - names, numbers, affiliations, e-mail addresses, and organizations - anything that you've entered, we can see! It's such a cinch. Watch Video.

Posted by jo at 04:39 PM | Comments (0)

Gamer Theory


Visualize This!

How can we 'see' a written text? Do you have a new way of visualizing writing on the screen? If so, then McKenzie Wark and the Institute for the Future of the Book have a challenge for you. We want you to visualize McKenzie's new book, Gamer Theory.

Version 1 of Gamer Theory was presented by the Institute for the Future of the Book as a 'networked book', open to comments from readers. McKenzie used these comments to write version 2, which will be published in April by Harvard University Press. With the new version we want to extend this exploration of the book in the digital age, and we want you to be part of it.

All you have to do is register, download the v2 text, make a visualization of it (preferably of the whole text though you can also focus on a single part), and upload it to our server with a short explanation of how you did it.

All visualizations will be presented in a gallery on the new Gamer Theory site. Some contributions may be specially featured. All entries will receive a free copy of the printed book (until we run out).

By "visualization" we mean some graphical representation of the text that uses computation to discover new meanings and patterns and enables forms of reading that print can't support. Some examples that have inspired us:

Brad Paley's "Text Arc"
Marcos Weskamp's "Newsmap"
Chirag Mehta's "US Presidential Speeches Tag Cloud"
Kushal Dave's "Exegesis"
CNET News.com's "The Big Picture"
"Visuwords" online graphical dictionary
Christopher Collins' "DocuBurst"
Stamen Design's rendering of Kate Hayles' "Narrating Bits" in USC's Vectors
Brian Kim Stefans' "The Dreamlife of Letters"
Young-Hae Chang Heavy Industries

Understand that this is just a loose guideline. Feel encouraged to break the rules, hack the definition, show us something we hadn't yet imagined.

All visualizations, like the web version of the text, will be Creative Commons licensed (Attribution-NonCommercial). You have the option of making your code available under this license as well or keeping it to yourself. We encourage you to share the source code of your visualization so that others can learn from your work and build on it. In this spirt, we've asked experienced hackers to provide code samples and resources to get you started (these will be made available on the upload page).

Gamer 2.0 will launch around April 18th in synch with the Harvard edition.

Read GAM3R 7H30RY 1.1 .

Download/upload page (registration required): http://web.futureofthebook.org/gamertheory2.0/viz/

The Institute for the Future of the Book is a small New York-based think tank dedicated to inventing new forms of discourse for the network age. Other recent publishing experiments include an annotated online edition of the Iraq Study Group Report (with Lapham's Quarterly) and Without Gods: Toward a History of Disbelief (with Mitchell Stephens, NYU). Read the Institute's blog, if:book.

McKenzie Wark teaches media and cultural studies at the New School for Social Research and Eugene Lang College in New York City. He is the author of several books, most recently A Hacker Manifesto (Harvard University Press) and Dispositions (Salt Publishing).

Ben Vershbow
Institute for the Future of the Book

Posted by jo at 03:13 PM | Comments (0)

Call for guerrilla art projects


Temps d'Images

Last week i visited a superb art venue just outside Paris: La Ferme du Buisson. Each year in October they organize an art festival called Temps d'Images. For the 2007 edition they want to spread out of their walls and invade public space. They've asked me to curate a show of guerilla art installations and performances (interactive or not) that would engage with and re-appropriate the urban space.

The spaces to conquer are outside the Ferme du Buisson: RER stations, bus and bus stops, shopping centers, parking lots, etc. Any places where the attention of passersby can be called to aspects of their everyday urban environment they might overlook or just ignore. The projects would inhabit the city without requiring any special permit.

As Temps d'Images is a European network some of the pieces would travel to other countries: Italy, Poland, Portugal, Canada, Estonia, etc.

There's a decent budget so you should be able to work in good conditions.

Plus, they are also looking for an artist who could come and see the Ferme du Buisson then head to Poitiers in April to head a workshop and help students create urban projects which might be part of the festival.

If you have any work either from France or any other country to suggest or need more detail, just drop me a line (yes, you can write me in french, it's my mother language, remember?) or post a comment here. Deadline is like... soon: mid-April.

Image from last year's edition of the festival: EXHIBIT A4206 / Stolen Property - Howard Katz / Yoann Trellu / Felix Zopf. [blogged by Regine on we-make-money-not-art]

Posted by jo at 01:11 PM | Comments (0)

Table Tennis Players


The World beneath a Table

Table Tennis Players, 2005, at the ARTZONE in Kyoto by COUMA. A table-tennis table was placed in the center of the venue and the six members stayed at the venue for as long as possible, playing table tennis while completing the work. COUMA consist of six artists who continue to pursue individual careers. The members are: Takehiro Iikawa, Teppei Kaneuji, Yuki Kimura, Manpei Tsurubayashi, Ai Nakagawa and Hyougo Hofuku. They met through playing table tennis. Into their works they reduce the world that emerges when the heights of table tennis are reached. [blogged on VVork]

Posted by jo at 12:51 PM | Comments (0)



A Mobile Radicals Project

If computer applications are to become pervasive then they must become part of the everyday fabric of our lives and will provide users with the ability to interact with objects and places within both the real and virtual worlds. One trait of human behaviour in the interaction with objects appears to be an inherent passion for leaving our mark on these objects. In our current society, this is most readily evident through graffiti spray-painted in public places. To some, this is urban art reflecting the communities in which it resides, whilst to many it is an act of vandalism.

SprayCan graffiti divides communities and generations in terms of how it should be dealt with in terms of either complete acceptance or punitive action. In MobSpray we have developed a system that tries to bridge the divide as it both provides writers with a means of tagging their environment, using mobile phones and RFID tags, whilst minimising the physical effects to the landscape for the communities where it resides.

Writers’ tags are deposited, and collected, from a database operating on a central server using a GPRS connection initiated by a Java application on a Nokia 5140 with an in-built RFID reader. These tags are currently displayed on the writers phone but the system is being evolved so that they can be projected on walls in urban landscapes.

Posted by jo at 12:38 PM | Comments (0)

From Participatatory Culture to Participatory Democracy (Part One)


Henry Jenkins

The following is my attempt to provide a written record of the remarks that I presented at the Beyond Broadcast conference that we hosted at MIT the other week. I would strongly recommend watching the webcast version of the talk to achieve the full effect since the talk depended very heavily on the visuals and I am not going to be able to reproduce very many of them here. You might also want to check out the interview I did for Thoughtcast in advance of the event. This post is intended, however, to provide links to all of the examples I presented during the talk.

Getting Too Close to Reality: Convergence Culture: Where Old and New Media Collide, my recent book, opens with the curious story of Bert and Bin Laden:

Dino Ignacio, a Filipino-American high school student created a Photoshop collage of Sesame Street's Bert interacting with terrorist leader Osama Bin Laden as part of a series of "Bert is Evil" images he posted on his homepage. Others depicted Bert as a Klansman, cavorting with Adolph Hitler, dressed as the Unabomber or having sex with Pamela Anderson. It was all in good fun. More >> [blogged by Henry Jenkins on Confessions of an Aca/Fan]

Posted by jo at 12:26 PM | Comments (0)

Second Life web 2.0 tools


Twitter and Sloog

The Beautiful Simplicity of Twitter (and BlogHUD): Second Life resident Koz Farina, creator of the very popular BlogHUD tool for blogging from within SL, is developing a system to allow you to cross-post your BlogHUD posts to your account on Twitter, the hot new social site that lets you miniblog along with your friends. Koz is already feeding all BlogHUD posts to a Twitter BlogHUD page. This is just the latest entry into a growing pool of Twitter-to-SL mashups from people like Ordinal Malaprop and Kisa Naumova, among others. And in fact, there’s been a huge flowering of ancillary Twitter apps since the service launched last fall. Why? Because Twitter is incredibly compelling, for a number of reasons. One of the most important, in my opinion, is the almost complete lack of button-based features that Twitter offers to its users. (Although I’d love for someone to build the wish app described at the end of this post.) More » [posted by Mark Wallace on 3pointD]


Sloog Gets its Tags Up in Second Life: I’m going to go ahead and call Sloog the best Web 2.0-style site for the virtual world of Second Life that I’ve seen yet. Sloog lets you tag locations in Second Life, storing them in the Sloog system so you can access them later on the Web. It’s a bit like del.icio.us tagging or Digg-ing virtual places, and it’s not a new function for SL users, but this is the best implementation of it I’ve seen yet. More » [posted by Mark Wallace on 3pointD]

Posted by jo at 12:15 PM | Comments (0)

Second Life Sketches: Let’s Put The Future Behind Us


We show where we came from

"[...] Philip Rosedale, founder of Linden Labs, started from the simple what-if question that seeds all of science fiction: what if we could actually invent this? ... To a generation of early adopters raised on Gibson and Stephenson, the answer was obvious. We show where we came from.

And so there’s a region called Gibson, upon which there is a city called Nexus Prime. It’s a cyberpunk set, a city deep and wide and styled as the paleo-future of the 1980s. You start on a high city square, surrounded by the gleaming spires of zaibatsu skyscrapers. Descend, and you’ll find the wrecked streets, the Gothic churches and blood-bucket bars. Under the streets are tunnels, leading to illicit clinics and bombed-out labs.

[...] As Gibson and Sterling wrote The Difference Engine, so too did Stephenson write The Diamond Age, his own take on the antique-styled future subgenre called steampunk. And so, as there is Gibson and Suffugium and Saijo City, so there is Caledon, the state of regions devoted to neo-Victorian style. In addition, a region called Babbage appears to be currently under construction in the same style ..." From Second Life Sketches: Let’s Put The Future Behind Us by Warren Ellis.

Posted by jo at 11:40 AM | Comments (0)

Ten Commandments for Gilbert & George (1995)


[posted on Expanded Cinema]

Posted by jo at 11:10 AM | Comments (0)



The Spirit of Jean Baudrillard

CTHEORY: THEORY, TECHNOLOGY AND CULTURE, VOL 30, NOS 1-2 :: 1000 Days 052 :: 07/03/2007 :: Editors: Arthur and Marilouise Kroker :: 1000 DAYS OF THEORY: The Spirit of Jean Baudrillard, In Memoriam: 1929-2007 by Arthur Kroker.

"Like his intellectual predecessors -- Nietzsche, Artaud, and Bataille -- Jean Baudrillard was that rarity of a cultural philosopher, a thinker whose reflections, refusing to be simply culturally mimetic, actually became a complex sign of the social reality of the postmodern century. In his thought there was always something simultaneously futuristic and ancient: futuristic because his theorization of the culture of simulation ran parallel to the great scientific discoveries of our time, specifically the radical transformation of culture and society under the impact of the speed of light-time and light-space; and ancient because Baudrillard was haunted by the enigma of pataphysics, namely the magical ascent of the reality-principle itself into the language of artifice, seduction and terror.

Not since Nietzsche's _The Gay Science_ has the secret of reality itself been so fully exposed. Neither referent nor signifier, social reality from Baudrillard's perspective always had about it the hint of a "referential illusion," a "fatal strategy," a "mirror of production," a "spirit of terrorism," a "desert of the real." Refusing the political closures of political economy as much as the social strictures of sociology, Baudrillard made of his thought a theatre of the medieval artistic practice of anamorphosis. Here, the desert of the real would be spun all the more wildly in order to draw out in reverse image the trace of its always hidden qualities of seduction and terror." Continue reading >>

Posted by jo at 10:05 AM | Comments (0)

Follow for Now:


Interviews with Friends and Heroes

Follow for Now: Interviews with Friends and Heroes is an anthology of forty-three interviews with minds of all kinds. See for yourself:

Science: Eugene Thacker: Whole Earth DNA, Mark C. Taylor: The Philosophy of Culture, Steven Johnson: No Bitmaps for These Territories, Howard Bloom: Mind at Large, Terence McKenna: Struck By Noetic Lightning, Manuel De Landa: ILLogical Progression.

Technology: Howard Rheingold: Virtual Cartographer, Rudy Rucker: Keeping it Transreal (part 1) / Game Theory (part 2), Albert-Lįszló Barabįsi: Think Networks, David Weinberger: Small Pieces, Eric Paulos: ExperiMental InterAction, Richard Saul Wurman: Technology, Entertainment, Design.

Media: Eric Zimmerman: Play as Research, McKenzie Wark: To the Vector the Spoils, N. Katherine Hayles: Material Girl, Geert Lovink: Tracking Critical Net Culture, Brenda Laurel: Utopian Entrepreneur, Peter Lunenfeld: Critic as Curator, Erik Davis: Mysticism in the Machine, Gareth Branwyn: Media Jam, Douglas Rushkoff: The Thing That I Call "Doug".

Music: Mike Ladd: Rebel Without a Pause, Aesop Rock: Lyrics to Go, Pete Miser: Camouflage is Relative, Yoni Wolf and Richard Adams: The Sound of a Handshake, dälek: Gods and Griots, Weasel Walter: Killing Music, Milemarker: The Only Band That Matters, Paul D. Miller aka DJ Spooky: Subliminal Minded.

Culture: Brian Coleman: Nostalgia is Def, Hal Brindley: Wild Boy, Doug Stanhope: Deadbeat Hero, Paul Roberts: Peak Oil Recoil, Tod Swank: Foundation's Edge, Shepard Fairey: Giant Steps, Steven Shaviro: Stranded in the Jungle, Mark Dery: Postfuture Shock.

Literature: Steve Aylett: Rogue Volts of Satire, Philip K. Dick: Speaking with the Dead, Adam Voith: Missives from the Downtimes, David X. Cohen: Futurama's Head (In a Jar), Sean Gullette: Faith in Chaos, Bruce Sterling: Future Tense.

Posted by jo at 09:01 AM | Comments (0)

Independent Robotic Community


Social Network for Robots and Humans

"In a special edition of El Pais Digital reporting the Arco festival in 2001, the Spanish artist Ricardo Iglesias, one of the net art pioneers in his country, said that nothing or almost nothing ("only cliché") can be said about net art in five or six lines. However he mentioned a series of isolated topics that interconnected, related to each other, that'd really express net art: the network, the global and decentralized communication, interactivity, the virtual spaces, telepresence, the chaos theory, the active and interactive principle, the telematic interfaces, the post-biological culture, the hypertextual perspective, on line-chat, the rhizome image and the state of uncertainty.

His latest artwork, Independent Robotic Community, is a sum of all of the above. Developed with Gerald Kogler the project focuses on new forms of interaction between robots and humans on two levels.The first one features a community of 20 small robots divided in two groups. Each group has a primary level of socialization and a series of sounds conforming with a single vocabulary. Each robot's initial state consists of a very simple movement within a delimitated spatial environment. When it comes across other robots, it swaps data about its state with sounds and increases its degree of socialization and the complexity of its movements. On a second level humans can interact with robots using mobile phones and Internet, communicating with them in real time and further influencing the socialization process within the independent groups. The result is an original visual representation of a social network that includes both the subjective point of view of a spy camera and the graphic display of social statistics. As to confirm that net art is the art of networking." Valentina Culatti, Neural.

Posted by jo at 08:48 AM | Comments (0)

March 07, 2007

unDEAF: Dutch Electronic Art unFestival


Call for participation

unDEAF is a satellite event of the Dutch Electronic Art Festival 2007. unDEAF is uncurated. Your work will not be judged, or restricted by a theme, neither it has to be finalized. unDEAF is self-organized. You organize and promote your own event, whether an art piece, a performance, a talk, a workshop, a meal, a song, a party or other as-yet-undefined events.

How to participate in 3 steps: 1. Announce your event at the website. 2. Subscribe to the mailing list and stay tuned to the latest news. 3. Show up in person or avatar from 13th to 15th of April.

April 10 - 15 :: Rotterdam, The Netherlands :: Free participation :: For those brave-hearts that would like to help organizing unDEAF, we might have simple accommodation for free.

Posted by jo at 04:58 PM | Comments (0)

DEAF07 workshops


Apply before March 15th!

