Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Monday, April 27, 2009





Saturday, April 25, 2009


seeing if this works

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Article that Emily found and posted

This is a worthwhile article that Emily has posted to her blog, about the over-connected world. True enough. What is our human condition? Are we so connected to our technology that we no longer relate to the world without this mediated experience?

Following - another perspective

I think you should all read Naehma's great post about Following, as I think she is raising all the issues related to the assignment.

Great post, great rant, worth discussing. You are right, Naehma, no doubt about it.

Sunday, April 12, 2009


The Following exercise was inspired by both Janet Cardiff’s audio walks (Two of which are Walk Münster by Janet Cardiff with Georges Bures Miller, 1997. Skulpture Project Münster 97, curated by Kasper König, Münster, Germany and The Missing Voice (Case Study B) byJanet Cardiff with Georges Bures Miller, 1999. Whitechapel Library organized by Artangel, London, England, June 17 – Nov. 27, 1999.) an example of the expressive, generative version of ambulant geo-notative locative art practice; and Sophie Calle’s Suite Vénitienne, where she used a conceptual strategy to create a document with photos providing evidence of her search to Venice to look for a stranger she met at a party. One student chose to follow five different people at his usual stop on the subway. Three of these people were “intimate strangers”, people he had observed frequently on his route, but
whom he did not know. Two people he followed, as a first encounter. He documented the experience of each trajectory, the time and distance traveled the fantasies and assumptions of each life, housing them all in a web-based map project.

Jean Baudrillard writes,
“To follow the other is to take charge of his itinerary; it is to watch over his life without him knowing it. It is to play the mythical role of the shadow, which, traditionally follows you and protects you from the sun – the man without a shadow is exposed to the violence of life without mediation – it is to relieve him of that existential burden, the responsibility of his own life. Simultaneously, she who follows is herself relieved of responsibility for her own life as she follows blindly in the footsteps of another. Again, a wonderful reciprocity exists in the cancellation of each existence, in the cancellation of each subject’s tenuous position as a subject” (1983 p.82).

Somewhat similarly, the responses of past students to the assignment ranged from one student’s realization that in her heart she loved to follow people – in fact, she realized that she had quite an “affinity for following people.” A city where walking is the main mode of transportation constantly puts people face to face, often the same people over and over. Since she moved to New York, it had frustrated her to find herself constantly surrounded by people she recognized but had never met. This assignment was her chance to figure out who these people really are. Yet, once she was asked to turn her curiosity into an exercise, the idea of following turned sour. She said, “I felt like I was invading not only their physical space, but their mental space too.”

A different reaction was elicited from another student, who was extremely threatened by the idea of following someone and allowing someone else’s physical itinerary to determine her movement in the city. Her sense of territory had distinct
racial and economic boundaries that determined her awareness of safety. Following another route was deeply disturbing. Her solution was to solicit the help of a friend to go with her. However, throughout the experience of following someone on an unfamiliar route, she commented that she had to “watch her back,” which became the next exercise for the class.

The Following exercise is similar to the Loca (Location Oriented Critical Arts) project. According to Evans et.al. Loca was initiated out of an interest in how surveillance and social control emerge as a residue or unforeseen effect of virtuous information systems and network technologies. Loca observes people's movements by tracking the position of the Bluetooth enabled devices that they carry. Over seven days more than two thousand five hundred people were detected enabling the team to build up a detailed picture of their movements. People were sent messages from a stranger with intimate knowledge of their motion. Over the course of the week the messages became gradually more sinister, the would-be friend mutating into stalker, "coffee later?" changing to "r u ignoring me?" For participants the experience of Loca is intangible, it unearths
what is not seen. The aim is subtle affect. As the developers note, “Loca is like a picture glanced at sideways, a message caught in the corner of the eye, or a mosquito swatted on the arm (http://www.loca-lab.org/).” It makes apparent the
kind of peer to peer observations that become possible as a result of the discomforts and dislocations associated with everyday surveillance.

Site Specifics #2

To continue unraveling this reading...

The philosopher Michel de Certeau, wrote a book called "The Practice of Everyday Life" which is on the Locative Media Bibiligraphy that was published by the Leonardo (MIT) eJournal.

