[ISEA97] Paper: Gérard Mermoz – On Multimedia Syntax: A Semiological Perspective (What We Might Learn From Print)


My initial idea for this paper was to examine multimedia syntax, using semiotics as a tool to critically evaluate concrete examples of CDRom and web site designs, and to outline a few suggestions for future developments. Given the limited time available, however, and after reading the introduction to this session and the abstracts, in which issues of narrative, the linearity of texts and interactivity appeared prominent, I have decided to focus on and problematize what I propose to call the dual materiality of texts, mores pecifically their typographic materiality, and consider some implications of that materiality on multimedia authoring. In the light of recent hypes and wild claims that print was dead, it is important and relevant not to loose sight of the contexts in which certain key concepts about reading and writing have emerged and evolved, before the advent of electronic media/platforms.

  • Gérard Mermoz, France/UK, Coventry University, UK, Studied literature and art history at Aix-en-Provence University, France. Moved to England. Taught art history at Bristol University, and Liverpool Polytechnic. Moved to Coventry in 1991 to teach Graphic Design. Gained an MA in Electronic Graphics at Coventry University (1994). Currently teaching graphic design at Coventry University, with special emphasis on typography and multimedia. Course leader for the new MA in Design & Digital Media. Member of the Rencontres Internationales de Lure (French Typographic Society). Honorary member of the Brno Biennale (1996). Exhibitions: various exhibitions of col­lages, sculptures and mixed media. Recently became inter­ested in electronic media. Dear John, multimedia piece about experimental typography, exhibited at Stations Arts Electroniques, Rennes, France and Brno Biennale, Czech Republic (1996); Conference presentations/Publications: On Typographic Reference, EMIGRE #36 (1995); Deconstruction and the Typography of Books, Acts of the Symposium of 17th Brno Biennale (1996); The “body of the text”: Typographic Interface and Interactive reading (theoretical text about interface design in an electronic hypertext      envi­ronment) published in the acts of INTERFACE3 symposium: Labile Ordnungen, Hamburg, 1997; Multimedia: Towards a new Language?, paper read at the symposium organized by Video Positive, Manchester (1997); On Typographic Communication, paper read at GRAPHILL, the annual con­ference of ‘Norske grafiske designere og illustratører’, Oslo.  gerardmermozartist.blogspot.com

Full text p. 36-37