Technology

Obscura by LROD y Artistas

A short dance-film inspired by Frida Kahlo’s The Wounded Table. I am not only thinking about rituals, offrendas y mi Familia but also what is the camera’s (me essentially) relation to the people in the frame.  I wanted to produce vibrant color in juxtaposition with darkness or the feeling of darkness. Creating worlds where inter-generational populations are included as well in the dance canon. Adelante!

Made by LROD y Artistas
Music: “Death Bed” by Alex Somers (Liminal Remix)
(I do not own the rights)

Creative Knot: GoPro: Hero Project

Creative Sandbox:

  • Opening: We will arrive together.

  • I will deliver a short content re-cap of the project, questions, and an overview of our time together.

  • We will move through some specific instruction (tasks, love rituals, experiments) in pairs and groups to establish some groundwork.

  • Then we will move into a more creative, play, open space for curiosity and input.

  • Sharing feedback and ideas around using the GoPro through interactions.

  • Closing Ritual.

“…everyone who loved sports and adventure wanted a GoPro, and from a niche brand, it moved to being a household name. With GoPro, anyone can be a star. In a context where everyone is self-obsessed and “selfie-obsessed” GoPro’s success was certain. Gopro BE A HERO. Their slogan, and their focus during their entire journey.”(Berardinetti 2015, 32)

When we think of the self during this time of recurring narcissism we begin to see how disconnected we are from the community. This, of course, is not new and has come in waves in the past like during the 70s when our society experienced what is known as the “me generation” and once again as the world wide web has embedded our way of life with the millennial generations oversaturation of technology. While my research is not grounded in psychological studies of this content it is apart of the research to our current situation in a state of “glorified self-personas.” Leading me to curiosity about GoPro’s mission to BE A HERO or BE A STAR when these captures are the majority of individual experiences.

What I find interesting, is the need to capture the extremes of one’s life and showcase these events in a digital public space. I see how this is beneficial for humans who will not have an opportunity or lack the skill to do what some of the professionals do on these films, but seems disconnected to the being a hero of only one. Now don’t get me wrong some of these captures are breathtaking and beautiful, but this leaves me questioning the purpose behind “be a hero” or “be a star” in context to individuality and “selfism” vs. community and “other”.

  • Here watch this and think about what clip grabs your attention the most?

  • Hang on to your answer for Tuesday.

GoPro is a billion dollar company and was specifically designed for the athlete and adventure seekers to capture their extreme experiences. GoPro has since expanded to include different genre to capture that include, music, animals, nature, short films, and so on. This product was the innovation of the video camera and re-centered the person’s perspective into the film, while also providing selfie stick, Karma, or Drone to include everyone back into the picture. However, I am most interested in using the GoPro Hero model to capture community interactions around qualities of care, tenderness, peacefulness, and ethics. Mostly thinking about these questions:

What makes these people heroes compared to everyday heroes? 

What is relevant about filming the interactions of everyday heroes that exist daily vs. the radical interactions of athleticism?

What is it like to be a hero for a day and have your experience captured?

How do peacefulness and tenderness translate on film? What does tenderness look like in actions form?

Redirecting back to Mr. Rogers, I find that his method for approaching his television mission for finding “peacefulness” on the television was in the way he delivered his programming. In reading an article by Buczinsky he says, “We have come through the initial rush of constant information, the euphoria of video screen magic, and the tingle of social media connectivity, and on the other side, we have found its hollowness”(Buczinsky 11). Finding the relevance of wanting to connect back to the community, to be seen face to face, or to engage in human interaction is a goal that I believe serves this research under Norah Zuniga-Shaw’s Humane Technology Research. This project also incorporates the use and approach with technology to include tenderness Mr. Rogers provided its viewers.

I am interested in capturing community through interactions that need attention to be showcased and held to equal standards of the GoPro mission. I am also still debating how I will edit the film, cinematic or video art style since this requires some thoughts on how the approach is delivered, and the material is being captured. We will experiment with the headgear and harness straps for the GoPro since each provides different perspectives. I am interested in making art with the community – co-authorship.

Here are two videos to browse from GoPro for a Cause category, there are some interesting aspects to the perspectives used to capture different movements, children, and emotion:

https://gopro.com/channel/gopro-for-a-cause/gopro-cause-building-homes-for-children-in-africa

https://gopro.com/channel/gopro-for-a-cause/a-blind-man-and-his-armless-friend-plant-a-forest-in-china

****These films are professionally from GoPro and have use of all GoPro products in order to create along with documentary filming/production.

With Care. See you soon.

