Tuesday, March 18, 2003

Art and new technologies

Via SmartMobs: the first graduate level art course explicitly on Wireless Art, or using WiFi as an artistic medium. According to the instructor, Yuri Gitman, "This class leads students through a series of projects and lectures aimed at pushing the boundaries of both art and wireless technology by using WiFi for purely artistic and expressive ends. I'm the instructor and also an artist-in-resident at Eyebeam(.org), a leading art and technology organization in NYC. I was responsible for the Noderunner game, which was posted at smartmobs.com a few months back. In any case, the class website is updated often, as it's a blog, and will host links to the projects we create."

It will be interesting to see if these art projects serve as social and technological critique. I still maintain that interactive textiles are the closest we've come to creating truly wearable computers, and I suspect that these technologies emerge, at least partly, in resistance to the limitations of (soft) people wearing (hard) machines. This makes me wonder what a critical wireless art project would look like? What would it feel and sound like? How would it resist itself? Or would it fully submit?

This also reminds me of some amazing projects by the folks at FoAM, and Sponge: "Sitting at the nexus of several areas of socio-cultural work including investigative art, speculative design, techno-scientific research and critical public discourse, Sponge was founded on the idea that both art and its conceptualization must be immanent in everyday economy." Very cool.

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