Panel: Hybrid Spatial Experiences
The dominant discourse across industry, government, culture and academia falsely presumes mobile telecommunications technology to be inherently networked, global and urban. Across these disparate domains, there is a tendency to assume an urban context, a global context, and a technological bias in terms of understanding the spatial dimensions and implications of wireless mobile networks. This technologically determined position is partly an artifact of the focus on spatial dimensions associated with fixed telecommunication networks (as in fixed telephone or stationary computer / modem) that have tended to follow patterns of population density. Also implicit in such figurations is the association of the ‘urban’ with the ‘relevant’, suggesting that mass consumption or participation in itself constitutes an ‘urban’ condition that is of inherent value. Whether overtly or covertly, the ‘urban’ as invoked in these and other discourses tends to signal the presence or potential of large-scale and expanding markets, a meaning that effectively displaces spatial and social practices deemed to be less profitable. Thus, the uncritical application of the term ‘urban’ imposes an implied hegemony and dichotomy between the terms urban/non-urban. In everyday terms, however, the lived experience of mobile networks is highly localized to the body of individual subjects, especially as such networks are spatially anchored to the mobile device and its corresponding range of network coverage and access which together constitute a three-dimensional dynamic spatial phenomena. Anchored to the mobile subject in situ the lived experience of mobile interaction, while inevitably interwoven with the global and urban as factors of network society and the post-human condition, is nonetheless differentiated in terms of cultural and geographical context. In “The Urban Revolution” Lefebvre problematizes the city by defining the word “urban” explicitly as the interaction of superstructure and base in a mutually constitutive relationship that is not localized to the city. This formulation is worthy of recall in contemporary discourses that conflate all things with the urban as if nothing could escape its cultural logic or analytical framework. Through the presentation of projects drawn from my own practice, I will reveal mobile interaction as a spectrum condition, where the becoming non-urban of mobile subjectivities is articulated through hybrid and heterogeneous spatial productions of embodied interaction in the magnetosphere.
- Teri Rueb‘s interactive sound walks, sculptures and site-specific installations explore landscape, architecture and spatial aspects of sound. She recently launched a new site-specific work across two sites Elsewhere : Anderswo as part of the exhibition Landschaft 2.0 at the Edith Russ Site for Media Art (Oldenburg, Germany) and the Springhornhof Kunstverein (Neuenkirchen, Germany). Past works include Core Sample (Spectacle Island, Boston Harbor and the Boston Institute of Contemporary Art), itinerant (Boston Commons and Public Garden), and Drift (set along the Wadden Sea near Cuxhaven, Germany). Trace, set along a network of hiking trails in the Canadian Rockies, was her first GPS-based sound walk created as a new media co-production with the Banff Centre for the Arts.