Humane Technology: Fred Rogers

Archive Date: January 20, 2018
Author:
lrodcollection1 Comment

When I was a child I so much enjoyed watching Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood. I found this show to be unique in its approach to different topics that my parents or other adults would shy away from at the time. Mr. Rogers provided a model for courage, bravery, and an approach to tough topics that gave me a great sense of joy, inclusion, and understanding. I also received an example of connection and comfort that arose from the content of this show. I do also know I am about to connect yet another white male figure to the cannon of intermedia studies, however, this is relevant to the Hero Project I am working on with the Champion Intergenerational Center.

According to Hedda Sharapan, one of the main consultants for the Fred Rogers Communications philosophy recalls,

“Fred felt strongly that “screens” should not be used as a substitute for human communication. He originally named our production company Family Communications, because his goal was to create experiences that parents and children would watch together and talk about. He firmly believed the best technology connects children with others and the world around them in positive ways.”

In an age where Mr. Roger’s philosophy seems to fade away, I recall this episode from Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood examining technology, connection, and learning, please click here. There is currently no getting away from the fact that the digital space is impeding on the analog spaces, and any source for course correction has long past. Mr. Rogers said, “Let’s not get so fascinated by what the technology can do that we forget what it can’t do.” I think the fascination has overtaken our lives and we are slowly forgetting its limitations. This situation is the one I am consumed with at the moment. How can we not forget about love, empathy, joy, relevance, and human connection and interaction? It can be hard to recognize the work that is being done in the realms of technology, film, and TV that address these concerns.

While I connect with my own experience watching Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood I am also looking at my own children’s consumption and reliance on the screen. I am constantly struggling with the relationship my children have with screens. Noting that this applies to my own struggle I have with disconnecting. I feel like I am constantly trying to find time to enjoy communication and interact by installing no screens at dinnertime, timed interactions, reading a book time, and blackout weekends. However, with all these new provisions to safeguard a child’s learning, I still find a struggle as society becomes more and more embedded through the screen. Here are some recent stats on daily intake. Also see here. 

Is this how it is going to be? Is the humane approach now to find ways to disconnect from the screen and reconnect with the body, environment, and people around us? Or is the humane way to provide content that enhances the connections in the digital space? Maybe it is both at this point.

Considering how TV and screen time can be humane, I glance over at the film industry statistics, which currently claims globally 41.2 billion dollars in 2017. My Humane technology project under Norah Zuniga Shaw’s research is in film and animation, so the impact of the rising power of film interests me. Check out some of the film industries projected numbers here. These numbers raise concern that our relationship towards film is constantly growing in popularity, and the rise of Disney/Pixar and Dreamworks films’ continue to be powerhouses in children’s content. Does the content of the films allow us a moment to escape our lives by providing us with 2-3 hours of visual entertainment? Or the chance to engage in other worlds, human interactions, different experiences, and problem solve? Is this considered humane?

I guess it all comes down to the content provided. I recently reflect on watching the Pixar movie COCO, I consider this experience of witnessing my own culture and family dynamics represented with care, so powerfully on a screen – to be humane. To see for once on the big screen in animation a clear representation of what it means to be Latina/o had a profound impact on me – one I will not forget. Yes, this movie also spoke to my inner child and my obsession surrounding death culture. More on that later.

While these thoughts are just some of the sensibilities I am forming around my project -there is much more to consider. The Champion Intergenerational Center I will be working with provides the opportunity for older and younger people to interact around well-being together.  Some of my growing questions at the moment include: What content needs to be seen? What are the representations I can provide with care? How is my approach considering love and empathy through film?

In 1969 Mr. Rogers made claim and was awarded 20 million to provide a platform of care to children with a television show via the public access network. This show was revolutionary for its time and has been an inspiration for showing the way to deliver content with care. Watch Mr. Rogers give his testimony…

The video above continues to move and inspire me. Not only with Mr. Roger’s ability to provide a sound argument but with the care and approach to his material. Mr. Rogers was able to transform public television and strategically provide an alternative for growing young minds. I think there is much to learn from Mr. Roger’s in the delivery of care and well-being.

Mr. Rogers, you were a pioneer and innovator in the humane technology field.

Intermedia || Interactive Audience

For our last study this semester, we were thinking about how the audience can participate while also folding in the first two studies and reshaping the work. We considered taking an easy approach to lighting and technology limiting down to what and why we use tech, light, sound and movement. We chose to begin with making a dinner table set with place settings digitally. This work was inspired by Judy Chicago’s The Dinner Party (1974-79), a monumental feminist work of its time. Then, we decided to interact by having our cellphones engaged in the work. To talk through with the audience, to text other performers, and capture video of the event. We also set up interactive movement study to see if the audience would pick it up and – they did!

Feel free to skip through:

In reflection, this work really seemed to be the easiest to complete, and we found a balance between interactions, technology, and movement that seemed to create a holistic environment. While it is important to consider what Marshall McLuhan said, “the medium is the message”… well, we are responding to the message (Dixon 2004). Couple key questions sit on my mind: What are we saying with the technology we are in collaboration with? What are the stakes that surround this interdisciplinary landscape? The work feels open, free, and uncontained to a specific genre. In a sense Intermedia is freedom.

