Final Reading Response

The degree of audience participation seems to be the key distinction between ‘participatory’ and ‘interactive’ art.  Many of the readings for this course, including this one, have included historical timelines of developments in art.  I find these accounts dry and difficult to engage with when reading them.  However I’ve noted the influence of Duchamp again and added the art form of “Happenings” (as a staged situation, bound to a fixed performance time) to my vocabulary.

“The Porcupine and the Car” had an interesting title that didn’t seem to have much to do with content of the article (except the anecdote at the end)…or did I miss something?  I agree with the author that (modern) artists are not necessarily people who draw well, but people who think well – perhaps I don’t think well enough that I found the title a distraction and just a device to prick a potential reader’s initial interest to start reading.  Despite some of my comments through the course this month, the main thing I took from this article and agree with, is that as technology becomes more accessible, the potential for individual creative expression also becomes greater.  So while I have many reservations about potential negative impacts of ‘technology’, I do see this as a positive amongst it all.

Thanks for the course Derek and I hope everyone has a nice summer 🙂 (see even I have been infiltrated by emoticons)

Reading Responses 1 – 4


I did not purchase the course text, and because of this I might have reacted to the prescribed readings somewhat differently from a member of the class with the physical pages. I did however find most all of the content online, and hopefully some of my thoughts will run parallel with the discussion of the blog.


1. Class Discussion, Impressions and Introductions


Speaking in groups about the first reading, what stood out to me most was the thought of experimentation with new forms of technology as creative media, and the slow revelation in which we may observe a technological instrument leading to a definition of purpose towards a project being made. How sometimes it can be somewhat ambiguous what the overwhelming creative action or medium actually was/is when you view it (or try it). Current work that is not exclusively made by a kind of “short trip” hand-to-material process can certainly be more sophisticated and mysterious in origin. Though I suppose persons and people, with their hands, did event each step of what has eventually became digital media or the existence of creative devices. The history of film comes to mind. How we have invented and then learned to use the camera centuries ago, uncovering its’ possibilities, it’s weaknesses, what we might do to actualize our vision or narrative – the creative deliberation that composes Time Based Media as a course, in exploring devices that can aid us to a certain extent, and to which.


2. Micro-lectures, Revised History and Performance


I viewed Peggy Gale’s “micro-lecture” in video format. Who I assume is Peggy herself speaks directly addressing the camera, with a slowly animated background of a shifting crowd, fitting the visual description of the time and people she speaks of.

The concept of titling this thought as a “lecture” strikes me as odd – until I realize that it is actually a history lesson. Not unlike a great deal of the history lessons we receive and will continue to receive as students of “creative education”  – revised with the addition of female content, or in this case, content of greater detail. One of my first days spend in the lecture hall/auditorium at our school, a professor made a note of mentioning that the current volume of the course text was quite good because it actually had a bunch of women in it(paraphrasing).

That being said, I quite enjoyed watching Peggy Gale recant the early days of “suffrage”.  The exact details of this “movement” were not as clear to me until viewing this.  My history of these events were perhaps “revised” by Peggy Gale, erasing the imprint of Canadian “Heritage Moment” shorts about Nellie Mclung “storming the castle”, by performance, but overwhelmingly light-hearted in nature.

I was pleased to hear of the level of aggression in the protest techniques that were used. I also enjoy contrarianism, on a few different levels. There was a clear sense of responsibility that Peggy felt the need to communicate, and made a “spectacle” of herself as she advises, or hopes for.  The format and delivery are intense and not at all unclear, as performance tends to be. Using your own more exclusively as an instrument itself is an incredibly courageous act, and is arguably one of the most emphatic and instantly understandable or reactionary.  It is difficult therefore to not see it as under-rated as a medium for more forceful, grand, “ultimate gesture” type illustrations of an idea, feeling, voice, etc.

The Leslie Hill article also refers to performance by people or things captured, though instead of traditional story telling alone, there is a combination of story telling and videography, exploring things that we know well and also what we do not necessarily know well. Although Leslie challenges the question asking if intimacy breeds obscurity, I don’t believe that really any of the artists discussed would agree with that fully, and neither do I. However I might allow an exception for viewers who choose to remain spectators, in the sense that they actively reject the message attempting delivery.