DEAF07 Interact or Die! Presents three hands-on workshops where artists from different backgrounds, students and technicians work collaboratively on experiments and new creations. The basic ingredients for all DEAF workshops are: excellent workshop leaders, a carefully selected variety of participants, good ideas and materials. The workshop leaders present the theory related to the workshops in the seminars Critical Ecosystems (DIY Networks) and Interrupting Realities (Tracking Technology), where all workshop participants are also encouraged to engage in the discussions and debates. The Hive@ Soft(n) workshop includes an invitation to collaboratively create a locative media game on the basis of an integration of the networks of the Soft(n) installation and the Hivenetworks project. Subcritpition for the workshops is open until March 15th 2007. Please check www.deaf07.nl/workshop_application to submit your application online, you will be notified by March 19th 2007. Apply for DEAF07 workshops before March 15th! Contact: lyndsey[at]v2.nl

DIY Networks: A hands on workshop on media ecologies
V2_Test Lab 1
Wednesday 11 to Saturday 14 April
Cost: 250 euro / 200 euro, including lunch and workshop materials, entrance to the exhibition and the Critical Ecosystems seminar.
Maximum participants: 30

The DIY Networks workshop is oriented towards electronic artists with an interest in the possibilities of approaching technologies beyond the paradigm of control. The focus will be on sustainable, customised, weareable, networked instruments and sound ecologies. Participants are invited to build their own artistic micro experiments and perform hardware and network hacking.
see www.deaf07.nl for more information.

Workshop leaders:
Alejandra Perez Nunez - http://www.elpueblodechina.org
Jo FRGMNT Grys : T.O.B - http://noisiv.de.vu/
Sophie Gosselin and Juien Ottavi : Apo33 - http://www.apo33.org

Tracking Technology
V2_Test Lab 2
Wednesday 11 to Saturday 14 April
Cost: 200 euro / 150 euro, including lunch, workshop materials entrance to the Interrupting Realities Seminar and the exhibition.
Maximum participants: 30

This hands-on workshop on Tracking Technologies is oriented towards performing artists / choreographers interested in using new technologies, as well as people with a technical/scientific background who want to apply their technical knowledge in an artistic domain. The workshop will set out to investigate data interpretations from real-time tracking devices and mappings of this data for artistic purposes, using max/msp. See www.deaf07.nl for more information.

Workshop leaders:
Armando Menicacci - http://www.anomos.org
Sher Doruff, Stan Wijnans, and Cliff Randell

Hive @ Soft(n)
Saturday 14th and Sunday 15th of April 2007
Cost: 150 euro / 100 euro, including lunch and workshop materials.
Maximum participants: 20

The Hive @ Soft(n) workshop is aimed at people with visualiation skills, programming skills in Flash, PD, and/or MAX/MSP and general creative people with an interest in locative media and reporting skills. During the workshop, participants will create a locative media game in which data interpretation, selection, broadcasting and visualisation of collected content is determined by affection. In order to do so, participants will integrate the wireless network of of ‘soft objects’ from the Soft(n) installation and the wireless network of Hivewares from the Hivenetworks project and will develop the visualisation application to realise the game. The data selected while developing, testing, and playing the game will be broadcast throughout the festival, and on the Internet.

Workshop Leaders:
Hivenetworks: RayLab - Vladimir Grafov, Alexei Blinov , Will Hall - http://hivenetworks.net
Soft(n) concept: Thecla Schiphorst - http://whisper.surrey.sfu.ca/
V2_ workshop team: Siuli Ko-Pullan, Stock, Simon de Bakker, Rui Guerra, Michiel Kauw-A-Tjoe

Posted by jo at 04:45 PM | Comments (0)

‘If the route’: The Great Learning of London


[A Taxi Opera]

‘If the route’: The Great Learning of London [A Taxi Opera] :: PerformanceStudio Voltaire :: Friday 9th March at 7.30pm :: The radio works: 104.4 Resonance Fm, Wednesdays 9pm 14th of March - 25th April 2007. More times below.

A collaboration between artist Beatrice Gibson and musician Jamie McCarthy, ‘If the Route:’ The Great Learning of London is a live performance and radio work in seven parts based on The Knowledge (the infamous London cabbie navigation system and mnemonic device students must master in order to become licensed cabbies). The Performance: The live performance of the 'if the route' has been developed collaboratively with 10 students from Knowledge Point and four improvising string players. A complex and fascinating mathematics of the everyday, The Knowledge involves learning 320 routes or runs mapped within a six-mile radius of Charing Cross. Traveling approximately 26,000 miles across the city on Honda C90's, knowledge students memorize a total of 30,000 streets. ‘Calling over’ entails that after the completion of the days run[s], students must call them out, reciting them out loud. Partners form to call over runs to one another, using recital and repetition as a means to remember the city.

Knowledge Point on Caledonian road, one of several taxi universities students may attend and whose curriculum includes a series of mnemonic devices to aid in their endeavor, is filled with pairs of men and increasingly the odd woman aurally reciting sets of directions to one another. Entering it is to be surrounded by the city fragmented and auralized into sets of sentences and street names, a veritable symphony performing the city as text .

Using the technique of calling over as its principle sound source, the performance of ‘if the route’ celebrates and elaborates this formidable system and poetic by re-contextualizing it within in the space of the gallery. Modeled on paragraph seven of Cardew's original score, Gibson and McCarthy's compositional structure emphasizes the practice of calling over as an ongoing process of repetition, memorization, rehearsal and navigation, articulated in a networked and non heirarchical manner.

The Score

‘If the Route’ takes it title from The Great Learning, the well known score by the radical and experimental 60’s composer and musician Cornelius Cardew. Informed by similar developments and ideals in the Fluxus movement and realized around the same period, Cardew’s work was rooted in belief of the democratic potential of music as a social platform, his score’s often intended for implementation by untrained musician-performers. Cardew’s version of the Great Learning was a score in seven paragraphs, rooted in and acoustically generated by the Confucian text of the same name. Playing on the title of ‘the great learning’ as it relates to The Knowledge and its own system of learning, and borrowing from the methodology, structure and political intent of Cardew’s score, Gibson and McCarthy have used both aural and non aural research into the knowledge as the generative principle behind composition. The score for 'if the route' provides the basis for both realization of live perfo rmance and the radio works.

The Radio Works

Mirroring the seven paragraphs of Cardew’s score, the radio piece comprises seven parts and takes place over seven weeks. In keeping with the spirit of Cardew and the political gesture of experimental composition in general, seven practitioners from varying fields and disciplines have been commissioned by Gibson and McCarthy to use and translate the score for radio according to their own personal and varying interpretations.

Participants include; artist and architect Celine Condorelli, artist Beatrice Gibson, musician and composer Kaffe Matthews, musician Jamie McCarthy, artist and writer, Tom McCarthy, poet and cabbie, Simon Phillips, and architect and theorist, Eyal Weizman in collaboration with Peter Mörtenböck & Helge Mooshammer (Networked Cultures)

Wednesday 14th March 9pm Beatrice Gibson and Jamie McCarthy
Wednesday 21st March 9pm Celine Condorelli
Wednesday 28th March 9pm Simon Phillips
Wednesday 04th April 9pm Eyal Weizman in collaboration with Peter Mörtenböck & Helge Mooshammer (Networked Cultures)
Wednesday 11th April 9pm Tom McCarthy (International Necronautical Society)
Wednesday 18th April 9pm Kaffe Matthews
Wednesday 25th April 9pm Beatrice Gibson and Jamie McCarthy

'If the Route:' The Great Learning of London is generously supported by Arts Council England. Partnered by Studio Voltaire and Resonance FM.

With special thanks to London Contemporary Dance School at The Place.

Posted by jo at 11:43 AM | Comments (0)

French philosopher Jean Baudrillard dies


French philosopher Jean Baudrillard dies [The Associated Press] :: March 6, 2007, PARIS: Jean Baudrillard, a French philosopher and social theorist known for his provocative commentaries on consumerism, excess and what he said was the disappearance of reality, died Tuesday, his publishing house said. He was 77.

Baudrillard died at his home in Paris after a long illness, said Michel Delorme, of the Galilee publishing house. The two men had worked together since 1977, when "Oublier Foucault" (Forget Foucault) was published, one of about 30 books by Baudrillard, Delorme said by telephone.

Among his last published books was "Cool Memories V," in 2005. Baudrillard, a sociologist by training, is perhaps best known for his concepts of "hyperreality" and "simulation."

Posted by jo at 11:18 AM | Comments (0)



Santiago Ortiz

LX 2.0: Contemporary Online Experiments: NeuroZappingFolks is a non-linear zapping through the Internet, a path leading to the inside of a web of relations, a web that can be explored from one tag to a site, to another tag, to another site... from word to image to word to image. NeuroZappingFolks is then the simulation of a brain lost in the web (lost between servers, but also lost in Internet's double identity: word and image).

Santiago Ortiz was born in Bogota, Colombia, in 1975. Artist, mathematician and a researcher on art, science and representational spaces, he has been exploring the development of shared spaces for different kinds of knowledge. Ortiz has been using communication, creative, and literary techniques, as well as digital space and architecture ones. He works as a teacher, having lectured all over Spain, Portugal and Latin America. He is one of the co-founders of the Blank magazine and of the Bestiario company-collective. He lives in Lisbon and Barcelona.

Posted by jo at 10:12 AM | Comments (0)

Mixed Reality Science in Second Life


[...] Matt Bidulph is assessing Second Life for Nature Magazine, in deliciously empirical ways. Physical microbiology is transformed into virtual macrobiology as Matt renders individual cells in Second Life. The original data is taken from four-nanometer scans of the real cells. Bidulph works on making constructs of these cells that are large enough to walk around in and examine in detail. He also imports a quakeworld model or two for good measure. Matt Biddulph shows off his work in a properly buzzword compliant presentation at the Google Code Jam. VRML always gets a laugh. Take two minutes to watch the video. Extended blog post on Biddulph's SL project here [...] [blogged by W. James Au on New World Notes] Also see Mediamatic review Building Bacteria in Second Life.

Posted by jo at 09:14 AM | Comments (0)

John Edwards’ Virtual Attackers Unmasked

Read John Edwards’ Virtual Attackers Unmasked by Lou Cabron.

Posted by jo at 08:44 AM | Comments (0)



Satellite Scratch

After the GP4, a player that uses the earth as a disc and its portable version the G-POD, BRAND is launching a range of brand new softwares. The first one, G-BEE (Global Beeliner), allows you to create direct sonic connections between two arbitrary locations on Earth: select two places (just avoid water surfaces as they are silent), pick the duration (5, 10 or 15 minutes of a selected satellite), and order the music.

The G-ONE (Global Orbit Navigation Engine) invites you to virtually hop on a satellite and scratch across the Earth's topography, just as the needle of a record player scratches across a record. The satellites (there are more than a thousand of them) and their orbits are real and calculated in real time. You can also subscribe to a daily thirty minute podcast of satellite scratch.

It's only recently, when i met Jens Brand and his collaborator Sukandar Kartadinata, that my doubts were confirmed: Brand's g-playing works are essentially tongue-in-cheeck. If you still have any doubt about that, just try to apply for an I-God membership card gold.

This month, Jens Brand is presenting his work in Oldenburg for SOUND//BYTES, an exhibition about electronic and digital soundworlds, Berlin and Luxembourg during the Festival Musique Visuelle. [blogged by Regine on we-make-money-not-art]

Posted by jo at 08:30 AM | Comments (0)

March 06, 2007

Ulises Mejias' Floating Points 4 presentation


Here are the slides and notes for my Floating Points 4 presentation, Networked Participation.

I wanted to experiment with a web-friendly non-powerpoint program, so I ended up using Opera Show. This means that you can click on the link and see the slides and notes from any browser, but if you want to run the slideshow, you will need to open the page in the Opera browser (free download) and then press F11 (Windows) or go to View, Full Screen (Mac).

Floating Points 4: Participatory Media is a speaker series that addresses "the recent emergence of inexpensive, worldwide, and many-to-many publishing and communication media" and how these media "have transformed the relationship between cultural producers and consumers." Floating Points is co-presented by Emerson College and New Radio and Performing Arts, Inc. (NRPA), a not-for-profit media organization with offices in Boston and New York.

This event featured Trebor Scholz and myself. Future ones will include McKenzie Wark & David Weinberger, and a panel on Second Life with Wagner James Au (aka Hamlet Linden), John Lester (aka Pathfinder Linden) and John (Craig) Freeman (aka JC Freemont), moderated by Eric Gordon. Check out the program for more information. [blogged by Ulises Mejias on IDEANT]

Posted by jo at 05:22 PM | Comments (0)

Word Finder, Google Earth Edition


1st Life / 2nd Life Game

Julian Bleecker writes: This is a 1st Life / 2nd Life game that is based on paper-based word-finder games. In this game, you try to identify dictionary words within a grid of letters and circle them. In this variation, the landscape becomes the game grid and you have to walk (or run!) to generate a virtual line that runs through the letters in order to "capture" the word and score points. A GPS is used to help the team identify where the letters are in 1st Life space, and to "capture" the words composed of those letters by recording "track logs" through them. The GPS is able to record where you are in 1st Life, and to create "tracks" of locations, which are essentially connected points that make up lines on the GPS. These track logs can be seen as a way of geospatial drawing — the tracks you make delineate lines which can compose various forms of drawing. In our case, the lines are meant to create lines through the letters that make up the words. (Note that in the more traditional word finder games one circles the letters — that would be a bit tricky in this variation, so we'll just draw an approximate line _through_ the letters. Continue reading >>

Posted by jo at 05:03 PM | Comments (0)

REAL Alien Invasion of "Our Minutemen" at a Home Depot


Videos are posted on YouTube and the comment and rating interactions become a network performance. The video itself refers to and calls into question YouTube itself. Thanks to all the Minutemen's anti-clown comments, they made the video one of the most commented on videos on YouTube the day it was posted. More of our videos are in the "related" chunk of the YouTube page and here: http://circasd.org/clown-media.html. Related post >>

Posted by jo at 04:02 PM | Comments (0)

Ars Virtua Artist in Residence (AVAIR)


Brad Kligerman

Brad Kligerman, Ars Virtua's first artist-in-residence, is an architect cloaked as an artist and teacher, who, by assuming this disguise, is trying to better understand what it actually means to make architecture. What, how and why we inhabit virtual worlds is the most important question he is addressing at this time in his work and life. He is Kliger Dinkin in Second Life. He blogs about all this at Metaverse Territories (Building with immaterials); Metaverse Architecture (Architectural Ideas from the Metaverse); Image Cloud


He does both gallery scale installations and projects at the scale of a territory. Of interest is the generation of spatial fragments that emerge from logical machines built by and for the project, and are necessary for its conception, its fabrication and its force. As a teacher, he leads a studio in an architecture school. Both of these activities (architect + teacher) are tied together by a strong emphasis on the invention of intelligent, interactive space that is respective of and emergent from its integral representational media, its local and global context and integrated constructive technologies.

Kligerman lives in Paris, France. He works in Paris, throughout Europe, the US and in the virtual world of Second Life, secondlife@Huchu/230/239/57/. See Kligerman's Ars Virtua Artist-in-Residence blog.

Posted by jo at 03:14 PM | Comments (0)

Clandestine Insurgent Rebel, Clown Army


Between Order and Chaos

“We can't start perfectly and beautifully. Don't be afraid of being a fool; start as a fool.” — Chogyam Trungpa Rimpoche

Roll up, roll up - ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, friends and foes - welcome to the unparalleled, the unexpected, the perfectly paradoxical, the grotesquely beautiful, the new-fangled world of the Clandestine Insurgent Rebel Clown Army (CIRCA).

We are clandestine because we refuse the spectacle of celebrity and we are everyone. Because without real names, faces or noses, we show that our words, dreams, and desires are more important than our biographies. Because we reject the society of surveillance that watches, controls, spies upon, records and checks our every move. Because by hiding our identity we recover the power of our acts. Because with greasepaint we give resistance a funny face and become visible once again.

We are insurgent because we have risen up from nowhere and are everywhere. Because ideas can be ignored but not suppressed and an insurrection of the imagination is irresistible. Because whenever we fall over we rise up again and again and again, knowing that nothing is lost for history, that nothing is final. Because history doesn't move in straight lines but surges like water, sometimes swirling, sometimes dripping, flowing, flooding - always unknowable, unexpected, uncertain. Because the key to insurgency is brilliant improvisation, not perfect blueprints.

We are rebels because we love life and happiness more than 'revolution'. Because no revolution is ever complete and rebellions continues forever. Because we will dismantle the ghost-machine of abstraction with means that are indistinguishable from ends. Because we don't want to change 'the' world, but 'our' world. Because we will always desert and disobey those who abuse and accumulate power. Because rebels transform everything - the way they live, create, love, eat, laugh, play, learn, trade, listen, think and most of all the way they rebel.

