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Archive by April, 2010

Mashup Cultures, edited by Stefan Sonvilla-Weiss

Note: I’m very happy to announce the release of a book publication titled Mashup Cultures in which I contribute a text titled “Regressive and Reflexive Mashups in Sampling Culture.”  The text was previously released on Vague Terrain in June 2007, and has been revised and extended by over 15 pages for the book publication. I introduce a series of new terms along with a diagram, which I will be making available online in the near future.

Mashup Cultures, Sonvilla-Weiss. Stefan (Ed.), Springeren: This volume brings together cutting-edge thinkers and scholars together with young researchers and students, proposing a colourful spectrum of media-theoretical, -practical and -educational approaches to current creative practices and techniques of production and consumption on and off the web. Along with the exploration of some of the emerging social media concepts, the book unveils some of the key drivers leading to participatory engagement of the User.

Mashup Cultures presents a broader view of the effects and consequences of current remix practices and the recombination of existing digital cultural content. The complexity of this book, which appears on the occasion of the fifth anniversary of the international MA study program ePedagogy Design – Visual Knowledge Building, also by necessity seeks to familiarize the reader with a profound glossary and vocabulary of Web 2.0 cultural techniques.

Book Link: http://www.springer.com/springerwiennewyork/
art/book/978-3-7091-0095-0

TABLE OF CONTENTS
•    Stefan Sonvilla-Weiss: Introduction: Mashups, Remix Practices and the Recombination of Existing Digital Content
•    Axel Bruns: Distributed Creativity: Filesharing and Produsage
•    Brenda Castro: The Virtual Art Garden: A Case Study of User-centered Design for Improving Interaction in Distant Learning Communities of Art Students
•    Doris Gassert: “You met me at a very strange time in my life.” Fight Club and the Moving Image on the Verge of ‘Going Digital’
•    David Gauntlett: Creativity, Participation and Connectedness: An Interview with David Gauntlett
•    Mizuko Ito: Mobilizing the Imagination in Everyday Play: The Case of Japanese Media Mixes
•    Henry Jenkins: Multiculturalism, Appropriation, and the New Media Literacies: Remixing Moby Dick
•    Owen Kelly: Sexton Blake & the Virtual Culture of Rosario: A Biji
•    Torsten Meyer: On the Database Principle: Knowledge and Delusion
•    Eduardo Navas: Regressive and Reflexive Mashups in Sampling Culture
•    Christina Schwalbe: Change of Media, Change of Scholarship, Change of University: Transition from the Graphosphere to a Digital Mediosphere
•    Noora Sopula & Joni Leimu: A Classroom 2.0 Experiment
•    Stefan Sonvilla-Weiss: Communication Techniques, Practices and Strategies of Generation “Web n+1?
•    Wey-Han Tan: Playing (with) Educational Games – Integrated Game Design and Second Order Gaming
•    Tere Vadén interviewed by Juha Varto: Tepidity of the Majority and Participatory Creativity

Mind over Money on Nova

On April 27, I viewed Mind Over Money on Nova.  The documentary portrays different theories by economists about emotional and rational decisions.  I found the documentary of interest in part because throughout the program  an experiment with a twenty dollar bill, which sold for twenty-eight dollars during an auction, was used as an example of how emotion and peer pressure may play a role in economic decisions.  This experiment reminded me of an art performance I organized during a 1998 residency at Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, where I auctioned two hundred dollars for two hundred and five dollars.

Part of the argument:

A new study at Harvard is exploring how emotions affect our decisions, whether we like it or not.

Icon Versus Logo

Quite interesting to consider the difference between a logo and an icon.  I ran into the above icon design which is differentiated from the logo design by the icon designer, who explains:

IMPORTANT: The Youtube Logotype is owned and copyrighted by Google. Please only use when referring to Youtube or their services. The icon and its graphics (except the Youtube logotype) are all licensed under Creative Commons (creativecommons.org) under Attribution, Share Alike and Noncommercial. In other words: It’s totally free, don’t use it for commercial work and I would love if you gave me credit when using it (and please notify me if you do). Enjoy! Download the Youtube Icon v1.0 (zip)

Source: http://tobiasahlin.com/portfolio/youtube-icon/

Notes on Sabrina Raaf’s Exhibition “A Light Green Light” at gallery@calit2, by Eduardo Navas

Gallery Visitor viewing one of the Raaf’s works at gallery@calit2.

Sabrina Raaf’s art works, Icelandic Rift, Meandering River, and Grower II among other works, are currently on view at gallery@calit2.net from April 2 to June 4, 2010.  The exhibition is titled A Light Green Light: Towards Sustainability in Practice, curated by Steve Dietz.

Raaf’s work aims to reflect on issues of the environment–a research topic that fits quite well with Calit2′s mission.  The press release reads:

The gallery@calit2 goes green this spring with an exhibition by Chicago-based artist Sabrina Raaf, whose custom-built robotic sculptures and site specific installations include a series of experiments that address issues of sustainable practice, the construction of social spaces, and prototyping for modular green architecture.

Raaf’s work may appear sci-fish to some viewers, but the precision of her execution, both materially and conceptually, demonstrates that to envision a green future is possible.  I read the robotic sculptures as an open-ended invitation to imagine a world in which we acknowledge and respect earth’s ecology.

Video of Grower II and other structures part of Icelandic Rift.

Grower II, which I was honored to curate as part of Transitio_MX last October, draws lines of different shades of green on a long piece of paper according to the level of carbon dioxide in the air.

Detail of one of Icelandic Rift’s structures.

A robotic sculpture part of Icelandic Rift, (2006-07)

Icelandic Rift, 2006-07 consists of abstract robotic-like structures inspired by the Icelandic landscape, which Raaf had the opportunity to experience at one point in person. Materials include aluminum, cast acrylic, urethane, ferrofluid, and custom kinetics and electronics.

Detail of another Icelandic Rift Structure.

Meandering River (2009), installed just to the left of the gallery’s entrance

Meandering River is inspired by the article “Meandering River as a Self Organization Process” (1996),  written by Henrik Stolum in which the author describes procedural mathematics that enable scientists to research river morphology. The drawings on thermal screens, which can be displayed in multiple forms, are  engraved by a robot.

Meandering River, installed just to the left of the gallery’s entrance.

Sabrina Raaf (left), Jordan Crandall (middle), and Steve Dietz (right), discuss the exhibition during a panel presentation held prior to the opening reception on April 2, 2010.

Mixr for the iPad

From the Mixr site: “DJ App for iPad. Feels & functions like authentic turntables. Mixr gives you a DJ experience unlike anything you’ve ever experienced. Beautiful interface, professional mixing.”

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