In this book, he says that "space is a practiced place." What he means by that, is that urban planning writes a specific meaning onto place. The direction of roadways, the areas of division in economic strata (where rich people live, where poverty lives etc), the location of the city functions (post office, hospital, train station, etc). So, what de Certeau is saying is that place becomes space when it becomes active, when it becomes inhabited. The daily action of everyday life, in all its detail, shifts the meaning of place from its monolithic, static meanings, to those that are human, social, fluid, always changing. Even our experience of place is determined by how long we are in a location. "Thus the street geometrically defined by urban planning is transformed into space by walkers." "Space as a practiced place, admits of unpredictability." "If space is like the word when it is spoken, then a single place will be realized in successive, multiple and even irreconcilable spaces." Think of Patrick's score..."In comparing 'pedestrian processes to linguistic formations" de Certeau states that.. to walk is to lack a place." Think of Patrick's score done again as a walking score in the city...

The anthropological understanding of place, is "formed by the individual identities, through complicities of language. local references, the unformulated rules of living know-how" (Auge/reading p.9), where one's location or position is known. Non-place is produced by passing-over place. Non-place designates two complementary but distinct realities formed in relation to certain, say, mobile or transitory ends (transport, transit, commerce, leisure) and relations that individuals have with these places. For example, the train station: all the people who pass through it, sometimes regularly, as in commuters, and those people who work there - selling tickets, working at the coffee shop, cleaning up, etc. As an aside, because I drive, I have become fascintated by the people who work at the food courts in the various road side rest areas of the New Jersey Turnpike, and I wonder what their relationship to those non-places are. For them, they are places. For me, the transient commuter, who drives in and out, I construct a fictional relationship between what I see and what the landscape is.

On page 11 of the reading is an important point:

Place and non-place re rather like opposed polarities: the first is never completely erased, the second never totally completed; they are like palimpsets on which the scrambled game of identity and relations is ceaselessly rewritten. But non-places are the real measure of our time. (Auge 1995)

A palimpset is a paper that has been written on twice, the original having been wiped out.

One of the top five Neighborhood Narratives projects, was done by a student at NYU:

The project, titled Palimpsest FM, consisted of a device that houses a hidden speaker which plays back the sounds of the same spot from an earlier time, anywhere from thirty seconds to a day before. The replayed recording serves as an audio version of a palimpsest, a proof of what had been there before. Using sound as her medium, the student created a nearly seamless overlapping of past and present where the sounds of today cannot be discerned from the sounds of the past. Like a palimpsest, it will be unclear where the past ends and the present begins.

Gaston Bachelard (in his book, Poetics of Space) speaks of centering oneself in stable surroundings, but if your surroundings are constantly in flux (and also incidentally not just your surroundings) like they are in New York, it is no wonder a sense of ontological anxiety can result. New York City has often been described as a place where the physical environment changes so quickly that rebuilding without being able to erase what came before it becomes very obvious to anyone who has lived there
long enough to call New York their home. “You’ve become a New Yorker once you have the urge to point out a place and say, “that used to be . . .” The “that used to be . . .” that every New Yorker expresses is part of the inerasable past that is being built over, it is an expression of memory of a piece of their home and consequently a piece of their identities that is gone but not forgotten. It is embodied in the senses. The urge to tell others what used to be is an attempt to reassert one’s identity and the home they had carved out of the city. This project serves as another means of describing the “that used to be.” But instead of
subjectively telling the narrative of one person’s New York, it objectively captures what the place witnessed. The audio palimpsest played back in this project serves as a kind of memorial of what used to be in the immediate past. It stands to
commemorate the same everyday New York that its citizens quietly mourn when it is torn down and built over. It memorializes the trivial happenings that many may overlook, but still plays an important role in a place’s narrative and consequently a
person’s identity. By placing Palimpsest FM in Washington Square Park under the shadow of the statue of Garibaldi and the Washington Arch, a comparison can be drawn between the monuments that commemorate the selective history of the
victors to one that records and replays all voices of the city equally. The neighborhood narrative can then become more complete as it plays back everything it hears.

The original prototype for this project was made with a recording device in one of those "record your own message" talking greeting cards.

The last mention from the Site-Specific reading is the last paragraph where it says, "It is in such contexts that site-specific art frequently works to "touble" the opposition between the site and the work. Trouble is meant as critique, question, or to even create a problem, but all with the aim of heightening the exchange between the site and the work.

Site-Specifics + Three score projects

This reading is very dense, and I will go over it in class. Alot of it - the references to modernism, etc. will be confusing. Ignore what you do not understand, as there are a few key points in the reading that I think you will understand, and they are the important ones.