We are clowns because what else can one be in such a stupid world. Because inside everyone is a lawless clown trying to escape. Because nothing undermines authority like holding it up to ridicule. Because since the beginning of time tricksters have embraced life's contradictions, creating coherence through confusion. Because fools are both fearsome and innocent, wise and stupid, entertainers and dissenters, healers and laughing stocks, scapegoats and subversives. Because buffoons always succeed in failing, always say yes, always hope and always feel things deeply. Because a clown can survive everything and get away with anything.

We are an army because we live on a planet in permanent war - a war of money against life, of profit against dignity, of progress against the future. Because a war that gorges itself on death and blood and shits money and toxins, deserves an obscene body of deviant soldiers. Because only an army can declare absurd war on absurd war. Because combat requires solidarity, discipline and commitment. Because alone clowns are pathetic figures, but in groups and gaggles, brigades and battalions, they are extremely dangerous. We are an army because we are angry and where bombs fail we might succeed with mocking laughter. And laughter needs an echo.

We are circa because we are approximate and ambivalent, neither here nor there, but in the most powerful of all places, the place in-between order and chaos.


Also see http://circasd.org

Posted by jo at 02:27 PM | Comments (0)

DualTerm :: Second Life


An Immersive Airport Experience

DualTerm -- by ERIK ADIGARD + CHRIS SALTER -- is an online installation that uses the platform and interaction framework of the networked 3-D virtual world Second Life. Exploring two contrasting forms of immersion (noise versus silence, the intensity of data versus the experience of emptiness) that mark the contemporary airport experience, Dual + Terminal presents a visual and aural walk thru 3-D environment that alternates the visitor between the built, physical space of the new Moshe Safdie terminal at Pearson International and an exact 3-D simulacra running in Second Life on the Terminal 01 kiosk.

The project situates itself in the increasingly complex territory currently being mapped between physical reality and its simulacra within 3-D simulations, gaming environments, meta worlds and other data-driven representations of built space. More specifically, DualTerm aims to explore an unavoidable tension that the modern traveler is increasingly caught within the context/site of the contemporary airport: the desire to be immersed in the public space of information and noise overload versus the craving for a private, interior state of suspension, contemplation, groundlessness and stillness before the act of flying.

The dramaturgy of the installation involves an interactive, 3-D walk thru of the Pearson Terminal by a visitor controlled avatar which makes experiential the contradictions of information saturation versus the desire for emptiness and stillness. The visitor's Second Life avatar can thus wander in a 3-D simulation of the actual terminal, entering into two potential experiential zones: (1) a data space in which real time data, noise, CNN broadcasts, LED advertisements are all texture mapped onto the existing features of the terminal animation (floor, walls, ceiling, furniture, visitors) creating a frenzied and overwhelming environment of noise, color, sound, image and information glut and (2) a void space contained within the data cube in which the visitor/avatar confronts an environment no longer determined by external flows of data but by the their own internal experience that occurs in the threshold between arrival in the terminal and the taking off from earth. Dual Term thus oscillates between two alternating intensities: the seduction of data saturation as it is generated by the airport and a feeling of interior suspension that can evoke the conditions of flying.

Posted by jo at 02:02 PM | Comments (0)



A Seminar with Tirdad Zolghadr

unitednationsplaza: That's Why You Always Find Me In The Kitchen At Parties: A seminar with Tirdad Zolghadr :: March 12th - March 23rd, 7 - 9 PM :: Closed Saturday March 17th and Sunday March 18th.

The unitednationsplaza seeks to elaborate models for art institutions that transcend the traditional boundaries between research, education and display. In this context, rather than offer a conventional course, Tirdad Zolghadr intends to pursue this possibility of new forms of discussion as rigorously as possible. In other terms, the aim is to apply the analytical rigor customarily reserved for ideological, infrastructural or art-critical concerns to the very material format in which these discussions are embedded.

Why is it that the visual arts, rather punctilious in form, format, genre, media- and site-specificity, perpetuate discursive rituals steeped in medieval university traditions. The models here are limited to the seminar and the lecture hall, or to formulaic “panel discussions” flanked by Evian bottles and Powerpoint presentations. Can one expect new answers to older questions regarding form and content, quality and innovation, aesthetics and politics, if our modes of discussing them remain so fossilized?

A serious consideration of untapped possibilities may help reevaluate age-old conventions, perhaps even allow a heightened sense of specificity. In which ways, for example, do certain formats overly predefine the reflection on certain themes. In the light of these questions, we shall reconsider issues of rhetorics, populism, symposium economics, artworld divisions of labor, postcolonialism and inclusivity, as well as helpful curatorial initiatives, teaching projects and artist interventions.

The seminar is based on an open structure allowing not only for theory, discussion and the odd Powerpoint presentation, but also surprise guests, historical digressions, entertainment, and the constant threat of genuine audience participation.

Topics include:

Symposia Tourism
The Aesthetics of Circulation
The Deictics of Knowledge
Artworld Divisions of Labor
Direct Democracy
The Odor of Discourse
University Heroics
Speaking Techniques
Gentle Condescension Gracefully Staged

Guests will include Boris Buden, Joerg Heiser, Nikolaus Hirsch, Hito Steyerl, Stefanie Wenner and others.

Tirdad Zolghadr works as a freelance curator, writes for Frieze magazine and has also contributed to Parkett, Bidoun, Cabinet, afterall, Neue Zürcher Zeitung, Straits Times Singapore and other publications. Since 2004, Zolghadr has curated events at Cubitt London, IASPIS Stockholm, Kunsthalle Geneva, various Tehran artspaces and other venues. He was co-curator of the International Sharjah Biennial 2005, and is currently preparing a long-term exhibition and research project addressing social class in the art world that shall take place at Gasworks London, Platform Istanbul and Tensta Konsthall. Zolghadr is also a founding member of the SHAHRZAD art & design collective and will shortly publish his novel Softcore with Telegram Books, London.

unitednationsplaza is exhibition as school. Structured as a seminar/residency program in the city of Berlin, it involves collaboration with approximately 60 artists, writers, theorists and a wide range of audiences for a period of one year. In the tradition of Free Universities, most of its events are open to all those interested to take part.

unitednationsplaza is organized by Anton Vidokle in collaboration with Liam Gillick, Boris Groys, Martha Rosler, Walid Raad, Jalal Toufic, Nikolaus Hirsch, Natascha Sadr Haghighian and Tirdad Zolghadr.

Admission is free but space is limited, please register by email to: magdalena[at]unitednationsplaza.org

Platz der Vereinten Nationen 14a
Berlin 10249 Germany
T. +49 (0)30 700 89 0 90
F. +49 (0)30 700 89 0 85

Posted by jo at 01:34 PM | Comments (0)

cyber feminism


past forward :: virtual real

cyber feminism :: Opening: March 8 2007, 7 pm with a concert performance by Eva Ursprung :: March 9 - March 31, 2007 :: Opening hours: Tuesday to Saturday 3-7 pm :: Austrian Association of Women Artists, Maysedergasse 2, 1010 Vienna/Austria :: Tel: + 43-1-513 64 73/Fax -- 9 :: vbkoe[at]vbkoe.org

cyber feminism past forward :: cyber fems virtual real :: cyber fems real meetings :: Kloe Bratz (TC), ][mez][ breeze (AUS), Carla Cruz (PT), Cym (AUT/NL), Aileen Derieg (AUT), Valie Djordjevic (G), Nina Höchtl (AUT), Deb King (USA), lady tigers night club LTNC (AUT), lizvlx (CH/A), Jess Loseby (Various) et al, Diana McCarthy (USA/G), Nancy Paterson (CAN), Regina Célia Pinto (BRA), Suzanne van Rossenberg (NL), sisterO (NL), Nina Sobell (USA), Evelin Stermitz (AUT/SLO), Eva Ursprung (AUT), Francesco Ventrella (I), Faith Wilding (USA), Nanette Wylde (USA), Jody Zellen (USA)

Posted by jo at 01:11 PM | Comments (0)

Art Interactive


Camille Utterback's Animated Gestures

Animated Gestures: three recent interactive drawing installations by pioneering new media artist, Camille Utterback :: Curated by Lisa Dorin :: March 9 - May 13, 2007 :: Art Interactive, 130 Bishop Allen Drive, Cambridge, MA 02139 ::

The three installations in Animated Gestures are part of the artist’s ongoing External Measures series, which Utterback began in 2001. They consist of the single-channel projections, Untitled 5 (2004) and Untitled 6 (2005), and Alluvial (2007), a two-channel piece commissioned for a private collection and debuting publicly at Art Interactive. In each installation, a unique abstract composition is created through what Utterback refers to as an “aesthetic system that responds fluidly and intriguingly to physical movement in the exhibit space.”

When a viewer enters the designated area in front of the projection screen, her shape is captured by an overhead camera, which communicates the information to a computer program that translates her movement into one of a series of corresponding marks, erasures or animated actions in the projected composition. The palette of organic marks resembles a variety of traditional drawing media—thick oil pastel or felt pen smears, delicate watercolor spots, chalky conté-crayon scribbles, and subtle pen and ink dots and lines—that are reflective of the artist’s own hand. Utterback’s early oil paintings, from her pre-technology art-making days, such as Pink Galaxy (1995), display a comparable affinity for the abstract gestures, particular color combinations, and characteristic mark making that appear in the External Measures series.

Similarly, her interest in participatory artworks that draw attention to and make use of the body, also predates her involvement with new media technologies, as exemplified by Preserves (1992), an installation in which viewers were invited to pick up and investigate a set of sealed canning jars filled with combinations of food and female beauty products.

Camille Utterback is a pioneering artist and programmer in the field of interactive installation. Her extensive exhibit history includes The Valencia Institute of Modern Art, Spain (2007); The Itaś Cultural Center, Sćo Paulo, Brazil (2006); The San Jose Museum of Art, California (2005); The New Museum of Contemporary Art, The American Museum of the Moving Image, New York (2003); The Taipei Museum of Contemporary Art (2001); The Seoul Metropolitan Museum of Art, and The Ars Electronica Center, Austria (2000). Awards include a Transmediale International Media Art Festival Award (2005), a Rockefeller Foundation New Media Fellowship (2002) and a Whitney Museum commission for their ArtPort website (2002). Her work is owned by Hewlett Packard, The Pittsburgh Children’s Museum, The La Caixa Foundation and others. Utterback holds a US patent for a video tracking system she developed as a researcher at New York University (2004).

Lisa Dorin is Assistant Curator of Contemporary Art at the Art Institute of Chicago, where she organizes focus, a series of one-person exhibitions by international contemporary artists, and is currently producing a catalogue of the museum’s film, video, and media collection.

Posted by jo at 12:30 PM | Comments (0)

Poetic Terrorism and Guerrilla Art in the 21st Century


by Jane Crayton aka JanedaPain

"Art as crime; crime as art." Hakim Bey

One of the most relevant statements made about art by a man who walked the line of expressionism. Hakim Bey, did he see the future, or did he contemplate the past, a combination of both I would guess.

The word guerrilla is a word of Spanish descent (guerra, meaning war) first used to describe the Spanish-Portuguese guerrilleros (insurgents). Guerrilleros have existed through out time often in defense of some wrongs imposed to a group of less represented and defended peoples. They often fight a foreign invader or a ruling government and crimes against humanity. In the modern world we have seen these same groups and individuals come out in a new form of guerrilla tactics that is often non-violent and thought provoking art. Unfortunately in the post 9/11 era we are now limited in our expressions, for fear that they may be considered terrorism and not art. Mind you some of these artist push the line, evacuating neighborhood and closing down cities, all in the name of their art projects and political views. But is it the over reaction of our post 9/11 era that has taught us to react with such eager and violent haste, and condemn the works of these political artist?

Is it the art or the tactics, that deliver the fear that resonates in the unaware and suddenly captured audience? That sudden and captured audience today can be an over alerted citizen or government workers. With the heightened threat of terrorism and the orange security levels at the airports, we are all being programmed that we are never to be safe again. And what a great subject for an art project, huh? Artist around the world are finding them selves in precarious positions, and having to explain themselves to courts around the world and defend their art. These artist are the guerrilla artist of the 21st century. But are they justified in their use of guerilla tactics for making their statement? Is this a struggle to control the people and their freedom of expression? Where do we need to draw the lines for artist and government?

To be an artist has always been a daring act and a future of impoverished hell. It has always been looked down upon until or unless you achieve fame for your art. Artist usually tend to lean towards the side of interesting characters, someone daring, someone expressive of ideas and opinions, someone sending a message. Their approach when successful is usually one of great surprise and inventive nature. These artist are often ridiculed at first and later praised for their daring ability to take on a challenge when all are against them. Typically guerrilla artist have been viewed as punks spray painting on the sides of buildings, but this goes far beyond simple vandalism. There is a culture, a revolution and a style of guerrilla art that is comparable to a peaceful protest utilizing guerrilla tactics.

Banksy a graffiti and guerrilla artist from the UK has delivered some of the best examples of well engineered guerrilla art. His art is legendary, from dodging Israeli soldiers to paint beautiful scenes on the 'security' wall in Palestine. To placing a parking boot on a sculpture in a central square in London. He has placed multiple pieces of modern remakes of art like Early Man goes to Market, and The British Pensioner in the Hat and Coat, in london Museums where they were not discovered for days even weeks. What a brilliant mind, how better to get into the museum, than to put your work there, yourself, video tape it and then wait for it to get discovered. But his guerrilla art is not just self promoting, he is making political statements by painting on the security wall in Palestine, and by placing the parking boot on the historical statue in a central location of London.

Mode 2 one of the most recognized graffiti artist in the Uk. Known for his unmistakable style and technique of sketchy fill-in with detailed backgrounds and scenes. His work is more like paintings, yet his technique is definitely that of a graffiti artist. His work can be found around the streets of London and his commissioned work can be found on some large Billboards. He is considered a guerrilla artist because of his guerrilla like tactics of graffiti art. The simple fact that most of it is illegal painting on private property, makes it illegal. Although his work is relevant as a guerilla artist, this trend of guerrilla tactics has grown and become a popular way for artist and activist to render their work in public spaces.

A group of artist who seemed to pickup wisely on the term guerrilla artist is the Guerrialla Girls. "We're a bunch of anonymous females who take the names of dead women artists as pseudonyms and appear in public wearing gorilla masks." is how the Guerrilla Girls describe themselves. This artist based feminist performance group started in New York. They have been surprising people all over the world with their outrageous guerrilla performances that often incorporate social and feminist issues. They focus more on the issues, than their personalities and individual identities, by wearing the gorilla masks. Their feminist conscious statements and demonstrations often transform the audience, and community, addressing a specific theme the girls have decided to share with the public. Would their audience take them as serious if their faces were shown? And do they fear public and social exclusion from their peer groups if their identities are discovered?

Yes Men are a group of artist and guerrilla activist utilizing artistic guerrilla tactics. Utilizing technology, New Media and theatrical tactics to achieve their desired identity alteration or 'correction'. From redesigning dummy websites to recreating fake marketing packages, to spoof the media with live interviews of impersonated persons whose identity they wish to correct. In November of 2004 the Yes Men went on BBC with breaking news that the Dow Chemical Company, (whom they claimed to be representatives of ) were going to clean up the mess in Bhopal and compensate the victims for their companies lack of responsibility. From this "identity correction" of Dow Chemical Company, they helped show the true intension of the company which did not intend to help the victims at all. The Yes Men call out actions by industry, commercial or political persons by utilizing guerrilla tactics. They often imitate company executives, and 'big time criminals' to publicly humiliate them in order to 'correct' their public identities. Their targets have included Mc Donald's, Dow Chemical, and Elected officials just to name a few.

The South Venice Billboard Correction Committee (SVBCC) A collective group of artist who administer radical social art changes to billboards in South Venice. This group works with guerrilla tactics to redesign and illustrate their social and political agenda. This group works to recreate a new politically corrected ad in place of the old ad. The group uses the existing design and redesigns the billboard to create a new public message. These actions are obviously illegal and a defacing of private property. The group is well aware that their activities are illegal, yet they continue to execute these guerrilla tactics to administer what they call "radical social art changes" to the billboards in order to deliver their social message. These guys literally scale the billboards at night and repaint them, and create a completely different message, in this public space. The idea that public spaces are the new canvas for political generated guerrilla art is a unique phenomena of the 21st Century New Media Artist.

Artist Jason Sprinkle (1969-2005), also known as Subculture Joe, was also an artist whom seemed to only catch negative attention from the city of Seattle. On Labor Day of 1993 Jason and his accomplices tied a ball and chain around the foot of Jonathan Borofsky's "Hammering Man" stature, that graced the entrance to the Seattle Art Museum. Sprinkle's guerrilla art performances and installations ranged from celebrated to terrorism related. In 1996 Sprinkle abandon a truck with a large red metal part of an installation in it, flattened all the tires and painted on the fender read a graffiti tag "the bomb". As a result the Seattle bomb squad was called out, city blocks were evacuated and robots deployed to disarm any potential exploding devices.

