Course Meeting Times

Lectures: 1 session / week, 2 hours / session

Experiences in Interactive Art

This class focuses on discussions on interactive art and its meaning. In weekly class sessions, visiting artists will discuss their own work from a theoretical and practical perspective with the class. Class discussions will center on questions of art and interactivity. Relevant topics include the purpose and language of art, creative practices, the appropriation of new technologies, social relevance, common artistic themes, and the response and involvement of audiences.

During the term students will be asked to develop, alone or in collaboration, an art work that can be exhibited in a gallery setting. Inspiration for this work might be drawn from class discussions with visiting artists or from prior personal work or interests. While not required, interactive art works are strongly encouraged. Student works are shown at an end of term exhibition at the CAVS that is open to the MIT community.

Visiting Artists

Visiting artists will include:

Zoe Beloff

Zoe Beloff was born in Edinburgh, Scotland. She received an MA from Edinburgh University and an MFA in film studies from Columbia University, and was in the Independent Study Program at the Whitney Museum of American Art. She teaches digital media at City College in New York. Her work has been shown at The Museum of Modern Art, New York; Biennial de l'image, Paris; Galerie Vox, Montreal; and the San Francisco Cinematheque, among others.

Steve Benton

Steve Benton is the Allen Professor of Media Arts and Sciences at MIT, the Head of the Spatial Imaging Group at the Media Laboratory, and the Director of the Center for Advanced Visual Studies. He was an undergraduate in Electrical Engineering at MIT, where he worked for Prof. Harold Edgerton. He did his doctoral work in Applied Physics at Harvard University, where he joined the faculty as its first Assistant Professor of Applied Optics. He had also been working with Edwin Land at the Polaroid Corporation since his undergraduate days, and founded a "Laboratory for Vivid Physics" there, where he studied the applications of lasers to photography. While at Polaroid, he invented the white-light viewable "rainbow" hologram often seen on credit cards and magazine covers. In 1982, he joined the startup team for the Media Lab at MIT, where he and his students are developing three-dimensional visual interfaces to computer data. Recently, he and his students have invented the world's first interactive holographic video system.

Luc Courchesne

Luc Courchesne was born in Quebec in 1952. He received a Bachelor of Design in Communication at the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design (1974), and a Master of Science in Visual Studies at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1984). His explorations in interactive video in 1984 when he co-authored Elastic Movies, one of the earliest experiments in the field with Ellen Sebring, Benjamin Bergery, Bill Seaman and others. He has since produced more than a dozen installations including Encyclopaedia Chiaroscuro (1987), Portrait One (1990), Family Portrait (1993), Hall of Shadows (1996), Landscape One (1997), Passages (1998), Rendez-vous (1999) and The Visitor: Living by Numbers (2001). His work has been shown extensively in galleries and museums worldwide, and his installations are part of the collections of the National Gallery of Canada (Ottawa), the ZKM/Medienmuseum (Karlsruhe), the NTT InterCommuncation Center (Tokyo) and the Museum of Communication (Bern). He was awarded the Grand Prix of the ICC Biennale '97 (Tokyo) and an Award of Distinction at Pris Ars Electronica 1999 (Linz). Currently based in Montreal, Luc Courchesne is professor of information design at the Universite de Montreal and president of the Societe des arts technologiques. Marc Lavallee and Étienne Desautels have been his two main collaborators since 1996.

Dorothy Cross

Dorothy Cross was born in 1956 in Cork, Ireland. She lives and works in Dublin. Cross' work employs sculpture, video, photography, performance and installation, often in unexpected combinations that traverse traditional practice boundaries. In 1999, she completed Chiasm, a combination of film projection and live opera performed in two handball alleys overlooking Galway Bay on the Irish coast. Also in 1999, Cross was awarded the Nissan Public Art Prize, resulting in her production of "Ghost Ship" - literally a luminescent ship temporarily moored in Dublin's Dun Loaghaire Harbour. Recent exhibitions throughout Europe and the US include Museum of Contemporary Art, Zagreb; Orchard Gallery, Derry; Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin; Artpace, San Antonio; McMullen Museum of Art, Boston; and Center for the Arts, San Francisco. Cross has also taken part in the Venice, Istanbul and Liverpool biennials. Her work is currently on show at Tate Modern, London as part of the permanent collection. Dorothy Cross is represented by Frith Street Gallery, London, and the Kerlin Gallery, Dublin.

