[NetBehaviour] PERFORMING PLACES: media and embodiment in the urban environment.

info info at furtherfield.org
Mon Oct 16 20:10:10 CEST 2006

PERFORMING PLACES: media and embodiment in the urban environment.
Helsinki, November 7-9, 2006

Seminar theme

The Performing places seminar will bring together researchers, artists 
and developers whose work touches on the experiential, affective and 
political aspects of urban and technological life, and who share an 
interest in inventive artistic and technical practices of the urban 
environment. The seminar addresses the current urban situation, where 
lived environments are undergoing major experiential and social changes, 
driven mainly by technical and economic pressures. Our aim is to create 
a forum for critical, transdisciplinary exchange by bringing to 
resonance a set of relevant themes:

1. Urban space, in its current versions, blends embodied and mediated 
forms, orchestrating everyday actions to an invisible score of signals 
and software. With ubiquitous computing, devices pervade our physical 
environments to trace and modulate behaviour, enabling new modes of 
service, surveillance and intervention.

2. Cities are increasingly shaped by the formation of 'creative 
clusters', according to innovation strategies which target an evolving 
experience industry and seek global competitiveness for a particular 
region or place. These strategies typically neglect embodied, affective 
or everyday aspects of the production of space - even if they often 
include programmes to advance citizen participation and social inclusion.

3. Artists and media developers have the possibility of addressing urban 
space in ways that prioritize its experiential, social and political 
contexts. Strategies of site-specific, community and performance art are 
complemented by the activity of media artists and designers, producing 
interventions and applications that can capture the collective 
dimensions of our experience and render them palpable.

4. Recent theories in human geography and the cultural study of 
technology highlight the affective and relational qualities of the 
urban/technological environment. In their focus on the performative and 
collective aspects of use and production, these theories challenge 
dominant views of representation and innovation, proposing more 
event-based and mobile accounts of inventive agency.


The seminar invites participation from all relevant disciplines, 
especially from practitioners and researchers in

*media, performance and urban arts
*IT design and and urban planning
*urban and media studies.

The aim is to build conceptual links and exchanges between disciplines, 
in order to produce a critical framework with real relevance for urban 
practice, research and policy. For this reason the seminar will take the 
form of parallel workshops, with short presentations and a collaborative 
development of issues. Project demonstrations are warmly encouraged - 
but the main objective is to move beyond presentation and arrive at a 
problematization of practices. Of special interest are contributions 
discussing, for example:

*Performativity and performance - embodied, affective and 
non-representational practices in media, arts and sociality;
*Ubiquitous interaction - collective, participatory agency in urban 
*Affected places - art and media interventions in the physical and 
virtual environment;
*Urban media experience - audiovisual, mobile and network media in the 
production, consumption and experience of places;
*In/visibility - techniques and practices of representing and making 
visible, from infrastructures to surveillance to performance;
*Critical urban practice - critical artistic and technical practice in 
the urban sphere; perspectives on production, coding, design, planning 
and development.

How to participate

Submissions should include 1) Title, 2) Keywords 3) 500-word abstract 4) 
Selected bibliography and 5) 200 word cv of presenter.

They should be sent by October 6, 2006 to informer[at]m-cult.org as pdf 
or rtf attachments.

Notification of acceptance is October 12 and full papers due October 31, 

For further information, contact Minna Tarkka: minna tarkka [at] m-cult 
[dot] org

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