The key point is in the first sentence, that in site-specific work, which is what you are going in the final projects, the work is an exchange between the meaning of the work itself (whatever you create) and the place where you situate this work (the block, the park, the area, the building etc.) And the more that the work and the place have an integrated relationship, the more you realize that this particular exchange, could not happen anywhere else. It is specific to the place. There are analogies to semiotiocs, which is a theory in linguistics, but since we did not go over this in class, this is too complicated to reference. Some of you may have studied linguistics in your other classes, in which case, you will understand the references to sign and signifier. But in plain english and in relation to the projects, what this means is that if you can identify all the political, aesthetic (what does the place look like, is it beautiful or ugly, is it modern or historic, what are the visual conditions), geographical, institutional or whatever other issues make up the complexity of the place itself, that will inform and even determine what you create in that place.

What all the references to minimalism mean is that in minimalism, which is where the work of art is reduced to the simpliest form of an idea (an all white canvas for example, being a "painting", the reception of the work of art is shifted from the pictorial quality of the work itself, in the brain and physical experience of the viewer. The viewer has to work harder to make meaning from an all white canvas, and further still, based on where that canvas is located. This shift of interpretation of meaning - it is not in the picture, it is in the mind of the viewer, is similar to what happens with a site-specific work. Minimalism also played with the time and space of the viewing or experience of the work, and here is where it moves to the the work of "art" in the public sphere. It breaks down the notion of "what is art"... it opens the space of interdisciplinary discourse, it approaches the condition of theater, or an event, that has a "start" and a "finish" and something that happens in-between. It emphasizes the transitory and ephemeral experience of viewing.

This was beautifully illustrated by three scores I want to point out:

The writing of text, "I am grateful for the air I breathe" on the sidewalk. Emily said that she thought of it as a prayer ritual, which one could sort of see when someone else "performed" her instructions. There was the performance of writing; adding text the public space; text referencing the library where we were located, but released from the books, or screens of the computer. Text that remained as a relic of an event (the event started from the when the score was handed to someone and we started watching it be written, to the point where it was written and we walked away.) The time it took to wait for it to be written, and thus is slowed down the time of comprehension, during which we were taking in a variety of other sensations. The fact that the text remained when we walked away, washed off by the rain and scuffed away by footprints. The site continued to speak, and took on different meanings: when it was being written on, the act of witnessing, the act of it remaining as a silent public message, the act of its erasure, and after, when it had vanished. The text itself, breathing air, located at the doorway of the library, referenced the enclosure of the building - especially the library, which as a heterotopic space, has elaborate rules of entry, participation, and exit. So, air in that location, could also mean freedom from enclosure - physical freedom, referenced by breathing. Are we all grateful for the air that we breathe? And what air are we breathing?

The second score I want to point out is Mariam's array of jars containing highly pungent fluids. This could be considered a sculpture by how it was composed (formally lined in a row, in a handmade display holding the jars), and it had alot of cultural references for and from Mariam, in thinking of the project. As she said, the smells of her homeland, are part of what make her identify home. So, "home" and "away" became part of the smells as other people were interpreting them. The sculpture was portable - we set it on the floor in the classroom, we set it on the floor in the library hallway, and we handed it from one person to another. The portable experience - instead of us passing a fixed installation, it was passed around - was olfactory. By engaging the sense of smell, by isolating it and highlighting the act of smelling as physical, was as subtle and ephemeral as the writing and breathing of Emily's score.

The third score I want to mention is Patrick's score:

Call a friend with your cell phone
Speak to your friend interpreting a symmbol sheet of little pictures that include: sun, box, the number 18, arrow, a hand with two fingers, the letter Q, the word delicious, a Christian cross, a dollar sigh, a penis, a musical note, a bed, a flower, what looks like it could be fesces, a stick figure saying "hey", a heart, the word grotesque and angry face (stick drawing).
Let your friend interpret your interpretation of my interpretation.