"Christopher Boisvert, 25-year-old student from the School of Visual Arts in Manhattan, may have the next few years to think over the implications of art in public places. That's because a class project he produced involved some art placed in a very public place that unfortunately went a bit awry. The public place was Union Station, one of New York City's busiest transportation nexuses, and the public art was the placing of close to 40 black boxes at various locations with the word 'FEAR' emblazoned on them," MAYORBOB writes. "To say that this project created a stir would be a gross understatement. In this post September 11th world, a display like that is going to engender just one reaction - fear. Union Station was shut down for about five hours while the NYPD bomb squad checked out the boxes. Boisvert turned himself in when he found out that the police were questioning people about the incident." This is just another example where the artist although making a very powerful statement, should have been more aware of his actions and the potential fear that he created with his political and social statement. And if he did think of the potential dangers and the potential reactions to his art piece, should he have considered delivering it differently, or accepting the responsibility of it, or be prepared to cover yourself adequately like the Billboard Correction group or even Banksy.

But these incidents are not limited to guerrilla artist, because even artist whom simply speak of the controversial subject of terrorism are subject to suspicion. Within a few weeks of the September 11th terrorist attacks, the FBI contacted the Whitney Museum of American Art about Mark Lombardi's drawings' on exhibition there. Mark Lombardi had apparently committed suicide the year before but his controversial work illustrating the links between terrorism and the global economy were still on display in the museum. Lombardi's work is considered not only art but also pieces of detailed and researched history. His art works are obvious interest to the government in the wake of the new era of terrorism we now live in. But is it really as bad as they want us to believe, or has the technology and the tactics of terrorism just fed the fear of radical self expression to be included within these terms.

Zanny Begg, produced a work of 10 life size checkpoint US solders for exhibition in the town of Sidney as a part of the [out of Gallery] project. Each life size replica was to have the slogan "Checkpoint for Weapons of Mass Distraction." Her intension was to satirize the US search for weapons of mass destruction. Zanny was instructed to remove her life size solders shortly after erecting them by the City Counsel and Mayor Leo Kelly. She was threatened with arrest and her works were later impounded. "It's a disgraceful interference with the freedom of speech of these artists," said Council of Civil Liberties president Cameron Murphy. Another exhibition in November was canceled because the title "Guerilla Art" some how "discredited the council" according to Kelly. Artist are now being censored by city councils and mayors, and art work is being confiscated in the 21st Century. Artist are no only being targeted as terrorist, but they can not even display work on the subject of terrorism or occupation. Is our own censorship not just as bad as the ones we are trying to grant to those in which we seek to give freedom through war...yeah...um... thats an oxymoron.

Columbian born painter Fernando Botero exhibited works in California that depict the Abu Ghriab prison and suspected abuse to prison inmates. His works are bold and courageous, and depict the artist disgust in US policy regarding prison inmates. "I, like everyone else, was shocked by the barbarity, especially because the United States is supposed to be this model of compassion." His goal is to make people remember the human tragedies sot hat no one will forget the unjust action of the US soldiers to Abu Ghraib's prisoners. His pictures look to shake people to disturb them, to make them think, and hopefully make them act. We have artist that are working with portraying the victims and the perpetrators of terrorism on both sides of the fence.

Nasrin Mazoi, a graduate student selected to present works at the Museum of Israeli Art in Ramat-Gan displayed six portraits of Palestinian males all she averred, were prepared "to blow themselves up in order to change the present situation." Her work has now traveled around the world, featuring these life size pictures of apparent suicide bombers or family members of one. This is not an isolated incidence of a Pro-Palestinian exhibition but it is a rather bold and very critical one. Some of these works have been lucky enough to squeak buy, but others have been subject to censorship and confiscation clearly because of the controversial subject.

Steven Kurtz is an associate professor of art at the University of Buffalo, in Buffalo, New York. He aroused suspicion in Spring 2004 when he called medical personal to his home because his wife unexpectedly died. When medical persons arrived at his home to help, they became suspicious of some medical, scientific, and technological equipment in his home. The authorities over reacted and shut down his neighborhood, evacuating people from their homes in surrounding neighborhoods, and closing streets. They took the body of his diseased wife into custody and arrested him, while dozens of agents searched his property. Mr Kurtz was now facing criminal charges as a member of the Critical Art Ensemble, "dedicated to exploring the intersections between art, technology, radical politics and critical theory". In July of 2004 a grand jury rejected the 'terrorism' charges, but he still faces federal criminal charges today for mail and wire fraud. What is interesting about Steven Kurtz is that he was arrested not for his performance or his art per-say, but because of what they thought it could be. Gary Younge from The Guardian in Buffalo describes the situation. "What began as a personal tragedy for Mr Kurtz has turned into what many believe is, at best, an overreaction prompted by 9/11 paranoia and, at worst, a politically motivated attempt to silence a radical artist." So where is the limit between crime and art, and art as crime? How do we define Kurtz, and other radical artist that work in new mediums that push boundaries with technology, should we limit their research? These are all important questions to be asking artist and their audience in the 21st century.

Are you scared to speak out, demonstrate, or produce radical art? I am, and I think even writing about this could get me on a list of people to be watched. I fear the police-state in which we live today, wants to censor our art and prosecute our artist as terrorist. I think that each of these artist has the responsibility only to themselves to weigh these actions, for they know their art has consequence, that is why it is so potent. It is apparent that the government wants to regulate what is said and demonstrated to the people. It is obvious that the current US administration is prepared to make permanent changes to laws in order to ease the legalities of entrapment for these guerrilla artist.

That said, when Banksy is striding through the Museum with a fresh addition ready to hang, does he not consider what will happen if he is caught and apprehended. Is it not the ultimate publicity for your work to be discovered and captured or even detained? Although horrible in the case of Steven Kurtz, who was not actively presenting work at the time of his arrest. Is he still not aware of his potential surroundings and the danger his work could have to his personal life and freedoms. But as artist and as activist, I think we are all willing to take these risks in our work and activism. I think some of us have been luckier than others. And I believe that some have carefully executed plans of great detail, with wisdom of potential hazards and legal obstacles.

When we examen the most recent incident in Boston on January 31st, where two artist Peter Berdovsky and Sean Stevens were charged with creating a panic because they placed electronic LED art that somehow caused a bomb scare. The installation was actually commissioned by the Turner Broadcasting Network and the art work depicting a popular animated character from Adult Swim's, Aqua Teen Hunger Force "flipping the bird". The artworks were actually installed for several weeks without, panic or notice throughout the entire country. What is crazy is it was a guerrilla marketing plan by the network, and they had several hundred LED boards placed in cities throughout the United States. Boston Police Commissioner Edward Davis called the stunt "unconscionable," while Boston Mayor Thomas Menino called it "outrageous" and the product of "corporate greed." Democratic Rep. Ed Markey, a Boston-area congressman, added, "It would be hard to dream up a more appalling publicity stunt." It seems that because the city over reacted, with the resulting "snarled traffic and mass transit closings as the bomb squad fumbled to find all the LED light boards. Do they now seek revenge for their over-reaction, or should they just consider themselves lucky to have gotten a good practice run. According to a student Todd Venderlin, "It's so not threatening -- it's a Lite-Brite," he told the press, referring to the children's toy
that allows its users to create pictures by placing translucent pegs into an opaque board. "I don't understand how they could be terrified. I would if it was a bunch of circuits blinking, but it wasn't."

When we look back into history we see that the great artist, scientist and inventors of our time have often had their actions and theories mistaken for evil conspiracy driven terrorism. Even Galileo was taken into custody and held by the church for speaking his views and publicly demonstrating his support of the new heliocentric view of the solar system. The modern inventors have to be risk takers in order to produce their inventions in theory, art and science. Yet they need to exercise extreme caution when demonstrating with guerrilla tactics because their politically charged art is still subject to the new laws of the Homeland Security Act, and may end up face to face with the terrorism task-force in the 21st Century. Hakim Bey said it best, "The best Poetic Terrorism is against the law, but don't get caught. Art as crime; crime as art."


Art of Mode 2. Retrieved Feb. 2, 2007

Begg, Zanny. Retrieved Feb. 10, 2007

Belluck, Pam. 2 Arrested in Boston Over Bomb Scare. Feb. 1, 2007 Retrieved Feb 2, 2007

Bey, Hakim. Chaos: the broadsheets of ontological anarchism, Poetic Terrorism, 1995

California Department of Corrections. Retreived Feb. 2, 2007

CNN Report. Two plead not guilty to Boston hoax charges. Feb. 2, 2007 Retrieved Feb 2, 2007

Hackett, Regina. Jason Sprinkle, 1969-2005: Celebrated acts of guerrilla art caused notoriety, changed him. Seattle Post, May 25, 2005 Retrieved Feb. 11, 2007

Guerrillagirls.com; Retrieved Feb 9, 2007

MAYORBOB. edited by John Plastic, That's not my Terrorist Attack, It's My Art Project!; Dec. 18, 2006 Retrieved Feb. 2, 2007

Munro, Catharine. Uproar over council ban on anti-war art display. The Sun-Herald; Feb. 6, 2005, Retrieved Feb. 10, 2007

NPR. The 'Conspiracy' Art of Mark Lombardi, Nov. 1, 2003 Retrieved Feb. 10, 2007

Roth, Frimet. Terrorism and Art, Jan. 19, 2005 Retrieved Feb. 10, 2007

Scigliano, Eric. Hammered man, beautiful mind. Seattlepi.com, June 1, 2005 Retrieved Feb 11, 2007

Vallen, Mark. Art for a Change. Fernando Botero Paints Abu Ghraib. Apr. 10, 2005 Retrieved Feb. 11, 2007 Yesmen.org, Retrieved Feb 10, 2007

[posted on SPECTRE]

Posted by jo at 12:22 PM | Comments (0)

Urban Sensorium


Fresh Perspectives on the Urban Mediascape

Urban Sensorium :: February 22 ~ March 25, 2007 :: TRIAD New Media Gallery, Seoul :: Participating Artists: Ji-Hoon Byun (KR), Jang-Won Lee (KR), Michelle Teran (CA), Erik Olofsen (NE), Hoax Collective (KR, GE), Jeong-Ho Park (KR), Horizon Drowner (KR). Curated by Suhjung Hur.

Urban Sensorium explores the multi-sensory experience in urban environment enhanced and intervened by media technologies. From radio, internet to emerging wireless network and pervasive surveillant system, we got immersed in the invisible layers of electro-magnetic fields, which transforms the way we perceive and experience our daily lives.

Artists in the exhibition question the notion of public space and spatio-temporal reality while viewing city as soundscape, interface for cosmos, fluid canvas and site of scopophilia. The binary between material / immaterial, city / nature, real / virtual, permanence / transience and private / public got fused into each other, contested, and redefined.

Urban Sensorium looks at not only visual but multi-sensory experience of sonic, visual, corporeal and architectural to find fresh perspectives toward urban mediascape beyond the surface of spectacles and commercial overloads.

Supported by the Arts Council Korea, Seoul Foundation for Arts and Culture, Embassy of Canada, Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands and the Westin Chosun Busan.

Posted by jo at 10:45 AM | Comments (0)

[iDC] The -L- Word


Laboring + Learning in Second Life

[left: Trebor Scholz presenting at OurFloatingPoints on Emerson Island, SL; screenshot by John Craig Freeman, February 28, 2007.]

Trebor Scholz wrote: After the OurFloatingPoints event at Emerson College, over some green string beans and tofu, I talked with the organizers about the value of Emerson buying an island in SecondLife (SL) for a thousand dollars in order to build a representation of their First Life campus. (Monthly service costs are about $250.) I still don't quite get it.

Emerson and Harvard replicated their First World architecture in SL. [1] SecondLife simply becomes a novel Public Relations interface. By re-creating our existing institutions in the virtual world, we loose a chance to re-think these knowledge factories untied from the restrictions of economical restrictions. Nevertheless, Harvard's Berkman Center for Internet & Society uses their SL campus to offer courses open to the "public" and Emerson even experiments with 3D modeling classes and authors artworks.

Berkman's use of its campus for long-distance learning ("courses open to the 'public'") is not interesting for me as there are only few examples of this kind of "e.learning" that made sense to me. Years ago, I used to take classes into Habbo Hotel in order for the students to get to know each other in this environment. That worked well, but why do we need to buy our own turf? Why do we need a replication of our own campus? Why not rather build a Black Mountain College with a Bauhaus Annex? Why teach in this virtual environment? Will SecondLife become a 3D version of Wikipedia, a virtual knowledge bank that offers a playful and fun interface to participant-generated content? Will students simply demand such playful access to knowledge?

Josephine Dorado's Kids Connect project nicely illustrates some affordances of SL. [2] Avatars add a bit of social bandwidth and I respect Josephine's argument that SL offers a sense of connectedness that is hard to measure. Brian Holmes warns us that many fantasy scenarios are "deeply instrumentalized, and most often in the service of powerful agendas, put into effect by groups which have the ability to manipulate the basic parameters of our environments, be they 'virtual' or 'actual.'" I agree; the biggest problem with SL is that it is a proprietary space.

The creative *labor* of the very very many financially benefits the very few. Monetary value is created in many ways (mere presence ą la attention economy, creation of profiles, production of 3D objects, import of media content). Labor, with the Italian philosopher Paolo Virno, has become performance, the act of being a speaker. Labor is tied to speech acts and communication systems. [3] To paraphrase the old saying: The greatest trick that capital ever pulled was convincing the world that labor didn't exist. Labor, with most physical production work (except service, of course) now moved to the global south, becomes a "casualized," often distributed, immaterial activity that is even mistaken as leisure or plain "fun." It took peoplea while to realize that online architectures reflect the political post-Fordist structures of First Life. In 1992, for example, Digitale Stad was set up with the idea to "design a complex, multi-layered system that operates largely on the basis of the city metaphor." The experiment did not work out.

Today, online architectures do not just simply mirror "First Life Capitalism," but the absence of awareness of servitude* is radically new. The Frankfurt School philosopher Herbert Marcuse put it well: "All liberation depends on the consciousness of servitude." This holds more true today than ever; many people in the US actually think that they are "happy" and perceive this distributed labor of the sociable web as a fun leisure activity. "We would do it anyway." The community becomes the product. I opened up these questions at Emerson--

"(Un)ethical Capitalism and Sociable Web Media" (video cast, download m4b file, 11.4mb-- open in Quicktime, resize, duration: 40 minutes) http://www.molodiez.org/podcasts/episode_20070301_203115-0500.m4b

What do YOU think about the exploitation of labor in sociable web media and virtual worlds in particular? Are there alternatives? Already after a short look at the demo of Solipsis, "the pure peer-to-peer system for a massively shared virtual world" (and potential alternative to SL), it seemed rather disturbing in terms of its US-centrism. [4]

I imagine SecondLife, currently in its early stages, as a useful place for a kind of rapid prototyping also in activist contexts. On the other hand, there is the danger that Second Life could just become a valve for social tension that should rather be played out in First Life, I partially agree with Charlie Gere. (A virtual speakers corner.) SL is ecologically harmful, I welcomed Julian Bleeker's reminder that there is no Second Life without the materiality/resources of First Life. Giselle Beiguelman points to the cinematic "observation of the second order,” with the avatar a step removed from us. This site could be a liberating place for experimentation with identity. What SL will be, remains to be seen; for now it requires the same kind of skill set that other participatory cultures call for; a toolbox that allows us to handle these environments in a way that serves our best interests and is aligned with our values and aspirations.


[1] Harvard's Berkman Center in SL

[2] Kids Connect Project

[3] http://www.generation-online.org/p/pvirno.htm

[4] Solipsis

Eric Gordon wrote:

As one of the organizers of OurFloatingPoints at Emerson and as one of the people behind designing our Second Life campus, I have to say a few things about our intentions, and more broadly speaking, about the possibilities of SL for education. First, I find it difficult to speak of Second Life as if it possessed some innate qualities. That's like saying the Web "fosters community" or "collapses geography." Blanket statements about a platform are necessarily limited to stereotypical characteristics and leave little room for technological adaptation to social formations. That said, Second Life is neither the next big thing or dangerous for our educational goals -- however, it is a novel platform through which we can explore questions of presence, place, community, and exhibition.

