This program is a successful pilot exchange program between two institutions, found and organized by their students. It was first created by Tuangkamol Thongborisute, and later co-organized by Lee Tusman. The program’s coordinator was Dr. Toeingam Guptabutra, a faculty member from the Mixed Media Department at Silpakorn University. Without her assistance, the program would not have come to fruition in the successful way it did. Almost 200 people attended the artist talks and the opening event of the exhibition in August 2017. The program was supported by UCLA’s School of the Arts and Architecture and Silpakorn University’s School of Painting Sculpture and Graphic Arts, as well as generously supported for its public events by Bangkok Art and Culture Centre.
Up-and-coming artists are increasingly utilizing technology and media to engage audiences in conversations around human interactions and behavior. This new art form is pushing the boundaries of how we view human relationships with technology and what possibilities the future may have in store. In August 2017, a collaboration between Silpakorn University’s Painting, Sculpture and Graphic Arts School and graduate students from UCLA’s DesignMedia Arts further explored this medium and investigated how these ideas may transform across culture, pedagogy, and discipline. One of the intentions of the creation of this program was also to connect young multi-disciplinary artists together, in hopes of fostering a strong, supportive community for the future of their professional careers across cultures and nations. Participants from both universities learned a great deal from each other. The collaboration resulted in two public events, both hosted at BACC at the end of the program: an exhibition of new interactive media artworks developed during the collaboration as well as a public lecture series on interactivity featuring artist talks.
The workshop was led by the graduate students of UCLA’s DMA on the topics Introduction to Physical Interactivity and Net Art/ Web Graffiti. Lee Tusman also gave a special lecture to Thai participants on the topics of History of Game Art and P5.js.
Although the program might seem like a private collaboration between two art institutions, it also included open events for the general public to join: the exhibition held at BACC and two public talks about art study in the US and on various topics within the field of “Interactive Art” by DMA graduate students who are researchers in this field.
PUBLIC ACTIVITIES INFORMATION
1. Workshop Exhibition – a show of final results from the program’s participants who worked collaboratively in groups to share similar interests and diverse skills to produce artworks in the realm of Interactive Art.
2. Discussion – Art Study and Living at UCLA by Tuangkamol Thongborisute and guest, UCLA’s Thai ambassador, Kaewalee Soontornmon.
The talk focused on new-media art and design study at UCLA in general. The topics included curriculum, how-to-apply, and financial aid. It also explored in detail the Design Media Arts Department curriculum, classes, and facilities. In the second part of the talk, the speakers covered topics about campus life, international student life in the US, work -study experiences, and life after graduation.
Kaewalee, or Kelly, holds a degree of Doctor of Medicine and Residency in Pediatrics from Mahidol University and of Master of Science in Epidemiology from UCLA. Currently, she is a PhD student in Epidemiology Department UCLA, funded by the Fogarty AIDS International Training and Research Program, NIH. Kelly was the Thailand Ambassador for UCLA’s Dashew Center for International Students and Scholars (DCISS) in 2016-2017, where she helped incoming Thai students to connect with their new community at UCLA. Kelly also helped organize many DCISS activities and events for international students.
3. Artist Talks :
Artist: Eli Joteva
Title: The Space Between Mind and Matter
In this seminar, Joteva covered the creative approach and the potential that arises from collaborative exchanges between art and science. She focused on the use of biofeedback technology by neuroscience researchers as well as by new media and performance artists. She further elaborated on her current relationship to neuroscience research and how it inspires her to evaluate the embodied experience of memory in relationship to space, time and landscape within her own art making practice.
Artist: David Ertel
TITLE: Automatic Landscapes
David Ertel is interested in how computer vision, satellite imagery, and other post-photographic practices inform our ideas about land and nature. His work has been featured in publications including Vice Magazine, The Creators Project, Interview Magazine, Dazed and Confused, Pitchfork, and The Guardian. He has been the recipient of several artist grants by institutions such as the PHI Centre, Canada Council for the Arts, and SODEC. At the BACC, he presented a critical history of mapping and environmental aesthetics as well as a survey of contemporary artists that explore these new ways of imaging our environment.
Artist: Christina Yglesias
Title: A Networked Social Practice
In her talk, Christina Yglesias discussed and defined a networked social practice. Topics included connection, disconnection, and identity as filtered though social technologies. She also discussed how she approaches making work in our hyper-networked culture.
Artist: Jack Turpin
TITLE: On the Virtues of Being Boneless and Incomplete
At the BACC, Jack presented his ongoing research on “cartoon logic”, i.e. the rules and physics governing the animated image. He tracked its history, development and dissemination into physical space and world culture.
Artist: Kristin McWharther
Title: Interactivity and Performance
Looking at how participation and spectacle shape contemporary art experiences, Kristin McWharter uses performance in conjunction with interactive technologies to dissect commonly held notions around competition, intimacy, influence, and conformity. Exploring mediums such as virtual reality, creative coding, and public participation, McWharter scrutinizes individual subjectivities within social interaction. McWharter discussed how the use of technology and performance can elicit meaningful participatory experiences within audiences that are conjuring new conversations and insights on social, cultural, and psychological influences of behavior.