ISEA97: Eighth International Symposium on Electronic Art

ISEA97:  [Overview] [Venues] [Presentations] [Workshops] [Art Events] [Gallery]

Eighth International Symposium on Electronic Art


Chicago, Illinois United States


22 September - 27 September, 1997

Organised by:

School of the Art Institute of Chicago


The ISEA97 conference and workshops took place at the Art Institute of Chicago. The main art exhibition was held in a 2000 square meter space at 847 W. Jackson Boulevard, other exhibits at the Electronic Visualization Lab, Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA), the Betty Rymer Gallery, the Chicago Cultural Center and other venues. Concerts, Performances and Screenings were given at several locations, a.o. the MCA Auditorium.  An Opening Event was staged with a concert by Laurie Anderson.  A Reception took place in Celebration of 30 Years of the Journal Leonardo.

Organising Committee:

Click to Collapse the Organising Committee
  • Shawn Decker, ISEA97 Chair
  • Michael Rodemer, Academic Program Committee Chair
  • Joelle Rabion, Conference Coordinator

Introductory and Welcoming Notes:


Click to Collapse the Symposium Theme

The symposium’s theme of “Content” endeavored to diminish the emphasis on new media tools themselves, in favor of the actual artistic product – what was significant and important about the work, how ideas formed by electronic means interacted and merged with those from traditional media and art making, and other issues related to why we use technology, rather than how. In the decades since McLuhan’s observations on media, a profound change has taken place in the arts. As computer technology has become increasingly widespread and affordable, many artists are asking “Now what?” For years, the challenges for electronic artists have often been the overcoming of technological barriers and the pioneering of new media. Today, we find ourselves wrestling with the more perplexing questions of meaning, content, and social context. Is the medium still the message? How are computers shaping the languages of expression for our age? What can we say now that we could not say before? Do these new media change our vision of ourselves and the world? How is physical experience being redefined by the virtual? Does advancing technological obsolescence preclude historical continuity?

Other Committees:

Click to Collapse the Other Committees

Honorary Board

  • Laurie Anderson, artist, US
  • Kevin Consey, director, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, US
  • Richard Daley, Mayor, City of Chicago, US
  • and others

International Programme Committee:


    Click to Collapse the Details
    • MacLean-Fogg Company
    • Molex Incorporated
    • Neoglyphics Media Corporation
    • the Goethe-Institut Chicago
    • LOT Polish Airlines
    • the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts
    • CRCA – Computer Rental Corporation of America