Locative Art, Identity And Memory: Production of Participative Hypermedia Documentaries in the Settlements of Landless Rural Workers Movement in Brazil

Symposium:


Session Title:

  • Location/Space (Papers)

Presentation Title:

  • Locative Art, Identity And Memory: Production of Participative Hypermedia Documentaries in the Settlements of Landless Rural Workers Movement in Brazil

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Abstract:

  • Our paper examines how the production of participative hypermedia documentaries with mobile devices can foment subjectivities and generate social movement within the settlements of the Landless Rural Workers Movement in the state of Rio Grande Do Sul, Brazil. The research project was initially underwritten by a CNPq/SEC/MINc 2013 grant, with on‑going research underwritten by funding from the Proext 2013 and Proext 2014 Competitions “Contributions of Interactive Art in ICT Education for Teacher Training”. We draw upon the appropriation of locative media and mobile digital devices to     establish links between the creation of subjectivity as emergent identity, the detection of memory as integrative process within social movement and the organization of parallel creative economies as alternative valuation. The theoretical thrust of our work couples Simondon’s communications theory and philosophy of technics with Guattari’s activist ecosophy. We examine the micro‑politics of the quotidian and memory as integrative of experience to bring forth singularizing experiences through the production of participative documentaries where both sender and receptor become generators of content mediated through a generalized web of connectivity which provides singular local value within global connections. Thus, we seek to generate an enabling ecology of practices which reposition the functionalities of digital technologies and the potentials of web‑based social media. This entails a shift from digital technologies and media as dynamic delivery systems of commercial information to the exercise of a sited, non‑sited ecology of practices which Guattari saw as being “created within the perspective of a new aesthetic‑political paradigm.” For both Guattari and Simondon, technology defines an active and vital realm of potential, not as a means to an end, but as an enabling ecology which interlinks aesthetic and ethical concerns. From a technical standpoint, digital technologies provide popular access to the means of production of professional quality content whereas web‑based social media provide unprecedented possibilities for dissemination and distribution of cultural production. In contrast to the sitedness of the participative documentary video production, locative media simultaneously bring into play a double function of mobility and fixity so that location need no longer be considered as a stable center of production or dissemination. By moving through space, the everyday user of locative media is a nomadic attractor of conditioned content as well as a radiator of data which retextures the moving location as a personalised, shifting informational landscape mediated by the locative devices. Modes of mediation of locative media continually reterritorialize the moving user according to a sham façade of choice. To counter this mediatic colonization, we situate these hybrid moving bodies with their wireless devices under the aegis of Guattari’s ethico‑aesthetic paradigm. As mediated cognitive subjects, users pass from being passive recipients of hyper‑targetted commercial hype into active agents of informational production and dissemination. Within this enhanced informational landscape composed with mobile devices, articulated, communicated territories can hopefully spring forth, both in the sense of being sited locally and linked globally, but also in terms of the creation of technologically mediated narratives and content as expressive of heightened subjectivity.

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