I wrote this post for Life | Art | Us on 7 June 2011. Click on the link at the bottom to read the full post.
On the Saturday of FutureEverything 11, I tripped over an interesting discussion organised by CODA, about the state of media art UK. As well as talking about the impact of recent funding cuts and the concerning number of media art organisations that had lost out, the group also talked proactively about how people and organisations active in the UK media art movement might work better together in the future, to improve the visibilty and understanding of media arts practice in the UK, and create a stronger voice for media art, particularly amongst policy makers and funders.
About the UK media art ecology
The UK media art ecology is fascinating and made up of many elements. It includes policy makers who provide funding and guidelines that help to shape the ecology at a strategic level, commissioning agencies who fund creative activity, arts and digital practitioners who make stuff, museums, galleries and other kinds of agencies (public and private) who show stuff, audiences who go and see stuff, academics, historians, journalists and critics who talk about work and broader trends, and education institutions who invest in the development of future practitioners, curators, creative producers, funders, critics and policy makers.
Image from Furtherfield’s Rich Networking event
A strong and vibrant creative ecology needs a good mix of all of these elements in order to thrive, it also needs these elements to work well together. Sadly, one of the biggest challenges facing media art UK is that the balance of these elements is quite skewed, particularly in terms of commissioning new work, and this has only become more acute as a result of recent funding cuts. Another challenge facing the UK media arts movement is that it’s fragmented, and it has been for quite some time. I’ll come back to this a little bit later.
Read this post in full – It’s been a really tough year, but what’s next for media art UK?.
I wrote this post for InterventTech on 22 March 2009. Click on the link at the bottom to read the full post.
BLOG EXTRACT – Friends of the Divided Mind was the title of this years Post Graduate exhibition from the Royal College of Art curating programme.
Like many of these platforms, the maturity of exhibitions produced by students varied. I personally felt that curators had been given a little too much license to ‘indulge in intellectualism,’ when coming up with their ‘concepts,’ this year. For me, curator ego was definitely the dish of the day. Having said that (and to be fair to those involved), if you can’t indulge in some ego driven intellectualism within the freedom of an MA programme, then when can you. So I hold no grudge.
Beacon by Thomson & Craighead
For me, the particular highlight of this collection of RCA exhibitions was the inclusion of Beacon by Thomson & Craighead in The Office of Real Time Activity. Taking the form of a mechanical railway flap sign [tick-flip-tick-flip], Beacon offers a minute by minute snapshot of live web searches as they are made around the world. Sourcing data directly from dogpile.com (the worlds favourite search engine aggregator), Beacon randomly presents one search query from the fifty it collects each minute via the signs display.
Read this post in full | A Beacon lights up ‘Friends of the Divided Mind’.
my-year-in-badges Badge no #001
Badge title: more sleep : less booze
Badge author: claire_w
Badge status: orphan 😦
Media: banana paper | pilot marker (EF) | Super Badge It! rectangle badge set
Produced: Jan 2nd 2009
Adopt this badge
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– claire welsby –