Pub­lic In­ti­macy


Session Title:

  • Unsitely Aesthetics: the Reconfiguring of Public Space in Electronic Art

Presentation Title:

  • Pub­lic In­ti­macy




  • Panel: Unsitely Aesthetics: the Reconfiguring of Public Space in Electronic Art

    In­creas­ingly our ex­pe­ri­ences of pub­lic space in­clude pri­vate ex­pres­sions, per­sonal emo­tions and in­ti­mate se­crets: the strict di­vide be­tween in­te­rior life and the out­side world has dra­mat­i­cally shifted, lead­ing to a new no­tion of pub­lic in­ti­macy. To be in­volved in each other’s lives has taken on new di­men­sions as net­worked cul­ture de­liv­ers home life to dis­tant ge­o­gra­phies and per­sonal mes­sages to nu­mer­ous points of open con­tact. Ex­plor­ing the theme of pub­lic in­ti­macy my pre­sen­ta­tion maps out this new un­der­stand­ing of com­mu­nity and pub­lic­ness by con­sid­er­ing dig­i­tal ex­change as a gift-econ­omy. While the in­ter­net and net­worked economies have cer­tainly spawned an array of new forms of con­sumerism based en­tirely on money and credit, it has also in­tro­duced forms of com­mu­ni­ca­tion, shar­ing, ex­change and col­lab­o­ra­tion that might be viewed as sup­ple­men­tal, that is, as an ad­di­tional for­ma­tion of econ­omy in which to be on-line is to give and re­ceive. Such a per­spec­tive may be found through a num­ber of artis­tic works. For in­stance in Christin Lahr’s Macht Geschenke work, a daily pro­ject of trans­fer­ring one cent through on-line bank­ing to the coun­try of Ger­many along with a quote from Das Kap­i­tal, or, a site that sup­ports in­di­vid­u­als to com­mit face­book sui­cide, the econ­omy of being on-line can be traced through as­pects of ex­cess, ex­pen­di­ture, sac­ri­fice, and gen­eros­ity. Fol­low­ing such works, the in­ter­net will be un­der­scored as a per­for­ma­tive iden­ti­fi­ca­tion with oth­ers that cre­ates un­steady forms of in­ti­macy equally in­spir­ing for imag­in­ing new forms of al­liance, friend­ship, and shar­ing as well as artis­tic in­ter­ven­tion.