Abstract for course Research Paper

2 12 2009


Can the deconstruction of space, both as a computer interface and the spaces occupied by diaspora communities, bridge theories of digital aesthetics and transnationalism?


The emergence of new digital technologies alongside the increasing phenomena of cultural diaspora is reinventing seemingly disparate definitions of space. This paper proposes connections between digital and transnational art and exposes a need for further research combining these two lenses in regards to the analysis of space. The theoretical framework for this study will involve a comparison and deconstruction of spatial concepts from digital media theorist Lev Manovich and cultural theorist Homi K. Bhaba.  In his seminal text “The Language of New Media”, Manovich locates and defines the new digital aesthetic of ‘spatial wandering’ in regards to the advent of Human Computer Interfaces (HCIs). Although thorough on many levels, Manovich’s theories can be critiqued as ignoring current transnational realities. Bhaba’s interpretations of a ‘Third Space’ in “How Newness Enters the World: Postmodern Space, postcolonial times and the trials of cultural translation” represent a transnational analysis of space that addresses the complexities of identity and culture but could benefit from Manovich’s digital perspective. What is the relevance, if any, of transnational identity when analysing digital spaces such as HCIs? How is the digital aesthetic relevant to transnational concepts? What connections can be found between these two fields of study and art practice?

KEY WORDS: space | digital art | transnational art | human computer interfaces (HCI) | migrant communities


baby steps…

2 12 2009

I’m back in Canada due to some unexpected and unfortunate circumstances. In ice hockey it is common and acceptable to be ‘body-checked’. If you are unfamiliar with this phenomenon it means being rammed into by an opposing player, usually at full speed and usually against the boards. If unexpected, this can result in one’s losing the puck, losing one’s ground (falling on your ass) and getting a bit winded.  Lately, I feel as though life has given me a great big body check! Still, I’m trying to work through the project as best as I can from here.  Step by tiny step, I’m getting things done. I plan to get back to the UK with my family in the next few weeks but am running into more delays. In any case, life goes on. Many thanks to the others in my course who have been helping me keep up to speed with everything and have sent their kind words of support.