While maintaining a sense of freedom, I turn to Faye Driscoll’s (2014) Thank You For Coming: Attendance has been a huge influence on the work I do in considering interactivity and connection with the audience. I referenced Faye’s work in the earlier blog post. So when we talk about the community making the work and co-creating, co-authoring, co-generating the outcome – we are interested in separating from technology for a moment to connect. This is a driving part of the work created in the final study. However, we demonstrated the interference technology has in our daily life. The way we connect through media in order to interact has certainly come full force.

Take a moment to enjoy this work and commentary:

 As the semester came to a close, Norah Zuniga-Shaw asked us what Intermedia is? I responded:

Intermedia is a radical space that allows for interactive engagement that activates the performers, technology, and audience to explore a liminality of openness. This interdisciplinary space transforms the environment to teleport all parties to a sub-dimension of the unknown. Intermedia creates a visual distortion and appetite fostering the collaboration of technological humanness.

Intermedia moves without a container and allows your imagination to run in any direction possible. I gained more insight into the importance of light/projection, how to formulate collaboration within this setting, and how to build a structure around integrating technology. While also learning the array of equipment and programs in the MOLA lab. I am leaving this course with more questions than I entered, but I feel ready to engage and continue the exploration forward. Digital self-signing off for now.

Sources:

Dixon, Steve. 2004. “The Digital Double.” New Visions in Performance: “The Impact of Digital Technologies. Ed. Gavin Carver. Lisse: Swets & Zeitlinger, 2004. Print.

Driscoll, Faye. 2014. Thank You For Coming: Attendance. (Film) Walker Art Center. Published 2017. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dlB3MrBr2_M

Intermedia || Media First

Archive Date: December 14, 2017
Author:
lrodcollection1 Comment

Texture inspires movement, environment, and sound were the starting point for our next study. Our next task gave us a moment of pause to reflect on how we can enter into a work from a different starting point. We recorded and photographed various videos with movement in them to project throughout the campus. Then, we had a full day of sifting through the material and trying different captures on different placements within MOLA.

After selecting the images our next task was to see where they were going to be installed in the space. So we used the arch of mesh to create a container for the work, as well, using the scrim and wall to project on. Next, came the movement invention and exploration. This project was challenging since the majority of our group needed to be behind the scenes working on Isadora, Matrix, and the lighting. However, the goal for us was to accomplish a welcoming environment in a fluid space for the audience. To me, this was our most challenging study, but it paid off in understanding how to merge movement when media comes first.

Developing the movement to suit moving images takes awareness, quality, and timing to not overload the audience’s visual capacity. We found it helpful to juxtapose the images with more movement with stillness, and the more static images with more movement. Mimicking movement from the screen was also a good way to be informed by the media.

Overall, a more developed version of the media first study would be projection mapping. I have listed here work by Dandypunk who puts the movement in response to the media in order to create a narrative. Which is a different direction that the space we created, but, the work is a good example a fully realized form of media first that show the multiplicity of choice in within Intermedia work.

The Alchemy of Light by Dandypunk:

Intermedia || Merging Reflection

Archive Date: December 14, 2017
Author:
lrodcollection0 Comments

In collaboration with my colleagues, we set out to produce a digital double investigation. Our goals included examining the Double as Reflection, suggested from Steve Dixon’s “The Digital Double” (2004) essay which I reflected previously on here. From this project, we realized that we were attracted to textures, themes, and discovered multiple ways to find a reflection at different levels of technological entanglement. Take a moment to skip through.

One challenge that we encountered was in using the video feedback loop, top-down camera, projection, and lighting to gain different perspectives of the space, it appeared that the movement we created needed to shift per examination. Incorporating The Isadora program, live sound, and lighting to bring these portraits together merged with the movement and use of the material was essential and grounding components to this project.

The digital double in the sense of reflection draws me to the consciousness that the real body maintains throughout the performance. I found it interesting that most of the time the real-life performer needs to witness the digital in reflection. Dixon notes, “This has been exacerbated by paradoxical rhetoric of disembodiment and virtual bodies, which have turned ideas of corporeal reality full circle by the claim that the digital body has equal status and (authenticity) to the biological one” (Dixon 2004, 24). During this study, the concept did cross my mind of the equality of images, and I found myself drawn to both bodies at different times. I begin to speak about this on this page with Agent Ruby and the sense of awareness of consciousness through AI that has developed.

For this project, I appreciated this viewing:

Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker’s Fase (1982) is so simple from a current technological standpoint but is still so mesmerizing to watch. Here light, shadow, film, and movement create the dance – enhance the dance. One of the parts that most interests me is at 7:18 of this film. Noting that from the first half of the film space transforms and they are now performing on their shadows in a fully saturated blue space.

