User:Max Dovey/Reading Writing Research Methodologies/maxdgradprop2

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When the technology performs (Working Title)

What I am proposing for my graduate project in June is a work that is built upon two elements that combine real-time media and live performance. The first is real-time webcams and the second is how computer software can now interpret (moving) images.
I am interested in the authenticity of live media and the way it mediates performance with real-time experience. By mediating live acts of performance with real-time computing and artificial intelligence programs the technology can interpret and respond to live action.
I intend on generating narratives through the process of instant (mis)interpretation and look at the authenticity of real-time media. This method of performance relates to my research into how the immediate and the authentic of the live act is mediated with technology.
Tech requirements

    A rough tech list
  • 2 projectors
  • 1 screen 5m x 3.5m
  • A staged area for performance opposite projection screen 7m x 5m
  • A 2.4mbps ethernet internet connection


Performance art has a long history of challenging the relationship between technology and the live aura and the discussion over reproduction and live art documentation has been fought since the 1960s. We now find that Walter Benjamin’s essay Art In The Age Of Technical Reproducibility (1936) needs to be revised, as artists are utilizing real-time technology and wireless networks to generate live performances in immediate and distant locations.
When referring to the aura of performance I identify it as the unexpected, the improvised nature of the live moment that cannot be recreated.
Computers can now operate within the live moment, processing and responding with the action so that the technology is no longer a reproduction detached from its authentic origin but a player in the act; generating the aura of the live moment in a relational mediation of events.

My wider inquiry for the graduation project is how does technology mediate performance and our experience of liveness?

Practical Steps

My interest in real-time led me to webcams and I’ve made some prototypes exploring different methods for performing with video streams. I’ve located webcams from an online community (opentopia) where there is a small group of regular watchers who comment on the webcams like reality T.V.
In these examples I perform the viewer’s comments by reading them out loud or creating subtitles text onto the webcam so the metadata becomes embedded into the same image and creates a performance on the act surveillance.

I have begun some small prototypes to begin this process –