Cuál sería el sentido de la expresión e-fagia? En la posibilidad de “digitalizarlo todo”, podemos decir que este medio es una manifestación básica y prioritaria de relación, de unión en la sociedad contemporánea: de formas procesadas para ser digitalizadas o imbricadas en una re-digitalización. Todo nuestro entorno se presta para ser digitalizado, pero a su vez, la imagen numérica puede ser re-digitalizada. Es una nueva “Fagia”.
Para la curaduría del Digital Evento se comenzó con la intención de hacer una selección de proyectos partiendo de la idea de hacer convocatorias abiertas centradas en ejes temáticos. Pero al pasar de los dias y del conocimiento que estábamos adquiriendo sobre la relación arte y la cultura creada en el entorno de la red, nuestra perspectiva se amplió y se trató de dar una mirada a las redes de comunicación, de creación y de reflexión de la imagen digital.
Como eje temático para el estudio de la curaduría decidimos investigar sobre proyectos relacionados con el arte en la red teniendo como centro de reflexión el concepto de “Actualización”. Este término es generalmente empleado para dimensionar las posibilidades que generan los nuevos medios digitales y basar en ellas sus enlaces y cooperaciones con el entorno y el concepto de la realidad.
Para el primer Evento Digital decidimos hacer una selección de trabajos que sirvieran de muestra básica. Debido al gran espectro de propuestas que ofrece la cultura de la red y tratando de conservar el eje de la investigación decidimos hacer una convocatoria cerrada. El objetivo para la segunda muestra sería desarrollar el tema de la actualización desde tres aspectos: aproximaciones artísticas a la programación, lazos o vías imbricadas en el Internet, y sociedades emergentes en la red.
El proceso para la curaduría del Evento Digital fue el siguiente: en primer lugar se investigó sobre artistas o grupos de trabajo; en segundo lugar se hizo contacto con estos y en tercer lugar se seleccionó un proyecto. Desde un comienzo consideramos oportuno que la muestra estuviera apoyada por una serie de reflexiones teóricas en torno al arte y su relación con la cultura en la era de Internet. Es así como buscamos presentar textos que sirvieran de base a toda persona que se interese en este tema.
What would be the meaning of the word “e-fagia”? In the possibility of “digitizing everything”, we can say that this medium is a basic and priority manifestation of cohesive relations in contemporary society: of forms processed to be digitized or imbricated in re-digitalization. All our surroundings are suitable to be digitized… it’s a new form of cannibalism.
While curating this event we started with the idea of selecting projects by doing an open call for entries around certain themes. However, the process of learning about the relationship between art and internet culture broadened our perspective and we started to look at networks of communication, creation and reflection on the digital image.
As a theme for the selection of the works we chose the concept of “transformation”, a term used to dimension the possibilities of digital media and their connection and interaction with the environment and the concept of reality.
Due to the wide spectrum of proposals offered by net culture, and trying to preserve the aim of the investigation, we decided to do a restricted call. For this first Digital Event we decided to do a selection that would give the public a basic idea of the work that is being developed. For the second exhibition we are planning on developing the theme of transformation from three perspectives: Artistic approximations to programming, Imbricated trends in the internet, Emergent societies on the net.
The process of curating this event was the following: first we researched about artists or work groups; then, we contacted them and we selected one of their projects. We are also providing a series of essays that we thought could lead to a reflection on art and culture in the Internet era. That’s why we decided to include texts that would work as a starting point for individuals that are interested in this topic.
We have grouped the invited works into four categories that suggest connections and similarities in their themes and the way they address artistic concerns. There is however, many other relationships that can be established between these works, which are rich in connotations and complexity. An additional fifth category has been also established in which we have grouped the visual artists that, not having worked before in this field, were invited and given assistance to create a project to present in the Internet.
Subjective narratives weaving reality
Many of the projects explore voices of memory, personal and collective histories and subjective and unconventional narratives that go beyond a linear sequence of events. Most of the pieces in this section deal with the concept of subjective narratives and their connection to documents, registers or traces. Felberbaum’s work somewhere between here and there… experiments with the documentary genre and the storytelling process as enabled by computers, letting the viewer alter the order of the sequences in an intuitive way. Memory Weave, by Zerbarini, gives the viewer access to factual information, interviews and users' inputs, while creating a mobile interface that seeks to evoke the paths of memory. Taira Liceaga views personal history and ancestry through photographs, constructing a narrative based on physical similarities. Maria collects different views and takes of the sky in order to subtly evoke different stories. Celia bases her work in a short story and experiments with different forms of user participation, reflecting on topics like virtual reality and imagination.
Technology, media, society and self -- transgressing territories
We can also find works that deal with the shifting nature of cultures coming in contact with one another. They reflect about the invasive quality of media, the effects of progress and technological advances on the development of cultural and social categories, and the relationship between dominant cultures and dominated ones. Traveling Corners explores deterritorialization, reterritorialization and cultural displacement, and the people’s relationship with the spaces they occupy. TLC:All the Chiapas deals with globalization, the internalization of the media spectacle and the way it invades even our most private realm. On the other hand, Imagepirate creates an invasive montage of appropriated images from different media ranging from cnn to animated porn, recombining them and shifting their meanings. Altred is an initiative that aims to generate an open network that shares and uses technology to establish net communities and relationships not driven by commercial interests, using technology to connect to one another and foster alternative points of view.
Poetics of the code
The emphasis of these works is placed on programming and the types of relationships, processes and results that can be achieved getting away from traditional interfaces, methods or sequences, provoking a different experience on the viewer. Ways of Neuron is a prototype that provides a navigational mode inspired in the way neurons interact and create their networks, giving the users the possibility to explore new ways of learning. La mareadora explores the activity of creation and transformation of language, using the tools available in the Internet to recombine meanings, allowing the reader to discover new relationships between words and ideas, establishing a potentially rich source of creation and inspiration. Pursuit and Capture reflects on filmic conventions employed by action movies in car chase scenes. Shots are stored in a database and then accessed randomly by a search engine, in order to create new sequences out of different combinations.
Performative acts trough the webcam
Sara Malinarich and Tania de la Cruz use the webcam as a site for their work, establishing technology-mediated interactions and exploring topics like deterritorialization, representation of the body and relations between cultures. Stay in Place reveals the resurgence of small complicities between two friends in a chat session while the screen acts as a mirror of oneself and the other, and makes us reflect about personal relationships in the presence of new technologies.
Tania de la Cruz combines historical elements in the relations between dominant and dominated cultures, using the web as a place to address identity and socio political issues.
Visual artists and the web
As a way to encourage the production of digital works, e-fagia invited several Latin-Canadian visual artists to participate in the conception and creation of a digital project to be included on this site. Delirium, by Claudia Bernal, is part of the artist’s investigation process of the Nepantes tryptich project. It addresses the conflicts in the constitution of feminine idenity by presenting a delicate soundscape and photographs of a series of gestures performed as in a ritual. Migrations, by Diana Cadavid and Alvaro Giron present videos that explore the concept of movement and the passing of time in the constant flux of life and migrations. LandEscape by Lina Rodríguez explores the questions and contradictions between land and memory, using fragmented texts, images and data that come together in an attempt to cope with a landscape that changes and shifts both in the present and in the past, in presence and in absence. Finally, Z’otz collective mixes in randomness into their drawings and texts to create Exquisite Corpse, a work in which the user can generate random compositions.