A to X: Audience Experience in Media Art Research

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Presentation Title:

  • A to X: Audience Experience in Media Art Research

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Abstract:

  • The importance of the audience as part of the media art event is widely acknowledged, but although interaction and embodiment are well theorised, we are yet to achieve a well grounded understanding of audience experience. It is fundamental to defining the context around which an art work has been made and shown. The panel asks how we understand the concerns of audiences and how they respond to concepts of creativity and innovation in media art.

    The premise of the panel is that understanding how an audience experiences media art is fundamental to understanding the impact of the art work. Too often the “idea” of the audience is invoked in media arts rhetoric in vague and general ways, and the effect that art works have is discussed in terms of expectation and supposition. This panel aims to move beyond these limitations and argues that we need to pay particular attention to the use and value of specific methods and approaches for studying experience. The panel aims to create an opportunity for practitioners and researchers from different perspectives to consolidate and develop a vibrant emerging body of knowledge about audiences of media art, which can empower artists, curators and academics.

    As discussions around the necessity of archiving and collecting new media work expand, it is arguable that future iterations of such artworks can only have cultural meaning if we are able to provide information on the context in which they were experienced: how and why audiences responded to them. This also raises issues about the way such information can be recorded and incorporated within documentation of art works.

    Full text (PDF) p.  311-314

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