Live Stage: Interaction, Interactivity, Interactive Art [at Linz]

Interaction, Interactivity, Interactive Art – A buzzword of new media under scrutiny :: September 4, 2008 :: Part of Ars Electronica – A New Cultural Economy, Linz, Austria :: Organized by Ludwig Boltzmann Institute Media.Art.Research.

Interaction: The relation between two or more relatively independent things or systems of change which advance, hinder, limit, or otherwise affect one another – (Dictionary of Philosophy and Psychology, 1901) Interactivity has become virtually a magic word for the promotion of new media and the media arts alike. The term refers not only to a certain technology, it also stands for social concepts and visions ranging from grassroots democracy all the way to consumer freedom. This imbues the term with its broad-ranging impact, but also contributes to its dilution.

This conference invites experts from different disciplines to examine the origins and applications of the various concepts of interactivity. It questions the extent to which interactivity should be considered a fundamental concept in the social and technological, cultural and artistic context, or as an outdated buzzword, useful only for the self-promotion of the different fields.

The idea is to contextualize the notions of interaction, interactivity and interactive art from a multidisciplinary perspective, including, sociology, information theory, interface design, game studies, art history and media art history. Whereas interaction originally described the reciprocity of influences, e. g. in biological systems, the concept was already applied to social interaction at the beginning of the 20th century. Around the 1950s, cybernetics employed the notion for a comparison of social, technological and physiological feedback processes. With the rise of digital technology, interactivity became a key paradigm of human-computer relations and interface design. At the same time, the importance of social interaction and active participation was emphasized within post-war society and the arts alike. In the framework of a thorough investigation of the often diverging concepts of interaction and interactivity stemming from these developments, the conference further invites a comparison and discussion of the heterogeneous interactive strategies of analogue and digital arts.

From Virtualities to Embodiment – Interaction Models in Media Art by Christiane Paul
I mistrust audience participation – Thoughts on Participation Art by Lars Blunck
Terms of Engagement: Interactivity in Visual Art Practices by Suzanne Lacy
Interaction and Interactivity – The perspective of communication sciences by Christoph Neuberger
Control and Freedom: Interactivity and Invasion by Wendy Hui Kyong Chun
Designing Interaction by Gillian Crampton Smith
Understanding Gameplay by Noah Wardrip-Fruin
From Surface to Interface – Neue Formen der Nutzerkunst by Peter Weibel
Interactive Art meets Biology by Arjen Mulder

Jul 24, 2008
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