Australian Forum : The World Is Everything That Is The Case
Schedule for the Australian Forum
Part 1 - 09:00 - 12:00 - Australian Forum Curator Panel
Part 2 - 13:00 - 14:00 - Stephen Jones book launch for his recently published work -Synthetics: Aspects of Art and Technology in Australia, 1956-1975, MIT Press.
Part 3 - 14:00 - 17:00 - Australian Forum Artist Panel
Curator Panel : The World Is Everything That Is The Case 2011 - 2013
Forum Chair: Prof. Sean Cubbit
The Australian forum panel will consist of the curators for ISEA 2011 and some of the organisining committee for ISEA Sydney 2013 . The panel will discuss The World Is Everything That Is The Case (ISEA 2011) in the context of the trans-migratory image leading to the immersion of global art that is networked, presented, archived and experienced elsewhere. The panel will look at the relentless cultural absorption of technologies that are driving the themes leading towards ISEA 2013
The case (suitcase) was explored as a space that embodies (contains?) the transformation of cultural practice under contemporary aesthetic conditions, occurring across states, borders and demarcation zones of continuous production.
Trans-migration of the Image
by Assoc. Prof. Paul Thomas
The paper will look at exploring the boundary of the lived experience  when we contemplate the emerging convergent relationships between arts, technology and science. The paper examines whether the lived experience is eroded and dissolved by becoming a trans-mediated and trans-migratory. The trans-migratory image is leading to a global art that is immersive, networked, presented, archived and experienced elsewhere. Is the basis for meaningful exchange faltering under the deluge of data?
 Henri Lefebvre suggests, ‘Space is conceived as being transformed into a ‘lived experience’ by a social subject. Lefebvre, H. (1994). The Production of Space, Blackwell Publishers.
The Curatorial Case: Curation as CODEC
by Dr. Vince Dziekan
The paper will reflectively analyze the curatorial processes involved in producing 'The World Is Everything That Is The Case' – the Australian representation at ISEA2011. Framed by previous practice-based research involving curatorial design, this case study will discuss how the central curatorial trope of the humble suitcase – explored as a space that embodies the transformation of cultural practice under contemporary aesthetic conditions, occurring across states, borders and demarcation zones of continuous production – was used to "unpack" the tensions that can be brought into existence and amplified between containment and the uncontainable; the sited (situated, in-transit) and unsighted (of a kind associated with the revelation of the deep focus X-ray scan of carry-on luggage). In doing so, this curatorial portmanteau  will be drawn upon to initiate further discussion of how curation operates as a codec that encrypts artworks for transmission and decodes them for playback or presentation.
 The portmanteau was type of bag commonly found in England and other parts of Europe that was extremely popular in the 19th century for travel. By applying a form of metaphor, Lewis Carroll invented the notion of a portmanteau word (a linguistic blend whereby two meanings are packed into one word), in his book Through the Looking Glass.
Contemporary Australian Robotic Art
by Dr Kathy Cleland
This presentation discusses the emergence of a diverse and thriving range of robotic art projects by Australian artists. At the Cultures of Robotics symposium held at the University of Sydney in December 2010 it was evident that there were a growing number of Australian artists working with robotics. Some of these artists had been working in this area for many years and others were just starting to move into robotics as a new area of practice. A number of these robotic projects explored the machinic characteristics of robots but many also mimicked and simulated the characteristics of living organisms and displayed bio-mimetic and anthropomorphic characteristics.
What are the reasons for this burgeoning of robotic artworks by Australian artists? A ‘robotic momentum’ in Australia? DIY robotics? Funding? Institutional support? How does the Australian experience compare with that in other countries. Do Australian artists still need to leave Australia to develop a robotic arts practice? Is there a growing international interest in robots and human-robot relationships?
