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Christiane Paul
Digital Art / Public Art: Governance and Agency in the Networked Commons

FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 9, 2007
Media Insurgencies: Panel Discussion

11 – 1 p.m. Polycentric Session, UC-Berkeley, Townsend Center for the Humanities
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Digital technologies and networked, translocal new media art have expanded, challenged, or even redefined concepts of what constitutes public space, the public domain, and public art. Today's culture is to a large extent revolving around flows -- of data (texts, images, and sounds), technologies, communication, and interaction -- and supports the concept of a networked commons, which raises questions about agency, control, and governance. As David Garcia (1998) has pointed out, "these flows are not just one element in the social organization, they are an expression of processes *dominating* our economic, political, and social life."

The paper will examine how digital media art has used electronic networks to redefine the notion of public space by enhancing possibilities of various kinds of interventions. These interventions can take the form of social softwares, or collectivist and activist strategies and tactical response; an archiving and filtering of public contributions; a merging of physical and virtual space; and an augmentation of physical sites and architectures.

The networked commons will be discussed in relationship to concepts such as authority, control, and governance and the ways in which they manifest in art projects that address issues ranging from community building to environmental activism.

Participant's Bio:
Christiane Paul is the Adjunct Curator of New Media Arts at the Whitney Museum of American Art and the director of Intelligent Agent, a service organization and information resource dedicated to digital art. She has written extensively on new media arts and her book Digital Art (part of the World of Art Series by Thames & Hudson, UK) was published in July 2003. She is currently editing an anthology on curating new media (forthcoming from UC Press) and co-editing, with Victoria Vesna and Margot Lovejoy, the anthology Context Providers - Context and Meaning in Media Arts (forthcoming from U of Minnesota Press). She teaches as an adjunct in the MFA computer arts department at the School of Visual Arts in New York and the Digital Media Department of the Rhode Island School of Design and has lectured internationally on art and technology. At the Whitney Museum, she has curated the shows "Profiling" (2007) and “Data Dynamics” (2001); the net art selection for the 2002 Whitney Biennial; the online exhibition "CODeDOC" (2002) for artport, the Whitney Museum’s online portal to Internet art for which she is responsible; as well as "Follow Through" by Scott Paterson and Jennifer Crowe (2005). Other curatorial work includes "Feedback" (Laboral Center for Art and Industrial Creation, Gijon, Asturias, Span, 2007); "Second Natures" at the Eli & Edythe Broad Art Center, Los Angeles, CA; the blackbox at ARCO art fair, Madrid (2006); "The Passage of Mirage" (Chelsea Art Museum, New York, 2004); "Evident Traces" (Ciberarts Festival Bilbao, 2004); "eVolution -- the art of living systems" (Art Interactive, Boston, 2004); "CODeDOC II" (Ars Electronica, 2003); the New York Digital Salon's 10th anniversary exhibition (NYC, 2003); “Mapping Transitions” at the University of Boulder, Colorado (2002); "Re-Media" (Fotofest, Houston, Texas, 2002); and a net art selection for “Evo1” (Gallery L, Moscow, October 2001).

Christiane Paul has participated in numerous panels on new media and presented at conferences worldwide. Her speaking engagements included the Tate, London (2003 / 2005); the LA County Museum of Art; ZKM (Center for Culture and Media), Karlsruhe, Germany; ARCO Expert Forum 2004, 2005, 2006, Madrid, Spain; the Museum of Contemporary Arts (MACBA), Barcelona, Spain; the Boston Cyberarts Festival; the Royal Academy of Arts, Copenhagen, Denmark; the Royal Academy of Arts, Stockholm, Sweden; the annual College Art Association conference (New York); the International Summit on Multimedia and the Internet (Abu Dhabi, UAE); invenção thinking the next millennium (São Paulo, Brazil); consciousness reframed 2 (CAiiA, Wales, Newport, UK); and the Governor’s Conference on the Arts (San Francisco).