Chair Person: Marc Tuters
Presenters: Tristan Thielmann, Mark Shepard & Michiel de Lange
In 2006 Varnelis and Tuters published “Beyond Locative Media”, which discussed the emergence of locative media as “the next big thing”. Five years on, with the ubiquity of iphones, locative media has become banal. Locative media had been much anticipated within the media art world, notably at the ISEA symposia in 2004 & 2006 after which it entered popular culture as a trope in William Gibson’s last two novels. Yet while it may have faded from the avant-garde, there is a thriving locative discourse in academic journals, associated with the “spatial turn” in media studies. This panel considers the role of locative media in the arts and humanities discourse. The aforementioned text framed locative media in terms of neo-Situationist tactics which sought to actively imagine an alternate city. While locative practicioners did not share the oppositional politics of their net art precursors, one can not help but wonder if some greater potential for the medium has not perhaps been foreclosed by a participatory culture that suggests little more than reconfiguring ideas from past.
William Gibson no longer writes about cyberspace in the future, but instead about locative art in the atemporal present. Having emerged in the mid-’00’s from media arts, locative media are now part of the consumer technology and popular culture. This panel discusses the value of this concept in relation to debates at the intersection of urbanism and media studies, and considers the (non)existence of a locative avant-garde.
- Marc Tuters is PhD candidate and lecturer in new media at the University of Amsterdam. He has two graduate degrees from Concordia (CDN) and University of Southern California (USA), and has worked as an artist and researcher in organizations including the Annenberg Centre, the Banff Centre, National University of Singapore, Waseda University.