As well as discussing current Australian robotic projects, some of which are presented in the exhibitionSigns of Life: Robot Incubator at ISEA2011, I will also look forward to possible trends for robotic art in the lead up to ISEA2013 in Sydney.
by Adjunct Prof. Melinda Rackham
Terra Virtualis, an exhibition of virtual art curated by the Australian Centre for Virtual Art (ACVA), peels apart the layering of realities. Firstly, the notion of exploration that the linguistic pun on Terra Australis, positions Australia’s past and future as apart from, yet intimately cojoined to the rest of the world. Secondly, the proliferation of Australian virtual art is critically driven by the relationship of physical location in virtuality and augmented reality, to the expanded concept of site-specificity. Girt by sea, the continent which produced these artworks, is deeply inscribed with the often oppositional layered realities of migration, settler culture and indigenous Australia. Terra Virtualis draws out the physical emaotional and vituual connections between us all.
Electronic Art: Resistance is Futile?
by Prof. Ross Rudesch Harley
Twenty five years ago, electronic art was in its infancy and occupied a marginal position in relation to the mainstream artworld and everyday life. Today it is often argued that electronic art has moved from the margins to become part of the fabric of mainstream culture. According to this line of thinking, resistance to electronic art has proven futile, and it now lies embedded in the heart of global contemporary cultures.
However, for many artists at this bleeding edge, the challenges are as great today as they were at the birth of ISEA. How useful is the discourse of newness and invention, and is it worthwhile pursuing this line any longer? Should we still argue that artists push the limits of new technologies in order to help us imaginatively experience and critically reflect life in the 21st century? How useful is to assert that digital electronic art is a wellspring of innovation and the new norm in everything from publishing to TV, to radio, games, film, fashion, music, architecture, design, applications and gadgets?
For ISEA2013, the urban spaces of Sydney will provide the scene for thinking through some of the contradictions that exist at the intersection of digital life, creative industries, and contemporary electronic art practice.
The Transnational 'Campo'
by Cecelia Cmielewski
Can recently ‘created’ public screen spaces open beyond the contained site to become places of civic engagement - can they generate a transnational ‘campo’?
The hypothesis being tested in the research project, “Large screens and the transnational public sphere”, through a partnership between Australia and South Korea is that interactive realtime artwork networked across nations on large public screens can have a positive impact on how we engage with each other and affect our civic lives.
Large public screens can become opportunities for transnational understanding and interaction between publics in different sites. Public screens can become sites that incubate innovative artistic and communication modes to revitalize public space and public interaction. Networked public screens can also function as a nexus for new forms of cross-cultural exchange.
Artist Panel: The World Is Everything That Is The Case
Special Event Chair: Prof. Ross Harley
The Australian artist forum will discuss The World Is Everything That Is The Case. This panel will explore the work and ideas surrounding the exhibition The World is Everything that is The Case. In this case, the exhibition (assuming the form and conceit of the portmanteauii) explores the migratory nature of artistic practice to act as a global mediation between the aesthetics of trade and the peregrine, wandering routes that lead towards meaning.
The case (suitcase) will be explored as a space that embodies (contains?) the transformation of cultural practice under contemporary aesthetic conditions, occurring across states, borders and demarcation zones of continuous production. The suitcase is self-contained and its consignment compressed ("zipped"). Here curation operates as CODEC. When uncompressed, its contents will manifest the spatial qualitv of the multiple.
The suitcases that provide the containers for the works in the exhibition under consideration can also be thought of as a table where the three card trick draws in the punters, where the winnings get played away on endless trains across the borders of Europe and Asia. The "boite‐en‐ valise" of the importer‐exporter (the artist?), the smuggler (the curator?) and their perpetual innocence (the ‘who-me? look’, and the ready lie). The artist as migrant and the artwork as migratory, are both ready to make their case.
Travelogue: the expressive potential to evolve a computational filmmaker
by Mark Guglielmetti
The project "Travelogue: a recording of minute expressions" explores the expressive processes of film and A-Life for the purpose of co-evolving an A-Life world with an A-Life filmmaker to create a documentary; a documentary of ‘interesting things’. This paper discusses "Travelogue: a recording of minute expressions" with particular focus on the relationship between A-Life and film and the potential to co-evolve an A-Life filmmaker. In this discussion the paper examines the potential to expand both the grammar of film and A-Life to evolve a new visual syntax and to create new logics for transitions and alternative visual/thematic analogies.
