[ISEA2011] Workshop: Gabriel Vanegas & Pau Cata – Conservation of Experiences with Media Art

Workshop Statement

The problem with conservation that deals with digital-art, netart, bioart, performance between other variations of intangible reality, is a similar to that which the conquerors or creators of America faced in the 16th century. For example, how does one preserve the flavour of a pineapple and show it to Europe? The trip by ship was very long, allowing only the shipping of dissected bodies, dead and tasteless. That is why the only way to show the beauty of what they found in most expeditions was in keeping the spirit, the essence, and the reinterpretation of what they saw based on their own experiences without knowing any scientific approach or methodology, that were taking form in diaries and books accompanied by fantastic and monstrous images, shaped by many factors of politics, culture and aesthetics. The reinterpretation went from being just a documentation of reality or a copy, to becoming the reality itself, that is the flavour of the pineapple. Botaniq preserves art across notations, synthesis of the experiences of the unknown observer and interactor, where the notation and the personal diary of the artistic experience becomes the work of art itself.To  this aim, Botaniq performs workshops of experimental visual composition where participants develop their own personal diary by documenting works of art displayed in an art festival or exhibition. How does Botaniq work? The workshops consist of archiving art works displayed in an art event where each participant is responsible for one of the works, illustrating, composing graphically and describing both the work and his interaction and experience. At the end of the workshop, the illustrated diaries of every participant are compiled in an encyclopaedic physical publication (Codex_Media Art) as well as a digital one, allowing our community to view the results freely and read the works of art through the reinterpretation. We will undertake as a case of archiving the main ISEA 2011 exhibition, developing an unique encyclopaedic volume. The deep exercise of reinterpretation that every person realizes in the workshops allows for an equal form of a continuity of oral, written and audio-visual tradition exerted by the critical mass rather than the elite. vimeo.com/18441863

  • Gabriel Vanegas is a media artist and researcher, with a master in media art at the school KHM in Cologne-Germany. In his research work, he has founded, curated and directed “El Niuton magazine”, one of the first publication about media art in Latin America with more than 350 media artists around the world; he has also curated and published a book called, “Hybrid Beans”, Art as a manifesto of hybridization. In his artistic work experiments with spatiality, virtuality and poetic, exhibiting internationally in festivals such as Migaa Project-Ars Electronica / Austria, KHM annual Exhibition/ Germany, Amaze Fest-Club Transmediale/ Germany, V2 Rotterdam / Holand, Sonica Festival/ Slovenia, ZKM museum/ Karlsruhe. Nowadays he makes a research in the area of Media Art archiving and Media Archaeology developing a project called “Botaniq,” a data base of contemporary art based on the experiences of the people who interact with a work of art. botaniq.org
  • Pau Cata has been working in the cultural field for more than 10 years. First he worked on the development of educational material for the main museums of Catalonia and Barcelona, Spain, while completing his degree in Contemporary History by the University of Barcelona (with awarded Erasmus in Italy and Greece). In 2004 he moved to London where he worked for The British Museum and the White Cube Gallery. During his five years in London he completed a Diploma in Arts Management by Birkbeck College and the MA Critical Arts Management and Media Cultural Studies by LSBU (funded by the Catalan Arts Council and the Spanish Ministry of Culture). For his MA he was awarded a Distinction and the Course Director Price for Outstanding Achievement. He has participated also in different courses on curating at Brikcbek College and Central Saint Martins and is member of the curatorial partnership Nomadic Projects. He is currently director of CeRCCa, Center for Research and Creativity and Artists in Residence located in his hometown of Llorenc del Penedes (Catalonia). As part of his job as Director he has been part on numerous research projects and workshops and is currently undertaking an Erasmus Young Entrepreneur Program with MoTA (Museum of Transient Art) in Ljubljana (Slovenia) developing a network of AIR Programs in East Europe.