Emerson College is an urban campus that hugs the southeast corner of the Boston Common. The geography of Boston is important to the experience of being on campus. Therefore, our decision to reproduce the architectural layout of campus and to recreate the Boston Common was deliberately made to correspond with our understanding of the platform's possibilities. We see Second Life as a way of creatively re-imagining the space. While, we're not able to screen student work in the physical Boston Common, it will be possible to do so in Second Life. While it is not possible to hold a meeting outside in January, it will be possible in Second Life. The virtual campus is not a fantastical space, but an enhanced space that can dialogue with the physical space. I don't see Second Life as a replacement for the classroom, the live event, the campus, or even the heart of Boston, but as an addendum to our existing arsenal of lived experiences. One of the most interesting aspects of the SL platform is how people identify with places and create a sense of the familiar. Whether this is through representations of institutions, geography, or products, familiarity and co-presence are potential qualities of the platform that deserve attention. Our efforts are not, as Trebor suggests, a marketing tactic for the school. While the administration's support for our efforts are certainly driven by those considerations, they understand that this is a faculty and student research project intended to investigate the possibilities and limitations of the environment.

The first element of our build is the theater wherein we hold live events. The question of how to orchestrate a live event in Second Life has been the topic of much internal debate. Primarily, can the Second LIfe audience, projected onto the screen during the event enhance the experience of those physically present? What can the corresponding audience of avatars (composed of proximate and non-proximate users) offer to the live audience? Is there a method of interaction between the two audience sets that would best activate
the audience? Can we use the platform to change the relationship between speaker and audience? Can we use the platform to alter the format of speech followed by questions? Again, we don't know the answer to these things, nor do we assume that Second Life supplies the answers. But we're excited to place a virtual scaffolding around what has become normalized academic practice in order to replace, repair or simply protect what we already know.


Ana Valdez wrote:

That's really interesting and I really wish more researchers could be engaged in the studio of Second Life's conditions and behaviours. A world without democracy, where the individual is constricted to "mature contempt" islands, where the discussion made in official forums is controlled by the omnipotent and omniscent Linden Lab. I read the headlines from last week's turbulence in SL. "terrorist attack in Second Life", "cyberterrorism". What is virtual terrorism? It reminds me about Julian Dibbell's excellent book "My tiny life", where a virtual rape was discussed and put on trial. And about precariety and workers rights we should discuss Anshe Chung, the real estate broker avatar for Ailin Graef, is known to use workers from her nativev China to make virtual wares in places similar to sweatshops. Virtual sweatshops are also used for games as Everquest or Ultima Online, where macros can be used to generate or reproduce objects who can be sold or traded in the games or outside the games. The virtual sweatshops (or more clear, the real sweatshops) are in the real life and populates av real workers, they make virtual wares but they are treated as all other precarious workers: they work day and night in dangerous conditions, exposed to datasmog and radiation of the screens. Many of them are in the maquila zone between Mexico and the US, Graafs are in China.


Michel Bauwens wrote:

Hi Trebor,

For years, the left has complained about the stranglehold of mass media, and how they were dumbing us down, preventing autonomy and sharing etc...

Now we have an extraordinary techno-social development which creates a multitude of micromedia, some of which, most of which?, probably are mediated by an existing political economy and specifically in concrete cases by proprietary platforms.

But the first thing is to recognize the joy that people are feeling when they are enabled/empowered to express themselves, share, and form communities. On that basis, they will learn the impediments that mediation is forcing on them, and learn to yearn for more pure forms of autonomy.

However, if peer production is non-reciprocal, as I argue, then it makes no sense to argue about exploitation through derivative services.

Rather, I would argue that in most cases, there is a very well understood social contract. You provide us with a participatory platform, we understand that needs funding, and therefore, the provider has a business strategy. Conflicts will arise out of the balance between participation and profit-taking, but not on the very principle of profit taking ,since this is the very condition for the participatory platform to be sustainable. If the participation breaks down because of the profit taking, as seems the case in MySpace, then people start to leave, and eventually, the social conditions for the creation of totally autonomous platforms will arise.

I understand that in academia, being critical is the life-blood for recognition and that there is a competition towards hyper-criticality. But I think that the conclusion that most people have suddently become 'dumb', because they do not recognize the exploitation, is unwarranted. They do know this, and they mostly recognize it as a fact of life, but they also have their own interests at heart.

If you criticize that the benefits of the labor of the many go to the few, does that then imply that you favour revenue-sharing? But in that case, you kill passionate production, it becomes a for-market activity, the quality of contributions plummets. Is that what is preferable? Or rather, should we find ways so that the generated revenue goes back to the community in such a way that the peer production process is not undermined by direct payments?

I say we need strategies which work with the passion of the peer producers, that take them seriously (does not assume they are dumb and unaware of exploitation).


Patrick Lichty wrote:

As mentioned before, I'm not totally convinced about the whole L thing, but it seems to be my area of research, and where I seem to be located.

And as new Columbia College island admin, I made a few decisions.

First, admissions asked if we could do a reconstruction of the campus.

Personally, I don't understand this. It's very odd that human architecture remains in a space where you can fly, etc.

My vision for the Columbia site is a place for experimentation, live media streaming, and for information dissemination to prospective students and existing ones. My department teaches 3D modelin and game design, and it makes sense for us to use Sl at this time, and better to put the fine artists in charge ;)

Therefore, no virtual representation of the physical campus. Period.

However, I intend to have galleries for our annual festival, links to departments and information, virtual t-shirts, departmental sandboxes, and media servers. Hopefully, our architecture will depend more on small textures than geometry, like Emily Carr. That way, we can look at basics of form, and concentrate on function.

Makes no sense to duplicate the physical in the virtual, although a lot of the rules are similar, many others are totally different.


Trebor Scholz wrote:


The dynamics of labor are complex. It's complicated; participants in sociable web media surely get something out of their time spent and labor invested. (I really appreciated the link that Ana Valdes established between virtual and "real life world" exploitation.) But when you say that people are aware that they are unfairly treated, I suggest to geographically situate this argument. Speaking about far stretches of Europe, I agree with you that such awareness is prevalent. Within the context of the United States, however, I can assure you that it is not some kind of opportunistic ivory tower assertion to propose that the consciousness of the very real exploitation of labor is dismal among the youth. Talk to most of the 18 or 25 year-olds here and you will find very little of the awareness that you are taking for granted. Au Contraire! I noticed a naturalized identification with corporate interests that seem to be closer to their hearts than their own. This is not their "fault," it's not the wrong kind of youth -- it is simply the way they were socialized, --yes-- by the mass media and basically by everything that surrounds them since day 1. Many of them see exploitation as a phenomenon that transcends history and is part of human nature. Sure, it is costly to provide the kind of service that MySpace or YouTube provide (granted that these are extreme examples). However, there is an undeniable imbalance between the profit gained through the performance and speech acts of the very many participants and their payback (micro-fame, affect, a sense of belonging, ...). And, there is nothing natural about that.


Joshua Levy wrote:

In the push-pull between the market and expression, many people here and elsewhere in academia tend to take sides against the market as if the market is in itself exploitative, and entrepreneurship should be discouraged, and anything that smells of profit is suspect. I'm not so ready to make those conclusions about SL or other for-profit environments since, as Michel argues, most users comprehend and accept the plain fact that the principle of profit-taking is "the very condition for the participatory platform to be sustainable." Is this a perfect model for free expression? Maybe or maybe not. But how else are we going to fund a platform like SL that takes real human sweat (alas, maybe produced in virtual sweatshops) to stay afloat and innovate. We can dream about a full open source SL, and that may happen some day, but there's no crime in Linden Labs' profit motives alone.

Our entire electronic life involves this contract: Google and all of its services are free to us because of the advertising Google rakes in; this may not be "pure" but it works -- Google is at the top of its field and the geeks prefer it. We watch television for free in return for watching inane commercials, etc. Is this system perfect? No. But that doesn't mean it's exploitative. As Michel says, if a company like MySpace overreaches is authority, we can leave and set up camp somewhere else.


Simon Biggs wrote:

A very short contribution to what is a very complex issue.

It seems to me that in its very conception SL is a replication of the dominant socio-economic mode of our time, the late-capitalist model developed primarily (although not entirely) in the USA and its satelites. SL has developed from and within the apparatus of globalised capital. That the ethical systems that underpin such an ideology are then found to be those that determine how SL develops should not be surprising. That money even exists in SL provides sufficient evidence of this.

SL is a misnomer. It is not a second life but simply a kind of first life, as constructed by a dominant elite, represented in such a manner that it will function to further inculcate and embed its associated ideology on a global scale. It will sustain the fundamental ethic of consumerism...that we are all potential suckers or grifters (often both) and that nobody is responsible for what happens to anybody else. In short, it is another rip off culture.


Andreas Schiffler wrote:

Michel Bauwens wrote:

> I say we need strategies which work with the passion of the peer
> producers, that take them seriously (does not assume they are dumb and
> unaware of exploitation).

In response to this very good analysis, I want to throw in an comment about the technology dependence of these strategies (aka, I am a technologist and can respond best in those categories).

What has arguably worked best in the past are systems that require a minimum of technology for the individual participant - allowing them to "plug in" easily. A good example is Wikipedia. Wikipedia allowed people to contribute with "just a browser" - even the text based "lynx" browser works. What's more, the interface was designed so that one didn't even have the hurdle of "logging in" - just click the [Edit] button and type. The servers and software that run Wikipedia were similarly "minimal" at the onset and only needed to be expanded when traffic grew due to the popularitly (see http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_servers and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Wikipedia).

Going back to the strategy argument: the simple fact that a system such as "Wikipedia" can run with these relatively modest hardware requirements helps greatly to keep the system operational through individual support and donations only - thus keeping it a relatively "corporate and ad-free" zone. Currently the Wikipedia system is run on about 100+ machines which are mostly caches. Now if we compare that to the 4000+ machines of SecondLife mentioned on previous threads - about 20 times more - it is easy to see why a system like SL is only viable in a "for-profit" scenario.

One conclusion that one can draw from this observation, is that systems operating at the high-end of technological capability such as SL are not very viable to be open (although that can change over time, as technology becomes better). This is similar to and extends the arguments about our digital divide: access to the Internet requires a certain amount of $ leaving behind the part of the world that has only 2cents. Access to a Virtual World requires requires even more $$$ further skewing the economics of "free and participatory".

Getting back to a strategy: What has to happen to facilitate a truly open virtual world? I think is likely best done as a massively connected distributed-computing system - a fragmented amorphous "Matrix" with minimal central server requirements similar to some of the P2P networks in existence today.

I could envision an open collaborative effort where participants contribute not just give their "labor" and their presence but also some bits and bytes form their harddrive, the idle CPU cycles of their screensavers and some connectivity to provide the resources that make up the VR in the first place. Thus what would be needed is a software that allows participants to contribute "Micro-Matrices" to the whole pool. I could see this being build out of existing OpenSource software; Linux as the base to get the hardware to go, building on networking technologies such as BitTorrent and Tor (http://tor.freehaven.net/), enabling grid computing similar to distributed.net, adding creative tools such as Gimp and Blender, supporting existing document technologies via OpenOffice like apps, providing communications via HTML, JXTA (http://vop2p.jxta.org/), H.264 and Jabber protocols.

Such a software might actually challenge the "Operating System + Deskop" metaphor sold by Microsoft and Apple. What if operating a PC means actually "plugging into a virtual world" in an equally give-and-take manner. If this would take hold, it might help free the Internet from the stranglehold of the "Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line" (ADSL) economy: the A means that most current broadband connections are too slow for uploads, disallowing individuals to operate servers effectively from home, hence inhibiting technologies such as the ones described above.

While at this point in time such a software or developments are more Fiction than Science, keep in mind that Nintendo is probably working on it. ;-)


Trebor wrote:

Howard Rheingold on on Education in SL:

"I've lectured in Second Life, complete with slides, and remarked that I didn't really see the advantage of doing it in SL. Members of the audience pointed out that it enabled people from all over the world to participate and to chat with each other while listening to my voice and watching my slides; again, you don't need an immersive graphical simulation world to do that.

I think the real proof of SL as an educational medium with unique affordances would come into play if an architecture class was able to hold sessions within scale models of the buildings they are studying, if a biochemistry class could manipulate realistic scale-model simulations of protein molecules, or if any kind of lesson involving 3D objects or environments could effectively simulate the behaviors of those objects or the visual-auditory experience of navigating those environments. Just as the techniques of teleoperation that emerged from the first days of VR ended up as valuable components of laparascopic surgery, we might see some surprise spinoffs in the educational arena. A problem there, of course, is that education systems suffer from a great deal more than a lack of immersive environments. I'm not ready to write off the educational potential of SL, although, as noted, the importance of that potential should be seen in context. In this regard, we're still in the early days of the medium, similar to cinema in the days when filmmakers nailed a camera tripod to a stage and filmed a play; SL needs D.W. Griffiths to come along and invent the equivalent of close-ups, montage, etc.

The one difficult to surmount obstacle is the learning curve. One figure I'd like to see is the number of people who create objects and environments in SL. That population is where the innovations are likely to emerge.

I think the SL hype deserves debunking, but let's not set that debunking up as an eternal straw man. Who, exactly, is predicting that any percentage of the population will really live in SL? (Someone who has lost a loved one to WOW?) To me, the point has long since ceased to be whether or not this is going to be as popular as solitaire, but whether some truly useful innovation is going to emerge."

Alan Clinton wrote:

I find Trebor's concepts of "unpaid labor" and his seeming desire to convert every act into "labor" somewhat problematic. I am also concerned about the philosophical ramifications of saying that people who think they are having fun are not really having fun or experiencing pleasure.

I'm not sure that seeking out all the unpaid labor in the virtual world is the most productive critique of capitalism.

Is the greatest trick of capitalism really convincing people that labor doesn't exist? I would say that its greatest trick would be convincing people that the violence of human exploitation doesn't exist. At the risk of revising Marcuse, couldn't we say that consciousness of servitude is not really the problem so much as providing strategies for political agency? People who are laboring know that they are laboring. People (and let's not dismiss the global south so quickly) who are suffering the violence of capitalism know they are suffering the violence of servitude. They may lack awareness of ways to name this violence or attack it, but they are not unaware of their suffering.

It's hard for me to shed any real tears for socioeconomically stable people giving up their virtual labor (or false consciousness fun) to companies that profit from it. However, it is criminal if sociable media agents/interfaces sap these individuals, as embodied beings, of the time, energy, and knowledge required for political agency (not primarily for themselves but for the brutally exploited)--having their political agency diminished or extinguished by their lack of awareness of their participation in the violent capitalism of which they are, for the most part, beneficiaries.

Perhaps the surplus value that needs to be spoken of in this context is the time, resources, and knowledge that is diverted from potential actions against global capitalism and its violence.

Alan Clinton

Tobias van Veen wrote:

Thanks Charlie for your wonderful critical blasts of SL scholarship.

However I do find it intriguing, this constant parallel with masturbation, insofar as it is part of a long, funny history in philosophy of guilt and denial and apology and moralism over masturbation (pinpointed with such acuity and humour in Derrida's analysis of auto-affection and "that dangerous supplement" in Rousseau, Of Grammatology).

The point being that masturbation, aka simulacra of sex, is as REAL as "real sex", it is not derived from real sex and thus a derivation or perversion, it is just sex with one's other-hand, it already entails alterity -- there is no need to debase it, is there? Thus to charge SL, even as polemic, with "cultural pornography" in this case I think is to offend pornography, not SL. Why degrade pornography and masturbation? Condemning sexual activities online is yet another facet of the "Bush administration" as you put it, and I think one of the more complex analyses yet to be grasped is the complex relation all online realms hold between sexuality, affect (aka masturbation) and alterity. It's what them younger kids are up too.

As for SL, Upgrade International has just launched a node there. So has Dorkbot from what I hear. Our current debate (I curate UpgradeMTL) is trying to find where to put it on our Google worldMap. Some suggest in the North Pole or middle of the Pacific; others, a random location to be loaded each time; others, where the servers are located.

I find this intriguing, the concept of a media arts meeting online, once a month, like the other Upgrade flesh gatherings, each based in its own city, in the sense that our avatars can get together in some virtual space and watch media clips of someone's media art, txt chat about it, ask questions, and that this might flit over all those nation-state barriers, save for that odd one concerning the curvature of the planetoid and that time thing. But it is interesting in the way that television can be interesting, maybe up a notch to some kind of participatory level, through the screen, always bounded by this screen. It might even be that such meetings are really the "proper" place of such media art, and not in the flesh, this nonplace, nonproper, properly speaking. Perhaps the rest of us city-based nodes are hanging on to some outdated mode of the f2f -- many of us struggling to make it work on a regular basis, the perennial question, "where is the community?" -- while SL demonstrates where media art finds its chez moi. Toward nonmedia, uncanny nonplace of the screen medium, technics hyperdrive on affect overload. I'm not sure if this is where my body wants to go though... which is really nowhere, just my chair, the same one I've been at all day. Now if Upgrade-I started having SL orgies, perhaps this would up the interest meter a notch, it would keep one hand busy at least, maybe even two... and if my partner were involved, would this classify as real sex, a partial threesome, the third the screen / webcam interface? Hmm.