Orient and Occident, Ars et Inventio
by Prof. Dr. Nigel Helyer
Orient and Occident; Ars et Inventio examines the cultural stereotypes projected upon the East by centuries of EuroCentric thought and ideologies. The paper will attempt to dis-entangle some of the major prejudices which were developed and supported by European military power during the C19th European colonisation of China by referring to the politics and economics in both the Medieval and comtemporary eras.
Local Colour and Networked Specificity
by Dr. Mitchell Whitelaw
Local Colour deals with the interplay of specificity and generality – the relationship between the local and material, and the abstracted and systematised domain characterized by the network. Digital fabrication – an increasingly powerful and attractive process for artists – is one instance of this interplay. Although fabricated work typically celebrates the material specificity of its outcomes, its process depends on suppressing or abstracting that specificity – treating its materials as neutral and homogeneous. How can digital fabrication be reconceived to address the specificity of its materials? This question is linked to a utopian impulse for a “networked specificity” – a productive articulation of the generality of the network, with the specificity of the local.
by Mark Cypher
Normally propositions stem from human beings who make statements about an outside world. However, the installation Propositions 2.0 is not entirely about humans making things. Rather, this work is based on Bruno Latour's notion of proposition, in which any contact between two or more entities, is actually a kind of intimate trans-action made possible by the way they articulate themselves. The difference between the human only model of proposition and Latour's is that lots of different objects, computers, grains of sand and humans, converge to articulate an event.
In this presentation I discuss an actor-network approach to interactive artworks and take a closer look at how all kinds of entities participate in material, agential, spatial and temporal ways to make an artwork like Propositions 2.0 happen.
Art and the Global Mind
by Karen Casey
When it comes to a country as vast and isolated as Australia artists have long recognized the necessity for creating artworks of manageable and transportable size, with many having arrived or departed our shores together with their work stowed in their luggage. Even now we are mindful of the need for portability. Yet unlike the suitcase format of our predecessors, the digitally mobile artist these days often needs little more than a laptop, a flash drive or URL.
The suitcase is also a personal metaphor for what houses my most valuable asset, my mind. For several years I have been exploring possibilities for generative art using brainwaves. My ongoing ‘Global Mind Project’ combines a purpose-designed EEG animation software and headset interface to transpose real time neural data into digital effects, for screen based and live interactive performance.
by Tina Gonsalves
A Chameleon is a tree-dwelling lizard that has the ability to change color in reaction to social signaling and camouflage. In daily encounters, people automatically and continuously synchronize with the facial expressions, voices, gestures, postures, movements and even physiology of others. Within our own culture, these responses happen in milliseconds and often unconsciously we become Chameleons, blending into the tone of our emotional environment. Scientists call the mimicry of social situations the ‘Chameleon Effect’.
In the 1960’s Psychologist Paul Ekman traveled the world, from the USA to tribes in Papua New Guinea, showing pictures of facial emotion expressions to people. He had set out to establish all the differences in emotion expression but to his surprise, he found more similarities. He concluded that the facial expressions of some emotions are not culturally determined, but universal across human cultures and thus biological in origin. However, cultures do differ considerably in their use of emotional expression and cultural display rules vary about when, where, and how one should express emotions, how these emotions are experienced, the reactions they provoke and the way they are perceived. As the complexity of our society broadens, when communicating, the overlay of cultural display rules can often get ‘lost in translation’, leading to a membrane of disconnects and negotiation. Over this talk I will discuss my development of a cross cultural emotion expression database used in my emotionally interactive work, Chameleon.
Bios of the Participants
Paul Thomas, Associate Professor, is currently Head of Painting at the College of Fine Art, University of New South Wales. Paul chairs numerous international conferences and is the co-chair of the Transdisciplinary Imaging Conference 2010. In 2000 Paul instigated and was the founding Director of the Biennale of Electronic Arts, Perth.