Glorianna Davenport

Glorianna Davenport is a founding member of the MIT Media Lab where she serves as principal research scientist and heads the Interactive Cinema Group. She is co-founder and Principal Research Affiliate of Media Lab Europe, Dublin where she heads the Story Networks group. Trained as a documentary filmmaker, Davenport has pioneered new methods in digital media including "Evolving Documentary," "Very Distributed Storytelling" and "Mobile Cinema." She has published and lectured extensively on subjects of responsive media, and her prototype works have been included in many international symposia, conferences, and film festivals. Over the course of her career, she has served on the boards of several editorial boards and on advisory boards for several start-up companies. She is a recipient of MIT's prestigious Gyorgy Kepes Fellowship prize.

Kelly Dobson

Kelly Dobson is a design engineer and artist. Working in the realms of technology, medicine, art, and culture, her projects involve the parapraxis of machine design - what machines do and mean for people other than what we consciously designed them to do and be used for. She is currently a researcher at the MIT Media Lab working towards her Ph.D. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Cornell University's Department of Architecture, Art and Planning and a Master of Science degree from MIT's Visual Studies Program.

Kelly has performed/lectured at MIT in Cambridge, Massachusetts (1999 - 2002); the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C. (December 1999); and at Metapolis in Barcelona, Spain (October - November 2002). She has shown her work in solo exhibitions at Cornell University's Tjaden Gallery and as performances/interventions in public places. Her work has been included in group exhibitions at the Herbert F. Johnson Museum in Ithaca, New York (1994); Witte de With in Rotterdam, The Netherlands (July - September 2000); The MIT Media Laboratory in Cambridge, Massachusetts (October 2001); The Kitchen in New York, New York (December 2001), Beall Center for Art and Technology, University of California, Irvine (January 2002); and with Metapolis at the Circulo De Bellas Artes in Madrid, Spain (November 2002). While working in the Physics and Media Group at the MIT Media Lab, Dobson collaborated on work with the Flying Karamozov Brothers (1999 - 2000) and for The Un-Private House exhibition at MoMA (1999). As a member of the Interrogative Design Group at MIT's Center for Advanced Visual Studies, she worked on the Aegis Project with Krzysztof Wodiczko, Adam Whiton, Sung Ho Kim, Jurek Stypulkowski, and Brooklyn Model Works, which was featured in the Whitney Biennial in New York (2000) and the Berlin Art Forum International with Gabrielle Maubrie Gallery (1999).

Toni Dove

Toni Dove is an artist/independent producer who works primarily with electronic media, including virtual reality and interactive video installations, performance and DVD ROMs that engage viewers in responsive and immersive narrative environments. Her work has been presented in the United States, Europe and Canada as well as in print and on radio and television. Her current project "Spectropia", an interactive supernatural thriller about the infinite deferrals of desire, is a feature length interactive movie for two players that will be presented both as a DVD Internet product and as a full scale cinematic performance event for an audience. The DVD "Sally or the Bubble Burst" is a scene from the "Spectropia" project. Dove has received numerous grants and awards including support from the Rockefeller Foundation, the Greenwall Foundation, the Langlois Foundation, New York State Council on the Arts, National Endowment for the Arts, New York Foundation for the Arts, and the Eugene McDermott Award in the Arts from M.I.T.

Ian Flitman

Ian Flitman was born in 1963 and grew up in a southern suburb of London. His continuing interest in the arts has led him through successive periods of first poetry, then theatre, followed by film. He made two 16mm films having been involved in all stages of their execution namely having written, produced, directed and edited them (An Almost Selfish Film - 8 mins 1991, One Across - 16 mins 1994). After seeing the computer generated Toy Story, he decided to become involved in digital media. He studied Software Systems for the Arts and Media at the University of Hertfordshire (B.Sc. Hons., first) and won a RSA Student Design Award in Interactive Media sponsored by Macromedia in 1999. After teaching briefly on the degree he completed, Ian Flitman then went into the maelstrom of dotcoms. He produced work and campaigns for clients such as Coca-Cola, Philips, Channel 4 and the British government. In May 2002 he left London and moved to Istanbul, the story of which is documented in his online project "Hackney Girl". This project reflects his current interest in digital cinema and utilises his past experience in storytelling, film and computer media. Ian now teaches Contemporary Media and the History and Aesthetics of Animation at Bilgi University, Istanbul.