3. Cracked Barthes, Acting on Imagination and Content


Reading Gill Branston’s cracked Barthes, I found it humorous to read an admittance of inaccessibility in experiencing semiotics, especially after reading countless straight-laced pages of content for Critical Frameworks, the first year course. It is constructed as a code, and made complicated or specific by an exclusive way of speaking, and forms a part of what we discussed to be “art speak”.  Rules of semiotics seem to stimulate mostly by their indirect descriptions of less tangible behaviors. The creation of schools of thought relative to semiotics provides us with tools made of words – encouraging and defining an action of perception. Heck, perception as multiple actions, particular actions that we choose/don’t choose/are/are not native to us specifically for different methods and situations to try to or even automatically absorb something(s). It is useful then, in a sense, to make a big deal out of it.  Whew.

Lev Manovich’s article seems to speak of humans interacting with technology and getting ahead of themselves, before they realize what they’ve been able to accomplish, and then having trouble understanding what “it “ is, or even what they’ve done or are doing. The inter-related image that is unique to particular techniques advanced over time is a poignant comment, especially in terms of the early computer game referenced, “Myst”. My father and brother played this game on our Atari that we had at home, and I remember the sensory experience as being cool toned and strangely vast, slow and quiet, requiring patience and a kind of psychological engagement much different than modern-made “gamer” entertainment.

Is it also not strange that some of the most virtually and technically complex and bizarre industries, say, film, animation and gaming, make and put out such extreme amounts of money? Maybe just animation, as the article seems to clearly define as mostly taking over the former “crafts”.  Ultimately I think that the ability to bring to life anything you could possible imagine, somewhat like the clip of we watched of Frankenstein’s “god”, is both beautiful and disturbing. The most popular form of content that we support in “entertainment” is a bit like having created a monster. The creation of sculpture and installation, however, for me, seems to utilize this belief to a more weighted (and sometimes more compassionate) physical entity.


4. Damned If You Do, Damned If You Don’t


“They [the artists that work with technological systems] have to get somebody as a progenitor so as not to look as though they invent it all by themselves. Makes a better package. But technology: art will be sunk or drowned by technology”, says Marcel Duchamp.

We seem to love the idea of hybridity, in the sense of human becoming machine and vice-versa. Perhaps this is because we view technological composition as immaculate, much like our own bodies, but with less complication due to emotional or hormonal/chemical influences. There is a sense of betrayal that exists in both entities separately, and maybe together they really are “ultimate”.

“If you don’t accept technology, you better go to another place because no place here is safe… no one wants to paint rotten oranges anymore”, says Robert Rauschenberg in 1967.

Down with hands and up with machine instruments. Don’t you know that there are things that can do that for you? Don’t waste your time conditioning your body to achieve things, that’s archaic. One cannot discount the population of individuals who choose to buck this trend, however the pressure to adapt to perpetually growing technological intelligence doth build. When many landmarks devices were invented it seemed prudent to experience and utilize them. However many devices are still being invented as this sentence is read – they root in the intent of early technology – and seem to change mostly in accessibility. This is good and bad. Techniques of “intermedia” employed by people such as John Cage are challenging, and of course, participatory – modern use of sound sight and even touch seem to be increasingly personal and even hedonistic. Intermedia is true “public art” in the leadership shift from maker to viewer, Happenings as being composed of the presence of many individuals and not just one.  This produces an experience, possibly in some way profound – possibly not. Though the possibilities do seem endless.

Reading response 4

From participation to interaction

before art was like a message the producer had the idea or most often the person who hired the painter o sculptor to communicate or glorify a person object. Or make a statement trough building innovation defensive reason or to show the community wealth and power by holding on to the notion “the bigger the better”.

in the last century this slowly shifted to a more interactive program where the audience is integrated into the pieces and or asked to participate, the dialogue chanced and so did the focus on quality of the actual artistic material. so the next thing is criticism and objects to be altered or to be tempered with on random by visitors of the installation.

artist tried and to step away from the term art with their integrated endeavors and success, not to make a statement against art but to emphasize the relation of their pieces and their social dynamics in relation to the audience.Here an artist named John Cage but the label on this phenomenon as “the happening”

Moving away from the movement of the human body alone the term cyborg,cybernetic robot or simply electronic art came into play with its anthropomorphism.Where electronic devices with a  some what human capability to react and interact with external input and stimulation and internal programing to perform actions and task’s. these robots created a modern interesting dialogue between the technological and the natural world.

with the progress of these new art forms sound,image movement w here all tackled and explored and used for the audience to experience.Al this interaction made a huge difference between old and new cinema due to the drastic changes of what life art and installation meant between the old and new, social situation and life are being questioned now the material is being upgraded into a  more automatic scape of modern electronics.where the early innovate art stays behind and automated dialogue takes its place.

reading response 3


as media evolved during the last century like no other before we start noticing different reaction because of the globalization en the conflict with many languages and cultures.

