Panel: New Media Art Education in Central and Eastern Europe in the Last Two Decades: experiments and transition
This paper presents the results obtained and experiences gained through the teaching of various short workshops in the Baltic States (as well as elsewhere) in the specific combination of interactivity and moving image. The workshops combine theoretical and practical approaches – a functional prototype of an ‘interactive film’ will be produced by students – and have been run by the author in Tallinn, Tartu, Riga, Liepaja and Vilnius from 2002 until the present day. Usually these workshops have been in official educational establishments – principally those of art and design – although more openly recruited workshops have also taken place. An inherent characteristic of making an interactive film is that a combination of specific disciplines are required to create the final outcome, primarily filmmaking, interaction design, and narrativity. Methods of teaching this, in which a workshop participant may not have any experience or background knowledge of one or more of these disciplines, and in which collaboration would be desirable, will be discussed. Despite the somewhat specific-sounding objective of these workshops, the resulting artefacts have displayed a huge variety of final forms and formats, including installation art, live performance, interactive DVD and websites. Although the scope of the final artefact is inevitably limited given a one or two week timescale, some of the products have undergone subsequent exploitation. This has occurred through public exhibition, public performance, remediation, and expansion/remake at a later date into a more substantial product. Workshop outcomes will be compared and contrasted to pick out whether clear differences are apparent according firstly to the varying profile of the students involved, and secondly between results from workshops in the Baltic States and those (also run by the author) in other European countries – some of which have involved a deliberately enforced mixture of students from both artistic and technical backgrounds. The paper also discusses whether the types of outcome have changed during the last seven years as a result of developments in technology and social media.
- Dr. Chris Hales is a specialist in the ‘interactive moving image’, as practitioner, educator and researcher. His interactive films have been presented internationally since 1995 both as installations and as live cinematic performances and in 2008 he exhibited most of his films in a 9-room exhibition as part of the Prague Triennale of Contemporary Art. Since completing his PhD “Rethinking the Interactive Movie” at SMARTlab (University of East London, UK) in 2006 he has remained at SMARTlab as a Post Doctoral Research Fellow. He writes frequently about ‘interactive moving image’ and has taught over 100 short workshop courses on this subject in numerous institutions in Europe. A recent research project was to rediscover details of the Czechoslovakian ‘Kinoautomat’ of 1967 and to help it to be performed again in public and to be published on DVD.