October 17, 2014
Networked Bodies: Digital Performance Weekender | Watermans 7-9 November

watermans

I’m pleased to announce that I will be exhibiting three works as part of Networked Bodies: Digital Performance Weekender at Watermans from the 7th to 9th of November. One of the works, The Distinction Between Here and There, Now and Then will be a gallery premiere and another A network of people who attended an exhibition and contributed to the creation of this work will be exhibited and open to participation for the last time.

The event which is all at once an exhibition, performances and symposium has an interesting line-up. If your in London try to pop along over the course of the weekend, I hope to be there Friday and Saturday so say hello.

The following is the event statement:

Networks are at the heart of how we live today. Networks generate transnational zones of action, bring together communities, circulate knowledge and information, expand spheres of influence, contaminate ideas, germinate exchanges, foster innovation, and facilitate distribution of power. However, networks are unfairly distributed and closely monitored. Geopolitical injustices and dominant political and economic forces mean that networks can foster segregation, facilitate hyper-centralized forms of citizen surveillance and control, fragment living space and experience. These developments of the network society generate social tensions, which invest the task of understanding networks in their many manifestations –including cultural ones– with social and political urgency.

Networks, despite many past promises of disembodiment and internationalism through the obsolescence of both bodies and geographical boundaries – promises now widely perceived themselves as obsolete – are still experienced by subjects that remain both embodied and geographically situated (Cohen, 2012: 11) As Cohen argues, not only are networks firmly connected to material bodies and physical geographies, but they also play “an increasingly significant role in constructing embodied experience” (ibid), by both empowering and configuring the “networked self” (ibid: 12).

In Networked Bodies at Watermans we want to explore networked performance practices with a view to considering how they transform live (embodied, disembodied and trans-bodied) performance practices. We are keen to consider the many, increasingly well documented, exciting possibilities these present to live performance, as well as their potential downsides. Speaking for the devil (so to speak), we ask: do these practices raise any ethical concerns through the use of surveillance and control, fragmentation of space and experience, alienation or even exploitation of their participants? Networked Bodies will aim to look beyond shiny appearances and into the –occasionally dirty– folds of the networks (and the bodies).

Curated by Maria Chatzichristodoulou (aka Maria X) and Irini Papadimitriou, the full programme for the event is available online here.

Posted by: Garrett @ 2:02 pm
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August 12, 2014
Colony 14

colony-14-poster

I’m showing some new work, called A network of people who attended an exhibition and contributed to the creation of this work, as part of Out of Office which is being exhibited at the Colony 14 Festival taking place across four venues in Cardigan, Wales.

The festival runs from the 20th of August until the 1st of September (daily 11am-3pm, 11am-7pm on the 22nd and 23rd of August) and is showing over 50 artists through installation, drawing, lens-based, time-based sculpture, painting, film, sculpture, performance, workshops, talks (and of course new media).

For a complete program of events see the webpage here. For details on how to get to Cardigan see the webpage here.

Posted by: Garrett @ 12:51 pm
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April 27, 2014
Please Switch On Your Mobile Phones

Tonight I attended what was listed as a Public Beta 1 of a network controlled performance titled Please Switch On Your Mobile Phones at the Sherman Theatre in Cardiff. Below is a quick run through of what happened.

The audience arrived in the theatre and were immediately asked to contribute a short memory to the performance from their mobile phones. This was done through a website on a local area wifi network. Once submitted you saw the message displayed below:

mobile-phones-1

And then waited patiently for your message to appear on screen (as seen below) behind the dancers who were warming up/rehersing in the space.

mobile-phones-2

Five memories were then chosen and each one assigned to a group of dancers who were colour coded as red, green, blue, yellow and orange. Below is the memory for the yellow group.

mobile-phones-3

Each message was then ‘transcoded’ into a series of movements based on the number of characters in each word. Below are the ‘transcoded’ movements for the yellow group. At this stage many in the audience started to have technical difficulties (you were instructed to raise your hand if this was the case), become impatient with what was happening and started to wander in and out to the toilets and bar.

mobile-phones-4

Next the audience were asked to pick a pictogram for each group of dancers. From here on I began to not understand the link between what we the audience were doing, specifically choosing the pictograms, and how it/they related to the what the dancers were doing.

mobile-phones-5

The choosing of the pictograms, three times per colour group, amounted to a voting contest and a bar graph of the results were shown on screen (seen below).