As modern culture believed that that all of these subject where able to be defined, critiqued and studied, Roland Barthes was an early linguist who started to look at the effects of images beside written language. He was not the only one who became aware that “normal” behavior, style, and other social accepted signs and communication. The non verbal sign language that is found in the physical world in every social structure and even outside every on all over the world.

Signs are very important in every facet of human life because it’s the apex of our understanding that sweet spot we automatically look for in any context.Because if we can figure out what the situation tell us we wouldn’t be able to perceive danger or maybe opportunity. Its like how would a farmer know when his patatoe’s are good to be harvested,or by the looks of the facial expression of the actress we can almost read what is going trough her mind these signs are denotative they are not merely objective.But they are telling us a expected reaction linked to the sign in most of the logical cases anyways.Like the actor gave her a rose and the actress started to blush and look at her feet shifting the wait from one foot to the other so to speak now wouldn’t you say that body language sounds shy?

but there are tons of examples how about the black and yellow on a wasp, u know that wasps have a sting and the color way you would recognize right away when u came across one.So here the color means attention just like the fluorescent yellow construction vest. Traffic signs.product labels all these tell you way more than the objective picture,and what did this meant for film and other media well obvious people started to play with these signs and started to use them to communicate their idea’s even more.Emphasizing cultural background and thinking about the surface meaning and the thought behind and context behind it.These codes became a handy tool for artist,media producers/makers and companies trough out the last few centurys but even b

Project #3: Website

Artist Statement

The concept behind this site was focused on the visually response to the scanned film strips whilst keeping it within a simplistic and monochromatic layout, not necessarily a large focus on the interactive notion of the viewer making a decision on the final outcome, but it was created to keep the viewer interested. During the process of making this, I came across many problems (especially in scanning the actual film) but none the less, with trial and error, I am quite satisfied with the result of my site. The film strip itself portrays an explosion, representing the thought process of how an idea is formed. I wanted to somewhat manipulate the viewers response with the story line of the film as it progresses through the different stages. The development of the internet has provided a give and take service, which I wanted to latch onto. What ever thoughts you had when coming to view the site, I aimed to enhance that, takes those thoughts – what ever they may be – and take them on a journey.

Assignment #3

Reading Response: Gill Brandston & Lev Manovich

The article written by Gill Branston was an interesting read about Semiotics and how our communication through language, and various other signifiers have become what it is today. Taking Design, I was relatively unfamiliar with the topics that have been touched in the two texts. It definitely left me with a more open perspective how how I could approach different tasks on how to communicate towards the viewer. Branston talked about Semiotics, explaining how meanings are constructed with the language that we’ve created for ourselves. With the conceptual and physical elements that contribute to the ‘give’ and ‘take’ process of communication, it was so intriguing that even though language has played such a vital part in making a sense of things, there are so many grey areas that leaves it not entirely accurate. It’s already incredibly difficult understand the human psyche, but to pin point the origins of how we describe things and create relations between different cultures is a phenomenon I have yet to comprehend. The section where it talks about colour and its denotations raises the importance of how our visual response  to our surroundings; because of its importance, colour itself has become an important language.

‘What is Digital Cinema?’ communicates the development and history of cinematography, and how its developments have interacted with various medias over the years. This notion of the “interactive narrative” has been a concept that the majority of viewers have been fascinated with. With the growth of technology over that space of time has greatly influenced the trends of cinematography’s ‘identity’. Before, it used to just tell a story, but now just telling a story is not good enough; we see how movies nowadays remove themselves from reality, both narratively and physically (with the introduction to computer generated animations etc. capturing live action film from a camera). Cinematography has that power to communicate a different reality that we can be a part of and enjoy. As much as I appreciate and enjoy the films that were created digitally, I do hope that in the distant future, the art of manual and traditional cinematography is not forgotten.