Ali Mazalek

Ali Mazalek is a Ph.D. candidate in the Interactive Cinema group at the MIT Media Laboratory. Her research explores how digital stories can take on tangible forms and can engage audiences in sociable interactions with the narrative content and with each other. Her recent work includes the development of a tangible interaction platform called TViews that uses wireless graspable pawns on a sensing surface as a means of navigating through complex spatially structured and multi-threaded stories. The platform has been used in several participatory storytelling experiences with both young people and adults. Ali received a MS in Media Arts and Sciences from MIT and a B.Sc. in Computer Science, Mathematics and Film Studies from the University of Toronto.

Nina Sabnani

Nina Sabnani, animator and painter, is currently senior designer and faculty at the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad. Nina, a Fine Arts graduate, trained further at NID in Animation Film Design. She has studied animation in Belgium, the Netherlands and UK and Multimedia and Television at Syracuse University NY, USA. Nina was actively involved in setting up the first Advanced Entry Programme in Animation in India, at NID in 1985. She developed the curriculum for a Post Graduate Programme in New Media, which commenced in 2001 and was responsible for writing the Vision report for NID 2001-2010 for Communication Design. She has been teaching and simultaneously making films on diverse issues since 1985. She has experimented in transposing artistic styles into animation. Her film Shubh Vivah , on the anti-dowry issue uses the Madhubani style of painting. Other animation films by her includeSummer Story based on K G Subramanyan's picture book and All About Nothing, on the birth of zero in India. Her professional works include channel identities for DD National, DD News, Tara Marathi and Tara Gujarati. In 1999, Nina received the state award for painting from the State Lalit Kala Academy. She is at present the coordinator of the New Media and Animation Design Programme at NID.

Eddo Stern

Eddo Stern was born in Tel Aviv, Israel and lives in Los Angeles. He is the creator of the acclaimed short film Sheik Attack. Since 1998, his work has been shown at The Kunsthalle Dusseldorf, The Walker Art Center, The Ludwig Museum, ARGOS in Brussels, and The Tate Gallery Liverpool. His interests are in new modes of narrative and documentary, and cross-cultural and cross-media representation in film, computer games, and the Internet. In 2000 he started C-Level, a cooperative new media lab and art space in LA's Chinatown. Stern is on the visiting faculty on the Graduate School of Cinema and Television at the University of Southern California. He received his Master of Fine Arts degree in Art and Integrated Media from California Institute for the Arts in 2000.

Krysztof Wodiczko

Born in Warsaw, Poland in 1943, Krzysztof Wodiczko lives and works in New York City and Boston, Massachusetts. He received a MFA from the Academy of Fine Arts (Akademia Sztuk Pieknych), Warsaw, Poland. Known for his twenty-five years of socially and politically charged public projections, Wodiczko explores the fundamentals of democracy in works designed for public space. Addressing such issues as homelessness, militarization, and xenophobia, Wodiczko uses public monuments, structures of symbolic power and collective memory, as integral foils for his iconic imagery. He has also developed a series of sculpture-instruments including, Homeless Vehicles, mobile shelters for homeless people and Mouthpieces and Alien Staffs, video-embedded objects through which individuals on the street can create and control their own representations. Wodiczko has presented public projections on the New York City Department of Public Affairs Building, Columbus Circle, New York City (1999); the Bunker Hill Monument, Boston, Massachusetts (1998); the Lenin Monument, Leninplatz, East Berlin (1990); the San Diego Museum of Man and Centro Cultural Tijuana (1998); the Guildhall, Derry, Northern Ireland (1985), and others. In addition to public projections and group exhibitions, Wodiczko presented three retrospective exhibitions in the 1990s, at Hiroshima City Art Museum, Japan (1999); De Appel Foundation, Amsterdam, The Netherlands (1995); and the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, Minnesota (1992).