[ISEA95] Panel: Kim Sawchuk & Catherine Richards – Ideology of Interactivity: Freedom, Choice, Creativity Panel Introduction

Panel Statement

Panel: Ideology of Interactivity

Within the domains of both popular culture and the arts, interactivity is a key promise of new computer-based media technologies. This panel will explore the metaphors of freedom, choice and creativity as depicted in current conceptions of interactivity. The discourse of interactivity will be enlarged to include discussions of power as it is related to aesthetics.

This panel will critique interactivity, often considered to be a defining feature of new media art works and its links with notions of freedom, choice and creativity. It will consider power and control as they are related to aesthetic issues and includes such questions as: what can the notion of freedom represent when artists determine interactive environments and artificial life works; has the nineteenth century conception of the artist, an emblem of freedom, choice and creativity, been imported into new media; if so, does it fit too comfortably within the ideological perception of technology itself?

  • Kim Sawchuk  (Canada) is a media theorist who writes on marketing research as well as on the media arts. Her media arts forays examine the political and artistic uses of on-line and electronic technologies. Her most recent work has been on the confluence between medical imaging and aesthetics. She teaches in the department of Communication Studies at Montreal’s Concordia University.
  • Catherine Richards (Canada) is a visual artist working in the domain of new technologies and the simulation of self. Her works have received awards as well as being exhibited internationally. She has written on the subject of new technologies, art and the body, and co-directed the Bioapparatus residency ’91 at the Banff Centre (Alberta, Canada).