The broader rubric for this theme touches on interaction design as well as the practices of media artists who develop dynamic and/or embodied processes for interactive artworks. The theme carries as well a strong interest in shared agency within the performativity of interaction, such that user and system co-construct interactions. In general, the papers in the theme explore co-constructed experiences across bodies and apparati, and across a mix of realities (for example, across "first" and "second" life). The theme points to concerns about computation carrying with it values that possibly work against the affective and embodied dimensions of digital media. Thus, several of the papers propose counter-values and counter-aesthetics, for example, by finding meaning in noise, by re-imagining the body/image that inhabits a virtual space, or by exploring forms of embodiment that challenge traditional representational aesthetics of the figure. Papers range from theorizing the audience and its role in actualizing an artwork, to considering the body as shared, rearranged and even immaterial in a technologically-saturated environment, to breaking with preconceptions about how the body is able to perform and which senses afford perception. The range of papers also speaks to how people in the different worlds of digital media - e.g. art, computation, design - can establish conceptual points of contact that enable bridging across domains.
Nell Tenhaaf, Associate Dean, Faculty of Fine Arts / Associate Professor, Department of Visual Arts York University firstname.lastname@example.org
Melanie Baljko, Department of Computer Science and Engineering, York University, email@example.com