[ISEA2011] Paper: Rui Filipe Antunes & Frederic Fol Leymarie – Generative narrative in xTNZ and Senhora da Graça


Session: Code and Generative Art

We will look into the artistic practice of computational ecosystems, attempting to see behind its formal novelty and invention. Computational ecosystems operate in a distinct model of narrative. The concept of generative narrative
discussed here illustrates what Umberto Eco denes as ‘open work’. First published in Italian in 1962, Eco’s critical book Open Work, addresses questions which are found (also) transversely in Generative Art. Modern music, literature and art are said to operate in a state of potential, of unexplored possibilities which the work may admit. The open-ended nature of the works offer an unlimited range of possible readings, works are ‘open’ to continuous generation of internal relations, which the addressee must uncover and select in his act of perceiving the totality of incoming stimuli.
Generative narrative, is a concept we can nd in electronic literature. We extend this concept discussing it within the  framework of the computational ecosystems. We will look into Lizbeth Klastrup’s concepts of ‘multi-user digital textuality’ and ‘interpretative framework’ to assist in this project and  understand how the material aspects of code participate in the narrative processes.

To illustrate these ideas, we discuss two case studies, xTNZ and Senhora da Graça, two computational ecosystems, where, we argue, this model of narrative conveys context and artistic meaning to the works.

  • Rui Filipe Antunes was born in Mozambique and lives and works in London, UK. With an academic background in Computing and Fine arts he is currently a PhD candidate in Arts and Computational Technologies at the Goldsmiths College, University of London, where he investigates the artistic use of virtual ecosystems in virtual worlds. His artistic work draws on the escapist relationship of contemporary society with technology, and has a special interest in the debate on virtual life/art. In the latest works a particular attention has been devoted to the construction of memory mediated by technology. His work has been awarded twice in the VIDA competition of art and artificial intelligence (12th and 13th edition) and features in a number of publications such as Preble’s Artforms or the Journal of Virtual Worlds. A large number of curatorial projects and shows have included his work in the last ten years, including in 2010: Post Human/Future Tense, at the Arcade Gallery, in Chicago; FILE 2010 – Media Arte, São Paulo, Brasil; or  {S0NiK} Fest and Synthetic Zero Event, BronxArtSpace, NY. In 2009 he has participated in the exhibition Lá Fora, in Lisbon, a major historical and contemporary retrospective of  art by portuguese artists living abroad.
  • Frederic Fol Leymarie, Goldsmiths College, London, UK. doc.gold.ac.uk/~ffl/wp    sites.google.com/site/aikonproject

Full text (PDF) p. 117-122 [title somewhat different]