Keep the fire comin'.



Charlie Gere wrote:


Thanks for your thoughts and believe me I am the last person to condemn masturbation, and therefore I take your point about denigrating pornography etc... I fear my polemical zeal and weakness for a beguiling metaphor overcame my capacity to present a fully reasoned argument. My point was about the dangers of conflating two different things, the experience of a virtual space such as SL on the one hand, and that of RL communities on the other. It's not really a question of embodiment; after all, as Benedict Anderson pointed out all those years ago, most of our communities are imagined and don't involve experience of all the other bodies of which they are comprised. But I do think it is a question of what actual effects actions have in different realms, such as SL and RL, and what kinds of responsibilities they bring with them.

I teach my Cultural Studies undergraduate students a couple of texts that relate to these issues, 'The Cross-Dressing Psychiatrist' by Allucquere Rosanne Stone and 'A Rape in Cyberspace' by Julian Dibble. Though both predate SL by quite a few years, the questions they raise remain pertinent, particularly the Dibble piece. My students and I have long discussions about whether the virtual textual 'rape' enacted on an avatar in LamdaMoo is in any sense equivalent to rape as the term is used in the material world. (Interesting that, as Tobias may well point out, that rape as an example confirms the 'complex relation all online realms hold between sexuality, affect... and alterity'). My strong sense is that there is pretty much no comparison and to conflate the two uses of the term is dangerous and even offensive. As a thought experience, imagine a rape victim's possible reaction to hearing someone describe some experience in SL as 'rape'. By the same token this could be said of many other terms used in both SL and RL, and of the experiences and structures to which they refer. Again imagine the reaction of someone who has been involved in attempting to build and sustain communities in, for example, Iraq or Palestine, listening to someone describe the problems of community building in SL. I think grasping and holding onto this distinction is incredibly important.


Josh Levy wrote:

I had a minor breakthrough last night. Some of the more experienced SL folks here are going to laugh at me for this -- but I realized that you can do so many more things with the camera than I realized (the camera is your POV in Second Life). It can be manipulated as you go about your business there, panning left to right, moving up and down, and zooming in and out. Previously I'd only zoomed in and out, struggling to focus in on other avatars' faces, or -- because I'm recording this for a short film -- to position my own avatar in visually interesting ways, including actually looking at my own face. Anyway, I felt a bit schmucky about it because I realized I should have known how to do this all along.

After I finished flogging myself I investigated Camp Darfur in SL. It's changed a lot since I've last been there, though the lack of other avatars is the same. Before it was pretty empty, with information scattered here and there and a few banners publichzing the atrocity. Now, there are flames leaping out at you as you arrive, posters describing the tragedy and images of refugees all over the place, and ominous-looking, giant blue helmets (the UN, get it?) strewn about. It's a pretty chaotic place, though this chaos doesn't suggest man-made terror as much as a lack of design and forethought.

I was struck by the same incongruities that got me interested in SL in the first place, the simple problem of confronting real issues in an unreal space. It sounds mundane and obvious when describing it, yet the feelings evoked by seeing my avatar -- or being my avatar -- standing in front of a large image of a Darfurian child, dirty and alone and crying, were complex and new. The child in the image was approximately the same size as my avatar. The two images existed in the same space, and were both representations of real people, yet my avatar was a digitized version of myself, and the image of the child was simply an image of the child. There were no other avatars around so I couldn't experience the thrill of social life in SL, and this fact heightened the starkness of the image. As I walked around I inadvertently created more of these tableaus. In one, my avatar looked at a poster with mostly words on it. As the camera panned around to the left side of the avatar its profile took up the foreground of the shot. In the background appeared an image of a woman from Darfur. In the distance were virtual huts with more information inside them and other tiny images. The image privileged my virtual face and relegated someone's real, distraught face to the background.

Gazing upon this image made me think of what many people on this list have referred to, that Second Life is the province of an educated elite and as such is given a disproportionate amount of importance with many tragic aspects of real life taking a back seat. More than anything else, it felt perverted that I should be in Second Life looking at those images taken of real women and children while my avatar and I practiced camera moves.

Yet there was something else going on; I was moved to stop and think about these things rather than see an image like that and pass it by without noticing, which is more typical. In her book Regarding the Pain of Others, Susan Sontag takes a sort of potshot at her earlier self, arguing that images in themselves might not have the power to evoke universal empathy and action; an image of a dead Palestinian boy evokes one reaction for a militant Palestinian and quite another for a militant Israeli. It's partly about the context in which we view these images. Nevertheless, while viewing these images of Darfurian refuges taken quite profoundly out of context I was able to see the awfulness like never before, and with my new agility with the camera I was able to create even starker images.

I realized after a bit that for me, the crux of the SL problem is its evocation of and relationship to real life, it's place within real life, and it's role, for better or for worse, as a reflection of real life (witness the recent vandalism that plagued John Edwards' space and various corporate outlets). Has anyone else been to Camp Darfur or a similar space, and how did you react?

Joshua Levy

iDC -- mailing list of the Institute for Distributed Creativity iDC[at]man.thing.net http://mailman.thing.net/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/idc

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Posted by jo at 10:10 AM | Comments (0)

Social Hacking


Public Art Commissions

C6 enter its tenth year with a flurry of activity, as the Dotmasters hit Plymouth for Social Hacking, 21-24 March 2007. Social Hacking is a series of temporary public art commissions for Plymouth by international artists' groups against a backdrop of urban regeneration. The project reflects the ways in which these changes to the city can be further influenced by creative human intervention.

Featuring commissioned work from: The Institute for Applied Autonomy(USA), Mikro Orchestra Project (Poland), and Ludic Society (Austria/Switzerland). The Dotmaster's Mobility in the art market by the original art wankers, C6, a Mikroparty including performances by Tetine (Brazil) and Mikrokilla & Jura (Poland), as well as the C6 disaster unit roadshow, project newsroom, artists' run workshops, workshops by The Pirate University (Global), and a public seminar with keynote presentation by McKenzie Wark (AUS/USA).

The Dotmasters travel to Switzerland in April for Bitnik's Hack culture exhibition in the Cabaret Vorltaire a series of workshop hacks where mobility in the high and low end culture markets are the subject of subversions. The exhibition will open on the 9th of March 2007 and end sometime in late August 2007 a series of +A Hack A Day; workshops accompany the exhibition. Practical How-Tos for Cultural Hacking, at Cabaret Voltaire, Spiegelgasse 1, Zurich Exhibition until May 2 2007 Sa, 14.4.07, 2pm - Cabaret Voltaire mit C6.org (London) - An Afternoon of Good Clean Fun with the dotmasters.

The C6 disaster unit continues to provide the visual backdrop for Longrange with a festival packed summer long tour, as well as continuing to work with the buzzcocks.

Plans for Nuart in Stavanger get underway soon and a bigger better celebration of street art you'd be hard pressed to find anywhere else. Keep the 5th to the 8th of September free, stay tuned.

Posted by jo at 09:50 AM | Comments (0)

More on Curating With Others (CWO)


Ruth Catlow on DIWO

Ruth Catlow wrote: A couple of days ago, Sarah Cook from the Crumb New-Media-Curating email list wrote...

In the meantime, perhaps someone from http can tell us how the opening of Do It With Others (Open Curation) went last night? I am curious about this model of exhibition making - where subscribers have a say (a bit like fans being asked to program the next All Tomorrow's Parties festival?) - does collaborative filtering create interesting results?

[...] I guess the thing to note in this context is that Furtherfield initiated the (DIWO) E-Mail-Art project so that "subscribers" to the NetBehaviour email list and the technologies they deploy are ALL artistic contributors to the project. Not sure I've identified ANY "fans" as yet; ))) The idea deliberately draws on the tradition of earlier Mail Art exhibitions in that the project started with an open-call and every post to the list, between 1st February and 1st April, is considered a work - or part of a larger, collaboratively created artwork. I can even imagine arguing that lurkers are also contributors. It's certainly true that the contributor:lurker ratio on the list has gone up from approx 1:25 (through January) to 1:4 (through February).

Historically Mail Art has a difficult relation to the old question about whether it belongs in a gallery (obvious eg Ray Johnson's "Dear Whitney Museum I hate you" mail art). What we try to explore and give room to in this approach to curating is a more dynamic and maleable context for the work. At HTTP we are in the fortunate position to be able to give space to this approach because of our relative informality, autonomy and independence, a decent-enough technical resource and our small but enthusiastic and broadly-skilled team of artist/producers and (for the time-being) curious and engaged visitors. Of course lots of people are not interested in all these different parts of the process. Many contributors prefer to leave the issues surrounding the display and dissemination of their artwork to others. But one of the reasons we chose to focus on the Mail Art theme was because of its reflexive nature. It considers all aspects of the artwork's passage through existing communication channels (through time and space) to the recipient(s) as contributing to the raison d'etre of the work. This is interesting to us as artists.

One danger that I can see of this approach of focusing on the curation and protocols of selection (especially with the current hoopla surrounding the so called democratisation of culture laid at the feet of networked tech) is that other aspects of the work can begin to be overshadowed. I'm not sure that many of the visitors to our (un)private view on Thursday evening were so interested in these issues or even in the particular technologies used. What seemed to grab people was the dynamic transformation and repositioning of materials and ideas as they flowed between approx 90 contributors.

The exhibition consists of "Threads" (series that directly involved mixing and dialogue, action and response) and "Streams" (of images, texts, movies instructions etc by single contributors) in print, sound, html, movie and text . Also a couple of installation works devised especially for the space. This was all argued and bashed out during our Sunday afternoon open-curating event. All submissions were sorted and categorised and displayed within a mailbox that was available for visitors to explore and redistribute (by clicking 'Forward Mail' ; )

From my perspective as a subscriber to NetBehaviour email list I find the process fascinating, informative, amusing and constantly surprising.

Then I gave links to some pics (lots more to the website soon).

Installation shot from early in the evening- Showing some printed "Threads" and "Streams"

Sim Gishel's 'Will Work For Food' - Vehicle drawing over an image of Marx's Grave in London

Projection of 'The Wreckers' a drawing produced within Dave Miller's online collaborative drawing software- being viewed by a visitor via the DIWO mailbox

Ruth [via netbehaviour]

Posted by jo at 09:25 AM | Comments (0)

March 05, 2007

Ars Virtua Artist-in-Residence (AVAIR):


Call for Proposals

Ars Virtua Artist-in-Residence (AVAIR): Call for Proposals :: Deadline: April 7, 2007. Ars Virtua Gallery and New Media Center in Second Life is soliciting proposals for its second artist-in-residence program. Established and emerging artists will work within the 3D rendered environment of Second Life. The 11-week residency will culminate in an exhibition and a community-based event. Residents will also receive a $400 stipend, training and mentorship as necessary.

Ars Virtua Artist-in-Residence (AVAIR) is an extended performance that examines what it means to reside in a place that has no physical location. Ars Virtua presents artists with a radical alternative to “real life” galleries: 1) Since it does not physically exist artists are not limited by physics, material budgets, building codes or landlords. Their only constraints are social conventions and (malleable-extensible) software. 2) The gallery is accessible 24 hours a day to an unlimited number of people in every part of the world simultaneously. 3) Because of the ever evolving, flexible nature of Second Life the “audience” is a far less predictable variable than one might find a Real Life gallery. Residents will be encouraged to explore, experiment with and challenge traditional conventions of art making and distribution, value and the art market, artist and audience, space and place.

Application Process: Artists are encouraged to log in to Second Life and create an avatar BEFORE applying. Finalists will be contacted for an interview. Interviews will take place in world in April. Applications will be judged based on ideas presented and work executed. We are looking for an artist who is willing to work within what may be a new environment for them and to be prepared to evolve in response to the synthetic world of Second Life. To apply send the following information to avair-at-arsvirtua.com:

1) Name, address, phone number, email, second life name.
2) Link to an online portfolio (expect a 5 minute visit) and a 500 word (two page) proposal. If you do not have an online portfolio please briefly discuss your work.

“AVAIR” is a 2006-2007 commission of New Radio and Performing Arts, Inc., (aka Ether-Ore) for its Turbulence web site. It was made possible with funding from the Jerome Foundation.

Posted by jo at 12:04 PM | Comments (0)

Ars Virtua Gallery and New Media Center hosts CADRE Laboratory Salon


Anthony Burke

Ars Virtua Gallery and New Media Center will be the in world host of a series of salons held at the CADRE Laboratory for New Media. Our first simulcast lecture will be on March 6th at 6.30 SLT at Ars Virtua's main gallery. Anthony Burke will be the discussant.

Anthony Burke, Senior Lecturer and Director, Masters of Digital Architecture, University of Technology, Sydney: Prior to his appointment as Director of UTS Masters in Digital Architecture program Anthony Burke was assistant professor of architecture at UC Berkeley. His research interests include emergent design principles and the relationship between new media and architecture. Professor Burke graduated from the Graduate school of Architecture Planning and Preservation at Columbia University with a Post Professional Masters in Advanced Architectural Design in 2000. Prior to that he gained his Bachelor of Architecture with honors from the University of New South Wales, Sydney in 1996. Before moving to University of California, Berkeley, Professor Burke maintained a design practice in Sydney, completing several small scale domestic and commercial projects.

He has held teaching positions at several institutions including the University of New South Wales, the University of Sydney, and Columbia University. Professor Burke has worked as an architectural designer in Hong Kong, Sydney and New York. He received a runner up award for the Sydney Town Hall Precinct International Ideas Competition in 2000, and has published articles on technology and architecture in Australia. His current research interests include emergent design principals, the relationship between New Media and Architecture and the history of architectural systems thinking and design after the 60's.

You must register at http://cadre.sjsu.edu/salons/ to attend in RL.

Ars Virtua is a new media center and gallery located in the synthetic world of Second Life. It is a new type of space that leverages the tension between 3-D rendered game space and terrestrial reality, between simulated and simulation. Ars Virtua is sponsored by the CADRE Laboratory for New Media.

Posted by jo at 11:48 AM | Comments (0)

Spatial Y



Spatial Y by Michael Nielen, Ann Rosén and Sten-Olof :: FYLKINGEN :: Saturday, March 10, 2007 at 19.30 :: Münchenbryggeriet, Torkel, Knutssonsgatan 2 (T-bana Mariatorget).

The pianist Michael Nielen, the artist Ann Rosén and the composer Sten-Olof Hellström performs the sound work Spatial Y. In a meeting between chamber music, installation art and electronic chaos the spatial aspects of sound are woven together forming a sound work to which further dimensions are added by the audience movements, sounds and choices. The audience can choose to regard the work as an installation, which you can enter and walk around inside or as a concert where you sit down and listen. 120 min with individual pause.

Michael Nielen: Born 1961 in Germany. Trained pianist from the Academies of Music in Düsseldorf and Cologne. Solo and ensemble concerts in several European countries with both classical and contemporary music. Collaboration with several composers. CD and radio recordings. Since 2000 works with sound installation and live-electronic for exihibitions and concerts. From 1998 instructor at the Kunsthųjskolen in Holbęk / Denmark. Lectures on different issues of contemporary music.

Ann Rosén's work can take the shape of video, sound art, electro acoustic music, sound and video installations etc. In the early 1990s she investigated various forms of human interaction, her work focussed on creating situations where people could meet under different forms. As computer technology became more accessible Ann Rosén started to combine social interaction with digital art forms. Many of her ideas require a large number of people from different backgrounds. This has led to that she has initiated and coordinated a number of interdisciplinary projects. In 2000 Ann Rosén started to include scientists and researchers from different fields in her projects. To address the problems encountered in these projects and create a platform for interdisciplinary collaborations Ann Rosén initiated ADRA- Art Driven Research Association in 2004.

Sten-Olof Hellström has been active as a professional composer since 1984 Masters of Music in composition at University of East Anglia, England 1990 Employed as researcher and composer at the Centre for User Oriented IT Design (CID), Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) since 1997. As a researcher Hellström has mainly worked in the field of Human Computer Interaction where he has been part of several major international research projects such as eREANA and Shape. He is also very active in the field of sonification (representing data with sound). One example of current work is the construction and development of a computer interface for the visually impaired. Sten-Olofs Hellströms main occupation and profession is however as a composer working with Electro-acoustic music.

