Online Course at ECC Performance Art: "New Technologies for Performance Art Part 1: An Introduction to the Extended Reality Spectrum and related Performance Works"

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This course is devoted to one of the most pertinent cultural trends of the present: immersion and its technologies. It addresses central questions such as: What does the turn to the immersive mean for us? Why is it happening? Who benefits ? How is it changing the way we create, share, and preserve art and culture? How does it transform the field of performance art?

The histories of art, photography, and film offer useful comparisons for what is being experienced in the present with the rapid development and assimilation of digital applications. Reality, after the surrealist twenties, could never again be seen as simple or continuous, describable empirically or through induction. As once science fictions now become scientific realities, and as the virtual inches closer to becoming indistinguishable from the actual, how do we understand the changing dynamics between new technology and human understanding? Experiential technologies or XR technologies, which include virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), and 360 photo and video capture, propose knowledge production through an immersive encounter. At the same time, they put central aspects of performative practice such as notions of liveness and corporeality up for renegotiation.
The field of Digital Humanities highlights the ongoing tension of pairing computational methods which are often more quantitative and positivist with arts and humanities practices that shepherd a more qualitative reflection or approach. This class brings together a set of theoretical and practical resources that illuminate the friction of that combination in powerful ways. Students will not only learn about historical and current techniques of immersion but will be expected to think critically and reflect on the work of artists producing XR related work.

Dates: October 5-26, Tuesdays 6-8pm CET

This course is succeeded by "New Technologies for Performance Art Part 2: Workshop: Hands-on Technical Training and Project Development". It is not mandatory to attend both parts.