So, Patrick is giving clues that this symbol palette is possibly a private language that he constructed to describe something. His location is a mixed reality experience, as we as the viewer/participants were watching Gaby phone her a friend (her sister?) and speak to her in Polish, which further obscured the "linguistic" understanding of the communication. There was language which referenced signs, which contained a language structure and for those of us who could not understand Polish, we were oblivious to the what it contained. For the the class, we experienced sound, and observed actions, but those sounds and actions were delivered to another somewhere, (where we couldn't see) and traveled through a no-where (the satelite system) to arrive in the anywhere of its destination. Patrick set this up to be a puzzle, a labyrinth that would unfold into a series of other labyrinths, that was by chance, interpreted by Gaby in a way that added very interesting and increasingly obtuse layers to the game. In effect, the cell phone became a way to exit the heterotopia that was not concrete. Gaby's voice left the controlled arena via an air wave... perhaps this is the air that we are now breathing?

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Social Softwares and Final Projects

What I would say is most important is the sense of web 2.0 politics - open source, ground up authorship, networked, distributed. So, the integration of the social softwares such as blogger, twitter, Facebook or Ning, de.li.ci.ous, Flickr, Hipcast (or moblogging, podcasting etc.), Google Maps are core to the concepts of the class. If your projects can integrate with any of these applications, you get extra points. If you are doing something outside, but can include a web element, a map, a feature of some kind, extra points. If you can work on the idea of a MIXED REALITY experience - either a mixture of physical and networked experience, or mixed through sensory scrambling, or spatial re-organization etc.

The most effective projects have created experiences that start in one condition and end in another condition. Walking somewhere, putting something(s) somewhere and leaving them there, and that combine several of these concepts into one overall experience.

The idea of permanence vs. mutability, the ephemeral quality of technology as public art.

The idea that art and creativity can collapse multiple meanings into one experience.

Having the public or the class create the content for the project. You create the structure for gathering that content, asking for it, soliciting it, provoking it, creating it.

Heterotopias, Technology and the Final Projects

We started our class with an essay called "Of Other Spaces" and the argument can be made that the mixed reality spaces that are created by the simultaneous experience of real place and the metaverse of Cyberspace is a third, heterotopic space - a time out of time, and a place out of place.

If you add some form of technology to your projects, you extend the space of the project; alter it, change the sequence of time and experience.

The issue of space as it relates to your final projects

All of you have picked a place for your final projects. The creative part of the assignment is to design a project/event/happening/performance/encounter in that place that activates the space. To do that, you have to bring together three things: some aspect of the history or dynamic of the place that you have researched, some aspect of your own experience and some experience of the interrelationship of the buildings, events and interactions that make up that space.

... and you need to read p. 28 in the Mapping Cyberspace reading on Theorising Space. Rob Kitchin lays out the history of how space has been thought about - Aristotelian - space is static, hierarchical and concrete; Newtonian - space is an absolute grid, within which objects are located and events occur; Leibnizian - space is fundamentally relational and defined in terms of those relationships; Kantian - space is conceptualized as a form imposed on the world by humans.

Criteria of Evaluation in Final Projects

layers (how many)
thinking process
growth in your own work

subjectivity (how well is expressed or understood in your method)
objectivity (what you have gathered from research)
extending or extention (any of the assignments or elements of your art practice)
issues of democracy (figure that out)

Multiple Elements in your projects

Things that can be included in your projects. Using many elements and integrating them into an organic whole is the challenge.

Maps, charts, printed guides
More than one location
The bus as location
Physical activity
Virtual activity
Physical + Virtual activity at the same time
Hand-crafted elements - sewing, drawing, rubbings
Digital Material - video, web sites, radio, GPS
Cell phones
Elimination of one sense (blind-folds, head-phones)
The archeologic debris of the area
Team activity

Critical Vehicles

Krzyysztof Wodiczko, in his book Critical Vehicles, discusses his art work over the span of his career, all of it highly political in nature. What Wodiczko focuses on is designing for human interaction, and human relationship. What he higlights is the binary of power: victor/vanquished. This type of binary analysis of social space can easily be understood in relation to race and gender. What is interesting about his Prophet's Prothesis, is the idea of a doubling - the real person and the media double, both simultaneously walking through the city. Here we have the Derive or Drift retranslated through the integration of media. Inside/outside, real/virtual. These types of binaries fuse together so that the doubled experience creates a whole. Conceptually very interesting. One could even conceive of the doubled self - the real and virtual as a ying/yang.

On p. 13, his design summary could be considered a manifesto. He has articulated a social problem that he is trying to solve through design.

What we have said in this class, is that design solves problems. One must first identify the problem and then create the design to solve it.


