• Sarat Maharaj
  • Lucia Santaella


I. MediaArtHistories: Times and Landscapes I and II

1. ( Chairs: Oliver Grau and Gunalan Nadarajan )
After photography, film, video, and the little known media art history of the 1960s-80s, today media artists are active in a wide range of digital areas (including interactive, genetic, telematic and nanoart). Media Art History offers a basis for attempting an evolutionary history of the audiovisual media, from the Laterna Magica to the Panorama, Phantasmagoria, Film, and the Virtual Art of recent decades. This panel tries to clarify, if and how varieties of Media Art have been splitting up during the last decades. It examines also how far back Media Art reaches as a historical category within the history of Art, Science and Technology. This session will offer a first overview about the visible influence of media art on all fields of art.


  • GUNALAN NADARAJAN: Islamic Automation: A Reading of al-Jazari's The Book of Knowledge of Ingenious Mechanical Devices (1206)
  • LOUISE POISSANT: From Material to medium
  • OLIVER GRAU: Magic, Movement and Evolution: From Phantasmagoria to Media Art
  • MARIO CARPO: The Demise of the Identicals Architectural standardization in the age of digital reproducibility

2. (Chair Edward Shanken, co: Charlie Gere)
Although there has been important scholarship on intersections between art and technology, there is no comprehensive technological history of art (as there are feminist and Marxist histories of art, for example.) Canonical histories of art fail to sufficiently address the inter-relatedness of developments in science, technology, and art. What similarities and differences, continuities and discontinuities, can be mapped onto artistic uses of technology and the role of artists in shaping technology throughout the history of art? This panel seeks to take account of extant literature on this history in order to establish foundations for further research and to gain perspective on its place with respect to larger historiographical concerns.


  • EDWARD SHANKEN: Towards a comprehensive technological history of art?
  • CHARLIE GERE: Early British Computer Art: the findings of the CACHe project
  • GRANT TAYLOR: "How anti-computer sentiment shaped early computer art
  • DARKO FRITZ & MARGIT ROSEN: Between Form and Concept - The Positioning of Computer-Based Arts in the Late 1960s
  • SYLVIE LACERTE: Experiments in Art and Technology: a gap to fill in art history's recent chronicles
  • ANNE COLLINS GOODYEAR: Technophilia, Vietnam, and the Rise and Fall of "Art and Technology" in the United States, 1965-1971
  • CAROLINE LANGILL: Hey, Look at Me! Thoughts on the canonical exclusion of early electronic art
  • MARIA FERNANDEZ: Gordon Pask - cybernetic polymath

II. Methodologies (Chair: W.J.T. Mitchell)
This session tries to give a critical overview of which methods art history has been using during the past to approach media art. Papers regarding media archaeological, anthropological, narrative and observer oriented approaches are welcome. Equally encouraged are proposals on iconological, semiotic and cyberfeministic methods.


  • ERKKI HUHTAMO: Media Arts and Media Archaeology - Collision or Convergence
  • IRINA ARISTARKHOVA: Excavating Mother, Excavating Cyborg
  • ANDREAS BROECKMANN: Image, Process, Performance, Machine. Paradigms of Media Art Theory

III. Art as Research / Artists as Inventors (Chair: Dieter Daniels)
Do "innovations" and "inventions" in the field of art differ from those in the field of technology and science? Do artists still contribute anything "new" to those fields of research - and did they ever in history? Which inventions changed the arts as well as technology and the media? These questions will be discussed in a frame from the 19th century until today, special foci of interest are:
- modernism and the birth of media technology 1840 - 1880
- the utopia of merging art and technology in the 1920s and 1960s
- the crisis of the "new" vs. digital media art innovations since the 1980s


  • DIETER DANIELS: "Art as Research / Artists as Inventors"
  • CHRIS MEIGH-ANDREWS: Peter Donebauer & Richard Monkhouse - Video Artist/ Engineers in the UK
  • FRED TURNER: Where Cybernetics Met The Counterculture: The Us Company, (USA)
  • SIMON PENNY: Art invention and technical innovation
  • CORNELIUS BORCK: Going beyond the body's limits: Raoul Hausmann's art of prosthetic perception


