Friday, 16 October 2009

Dead Media, Live Nature

I am giving some media ecology and dead media related talks in the near future. The first one is going to be in a couple of weeks in Amsterdam as part of the matinees of the Imaginary Futures research group. I was kindly invited there by Wanda Strauven. Its on Friday the 30th of October, I think starting around 10.30 or 11, and located at Bungehuis, Spuistraat 210, room 101.

Here is the abstract:

The talk Dead Media/Live Nature focuses on the transpositions of media and nature through recent art projects such as Harwood-Wright-Yokokoji's Eco Media (Cross Talk) and Garnet Hertz's Dead Media. The Eco Media project developed new modes of thinking and doing media (ecology) through a tracking of the intensities of nature. However, in this case the medium was understood in a very broad sense to cover the ecosystem as a communication network of atmospheric flows, tides, reproductive hormones, scent markers, migrations or geological distributions. The project does not focus solely on the ecological crisis that has been a topic of media representations for years, but also engages with a more immanent level of media ecology in a manner that resembles Matthew Fuller's call for Art for Animals. Media is approached from the viewpoint of animal perceptions, motilities and energies (such as wind) that escape the frameworks of "human media." In this context the rhetorical question of the Eco Media project concerning non-human media is intriguing: "Can 'natural media' with its different agencies and sensorium help to rethink human media, revealing opportunities for action or areas of mutual interest?" In addition the talk will expand the notion of "dead media" as articulated recently by Garnet Hertz, and discuss its relevance for establishing a connection between media ecology and media archaeology.

Wednesday, 14 October 2009

Project start!

This is the blog for my new research project on Media Archaeology -- and the Cartographical Mapping of some new trends in media studies and history. It supports the research project that investigates media archaeology as media studies method and theory, and maps both its trends and emerging directions. Polity Press have just confirmed that they will offer a contract for the book that is coming out of the project -- book hopefully finished in August 2011. Excited to be doing this for Polity and fingers crossed; submitting an application to the AHRC for an early career fellowship where this book would be the key output.

The project and the book support the work we did already with Erkki Huhtamo -- an edited volume on media archaeology and its new directions. That book is coming out from University of California Press hopefully in 2011, and was an exciting even if a long project. Working with Erkki was wonderful in terms of his huge experience of the field and media history, but also because of our diverging but hopefully complementing ideas of media archaeological research.

The proposed project (and this blog which will be used for updates on progress, ideas, interim results, as well as wider discussions of what is going on in terms of media archaeology and related approaches) addresses how to develop media archaeology as an exemplary "21st century arts and humanities theory and method" that tackles key themes in software cultures, creative practice, digital archives and lends innovatively from feminist theory, critical methodologies and such emerging trends in media theory as new materialist cultural analysis.

Well, the gets into full swing only next year, so this blog will also kick-off more forcefully then. But stay tuned. Its all about dead media, obsolescence, losers of media history and other freaks in media theory!