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Critical Information: Mapping the Intersection of Art and Technology

  • Deadline:
    Dec. 3, 2011, 10 a.m.
  • Location:
    MFA Art Criticism & Writing, School of Visual Arts, 132 West 21st Street, 6th Floor, new york, New York, 10010, US




Conference Panels: 10:00am – 3:30pm
132 West 21 Street, 6th floor, New York City

Keynote Address: 4:00 – 5:30pm, followed by reception
SVA Theatre, 333 West 23 Street, New York City

All events are free and open to the public

School of Visual Arts (SVA) presents Critical Information: Mapping the Intersection of Art and Technology, an interdisciplinary graduate student conference examining the contemporary dialogue between art, media and technology. Sponsored by the MFA Art Criticism and Writing Department at SVA, the Critical Information graduate conference provides a critical forum for current scholarship exploring the juncture of media, theory, criticism, and the visual arts. McKenzie Wark, Associate Professor of Culture and Media at Eugene Lang College, The New School for Liberal Arts, will deliver the keynote address entitled Spectacles of Disintegration.

Wark has written extensively on media theory, critical theory and new media. His books include Virtual Geography: Living With Global Media Events (Indiana University Press, 1994), The Hacker Manifesto (Harvard University Press, 2004), Gamer Theory (Harvard University Press, 2007), and The Beach Beneath the Street: The Everyday Life and Glorious Times of the Situationist International (Verso, 2011).

The conference’s international roster of participants represents a wide cross-section of disciplines, ranging from visual and cultural studies to interactive media arts; criticism to curatorial practice; and performance art to art history. More information on the panels and papers, as well as the full schedule of events can be found at www.criticalinformationsva.com.

The MFA Art Criticism and Writing Department at SVA offers a two-year course of study leading to an MFA degree. For students who want to improve their writing and advance their knowledge of contemporary art, theory, literature, and history, this concentrated program offers seminars by practicing critics, editors, philosophers, poets, and artists. The focus in writing is on the essay as form, as well as on shorter forms of review, through intensive writing practicums.

School of Visual Arts (SVA) in New York City is an established leader and innovator in the education of artists. From its inception in 1947, the faculty has been comprised of professionals working in the arts and art-related fields. SVA provides an environment that nurtures creativity, inventiveness and experimentation, enabling students to develop a strong sense of identity and a clear direction of purpose.


All panels meet at MFA Art Criticism & Writing
132 West 21st Street, 7th Floor

SESSION 1: 10:00 A.M. TO 11:30 A.M.

Art, Technology and Identity
Respondents: Margaret Graham (student) and Susan Bee (faculty)

In an age when the line between the actual and the virtual is rapidly dissolving, how and where do we to locate the self? And how does the collision of art and technology relate to identity politics? Presenters participating in the “Art, Technology, and Identity” panel will approach these questions and others like them through the lenses of gender, sexuality, art practice, and social behavior.

Jeremy Eichenbaum, Existing in a Dual Consciousness: A Personal Account… (Art Center College of Design, Media Design, MFA)

Victoria Salinger, Gendering the Machine: Hanne Darboven’s “Higher Knitting” (University of Chicago, Art History, PhD)

Evelin Stermitz, ArtFem.TV: Art and Feminism ITV [www.artfem.tv] (University of Ljubljana, Philosophy, Faculty of Arts, M.A., M.Phil.)

Robert Yang, "Handle with Care": A First Person Video Game About Gay Divorce (Parsons the New School for Design, Design and Technology, MFA)


Information Art
Respondents: Noah Dillon (student) and Nancy Princenthal (faculty)

Mimicking conditions of mass media production and display, Information Art developed at the birth of the computer. This panel will discuss how new technology began to invade the space of art as Duchampian readymades in Pop, Benjamin’s theory of the Aura and its relation to the Google Art Project, and Sol LeWitt’s wall drawings as precursors to algorithmic, process-based performance. The panel will also include Matthew Lange’s Plummet Machine, a shamanistic performance of the modern media history.

Liam Considine, Flowers and Stripes: Warhol and Buren in Paris circa 1965 (New York University, Institute of Fine Arts, PhD)

Faith Holland, The Pixel Museum: The Crop, Cut, Paste of the Meaning of Paintings in Google Art Project (School of Visual Arts, Photography, Video, & Related Media, MFA)

Matthew Lange, Assemblage 6: The Plummet Machine as Manifest in Neo-Industrial Media Apparatuses (School of Visual Arts, Photography, Video, & Related Media, MFA)

Gillian Young, LeWitt and the Machine (Columbia University, Art History & Archaeology, PhD)

SESSION 2: 11:45 A.M. TO 1:15 P.M.