IV. Image Science and 'Representation': From a Cognitive Point of View (Chair: Barbara Stafford)
Although much recent scholarship in the Humanities and Social Sciences has been "body-minded," this research has yet to grapple with a major problem familiar to contemporary cognitive scientists and neuroscientists. How do we reconcile a top-down, functional view of cognition with a view of human beings as elements of a culturally shaped biological world? Current scientific investigations into autopoiesis, emotion, symbolization, mind-body relations, consciousness, "mental representations", visual and perceptual systems …open up fresh ways of not only figuring the self but of approaching historical as well as elusive electronic media --again or anew--from the deeper vantage of an embodied and distributed brain. Papers that struggle concretely to relate and integrate aspects of the brain basis of cognition with any number of pattern-making media are solicited to stimulate debate.


  • BARBARA STAFFORD: "Image Science and 'Representation': From a Cognitive Point of View"
  • KRISTIN VEEL: Once upon a time there was a database…Database and narrative from a cognitive (...)
  • ROBERT PEPPERELL: Self-Aware Art, Paradoxes and the Extended Mind
  • CHRISTINE ROSS: Slow time in contemporary media arts, (Canada)
  • PHILLIP THURTLE & CLAUDIA X. VALDES: "Biofeedback and the arts": listening as experimental practice
  • CHRISTOPHER SALTER: The performative turn in New Media - A critical history
  • TIM CLARK: Computation, Aesthetics, and Representation: A Critical Examination of the "The Thesis of Computational Sufficiency & Explanation" and the Incorporation of "The Argument from Human Creativity

V. Collaborative Practice/ Networking (history) (Chair: Ryszard Kluszczynski, co: Diana Domingues)
In a network people are working together, they share resources and knowledge with each other - and they compete with each other. This process has sped up enormously within a few decades and has reached a new quality/dimension. It is the computer who had and has a forming influence on this change - from the Mainframes of the 50s and 60s to the PCs of the 70s and the growing popularity of the Internet during the 90s of the past century. The dataflow created new economies and new forms of human communication - and last but not least the so-called globalization.


  • RYSZARD KLUSZCZYNSKI: RE-writing the History of Modern Art: How Media Change Our Perspective on the Past
  • NINA CZEGLEDY: Cross Cultural Interdisciplinary Initiatives
  • TODD DAVIS, DOUGLAS JARVIS, JEREMY TURNER: SAT-TEL-COMP - (Satellite-Telephone-Computer): Beginnings of multi-dimensional artist networks through the connectivity of (technological) telecommunications devices and human dialogue
  • MARGARET DOLINSKY: CAVEs Projecting imagination into reality across high speed networks

VI. Pop/Mass/Society (Chair Machiko Kusahara, co: Andreas Lange)
The dividing lines between art products and consumer products have been disappearing more and more since the Pop Art of the 1960s. The distinction between artist and recipient has also become blurred. Most recently, the digitalization of our society has sped up this process enormously. In principle, more and more artworks are no longer bound to a specific place and can be further developed relatively freely. The cut-and-paste principle has become an essential characteristic of contemporary culture production. The spread of access to the computer and the internet gives more people the possibility to participate in this production. The panel examines concrete forms, as for example computer games, determining the cultural context and what consequences they could have for the understanding of art in the 21st century.


  • MACHIKO KUSAHARA: Technology as Art: "Device Art" as a New Japanese Paradigm
  • ANDREAS LANGE: Archiving of Computer Games
  • KAREN KEIFER-BOYD: Computer Games: Art in the 21st Century,
  • TOBEY CROCKETT: An Aesthetics of Play - or, How to Appreciate Interactive Fun
  • MARK TRIBE: Open Source Culture

VII a. Collecting, preserving and archiving the media arts (Chair: Jean Gagnon)
Collections grow because of different influences such as art dealers, the art
market, curators and currents in the international contemporary art scene.
What are the conditions necessary for a wider consideration of media art
works and of new media in these collections?