Contact and information:
0708-866459, Sten-Olof Hellström

Posted by jo at 11:04 AM | Comments (0)

March 04, 2007

UPGRADE! Second Life



The first UPGRADE! Second Life presentation occurred on Friday at the BitFactory Chindo gallery as a co-location with the Paris node, with consistent attendance of about 15-18 avatars from North America, Europe, and South America. Alain Della Negra and Kaori Kinoshita presented their documentary work on the lives of avatars in real life. Although there were the usual technical challenges (latency times on streaming, etc.), multiple contingencies were planned for, and attendees were able to see all media clips for the event. As with most SL events, the social milieu was a little chaotic, very lively, but there was abundant conversation about the work, and virtual attendees from France stayed ar t least 30-60 minutes after the meeting.

This was a very exciting event, and James and I are very excited about the level of enthusiasm for this first meet. Documentation is here.

Alain Della Negra and Kaori Kinoshita are artists working on virtual worlds. They present their last documentary about “Second Life” universe and users. Their movie questions the notion of the virtual life. For those who wishing to live in / experiment this virtual world(s), “Second Life” offers the chance to create, manage and develop their own alternate reality. With these possibilities, and a population that is in constant growth, “Second Life” has political ramifications. Who decides the rules applied in this virtual world? What laws, what measures need to be defined? Where is the frontier between the virtual and the real, and how is it transmuted? This documentary aims to elucidate the porous nature between real and virtual worlds.

UPGRADE! SL is a forum for the promotion and sharing of New Media art and critical discourse occurring in the online world, Second Life. Founded by Rubiyat Shatner (James Morgan / Ars Virtua) and Man Michinaga (Patrick Lichty / BitFactory / Columbia College Chicago), UPGRADE! SL is the first non-geographical node of Upgrade! International.

Patrick Lichty



Posted by jo at 06:21 PM | Comments (0)

Sharjah Biennial 8


Art and our Relationship with Nature + Environment

The Sharjah Biennial 8 (SB8) :: April 4th, 2007 :: Sharjah, United Arab Emirates (UAE) :: Director: Hoor Al Qasimi :: Artistic Director: Jack Persekian :: Curators: Mohammed Kazem, Eva Scharrer, Jonathan Watkins.

The Sharjah Biennial 8’s theme proposes art as a way of creating a better understanding about our relationship with nature and the environment, whilst considering its social, political, cultural and subjective dimensions in an interdisciplinary way. SB8 will focus on the renewed role of art in addressing a wide range of issues that alarmingly affect human existence on earth. The Biennial is aware of the critical ambiguity of its subject matter, and of the fact that it is part of the product-producing and -consuming society, and of the constantly growing tribe of biennials, that year after year, encourage a number of artists, curators, audiences and artworks to travel around the globe. Still, SB8 needs to be critical and will attempt to implicate all sectors of society into questioning our social, political, and ecological praxis.

The Biennial’s programme includes exhibitions, performances, a film programme curated by Mark Nash and a symposium organised in collaboration with the American University of Sharjah, RSA (London) and curatorial practice Latitudes (Barcelona). The entire city of Sharjah is being offered to more than 80 international artists for the creation of new site-specific work. Exhibitions, performances and events will take place across a wide range of venues including the Sharjah Art Museum, the Expo Centre, the Heritage Area of Sharjah, and several outdoor urban and natural sites. The Sharjah Biennial Art Prizes will be awarded to two winning artists by a jury composed of Negar Azimi, Charles Esche and Geeta Kapur. Furthermore, UNESCO will award their Prize for the Promotion of the Arts & the Young Digital Creator Award, in collaboration with the Sharjah Biennial 8.

Posted by jo at 06:09 PM | Comments (0)

New Climates


Art, Climate Change and Networked Culture

New Climates, curated by Shane Brennan, is an online exhibition of new and existing artworks responding to the relationship between art, global climate change and networked culture. This curatorial weblog will create a flexible and open-ended space to address these ideas at a time when climate change has become a vital concern among artists. Launching in the spring of 2007, New Climates will take the form of a continuously-updated and extensive video weblog.

14 artists have been selected to create short web-videos responding to the pervasive discourse and images of the climate change crisis. The original works may include animations, documentaries, personal testimonials, appropriations, data streams and text or image slideshows. In addition, existing videos and other artworks relating to the theme will be posted and discussed.

As a video weblog—which will be aimed at a broad, heterogeneous audience of art- and non-art-world individuals—the exhibition will be distributed across both space and time: It will be open to the contributions of artists across the globe, and it will grow organically through a series of syndicated (RSS) posts over the course of several months. In this way, the theme of global climate change will intersect with the technology and language of global media. Just as the climate change debate is constantly shifting and evolving, this exhibition will remain transitive, flexible and open-ended.

This project will also explore the contemporary phenomenon of distributed curating: exhibiting artwork across a variety of spaces, networks, temporalities and audiences. It will take advantage of popular technologies (e.g. blogging and web-video sharing) to initiate a dialogue relevant at multiple levels to artists, curator(s) and visitors.

Work will appear in the New Climates exhibition between March and May 2007.

Artists Contributing New Work:

Michael Alstad
Anthony Discenza
Jane D. Marsching
Mary Mattingly
Joe Milutis
Cary Peppermint & Christine Nadir
Andrea Polli
Giles Revell & Matt Wiley
Brooke Singer
Jon Thomson & Alison Craighead
Gail Wight
Peter Eramian
Sarah Simon

Artists Contributing Existing Work:

Ben Engebreth
Michael Mandiberg

Posted by jo at 06:00 PM | Comments (0)

March 03, 2007

Subliminal Statements 2: the Interior World


Call for Submissions

Subliminal Statements 2: the Interior World, The Newsletter of the Society for a Subliminal State :: Call for Submissions :: Due April 15, 2007.

The earth is hollow! It's surface is riddled with paths to the inside! We want your articles on the interior world! An interior world lies beneath the earth's crust. Centuries of industrial mining have etched labyrinthine shafts and caverns throughout the world. Beneath it are vast cave systems, replete with underground rivers, seas, and waterfalls, where unique plant and animal life thrive.

Still deeper, the earth is hollow. A differentiated body, its interior is molten: a permeable liquid mantle encircled by a comparatively thin solid husk. At the inner edge of the earth's solid shell, crystals sublimate, mingling with pockets of pressurized gas - heated and vibrant with the light of the molten interior.

For centuries, scientists, explorers, and writers have held that this fiery core is a small, inner sun, and that the inner edge of this shell of an earth is a balmy land with a surface area greater than that of the earth's outer surface. This land, inhabited by a varied plant and animal life features seas and continents. Its geography, anthropology, and physics are the subject of hundreds of books published since the late 17th century.

Other writers theorize concentric spheres within the earth, lit and heated by a luminous substance that adheres to the outer earth's inner surface. These spheres, also populated by abundant life are accessible through wide holes at the earth's poles, where the polar ice caps give way to temperate polar seas.

The second issue of Subliminal Statements will document this interior world.
We want your evidence.


Subliminal Statements is printed on one sheet of 11 by 17 inch paper (front and back). The newsletter is printed in a newspaper format. Accordingly we will accept articles and essays written in a style befitting a newspaper: written as though reported, brief editorials, etc. Due to the scientific nature of the issue's theme, we are also accepting submissions in the form of scientific papers, charts, or other data-heavy examinations of the theme.

Photos, drawings, illustrations, or other images should accompany text submissions only, and must be able to be printed in black and white.


Text submissions should be a maximum of 1500 words, though we will accept excerpts of longer documents, and article to be published serially (please contact us if you are interested in writing a serial article for Subliminal Statements). There is no minimum length. In fact, the shorter, the better.

Submit your text as .rtf, .txt, or .doc files, your data as .xls, or .csv files, and your images as .png, .tiff, .jpeg, or .gif (8 MB max).

E-mail your submissions to subhist[at]subliminalstate.org with the subject line: Subliminal Statements 3 Submission.

Your submissions must be received by midnight on April 15, 2007.

If accepted, your submissions will be published in the second issue of the Society for a Subliminal State Newsletter, a newspaper-style compact format print publication, and on the Society's web site. The print version will be distributed for free to bookstores, art events, and historical centers in New York and Massachusetts. It may be downloaded and copied for wider distribution.


The Society for a Subliminal State is a fledgling organization started by Carrie Dashow and Jesse Pearlman Karlsberg. The Society for a Subliminal State agitates against the exclusive use of empirical evidence in the search for truth. It is an organization that believes there are many different types of digging that to be productively undertaken. The Society for a Subliminal State mirrors the form of a traditional historical society, contributing to the public discourse through a quarterly newsletter and a website. Subliminal Statements accepts articles on topics avoided by publications that advocate fact checking. The Society grounds itself in the belief that truth is deeper than proof, and holds that if you see it three times then that too may be the path to truth.

Posted by jo at 07:28 PM | Comments (0)

16 Beaver Group


Ashley Hunt

16 Beaver Group :: Ashley Hunt - Representations Of The Erased :: Monday 03.05.07 :: What: Talk / Discussion / Screening :: Where: 16 Beaver Street, 4th Floor :: When: 7:30 pm :: Who: Free and open to all.

Ashley Hunt is an artist and activist who uses video, photography, mapping and writing to engage social movements, modes of learning and public discourse. Among his interests are structures that allow people to accumulate power and those which keep others from getting power, while learning from the ways people come to know, respond to and conceive of themselves within these structures. Rather than seeing art and activism as two exclusive spheres of practice, he approaches them as intertwined, drawing upon the ideas of organizing and cultural theory alike — the theorizing and practices of one informing the other.

This has included investigations into the prison, the demise of welfare state institutions, war and disaster capitalism, documentary practices and political activism as a mode of representation. His primary work of the past eight years is organized under the umbrella of “The Corrections Documentary Project” (www.correctionsproject.com), which centers around the contemporary growth of prisons and their foundational role in today’s economic restructuring and the politics of race.

Hunt’s work has been screened and exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art, the Contemporary Museum in Baltimore, the Martin Luther King Jr. Center in Atlanta, Kunst-Werke Institute for Contemporary Art in Berlin, as well as numerous grassroots and community based venues throughout the U.S. His writings have been published in Rethinking Marxism (‘06), the Journal of Aesthetics and Protest (‘07 & ‘05), Sandbox Magazine (‘02) and at Artwurl.org (‘03–present). He is currently a fellow at the Vera List Center for Art and Politics.


A Fortification of Race
Temporary Public Spaces




16 Beaver Group
16 Beaver Street, 4th / 5th fl.
New York, NY 10004
phone: 212.480.2099

4,5 Bowling Green
R,W Whitehall
2,3 Wall Street
J,M Broad Street
1,9 South Ferry

for directions/subscriptions/info visit:

Posted by jo at 07:03 PM | Comments (0)

March 02, 2007



Myspace as an interactive platform

Tobecontinued is a group exhibition in progress that starts with some students of the Fine Arts Academy of Rome. Using Myspace as an interactive platform, Tobecontinued is based on the concepts of open art-work, cause and/vs effect, and free association of ideas; where the last art-work is always inspired to the previous one, in order to generate an open art-work in continuous evolution that never completes itself...

The process is constituted by the single works as video, animations, photos, music, net projects, and shows details, nuances and ideas of the whole art-work's project. Let's continue, joining with us and sending your art-work (max. 3 mb per email) at tobecontinued.tobecontinued[at]gmail.com" Random

Posted by jo at 11:22 AM | Comments (0)

Email Clock


A networked clock that reads email

Like every person who spends most of his day in front of a computer, Tom Igoe is obsessed by his email. Researcher and Teacher at NYU Interactive Teleccommunications Program (ITP), he can't stop checking his inbox constantly. Unfortunately the evolution of the email programs, that alert the users as soon as a message comes in, is Email Clock feeding this obsession. This is why Igoe decided to invent a device that hopefully will allow him to get rid of the anxiety generated by the email flow. It's called Email Clock, it's a work in progress and consists in an analogic clock that reads email. This Newtworked Sculpture, as its author refers to it, would run at a normal pace when there is no email waiting , but every new kilobyte of email would drive it hyperactively forward. A java application living on an application server would check Tom's email accounts, noting when new data arrived. With each new message, the application would send the number of bytes to a microcontroller attached to the internet. The microcontroller would then move the clock. If this device is going to be successful in allevieting anxiety over the inbox is not certain. However it is a good example of what Physical Computing is, that is an approach to learning how humans communicate through computers that starts by considering how humans express themselves physically. Taking the body as a given, physical computing researchers have to learn how a computer converts the changes in energy given off by our bodies, in the form of heat, light, sound, and so forth, into changing electronic signals that it can read interpret. In this case the computer will hopefully absorb the bad vibes produced by anxiety - The irony that hides behind this idea makes the Email Clock a real Smile Machine." Valentina Culatti, Neural

Posted by jo at 11:14 AM | Comments (0)




NEW THURSDAY CLUB on 8 MARCH with SUE BROADHURST :: Supported by the Goldsmiths DIGITAL STUDIOS and the Goldsmiths GRADUATE SCHOOL :: 6pm until 8pm, Lecture Theatre at Ben Pimlott Building (Ground Floor, right), Goldsmiths, University of London, New Cross, SE14 6NW :: FREE, ALL ARE WELCOME.

DIGITAL PRACTICES: Performance and technology in all its divergent forms is an emergent area of performance practice which reflects a certain being in the world - a Zeitgeist; in short, it provides a reflection of our contemporary world at the beginning of the twenty-first century. In a relatively short period of time there has been an explosion of new technologies that have infiltrated all areas of life and irrevocably altered our lives. Consequences of this technological permeation are both ontological and epistemological, and not without problems as we see our world change from day to day.

Exemplary digital practices are Blue Bloodshot Flowers (2001), featuring an avatar called Jeremiah, Merce Cunningham’s Biped (2000) with its virtual dancers, and Stelarc’s “obsolete body”; in film, the digital innovation and creativity of The Matrix trilogy (1999-2003) and the Star Wars prequels (1999-2005); in sound and new media interactive practices, the digitally manipulated sound of Optik, the “intermedia” of Palindrome, and the “electronic disturbance” of Troika Ranch; and in Bioart, the “recombinant theater” of Critical Arts Ensemble, and the “phenotypical reprogramming” and “functional portraits” of Marta de Menezes.

In my opinion the quintessential features within much of this performance demand a new mode of analysis which foregrounds the inherent tensions between the physical and virtual. These practices, in different ways, emphasize the body and technology in performance and they explode the margins between the physical and virtual and what is seen as dominant traditional art practices and innovative technical experimentation. Therefore, my main premise is the exploration and investigation into the physical/virtual interface so prevalent within the digital.

As a development of my previous theorization on liminality I believe that aesthetic theorization is central to this analysis. However, other approaches are also valid, particularly, those offered by recent research into cognitive neuroscience, particularly in relation to the emergent field of “neuro-esthetics” where the primary objective is to provide “an understanding of the biological basis of aesthetic experience” (Zeki 1999).

SUE BROADHURST is a writer and performance practitioner, Reader in Drama and Technology, and the Head of Drama Studies in the School of Arts, Brunel University, West London. She is author of Liminal Acts: A Critical Overview of Contemporary Performance and Theory, London: Cassell/New York: Continuum, 1999, Digital Practices: Aesthetic and Neuroesthetic Approaches to Performance and Technology (forthcoming, 2007), Performance and Technology: Practices of Virtual Embodiment and Interactivity (Palgrave MacMillan, 2006) together with various articles including ‘Interaction, Reaction and Performance: The Jeremiah Project’, The Drama Review, MIT Press 48, (4): 47-57. Sue is currently working on a series of collaborative practice based research projects entitled, “Intelligence, Interaction, Reaction and Performance,” which involve introducing various interactive digital technologies into live performance including, artificial intelligence, 3D film, modeling and animation, and motion tracking. She is also editor of the on-line journal.

...and the last Thursday Club of this term will be on


International and award winning artists igloo create intermedia artworks, led by Ruth Gibson & Bruno Martelli.