Some examples, far out and not:

Joseph Beuys, German conceptual artist: http://www.artnotart.com/fluxus/jbeuys-manifesto.html

Fluxus manifesto: http://www.artnotart.com/fluxus/index.html

White Manifesto by Lucio Fontana, "We are continuing the evolution of art."

The Italian Futurists wrote many manifestos. They wrote manifestos on everything from art to clothing. http://www.italianfuturism.org/manifestos/

This show in Chelsea (Oct. 23 - Dec. 20) has some beautiful work which translates Zapatista manifestos into musical scores (each letter of the alphabet which is also a note, becomes that note, and everything else is a pause/silence.) Kent Gallery, 541 West 25th Street http://www.kentgallery.com/index.html

The Dogme95 film-making manifesto that I mentioned in class http://www.dogme95.dk/the_vow/index.htm

You'll love this one: The Foundation and Manifesto of Futurism, Thomas Marinetti 1905 http://www.unknown.nu/futurism/manifesto.html

The Situationist Manifesto http://www.infopool.org.uk/6003.html

And this is the manifesto that will help you with the entire assignment and final project The Manifesto of Possibilities http://wiki.bbk.ac.uk/Buildingcultures/index.php/Manifesto_of_Possibilities

Tuesday, March 31, 2009


We will be meeting as teams for 1 hour of every class between now and the final presentations. Each class will have to have a set of "deliverables."

April 1 - discuss locations and ideas. Something that integrates the interests and concerns of the team members. During the week, visit the sites to consider the possibilities.

April 8 - research and history of site. Concept ideas for project. Decide if it will have a web component or something that needs to be posted in advance (ads on Craig's List, etc.) Locations set and presentation schedule will be worked out.

April 15 - All pre-presentation web ads etc. need to be posted by this date. Class will be devoted to project development and David and I will meet with all the teams while they are working.

April 22 - 3 teams present

April 29 - 3 teams present. All Manifestos due and will be posted to your blogs. Anyone not posting their manifesto to the blog will get an automatic F for the final assignment.

May 5 or 6 - In the final week before this class, we will read all the manifestos and make comments on the blogs. This will fuel the final critique and wrap up.

Location Choices

These sites AND/OR the one block radius of these sites:

Willow Grove Cemetery

New Brunswick Train Station

Henry Guest House

Bayard Street Post Office

Monument Square

Mt. Zion AME church

State Theater

Zimmerli Art Museum

Schank Observatory

C-Town grocery store

Final Project Teams

Mariam - leader

Danielle - leader
Stephanie Schulman

Naemah - leader

Daniel Weingrad - leader
Steph Danbrowney

Cassandra - leader
Amanda Downs

Gaby - leader

The Surprise

David Gordon will be in our class for the rest of the semester. If you would like to know more about our surprise, check out this link.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

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Thursday, March 5, 2009

Google MyMaps - How to

Go to Google – Maps.

You will see the options for Get Directions or MyMaps.

Go to Google – Maps.

Click on MyMaps

Click on Create New Map

You will be able to give a title to your map and a description. You will also have a complete set of tools available in the Map area (see hand, balloon, line or shaded area). You can drip a balloon on any location and you can use the lines to connect the balloons or to create a route or radius. And you can move everything with the hand.

You can also select your privacy settings for public or private.

If you move a balloon icon to a location that you choose, a little menu will present itself. You can give the location a name and description. If you click on RICH TEXT on top of the text box, you will get a full blog toolbar. If you would like to add a photo, you can link it from Flickr by clicking on the Picture Icon and adding the url from the Flickr picture (Click on the image in Flcikr and then All Sizes, and url will be on the bottom of the page).

So, in other words, if this is going to be a photo story, you have to upload your images to Flickr..

You can always go back and edit the Map.

If you need more help, contact me: hanaiver@gmail.com

World Trade Center Sonic Memorial

Here is the link for the World Trade Center Sonic Memorial. There is a lot of interesting audio in this site. A great on-line ephemeral memorial of a place that was vaporized. The virtual location of this memorial seems very fitting to the event.


Janet Cardiff - Walks

Here is the link for Janet Cardiff and her husband Georges Bures Miller. If you look at the site and listen to some of the audio, I think you will find it interesting. It may give you some ideas for your own projects.


Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Tim Hawkinson - Face

The artist I was looking for was Tim Hawkinson. I got the name changed as I have *no* memory and I had just mentioned Mary Hawkesworth.