  • JEAN GAGNON: Collecting, preserving and archiving the media arts
  • CHRISTIANE PAUL: The Myth of Immateriality - Presenting & Preserving New Media
  • PETER WEIBEL: The Migration and Preservation of Media
  • JON IPPOLITO: Speedbumps on the Information Superhighway

VII b. Database/New Scientific Tools (Chair: Rudolf Frieling, co: Oliver Grau)
Accessing and browsing the immense amount of data produced by individuals, institutions, and archives has become a key question to our information society. In which way can new scientific tools of structuring and visualizing data provide new contexts and enhance our understanding of semantics?


  • CHRISTIAN BERNDT: Database of Virtual Art - For an expanded concept of documentation
  • SANDRA FAUCONNIER: V2_'s archive - A dynamic model for the description of media art


VIII. Cross-Culture - Global Art (Chair: Sara Diamond, Co: Manray Hsu)
Issues of cultural difference will be included throughout Refresh! However, the panels in Cross-Culture--Global Art provide an opportunity to examine cross-cultural influences, the global and the local. Through these sessions we hope to construct the histories, influences and parallels to new media art and even the definitions of what constitutes new media from varied cultural perspectives. For example, how what are the impacts of narrative structures from Aboriginal and other oral cultures on the analysis and practice of new media? How do notions of identity shift across cultures historically, how are these embedded and transformed by new media practice? What philosophical perspectives can ground our understandings of new media aesthetics? How does globalization and the construction of global contexts such as festivals and biennials effect local new media practices? We encourage papers from diverse cultural perspectives and methodologies.


  • SARA DIAMOND: Global/Local Collective Models in the History of New Media Cultures
  • MANRAY HSU: "From Techno-Utopia to Network Cosmopolitanism: On the Convergence between New Media Art and Contemporary Art"
  • MARKO STAMENKOVIC: New Media Art in Postsocialist Conditions
  • SHEILA PETTY: "CyberRace Constructs: Transnational Identities in R. Kempadoo's Ghosting"
  • MARY LEIGH MORBEY: From Cybercolonialism to Cyberglocalization: A Virtual Shifting of Cultural Identity on National Musea Websites
  • THOMAS RICCIO: World Narrative: The Creation of a New ?Place?
  • APARNA SHARMA: Oscillations... occasions of excess and interrogation
  • LAURA MARKS: Latent rhythm: Algorithmic performativity in media art and Islamic calligraphy


IX. What can the History of New Media Learn from History of Science/Science Studies? (Chair: Linda Henderson)
As in the case of artists working in traditional media who have engaged science and technology, new media artists must be situated contextually in the "cultural field" (Kate Hayles) in which they have worked or are working. Science and technology have been an important part of that cultural field in the twentieth century, and the history of science and science studies-along with the field of literature and science--offer important lessons for art historians writing the history of new media art. This session invites papers from art historians and scholars in science-related disciplines which explore methodological and theoretical issues as well as those that put interdisciplinary approaches into practice in studying new media art.


  • LINDA HENDERSON: "'The Fourth Dimension,' the History of Science, and New Media"
  • TIMOTHY LENOIR: "Making Studies in New Media Critical"
  • MICHAEL PUNT: history of science technology and entertainment at the turn of the nineteenth century
  • TIMOTHY DRUCKREY: Idiosyncratic Archaeologies: Realigning Media History
  • SIMON WERRETT: Logics of Innovation: Science Studies and New Media Approaches Compared
  • YANN CHATEIGNÉ: The fourth memory: Beyond information art in the hypertechnological times


X. Rejuvenate: Film, sound and music in media arts history (Chair Tom Gunning, Co: Douglas Kahn)
During an earlier period of new media arts discourse, time-based media were often considered to be "old media." While this conceit has been tempered, we still need to consider the sophistication and provocation of film, sound and music from the perspective of media arts history. This session invites papers, which examine the return of old media, thick in their natural habitat of the discourses, practices and institutions of the arts, entertainment,
science, everyday life, wherever they existed.