Paul has been working in the area of electronic arts since 1981 when he co-founded the group Media-Space. Media-Space was part of the first global link up with artists connected to ARTEX. From 1981-1986 the group was involved in a number of collaborative exhibitions and was instrumental in the establishment a substantial body of research. Paul’s current research project ‘Nanoessence’ explores the space between life and death at a nano level. The project is part of an ongoing collaboration with the Nanochemistry Research Institute, Curtin University of Technology and SymbioticA at the University of Western Australia. The previous project ‘Midas’ was researching at a nano level the transition phase between skin and gold. Paul has recently completed working on an intelligent architecture public art project for the Curtin Mineral and Chemistry Research Precinct. In 2009 he established Collaborative Research in Art Science and Humanity (CRASH) at Curtin http://crash.curtin.edu.au
Paul is a practicing electronic artist whose work has exhibited internationally and can be seen on his website http://www.visiblespace.com/
Dr. Vince Dziekan is Associate Dean (Education) in the Faculty of Art & Design at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia. In addition, he is affiliated with the Foundation for Art & Creative Technology (FACT) in Liverpool, UK as a FACT Associate and most recently was appointed Digital Media Curator of The Leonardo Electronic Almanac (LEA).
His current research focus concentrates on the impact of digital technologies on curatorial design and the implications of virtuality on exhibition-based practices. This interdisciplinary investigation has been articulated recently in Virtuality and the Art of Exhibition (forthcoming publication, Intellect Books, UK)
He has exhibited widely in solo and group exhibitions in Australia and through his independent curatorial practice. In August 2009, he exhibited his demonstration exhibition, The Ammonite Order, Or Objectiles for an (Un) Natural History at Ormeau Baths Gallery in Belfast, Northern Ireland as part of the ISEA2009 juried exhibition. In 2011, he will be co-curating The World Is Everything That Is The Case – the Australian representation in ISEA2011, Istanbul, Turkey.
He has published in relation to related topics in various peer-reviewed journals and presented at numerous refereed conferences, both nationally and internationally. He is research leader of the Photography & Video Research Cluster at Monash Art & Design, adjunct programme advisor for FACT Atelier (FACT, Liverpool) and member of the international advisory committee of ReWire 2011 (MediaArtHistories conference, Liverpool) and the Virtual NGV steering committee (National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne). He has been involved in collaborative research in association with Z-Node (ZHdK, Zurich University of the Arts), Media Arts Scoping Study (MASS) and the Omnium Research Group (University of New South Wales, Sydney). During 2008, he was a Visiting Research Fellow with the Slade School of Fine Art (University College London). In 2009, he was awarded a British Council Design Researcher Award.
Dr. Melinda Rackham has engaged with sculptural, distributed, emergent and responsive media artforms as an artist, curator and cultural producer for twenty-five years. She has participatied in the major international media art exhibitions and festivals either as an exhibiting Artist, a Conference speaker, or as a Jury member.
In 2002 Melinda established ‐empyre‐, one of the worlds leading online critical media art theory forums, and was the first Curator of Networked Media at the Australian Centre for Moving Image. As Director of Australian Network for Art and Technology from 2005 till 2009 Melinda forged significant industry partnerships, and elevated public engagement and critique of practices in art, science and new technologies. Currently Partner Curator at RiAus and Adjunct Professor at RMIT University, Dr. Rackham’s focus is curating and writing on the emerging art and cultures manifest across networked, responsive, and biological practices and their impact on our everyday lives.
Dr Kathy Cleland is an Australian-based curator, writer and researcher specialising in new media art and digital culture. She is Director of the Digital Cultures Program at The University of Sydney, an innovative cross-disciplinary program that critically investigates the social and cultural impacts of new digital media technologies. Her curatorial projects include the Cyber Cultures exhibition series which toured to over 20 venues in Australia and New Zealand (2000–2003), the Mirror States exhibition (2008) at MIC Toi Rerehiko, Auckland, NZ and Campbelltown Arts Centre, Sydney, and Face to Face: portraiture in a digital age for d/Lux/MediaArts, a digital portraiture exhibition currently touring Australia and Asia (2008-2011). Kathy is a founding member the Robot Cultures research initiative set up by the Digital Cultures Program and the Centre for Social Robotics Centre at the University of Sydney (www.robotcultures.org). She is on the Organising Committee and is Chair of the Curatorial Committee for ISEA2013 in Sydney.
Ross Rudesch Harley
Professor Ross Rudesch Harley is an artist, writer, and educator in the field of new media and popular culture. His work crosses the bounds of media art practice, cinema, music, design, and architecture. Ross is Professor and Head of the School of Media Arts, College of Fine Arts at the University of New South Wales, Sydney. He was Director of TISEA in 1992, and is Chair of the ISEA2013 Symposium Committee.
Cecelia Cmielewski is Partner Investigator on the Australian Research Council Linkage Project, Large Screens and the Transnational Public Sphere.
Cecelia has made significant contributions to the strategic development and capacity building of the Australian creative sector, particularly through her involvement in policy research and analysis, for the Australia Council for the Arts, Arts in a Multicultural Australia policies. She has worked closely with the academic community to further an actively informed and engaged arts sector, providing research and delivery for the Australia Council on a number of international conferences, including Empires Ruins +Networks (2004) at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image in Melbourne and Globalisation + Art + Cultural Difference (2002) at Artspace in Sydney, with Scott McQuire and Nikos Papastergiadis, and in collaboration with the British Council: Making Creative Cities: The Value of Cultural Diversity in the Arts (2008).
Mark Guglielmetti investigates the formations of cultural identity and subjective experience. He uses various media to explore these and related issues; electronic, digital and biological. His work has been exhibited nationally and internationally including the Melbourne International Film Festival 2001, Biennial of Electronic Arts Perth (BEAP) 2004, Ars Electronica 2004, and showcased at the Architectural Biennial in Beijing 2004 and in “Australian Screen Culture”, at the Barbican in London 2004 and Centre Pompidou in 2003.
Recent works and exhibitions include Intractable (2010) in the InsideOut Exhibition, Object Gallery, Sydney and DMU Cube Gallery Leicester, England; Documentary nShape (2009) at Guilford Lane Gallery in Melbourne; and Laboratories of thought… (2007) Trocadero ArtSpace, Footscray.
Guglielmetti has recently been beavering away researching the relationship between cinema and artificial life in an attempt to co-evolve an artificial life filmmaker with an artificial life world.
Nigel Helyer (a.k.a. DrSonique) is an independent sculptor and sound-artist. He is the director of a small multi-disciplinary team “Sonic Objects; Sonic Architecture” with an international reputation for large scale sound-sculpture installations, environmental public artworks, museum inter-actives and new media projects.
His practice is strongly interdisciplinary, linking a broad platform of creative practice with scientific Research and Development in both Academic and Industrial contexts, and he maintains an active interest in critical and theoretical debates.
His activities include; the development of a powerful vir tual audio reality mapping system, “Sonic Landscapes” in collaboration with Lake Technology (now Dolby Australia) and he is the Artistic Director of the AudioNomad Research Group developing location sensitive environmental audio at the School of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of New South Wales.
Nigel is an honorary faculty member in Architectural Acoustics at the University of Sydney and is a Professorial Visiting Fellow at the school of Computer Science and Engineering at UNSW and has held positions as Visiting Professor at Stanford University, the Art Institute of Chicago and La Esmeralda at CENART Mexico DF. He has been awarded the Artist in Residence at the Paul Scherrer Institut in Switzerland; the Tropical Marine Science Institute of the National University of Singapore and recently the Radiophonic Fellowship for ABC Radio.
Nigel maintains active links with The Exploratorium Museum in San Francisco, and the SymbioticA biotechnology lab at the University of Western Australia.
Nigel is a cofounder and commissioner of the SoundCulture organisation; was a fellow of the Australia Council for 2002/3; the winner of the Helen Lempriere National Sculpture Award 2002 and curator of Sonic Differences part of the Biennale of Electronic Arts Perth 2004. He has recently completed the Wireless House, project, a major commission for the City of Sydney and GhosTrain_02 an architectural sound intervention forThe Performance Space at CarriageWorks.
He is currently undertaking commissions for a solar powered digital audio sculpture for Macquarie University, a kinetic sound sculpture for Geraldton City, WA
Mitchell Whitelaw is an academic, writer and artist with interests in new media art and culture, especially generative systems and data-aesthetics. His writing has appeared in journals including Leonardo, Digital Creativity, Fibreculture, and Senses and Society. In 2004 his work on a-life art was published in the book Metacreation: Art and Artificial Life (MIT Press, 2004).