Here is a great video (1 minute) on Art 21 about Emotor - his motorized face:


Tuesday, March 3, 2009

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Tuesday, February 24, 2009

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History of Maps

A brief history of maps with some great map links!


An explanation of the Cartesian Co-ordinate system


Book: Wayfinding Behavior: Cognitive Mapping and other Spatial Practices

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Monday, February 23, 2009

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Sunday, February 22, 2009

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Thursday, February 19, 2009

The Assignment for 2/25

For this week, you are to pick a partner. With your partner, you will go to a location where each one of you took a picture for last weeks "Photograph a heterotopia" assignment. When you near the location, the person who took the picture will lead the person who did not take the picture around the location. The person who did not take the picture will have their eyes closed and will explore the site through sound, smell, touch, taste, weight, mass, volume, sensation, association, memory, experience (Yi Fu Tuan). The person with their eyes closed will narrate their experience into the cell phone, phoning into the blog via Hipcast (see Neighborhood Narratives blog post on "Recording from your telephone") The person who took the picture (the photographer) will function at their site only as a seeing guide. Repeat with the the roles changed at the other person's site.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Photo assignment

...which was to walk around New Brunswick and try to photography Heterotopias, which you will understand (or try to) from the Foucault reading and post the photos to Flickr and link your Flickr account to your blog.


You are supposed to pick one question about each reading from a classmate (by going to their blog and reading their questions). Then you answer each one (3 in total) by writing on your blog.

Final Blog address list

Delete Julia Weich, add Tom Septak, change Jamie Kulger address and change Cassandra Sebastian Pernia address

Alexandra Stein http://astein-neighborhoodnarratives.blogspot.com
Amanda Downs http://amandadowns1.blogspot.com
Candace Lo http://blogcandace.blogspot.com
Cassandra Sebastian Pernia http://cassandrapernia.blogspot.com/
Daniel Weingard http://danielweingardsblog.blogspot.com/
Danielle Ditaranto http://rutgers-nn.blogspot.com
Denise Christinereed http://denniissee.blogspot.com
Donna Joseph http://donnajo58.blogspot.com
Emily Suzuki http://emilysuzuki.blogspot.com/
Gabriella Potievsky http://gabpot.blogger.com
Jamie Kulger http://jamiekugs.blogspot.com/
Justin Debrosse http://jdebross.blogspot.com
Kathryn Nguyen http://springnarratives.blogspot.com/
Kristie Alicia http://krisalicea.blogspot.com/
Lindsay Hulme http://disgustingthing.blogspot.com/
Mariam Ali http://psychgirl-thenandnow.blogspot.com/
Mary Finelli http://mfinelli.blogspot.com
Melanie Macdonald http://rutgersspring09-nn-melanie.blogspot.com/
Mindy Hsu http://itchyagnes.blogspot.com
Naeemah Davis http://naeemahi.blogspot.com/
Patrick Ree http://mysteree-mystery.blogspot.com/
Sarah Liguori http://sarahlig.blogspot.com/
Stephanie Danbrowney http://sdanbrow.blogspot.com/
Stephanie Schulman http://stepschu22.blogspot.com/
Sunny Eden http://sunnygulrajani.blogspot.com/
Tom Septak http://tomseptak.blogspot.com

Friday, February 13, 2009

Connecting Flickr to Blogger

It took me *forever* to figure all of this out, as I had completely forgotten and some of the settings are hard to find.

Okay, there are different ways you can post to your blog from Flickr and you can see three ways in my test blog here

1) To blog a photo from Flickr so that it shows up as a post:

In your flickr account, go to Your Account.
There are 4 subheadings: Personal Information | Privacy & Permissions | Email | Extending Flickr. The page you that you will see is Personal Information. Click the tab 'Extending Flickr' and go to that page. Under 'Your Blogs', click the link 'Configure your Flickr-to-blog settings.'
Choose Blogger Blog, Click ‘Next’
On that page, click 'Head over to google now'
At the bottom of that page, click 'Grant Access'
Choose your blog from your list of Blogs (if you have a list), otherwise it will just display your blog name. Click 'Next'
It will display your blog url and all the information it needs. Click 'All done'.
Click 'Create a custom template' and choose one (or not). Click 'Done'.

Okay, now go to your PhotoStream in Flickr:

Click on any photo in your album so that you get the large size in its own window. Above the image, you will see a button for 'