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Flatpack 3 2009

How do you document a moving image festival that happens in the dark with copyrighted material? It’s easy, when it’s an engaged and creative festival like Flatpack 2009 from 7 Inch Cinema.

Assorted bloggers have been helping to fill the gaps in our memory:
> http://www.flatpackfestival.org/blog/flatpack-collective-memory/ and souvenir photos are making their way online:

> http://www.flickr.com/photos/7inchcinema/

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Johannes Birringer at ICE

johannesbirringer

Last week at ICE, we had a visit from Johannes Birringer, who, amongst his other roles, is artistic director of AlienNation Co. Johannes leads projects involving a hybrid of dance and technology and came along to talk about some of the projects he has both researched, and been directly involved in. He’s also currently flogging a book (Performance, Technology, & Science), so there was a chance to find out more about the things he was showing us.

Some of his projects he talked about involved wearable media: that is, technology mixed into clothing. Having worked with fashion designers, the results were much more exciting and interesting to look at than the idea might at first appear (those fearing a Cyberman style suit, need not worry). The clothing was more along the lines of Alexander McQueen than the BBC props department.

One of the projects he dealt with in some depth was the 9Evenings events, in New York in the 1960s. From the blurb:

The idea of collaborating with technicians, not only initiated by Robert Rauschenberg and Billy Klüver but also organized and largely promoted by them, lead to the performances suggested by the festival title: Nine Evenings with performances by John Cage, Lucinda Childs, Merce Cunningham, Öyvind Fahlström, Alex Hay, Deborah Hay, Steve Paxton, Robert Rauschenberg, David Tudor, and Robert Whitman. Billy Klüver was again the driving force. The main technical element of the performances was the electronic modulation system TEEM, composed of portable, electronic units which functioned without cables by remote control. Cage used this system to activate and deactivate loud speakers that consistently reacted to movement by way of photo-cells. For not always being technically and artistically successful, these performances exhausted for the first time the full range of the live-aspect of electronics, taking advantage of its artistic potential in all of its diversity.

The people attending the talk were a mix of dance/performance and media folks from ICE and beyond. Despite the small crowd, it was a crowd that wanted to hear and respond to the works shown.

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Convergence

Media Convergence, bringing together several strands of media that compliment one another and service the overall narrative or theme, offers an interesting way to model the idea of Ice Cubes as fulfilling some of the brand awareness aspects of the research brief.

It has been used with several TV programs, for example Lost, which exists primarily as a HBO show and also as various websites, that pull out strands and character backgrounds that might not be explored in the show itself.

By considering the use of multiple platforms as not just different transmission channels but as places where different strands of conversation take place, it might be possible to align this to the notion of how artists might want to use Ice Cubes for their own projects?

Instead of it being just a secondary function that ‘documents’ a performance or seminar, the use of web-based tools is factored into the event as a place where feedback or further additional narratives can occur. For example, in Lost, there were websites setup as though they were by the families of the survivors of the plane crash, or conspiracy theorists. These added to the sense of engagement with the program, as well as being a viral marketing tool. For a theatre performance, small snippets of action could be posted that aren’t in the final work but explore something beyond the moment of performance? Then discussions could take place in comments or video hosting websites or blogs?

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Amp networking events

Amp, the networking series of events, who want:

To make the UK the most connected place on the planet.

To help as many people as who want to have as many powerful conversations as they care to.

To bring support, encouragement and amplification to the most innovative thinkers in the UK.

Amplified – recognition of ‘social’ as both a normal innovative & management process and social media is an amplifier of that.

Making social media practioners more effective, innovative, creative, accessible, able to bridge the silos, listened to.

Make the UK the world’s most networked economy by 2010.

Make social media a mainstream way of doing business, education, creation. Make all workplaces network places. By 2010.

I’m assuming that they’re a bit like Creative Coffee Club(CCC), but as another network opportunity. I’m not entirely sure as to why they are different (at least from reading their blurb) from CCC. Although perhaps it doesn’t matter whether they are or not. The vital thing might be that all these different networks reach different people through different channels? If people from CCC are going along to the Amp events, then a Venn diagram of connections are being made and more people are making contact with others who might share familiar ideas and goals etc.

On their Wiki, they have a page for discussion on how the live streaming and online discussions could have been better worked.

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