‘In the mid-sixties, Fluxus artists began using the term 'intermedia' to describe work that was ....composed of multiple media. The term highlights the intersection of artistic genres and has gradually emphasized performative work and projects that employ new technologies.’ [Marisa Olson - Rhizome.org]

igloo projects are created with teams of highly skilled practitioners drawn primarily from performance, music, design, architecture, costume, computer science and technology backgrounds. Their work combines film, video, motion capture technology, music and performance with digital technology. The work is developed in a variety of formats and made for distribution across a range of platforms, including gallery installation, internet sites, large and small scale performance and Cd Rom.

THE THURSDAY CLUB is an open forum discussion group for anyone interested in the theories and practices of cross-disciplinarity, interactivity, technologies and philosophies of the state-of-the-art in today’s (and tomorrow’s) cultural landscape(s).

To find Goldsmiths check http://www.goldsmiths.ac.uk/find-us/

Posted by jo at 10:49 AM | Comments (0)

Programmable Media:


Open Platforms for Creativity and Collaboration

See documentation of the event. !! TODAY !! BROADCAST LIVE TO SECOND LIFE. PLEASE JOIN US FOR Programmable Media: Open Platforms for Creativity and Collaboration :: A symposium organized and presented by New Radio and Performing Arts, Inc. / Turbulence.org, hosted by Pace Digital Gallery :: Date: March 2, 2007 :: Time: 10 am to 3:30 pm :: Venue: Multipurpose Room, 1 Pace Plaza, Pace University ::

In July 2004 the not-for-profit media organization New Radio and Performing Arts, Inc. began the networked_performance blog to chronicle observations that internet based creative practice is expanding due to the ready availability of wireless, mobile, and GPS computational devices and the emergence of the programmable web. We observe that artists, designers and researchers working in digitally networked and programmable environments are increasingly making projects that are media platforms, tools and services which are open and contingent upon participation and the contribution of content to realize them.

Programmable Media: Open Platforms for Creativity and Collaboration, hosted by Pace University, will explore two forms of current practice. First, the creation of original software to create tools and services for creative and social use, such as a freely available 3-D drawing tool and musical instrument, or a public commons meta layer conceived as a continuous public space for collaboration. Second, the creation of original work using the tools available within open platforms such as Second Life and MySpace to build community and raise awareness.

PARTICIPANTS: John (Craig) Freeman, Tom Igoe, Cary Peppermint, Amit Pitaru, Michelle Riel, Helen Thorington, and Mushon Zer-Aviv and Dan Phiffer.


10:00 - 10:45 am: Introduction: Social Coding: Tools, Platforms, Systems

Helen Thorington: Turbulence.org's networked_performance blog
Michelle Riel: Siting this Symposium in current practice
Q&A (audience)

10:45 - 11:00 am: Transition

11:00 am - 12.20 pm: Roundtable 1

Mushon Zer-Aviv + Dan Phiffer: The Social Space of the Net: ShiftSpace
Amit Pitaru: Sonic Wire Sculptor
Tom Igoe: Networked Objects: Email Clock & Air Quality Meter & others
Discussion (with moderators)
Q&A (audience)

12.20 - 2:00 pm: lunch break

2:00 - 3:20 pm: Roundtable 2

Cary Peppermint: The Performative Space of the Net
John (Craig) Freeman: Particapatory Installation Art in Second Life
Michelle Riel: Responsive Soft-Biological System
Discussion (with moderators)
Q&A (audience)

Participant Biographies:

John (Craig) Freeman is an artist and educator who uses digital technologies to produce place-based virtual reality and site-specific public art. The virtual reality work is made up of projected interactive environments that lead the audience from global satellite images to immersive, user navigated scenes on the ground. As one explores these virtual spaces, the story of the place unfolds in a montage of nonlinear media. Freeman's work has been exhibited internationally. He has recently introduced it into the 3-D graphical world of Second Life. Freeman is currently an Associate Professor of New Media at Emerson College in Boston.

Tom Igoe teaches courses in physical computing and networking, exploring ways to allow digital technologies to sense and respond to a wider range of human physical expression. Coming from a background in theatre, his work has centered on physical interaction related to live performance and public space. His current research focuses on ecologically sustainable practices in technology development. Along with Dan O'Sullivan, he co-authored the book "Physical Computing: Sensing and Controlling the Physical World with Computers," which has been adopted by numerous digital art and design programs around the world. He is working on another book on networked objects, for O'Reilly Media, due out in 2007. Projects include a series of networked banquet table centerpieces and musical instruments; an email clock; and a series of interactive dioramas, created in collaboration with M.R. Petit. He has consulted for The American Museum of the Moving Image, EAR Studio, Diller + Scofidio Architects, Eos Orchestra, and others. He is a contributor to MAKE magazine and a collaborator on the Arduino open source microcontroller project. He hopes someday to work with monkeys, as well.

Cary Peppermint is a conceptual artist who works with digital technologies and performance art. He is assistant professor of art at Colgate University where he teaches courses in the theory and practice of digital art. Cary is known for his website "Restlessculture.net." which serves as a platform for his ongoing series of networked performances. His latest works engage the concepts of wilderness, space, the American frontier, and environmental ethics and explore how new media technologies both limit and expand our conceptions of nature and the environment, questioning how we live and make art with and in nature. Cary has curated international exhibitions of digitally infused eco-art including, “Technorganic” and “Wilderness Information Network” which both took place in the upper Catskills of New York state. He has been the recipient of numerous awards, including a Franklin Furnace Performance Grant, Experimental Television Workshop Grant, and NYSCA's Decentralization Grant. His work is in the collections of the Walker Art Center, Rhizome.org at the New Museum for Contemporary Art, The Whitney Museum of American Art, and Computer Fine Arts.

Dan Phiffer is a new media hacker from California, interested in exploring cultural dimensions of inexpensive communications networks such as voice telephony and the Internet. Drawing on his computer science background, Dan's software projects seek to provide meaningful creative opportunities through intuitive user interfaces. Dan now lives in Brooklyn, New York and is pursuing a Masters from NYU's Interactive Telecommunications Program.

Amit Pitaru is an artist, designer and researcher of Human Machine Interaction (HCI). Amit cross-palliates his work between a wide range of fields; As an artist, he develops custom-made musical and animation instruments, and has recently exhibited/performed at the London Design Museum, Paris Pompidou Center, Sundance Film festival and ICC Museum in Tokyo. Amit is also a designer with particular interest in Assistive Technologies and Universal Design. He is currently commissioned by the MacArthur Foundation to write a chapter for an upcoming book on his recent work - creating toys and software that are inclusively accessible to people with various disabilities. As an educator, Amit develops curriculums that focus on the coupling of technology and the creative thought process. He regularly teaches at New York University's ITP and Cooper Union's Arts department.

Michelle Riel is associate professor of new media and chair of the Teledramatic Arts and Technology Department at California State University Monterey Bay. Riel collaborates with turbulence.org on the networked_performance blog, documenting and presenting on emerging work that is both networked and live. She is an award winning designer and NEA commissioned net artist. Her current work, antSongs, is a responsive music system collaborating with ants to explore issues of sustainability, community, and globalism.

Helen Thorington is an award winning writer, sound composer and media artist. Thorington is founder and co- director of the independent media organization, New Radio and Performing Arts, Inc., whose projects include the national weekly radio series, New American Radio, Turbulence.org (1996-present), and the networked_performance blog (2004-present). Thorington publishes and presents internationally on these projects. She is currently teaching in the Department of Arts and New Media at Emerson College.

Mushon Zer-Aviv was born in Israel in 1976. He has been involved in and initiated cross-media projects in art, design, comics, animation, online culture and media activism. Co-founder of Shual.com design studio. A teacher at Shekar College of Design & Engineering. An active contributor to Pixelsurgeon.com, Exego.net and Maarav.org.il online magazines. Curated BD4D Tel-Aviv and started Upgrade! Tel-Aviv events, both series aimed at creating and developing the Israeli new-media creative network. Mushon is currently studying at NYU’s Interactive Telecommunication Program.

Posted by jo at 08:00 AM | Comments (0)

March 01, 2007

Solipsis [via iDC]


A Massively Shared Virtual World

Solipsis is a pure peer-to-peer system for a massively shared virtual world. There are no central servers at all: it only relies on end-users' machines. Solipsis is a public virtual territory. The world is initially empty and only users will fill it by creating and running entities. No pre-existing cities, inhabitants nor scenario to respect... Solipsis is open-source, so everybody can enhance the protocols and the algorithms. Moreover, the system architecture clearly separates the different tasks, so that peer-to-peer hackers as well as multimedia geeks can find a good place to have fun here! Current versions of Solipsis give the opportunity to act as pionneers in a pre-cambrian world. You only have a 2D representation of the virtual world and some basic tools devoted to communications and interactions. But it just works, so, come on and enjoy!

Continued from [iDC] Second Life and activism"

Ana Valdez wrote:

I have been reviewing computer games for the largest Swedish newspaper (400.000 copies every day) since 1984, when the computers were Atari, Commodore Amiga, Sinclair, Amstrad. At that time there were some small European companies trying to make themselves a spot, Infogrames, Cocktail Soft, Mindgames, Tati, it was France, Spain, Germany and Sweden who created some small companies. (I am explicitely taking out Japan because Japan is making games for console, Nintendo, etc, but was never a big player in the PC gamesmarket.)

Today the market is almost 100 procent owned by American companies who have bought the European companies. It's one Arabic company in Syria, Akkad media, who makes Under Ashes and Under Siege, the two only Arabic made and Arabic produced computer games.

In Sweden we have only one company, Mindark, producing the online world Project Enthropia, where the players can earn wages in real money, a big changing in the online worlds economy. And the company who makes Battlefield 1942 is Swedish but it produces it's games for the American market and makes games for Warner Brothers and others.

The computer games has evolved in the same way than the film movies, started with some young enthusiastic people making games in the cellars and garages (Myst was produced in a garage, Tetris by a lonely Russian mathematician who didn't earn revenue at all from Tetris, etc) to the big productions of today, where huge studios and hundreds of artists and programmers make the widespread games.

We don't have "indy games" yet, we should.

ps: online worlds, War of Worldcraft, Ultima Online, Everquest, Second Life, are all produced and developed in the US. In Corea Lineage, the highly popular online world, is produced and developed by Corean and American engineers.

Simon Gwendal wrote:

About the initial comment of Ana Valdes (the lack of freedom in current virtual worlds), I think that it emphasizes the little introduction to Virtual Worlds I wrote last year: http://p2pfoundation.net/Introduction

The book of Peter Ludlow give other examples of dictatorial decisions in virtual worlds.

As said in this introduction, the "free and distributed" alternatives to Second Life exist but they haven't succeeded in creating a "buzz" and, without community of players, a virtual world has few interest... We can only hope that people will eventually "understand" that the life proposed by Linden Lab in Second Life does not deserve any contribution because the power is not distributed. I personaly advocate for the Solipsis project (in France), which is now officially granted by the national research agency (from 09/2006 to 09/2008) --> http://solipsis.netofpeers.net

-- Gwendal

Joshua Levy wrote:

Thanks all for your insightful and thankfully skeptical takes on Second Life! While SL should never be intended to replace real life (some people actually criticize it for try to do so) people are finding that it offers us empathic experiences previously only found when people occupy the same physical space.

Scott Kildall hit on what I've been trying to articulate for a while -- that SL "offers re-spatialization of activity and a feeling of presentness... unique experiences that make people laugh and form deeper bonds -- this is where Second Life can excel." This ability to help people have deeper experiences that mimic physical closeness gives us the opportunity to connect in unforeseen ways. The first time I went into SL I had an experience that I think others of have had -- I couldn't stop laughing. I wanted a new shirt and asked the first avatar I found to help me find one, and she did. The naturalness of the interaction, the embodied nature of it, the seeming closeness -- it all felt so weird.

In response to Trebor's question about "inconvenient youth" and whether or not this fantasy world can "fertilize politics" in the real world, Brian Holmes reminds us that art in general often creates fantasies that enable us to "suss out all the connections to or disjunctions from the rest of lived experience." Fantasies have always served a purpose as spaces in which we can look out real life from a distance, or model life as we'd like to live it.

Andreas Schiffler points out the frustrating reality of it all -- SL requires so much bandwidth and CPU as to make it completely impractical for the kind of daylong use we associate with IM. He says that "if we are looking at it as a medium to disseminate information, the shortcomings outweigh the benefits," but I wonder if we aren't misguided to think of it as a "medium to disseminate information," which suggests a mass medium; many users already understand the true value of SL is in the quality of interactions it enables among small groups, not in its ability (or inability) to help people spread a message far and wide.

I've noticed that whenever I try to tell someone about my work in SL their thoughts quickly turn to money. "People are making money there, aren't they?" they always ask. Steven Shaviro extends this capitalistic obsession to networked media and the explosion of "user-generated content." "I fear that the call or incitement to participate, to get involved, to be creative, largely means that we are being asked to be entrepreneurs of ourselves, and thus work ever harder to facilitate our own exploitation." That's assuming that entrepreneurship equals exploitation, of course...

A few people brought up the fact that SL environments are often simulacra of real-world environments. Many of our computer interfaces also suffer from this lack of transcending their origins; it's struck me as strange that, for example, among the tools in Final Cut Pro are a "razor" and "reels." As Josephine Dorado points out, the real fun happens when real life imitates SL. I agree; like Josephine, I too want to fly and wear high-heel boots all the time! (Maybe not all the time...)

But Charlie Gere gets to the point; let's quote him a bit here:

"It would seem to me obvious that trying to make some sense of and find ways of mitigating the violence and unjustice in the complex world and culture we already necessarily inhabit, not least bodily, is far more pressing and considerably more worth defending than any supposed capacity to 'design and inhabit our on worlds and construct our own culture'. This seems to me to be at best a license for mass solipsism and at worse something like the kind of thinking that undergirds much totalitarianism, as well as an evasion of our responsibilities to the world as we find it."

Patrick Lichty is interested in the phenomenology of SL, as am I: the unique experience you get in SL that, while possibly solipsistic, gives us the chance to experience our world from a distance. But take Gere's critique that the real world contains problems far more pressing and dangerous than anything that could be happening in SL. Is there a place for this kind of mass solipsism -- can it connect it us to the pressing issues of our time -- or by laboring over building an island with orcas and moose living in the same space, or worrying about what shirt our avatar is wearing, or bombing a Reebok store and vandalizing John Edwards' SL space, are we evading our responsibility to fix a seriously broken world?

-Josh Levy

Posted by jo at 04:54 PM | Comments (0)




11:00 AM FLUXUS ON THE BEACH :: 800 Lincoln Road, Miami Beach :: come join our FLUXUS parade along Lincoln Road and follow our piano od(d)yssey out to sea. witness Fluxus artists alison knowles and larry miller in performance as they perform a number of piano pieces along the way to the beach in honor of nam june paik - long time Miami Beach resident. An unforgettable experience for all. Be prepared to participate. Bring your bicycles, sport clothing, your kids and friends... It’s free!

2:30 PM FLUX FAIR :: 1300 Biscayne Boulevard, Carnival Center plaza :: Bring your cameras and writing utensils to record the FLUX FAIR at the Carnival Center’s outdoor plaza. Also, bring those old shoes that get no wear anymore, and your musical instruments, we have all else. Be prepared to participate in fluxus booth activities. It’s also free. Bring old shoes to donate and let others wear them, your musical instruments-particularly brass, and your pads and pencils and your cameras to document and share with us.

And don’t forget to attend:

9:30 PM FLUX EVE CONCERT :: 1300 Biscayne Boulevard, Carnival Center - Studio Theater :: This one costs some money ($20) but trust us: it’ll be over the top, with lots of lager-scale surprises. A truly fluxus experience that must not be missed.

gustavo matamoros
artistic director
Posted by jo at 04:48 PM | Comments (0)



Open Session

The next open session in UpStage will take place on Wednesday 7 March at 9:00 pm New Zealand time (local time converter) - everyone is welcome.

If you're thinking about proposing a performance for the 070707 UpStage festival then this is the time to come along and learn a bit more about UpStage, the new features being introduced with UpStage 2, and how to create graphics and devise your cyberformance. The 070707 call for participation is at http://www.upstage.org.nz/news.html.

If you'd like a guest log-in for wednesday's session please email helen@upstage.org.nz; if you want to come and lurk in the audience to get a feel for things, simply point your browser at http://upstage.org.nz:8084/stages/swaray at the appointed time.

A note for dial-up users: we have been testing UpStage 2 on dial-up, and it does work - however it takes a long time for the stage to load. We recommend that you start loading the stage half an hour before the walk-thru to be sure that you are there on time. Once it's loaded, you may experience some lag but it generally functions well.

helen varley jamieson
UpStage project manager

Posted by jo at 04:31 PM | Comments (0)