I really enjoyed the Digital Art and Culture conference at UC Irvine. The difficult part was selecting which panel you wanted to attend, since there were so many interesting topics/presentations. The conference theme was "after media: embodiment and context." Katherine Hayles talked about the entwining of humans and technology. The inside (subjectivity) is always already contaminated with the outside (technics). She discussed this as "epigenetic technogenesis" and expressed concern that hyperattention is displacing deep attention in culture. This talk was especially relevant to me with respect to Game-Space and our thoughts concerning the construction of a "hybrid subject." According to Hayles, "alien phenomenology IS human phenomenology."
There were panels on software studies, embodiment, ubiquity, locative media, environment, cognition, sexuality, pedagogy, electronic literature, etc. "Speculative Realism" was definitely an undercurrent! There was a nice exhibition at the Beall Center. I enjoyed Karolina Sobecka and Jim George's, SNIFF. Large crowds often cause problems with interactive projects (opening nights are the worst), but returning later I could better appreciate the work. The sense of a negotiated relationship between ourselves (the viewer) and this "animal" was uncanny.
Here's a copy of our paper:
Game-Space: Unfolding Experiments in Subjectivity
Overall, it was a great time. Look forward to the next one!