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Finally all chosen pictograms were shown.

mobile-phones-7

Throughout all of this the website on your mobile phone kept redirecting you to the interacts you were being asked to perform or showed you the choreography chosen for the dancers. Below is shown a menu for all the colour groups which when accessed showed each groups choreography.

mobile-phones-8

And then there were some Kinects in the space that were being used to capture video and projected as an effect (seen below). The audience were now redirected on the website to controls for audio, video etc. which they could control for a set period of time. This however had many technical difficulties with many unable to access it in their limed time slot.

mobile-phones-9

I attended this with I guess too many expectations, knowing full well what can be done with technologies in this context, however that was’nt the issue. I knew the whole event was a test, an experiment, and I was quite happy for it to be rough around the edges but instead it was very disjointed. The ‘transcoding’ of memories to movement was simple, clever, and could have been evolved further. The audience seemed most happy with this part of the performance as they were able to see their memories on screen so they had visible evidence of contributing to the event. Everything about the pictograms was confused; What did the pictograms mean? How did they relate to the memories or were they a completely different idea? What were dancers doing as a response to the pictograms? Was a voting system enough to give audience members a sense of actually contributing? The idea of controlling the environment e.g. the audio, video etc. had lots of potential but the way this control was provided, a time-share of sorts, which was hindered by lots of technical difficulties meant that most audience members seemed to give up.

All of this took over an hour and a half before finally there was a short performance of the choreography score created by the audience. I came away disappointed, disappointed at not understanding how I was contributing in many parts of the performance and disappointed that it took such a long time to score the work for what was then quite short.

Posted by: Garrett @ 1:13 am
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April 24, 2014
Out of Office

out-of-office

If you’re in Cardiff before the 30th of April, it’s worth going along to see Matthew Britton’s curatorial project Out of Office at Arcade Cardiff:

Out of Office is a micro curatorial platform that utilises the auto-reply feature that is present on most email accounts as a method of distributing art. I wish to suggest an even more intimate way of distributing and viewing online works, one which is primarily in the comfort of your own mailbox.

In order to view the work you need only send an email to the assigned email address and wait for the auto reply.

The project features works by: Matthew Britton, Emilie Gervais, Constant Dullaart, Kim Asendorf, Jonas Lund, Sebastian Schmieg, Matthew Williamson, Johannes P Osterhoff, Naomi Heath, Shia LaBeouf, Nastja Säde Rönkkö, Luke Turner, Winnie Soon and Susan Scarlata. If you’re nowhere near Cardiff the works can also be accessed directly from the project website.

Posted by: Garrett @ 5:24 pm
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March 26, 2014
Netscapes exhibited as part of A-EYE

a-eye

Netscapes will be exhibited within the exhibition A-EYE: An exhibition of art and nature­-inspired computation as part of the Artificial Intelligence and the Simulation of Behaviour (AISB) 50th annual convention at Goldsmiths, University of London from the 01-04/04/14. Full details below.

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A-EYE:
An exhibition of art and nature­-inspired computation

This art exhibition is organised as part of a convention (AISB50) commemorating both 50 years since the founding of the society for the study of Artificial Intelligence and the Simulation of Behaviour (the AISB) and sixty years since the death of Alan Turing, founding father of both Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence, will be held at Goldsmiths, University of London, UK from the 1st to the 4th April 2014.

The exhibition is the first of its kind at the AISB convention and it incorporates various aspects of generating artworks using various artificial intelligence techniques (swarm intelligence, evolutionary algorithms, artificial neural networks, multi-­agent systems, artificial life and any other algorithm) or method that derives from the natural world.

Exhibition Date:
1-4 April 2014

Private View:
Monday 31st March, 17:00-20:00
Harold Cohen will give the opening speech in the exhibition venue.

Venue:
Goldsmiths, University of London
New Academic Building

Posted by: Garrett @ 12:37 pm
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