[artinfo] call Performing Places seminar, Helsinki, Nov 7-9, 2006

Adele Eisenstein adele at c3.hu
Mon Sep 25 00:11:27 CEST 2006

Call for participation

media and embodiment in the urban environment

Helsinki, November 7-9, 2006

*Submission deadline: October 6, 2006
*Notification of acceptance: October 12
*Full papers due: October 31
*Seminar opening/closing: November 7, 6 pm / November 9, 4 pm

Seminar theme

The Performing places seminar will bring together researchers, 
artists and developers whose work touches on the experiential, 
affective and political aspects of urban and technological life, and 
who share an interest in inventive artistic and technical practices 
of the urban environment.

The seminar addresses the current urban situation, where lived 
environments are undergoing major experiential and social changes, 
driven mainly by technical and economic pressures. Our aim is to 
create a forum for critical, transdisciplinary exchange by bringing 
to resonance a set of relevant themes:

1. Urban space, in its current versions, blends embodied and mediated 
forms, orchestrating everyday actions to an invisible score of 
signals and software. With ubiquitous computing, devices pervade our 
physical environments to trace and modulate behaviour, enabling new 
modes of service, surveillance and intervention.

2. Cities are increasingly shaped by the formation of 'creative 
clusters', according to innovation strategies which target an 
evolving experience industry and seek global competitiveness for a 
particular region or place. These strategies typically neglect 
embodied, affective or everyday aspects of the production of space - 
even if they often include programmes to advance citizen 
participation and social inclusion.

3. Artists and media developers have the possibility of addressing 
urban space in ways that prioritize its experiential, social and 
political contexts. Strategies of site-specific, community and 
performance art are complemented by the activity of media artists and 
designers, producing interventions and applications that can capture 
the collective dimensions of our experience and render them palpable.

4. Recent theories in human geography and the cultural study of 
technology highlight the affective and relational qualities of the 
urban/technological environment. In their focus on the performative 
and collective aspects of use and production, these theories 
challenge dominant views of representation and innovation, proposing 
more event-based and mobile accounts of inventive agency.



The seminar invites participation from all relevant disciplines, 
especially from practitioners and researchers in

*media, performance and urban arts
*IT design and and urban planning
*urban and media studies.

The aim is to build conceptual links and exchanges between 
disciplines, in order to produce a critical framework with real 
relevance for urban practice, research and policy. For this reason 
the seminar will take the form of parallel workshops, with short 
presentations and a collaborative development of issues. Project 
demonstrations are warmly encouraged - but the main objective is to 
move beyond presentation and arrive at a problematization of 
practices. Of special interest are contributions discussing, for example:

*Performativity and performance - embodied, affective and 
non-representational practices in media, arts and sociality;
*Ubiquitous interaction - collective, participatory agency in urban 
*Affected places - art and media interventions in the physical and 
virtual environment;
*Urban media experience - audiovisual, mobile and network media in 
the production, consumption and experience of places;
*In/visibility - techniques and practices of representing and making 
visible, from infrastructures to surveillance to performance;
*Critical urban practice - critical artistic and technical practice 
in the urban sphere; perspectives on production, coding, design, 
planning and development.

How to participate

Submissions should include 1) Title, 2) Keywords 3) 500-word abstract 
4) Selected bibliography and 5) 200 word cv of presenter.

They should be sent by October 6, 2006 to informer at m-cult.org as pdf 
or rtf attachments.

Notification of acceptance is October 12 and full papers due October 31, 2006.

For further information, contact Minna Tarkka: minna tarkka [at] 
m-cult [dot] org

Invited speakers and artists

Nigel Thrift, University of Warwick, Human Geography
Sally Jane Norman, Newcastle University, Culture lab
Adrian Mackenzie, Lancaster University, Institute for Cultural Research
Hille Koskela, University of Helsinki, Department of Geography

Invited artist-researchers Pia Lindman, performance artist, Fellow, 
MIT Centre for Advanced Visual Studies
Ari Tenhula, choreographer, researcher, Theatre Academy of Finland
Heidi Tikka, media artist, researcher, Media Lab UIAH / USED


The seminar is organised in context of USED (Urban Spaces and 
Experience Design), an arts and research interaction project carried 
out by m-cult and HIIT and funded by the Academy of Finland and the 
Arts Council of Finland. The co-organising partners are:

m-cult centre for new media culture, Minna Tarkka
http://www.m-cult.org http://used.m-cult.org
HIIT Helsinki Institute for Information Technology, Giulio Jacucci
Helsinki University of Technology, Urban and Regional Studies, Panu Lehtovuori
Theatre Academy of Finland, Performance studies, Annette Arlander
University of Art and Design Helsinki, Environmental Art, Alan Prohm
University of Art and Design Helsinki, Media Lab, Lily Diaz



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