  • TOM GUNNING:"Amnesia and Deja vu: New and Old Technology and the Need for a Theory of the Mediated Image"
  • DOUGLAS KAHN: Music: The First Digital Art
  • KEITH SANBORN: "Hollis Frampton's Algorithmic Aesthetic"
  • SCOTT BUKATMAN: "Comics and the Critique of Chronophotography"


XI. High Art/Low Culture – the future of media art sciences? (Chair: Karin Bruns)
The panel aims to bring together the methodological fields of media studies and media art history. Rather than limiting their focus to canonical works of art new studies in media art production blend methods and issues from art history and media sciences as well as from communication studies, sociology, techno sciences, art history, cultural and postcolonial studies. To enhance discussions papers of the following topics are invited: methods, history and principles of western media sciences; concepts of techno-cultural media sciences; visual studies, game culture studies and media art; everyday digital culture.


  • KARIN BRUNS: Pixelspaces: Media studies, data banks and knowledge systems
  • YARA GUASQUE: Immersive and participative environments
  • ANDY POLAINE: Lowbrow, high art. Why Big Fine Art doesn't understand interactivity
  • CLAUS PIAS: Zombies of the Revolution

XII. History of Institutions (Chair: Itsuo Sakane)
(more information soon)


  • ITSUO SAKANE: "On the History of Interaction between Art and Technology -Toward the Cultural Evolution of Human-being"
  • JASIA REICHARDT: The Computer in Art
  • ANDREAS BROECKMANN: discussant


XIII. tba.
(more information soon)


  • FRIEDER NAKE: Significant events in the history of Digital and Computer Art
  • RON BURNETT: Is New Media New?
  • tba.


Poster Session
(more information soon)
Experts of the field will be invited to present their research visually. The session at Banff is two hours long and there will be no other session at the conference at the same time. In a large space at the Banff New Media Institute every presenter will have his own poster board space. During the presentation, the presenter remains at the display board to answer questions and discuss the contents of the display.


  • KIRSTY ROBERTSON: Webs of Resistance: Knitting, the Body, and the Net
  • CHARLOTTE FROST: Better Serving the List Serve
  • GENCO GULAN: Web Biennial: International Contemporary Art Exhibition for and on the World Wide Web
  • ATTEQA MALIK: Media Art in Pakistan_ Not another "in your face" advertisement campaign!
  • MICHAEL SALMOND: Legitimizing the Video Game
  • MARIA VICTORIA GUGLIETTI: Dialogue- Assimilation- Subversion: Contemporary New Media Native Art in Canada
  • AYESHA HAMEED: The unspoken archive: New media representations of the middle passage
  • CHRISTOPH KLUETSCH: Aesthetic Values
  • JOHN MAXWELL: The "Dynabook": A Study in Survivals
  • SYLVIA GRACE BORDA & ALICE MING WAI JIM: [esc]aping: Mapping Digital Diasporas in Canada
  • ARTUR MATUCK: Human-computer creative interfaces and the emergence of e-authors
  • MAUREEN NAPPI: What's in a Name? The Ontology of Media Arts
  • MARTIN RIESER: Interactive Art and Public spaces: Spatial Narratives for the 21st Century
  • JAN ALTMANN: Expressive bacteria: the art of photomicroscopy
  • FRANCES DYSON: Question of collaborations between artists and scientists

Reception at the Walter Phillips Gallery, Thursday, September 29.

The Art Formerly Known As New Media
"The Art Formerly Known As New Media" is an exhibition at the Walter
Phillips Gallery (Sept. 17 - Oct. 23) curated by Sarah Cook and Steve
Dietz on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of the Banff New Media
Institute. Selected from the hundreds of artists who have participated
in the Institute's programming (symposia, co-productions, labs), the
exhibition is not an historical retrospective of work commissioned,
produced or previously presented at Banff. It is a "refreshed" look at
how traditional forms of new media work such as interactive
installations, interfaces, software, responsive performances, immersive
spaces, and the world wide web have been explored through BNMI's
programming in terms of broader questions of economics, politics,
social relations, public space, memory, leisure, contemporary art, and
what it means to be human as we increasingly become machine.