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NEW-MEDIA-CURATING  February 2013

NEW-MEDIA-CURATING February 2013

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Subject:

mapping the Fields

From:

Armin Medosch <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Armin Medosch <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Fri, 22 Feb 2013 08:38:30 +0100

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text/plain

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Dear All,

I think it is not possible to curate the net anymore. It would have to 
be treated as one giant ready-made, but where to start and where to end? 
I think some of the first wave of net artists such as Vuk Cosic, Alexei 
Shulgin and Olga Lialina did treat the net as a ready-made. This was 
possible in 1995 or 1996, but not now. There will come a time when the 
net will become obsolete. Then it will suddenly become terribly 
interesting again. Just like in the late 1960s, when the arrival of 
video triggered a new wave of interest in film as an experimental medium.

We live in an unprecedented era of historical change. The web was/is 
part of an assemblage of ideologies and empirical realities that can be 
summarised under terms such as neo-liberal information societies. Since 
2008 it is clear that this very system is in crisis. In the past, 
financial crises have hit the so called peripheries hard, Asia in 1997, 
Brasil, Russia, in 1998, Argentine in 2001. Now the former West is in 
the eye of the hurricaine. This is not just about a short dip in the 
GNP, it is a major transitional crisis, a crisis of the world system and 
of a specific developmental model in which those digital technologies 
which we all so love ;-) have played a particular role.

It has become increasingly clear that digitech is part of the problem, 
rather than the solution (or maybe both). Is it justifiable that data 
warehouses be built which have the enetrgy consumption of a medium sized 
town just so that bored teenies can remix manga (sorry for the exmaple 
it could be anything) so that salaried academics theorise this as the 
latest fad of remix-society's empowerment?

This is where the Fields project comes in which I have initiated 
together with Rasa Smite and Raitis Smits of RIXC, Riga. I am posting an 
early call for participation below.

I have also written a longer text which gives a bit more background:
http://www.thenextlayer.org/node/1459

The gist of the argument is that there is no single term anymore that 
can serve as an umbrella term for those practices, neither digital art 
nor media art. We also cannot settle to live comfortably in a post-media 
condition if this implies the stagnation so characteristic for anything 
post- (remember, after postmodernism cxame a phase of hyperactivity, of 
hyper-modernism, just look at the Shard). We need to move beyond this 
situation and not just invent a new aesthetics but new forms of living, 
of co-operation, of exchange. Technologies will play a role in this, but 
not such a privileged anymore. The vantage point of media as THE key 
viewpoint from where to conceptualise change has outlived its 
usefulness. Something new has to come into existence, and this will grow 
from a multiplicity of interconnected fields.

This is why we are posting such an early call. We are not just making an 
exhibition, but starting a conversation. So if you do want to 
participate in this experiment, please respond to the call below (and 
not to my email address). This is not just for artists but you can also 
respond as a curator, theorist, activist: put yourself on the map


FIELDS

Call for Participation

Fields starts from the assumption that the changing role of art in 
society is one where it becomes a critical interloper in patterns of 
social, scientific, and technological transformations. The range of 
practices which were once subsumed under terms such as media art, 
digital art, art and technology, art and science, have experienced such 
growth and diversification that no single term can work as a signpost 
any more. Fields is about mapping those expanded fields of artistic 
practices which are contextual seedbeds for ideas and practices aiming 
at overcoming the crisis of the present, inventing new avenues for 
future developments by bringing together traditionally separated 
domains. Fields is about new ecological and transversal trends in art, 
outlining potential future trajectories for multifarious types of 
activities that merge politics, technology, ecology, gender, semiology.

Which Fields act as catalysts and underpin those artistic practices 
which offer the greatest potential for social change towards more 
imaginative and sustainable ways of living? Which pre-cursors in the 
last 30-40 years did exist and what can we learn from those often untold 
stories? Areas that we will be looking at include but are not restricted to

* real fields, fields as in agricultural fields, works relating to 
fields, food growing, water, seeds, plant ecologies and communications; 
eco-activism, agro-socio-political projects
* field as metaphor, semiotic field theories and meta-field theories; 
work as decoding and recoding of cultural patterns of social use of images;
* electromagnetic fields: and their experimental epistomologies (quantum 
field theory); notion of relational field (Burnham 1968); the 
epistemological implications of quantum theory in art
* gendered fields, field as a psychological relation, psychological and 
psycho-analytical field theories
* field theories of perception
* social field theories, theories of masses and of emotional 
'contagion'; relational field theories, notion of culture as a 
relational field

If you have an art or artistic-research project that fits one of those 
categories or where you feel that it extends this concept, please send a 
short description to: [log in to unmask]

This is a first round call, the deadline is 31st of May, 2013.

In 2013 we aim at organising a number of workshops and event, beginning 
with Transmediale 2013, where the initial matrix of Fields gets jointly 
developed. This work is a step to the launch of the final exhibition 
Fields from May 15 to August 03 as part of Riga Culture Capital 2014, at 
Arsenals Exhibition Hall of National Art Museum in Riga. Fields is 
co-curated by Armin Medosch, Rasa Smite and Raitis Smits, and will get 
produced by RIXC in collaboration with a growing number of networks and 
partners.

regards
Armin


..............

Art, Technology and Social Change
http://www.thenextlayer.org/

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