Glancing into the future I was struck by this digital double. While the concept is simple seems simple what transpires is exhilarating.

This is CO: LATERAL (2016) by Joao Martinho Moura

Moura’s work with the digital double here is literally electrifying itself. I appreciate how in this work the dancer is in the dark while the emphasis is put on the double.  The bold lighting against the blackened stage gives a stark contrast platform for the double to stand out.  In a sense this double take on a dominant force on stage and provides a strong presence in the work following along with Dixon’s models.

The most important experience I had from this study is the merger of technology and body with intention. Questioning why /how we implement technology into the work was at the forefront of this study to think about as a group. The question: How we collaborate with technology? Continued forward into our next studies.

Sources:

De Keersmaeker, Anne Teresa, and Michele Anne de Mey. 1982. “Fase.” (Film) Director Thierry de Mey. Music Robert Reich.

Dixon. Steve. 2004. “The Digital Double.” New Visions in Performance: The Impact of Digital Technologies. Ed. Gavin Carver. Lisse: Swets & Zeitlinger. Print

The Internal | Connecting | Creative Process

Date: October 26, 2017

Two levels in Creative process v.210

Mapping out a creative process to connect two parts of my research resonating with Inside the room and Outside the room branches. Inside the room’s design is led by the Experiment thread, while Outside the room reflects the Research thread. I was compiling this information from a word bank created in Grad Composition class with Professor Susan Van Pelt Petry and peers. We then each took the word bank and made a visual map of our own individual creative process.

For my own challenge, I only used each word one time and practiced this assignment utilizing a present moment embodiment. Meaning, I only allowed myself one piece of paper with no option to have a do-over. Utilizing this assignment as a challenge I was aware of my devising boundaries. This project created a meditative space for me to sit with my pen to the paper, and process my process. Which usually feels meta, however, this project was calming while being informative. Most of my reflections have happened through a stream of consciousness or analytical essay, so it felt good to move towards a tangible medium to flush out information.

Further noting the attention and weight of each word resonating within my body and I continue to let these words reconfigure inside my body. A digital roadway on the frontier of inter-connectivity pulsing, sparking and transferring connections that re-wires and retracts information before surging it back out again.

The system is operating. 

I recognize these maps are abundant within my body, mind and are the containers to hold, organize, connect information used to make co-creative spaces. They are roadways of information. Living knowledge intrigues me as I delve into the internal self of producing art. Maybe the cyborg self is emerging underneath the surface below my skin and responds to the familiarity of the motherboard. While the image below relates to this emerging, I examine the depths and intricacies that are possible in overriding.

Cyborg Self Reflection | Awakening

In trying to navigate my own cyborg self-relationship I am drawn to this quote by Donna Haraway a professor, consciousness, and feminist scholar, “Cyborg writing is about the power to survive, not on the basis of original innocence, but on the basis of seizing the tools to mark the world that marked them as other” (Haraway 2016, 55). My journey over the past five years has sent me plunging into words, writing, and language – preparing me for my conversations, arguments, and discourse today. Sometimes my consciousness rejects my impulse to respond, and my unconsciousness delivers connectors to reconnect broken bridges of thought. Tracing the map above throughout my creative process enables me to redirect how I am thinking, feeling, and exploring the material.

Responding to a recent visit by Vida Midgelow who presented at the DSA inaugural Scholarly Conference and is a Professor in Dance and Choreographic Studies at Middlesex University London says, “Coming into language is a significant process through which experiential, material and emergent forms of knowledge can be foregrounded, processed and shared” (Midgelow 1994). Previously, I rarely spoke my stance or dared to share the perspectives that ran rampant in my mind.

The information comes to me as this digital space allows me to write about these developing curiosities that are awakening. Identifying as an “other,” I do claim the tools to unearth my potential as a choreographic researcher, scholar, and free-thinker to engage in practices that move humanity towards change. Structures, rules, and traditions can be broken and reconfigured to make manifest new ways of operating that enhance artistic ability, connect technology and humanity, and revolutionize the central core of art making.

Free Motherboard Vector Art

The above image is how I imagine the framework for my discourse of choreographic research operating. The motherboard vector art is part – object – abstract – micro-processing –  unit –  internet integrated – modern – binary that projects future technological advances – or human.

 

Works Cited

Haraway, Donna J. and Cary Wolfe. 2016. Manifestly Haraway. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press. https://muse.jhu.edu/ (accessed October 25, 2017).

Midgelow, Vida. and Jane Bacon. 2014. “Creative Articulation Practice (CAP).”                                      Forthcoming in Choreographic Practices. 5[2]                                                                                  https://www.academia.edu/9956868/Creative_Articulations_Process_CAP_  (accessed October 25, 2017)