His artwork has been exhibited at venues including Electrofringe, Object gallery, CraftACT, Guildford Lane Gallery and Canberra Contemporary Artspace, and will be included in the 2011 generative artist's book project Written Images. His work on visualising cultural collections has been supported by the National Archives of Australia and the National Museum of Australia.
His current work spans generative art and design, digital materiality and data visualisation. He is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Arts and Design at the University of Canberra, where he leads the Master of Digital Design.
Mark Cypher is a new media artist and Academic Chair of Digital Media at Murdoch University, Perth, Western Australia. His practice reflects an ongoing engagement with the practice and discourse of interactivity particularly in relation to actor-network theory. His artwork has featured in several international exhibitions including, 404 International Festival of Electronic Arts (Argentina), Salon International De Art Digital (Cuba), Siggraph 2006 (USA), FILE - Festival Internacional de Linguagem Eletrônica ( Brazil), NewForms06 (Canada), BEAP -Biennial of Electronic Art (Australia), Haptic 07 (Canada), Bios4, Centro Andaluz de Arte Contemporáneo (Spain) and Electrofringe (Australia).
Karen Casey is an interdisciplinary artist who employs a combination of traditional and new media in exploring intersections between the arts, science and society.
She has experimented and worked with various analogue and digital media technologies since 1990, while maintaining her practice as a painter, printmaker and public artist. Karen exhibited in numerous curatorial and overseas touring exhibitions from the mid 1980’s and is widely represented in National galleries and public collections in Australia and internationally. She has been awarded several significant public art commissions and was appointed as Artist-in-Residence for the City of Melbourne, Urban Design Branch 2003-04.
Following research undertaken in 2004 at the Brain Sciences Institute, Swinburne University of Technology, Karen initiated ‘Art of Mind’ and the collaborative development of an interactive interface to generate audiovisual effects from brainwaves. In 2010 she launched Global Mind Project, with a live ‘neuro-art’ performance event ‘Spectacle of the Mind’ at Federation Square Melbourne, as a continuation of her ongoing investigation into creativity and cognition.
Tina Gonsalves is currently working with world-leaders in psychology, neuroscience and emotion computing in order to research and produce emotionally interinteractive installations. She is currently honorary artist in resident at the Institute of Neurology at UCL in London, Max Planke Institute in Leipzig and artist in resident at Nokia Research Labs, Finland as part of the Australia Council Connections Residency.
Formal Education and Study:
1990-1994 Degree in Honors, Swinburne School of Design, Swinburne University, Melbourne, AUSTRALIA
2000-2005 Masters in Art and Interactive Media, “Externalizing the Internal” Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology University, Melbourne, AUST
2005-2010 Phd, Creativity and Cognition Studio, University of Sydney, AUST
Selected Group and Solo Exhibitions/screenings :
Superhuman, RMIT Gallery Nov 2009; Tina Gonsalves, Chameleon, Fabrica, Brighton, UK Oct 2009; Darwin and Emotions, Natural History Museum, London, June 2009; Le Cube, Paris, April 2009; Royal Society London, April 2009; Tina Gonsalves: Chameleon, Lighthouse, UK 2009, Tina Gonsalves: Chameleon, Dana Center, Science Museum 2009 (event)Tina Gonsalves: Chameleon, UCL Hospital, UK 2008 Tina Gonsalves: Chameleon, ICA, UK 2008, Tina Gonsalves: Feel_Melancholia 2007, Pompidou Center 07, Adelaide Festival 06, GAS NYC 2006, Michigan University 2006, Siggraph, Los Angeles, USA 2005,
Selected Awards: 2010: Arts and Ideas Comission, UK; Inter Arts Residency 2009: Inter Arts New Work Grant, Australia Council; Lighthouse
Commission, Brighton, UK; Fabrica Commission, Brighton UK; Creative Connections Residency, Australia Arts Council; Artist in Residence at Nokia Research Labs, Finland; Arts Council England Grant for the Arts 2008 Awards: Wellcome Trust Large Art Award UK; Visiting Artist, Affective Computing, MIT Media Lab, USA; Australian Network for Art and Technology Synapse Residency Grant,