Digital Costs
Respondents: Collin Sundt (student) and Suzanne Anker (faculty)

The costs and consequences of the ever-expanding technology our world increasingly views itself through. From new modes of distribution to totalizing views, these are the intimations and operations of the digital landscape.

Tiffany Funk, The Prosthetic Aesthetic: An Art of Anxious Extensions (University of Illinois at Chicago, MFA (ABD), PhD)

Chris Handran, Reinventing the Apparatus in the Expanded Field of
Photography (Queensland University of Technology, Creative Industries Faculty, MA)

Lee Johnson, ProVide Marketplace, 2011 (Rhode Island School of Design, Ceramics, MFA)

Austin S. Lee and Yuseung Kim, The Everyday Story of Imaginative Time & Space (Art Center College of Design, Media Design Program, MFA)


Site and Subjectivity
Respondents: Lee Ann Norman (student) and Kurt Ralske (faculty)

Topics in this panel focus on a general interest in the changing relationships between human spaces and the social, economic, and political flows of information. As the mechanical is updated by the digital, what is the impact on real human lives?

John Ball, Fulfilling the Promise of the Bauhaus: Integrating the Arts and Building-Making Through BIM Technologies (Arizona State University, Environment, Design, and the Arts, PhD)

Dorrie Brooks, Situated Architecture in the Digital Age: Adapting a Textile Mill in Holyoke, MA (University of Massachusetts, Program in Architecture & Design)

Matthew Everett Lawson and Elizabeth Anne Watkins, "Wonder" (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Culture and Technology, MS)

Aurora Tang, Site, Nonsite, Website: Technologies for Perception / “Navigating Nonspace” (University of Southern California, Art and Curatorial Practices in the Public Sphere, MA)

SESSION 3: 2:00 P.M. TO 3:30 P.M.

Future of Signs
Respondents: Kareem Estefan (student) and Ann Lauterbach (faculty)

This panel will trace the study of signs across disciplines and eras, examining text and image as alternately arbitrary, mimetic, indexical or social to re-think the perception of signs for our digital culture.

Erin Gee, Repetition as Radical Referral: Echo and Narcissus in the Digital Environment (Concordia University, Visual Arts, MFA)

Winifred E. Newman, Phantasmata Poetica or Images as Objects of Knowledge in Early Theories of Aesthetics (Harvard University, Architecture, PhD)

Jennifer Pranolo, Tagging the Index: Image and Information (University of California, Berkeley, Rhetoric/Film Studies, PhD)

Rotem Rozental, Social Engagement, Visual Participation and Perception (SUNY Binghamton University, Art History, PhD)


Visualizing the Invisible: The Art of Sound
Respondents: Alex Allenchey (student) and Michael Capio (faculty)

Topics in this panel seek to explore the relationships between images, sounds, and technologies of contemporary culture.

Alex Braidwood, Listening Instruments (Art Center College of Design, Media Design, MFA)

Elizabeth G. Medoff, Sound Monuments: Rethinking Public Memory (School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Visual and Critical Studies, MFA)

Ryan Raffa, RhythmSynthesis (Parsons The New School for Design, Design and Technology, MFA)

Portia Seddon, The Aesthetics and Politics of Popular Music MP3 Blogs (Hunter College of the City University of New York, Anthropology, MA)


Mediated Memory
Respondents: Diana Seo Hyung Lee (student) and Tom Huhn (faculty)

What is new media’s role in our understanding of death? How does it function in the context of grieving and how does it structure our recollection of the past? This panel will explore the various ways in which the virtual and technological world have transformed our relationship to mortality, memory, and mourning, and how it might usher a means toward healing and reconciliation.

Erin Bell, “The Ghost in the Machine:” Blogging Beyond Death (Wayne State University, English, PhD)

Sara Moore, In Absentia (Art Center College of Design, Media Design, MFA)

Erika Tarte, Design Future History: A Meditation on Mediated Remembering (Rhode Island School of Design, Graphic Design, MFA)

Ian Wojtowicz, B’Seder: A Memory Palace Transceiver of Contested Historical Narratives in Polish and Jewish Communities (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Art, Culture and Technology, MS)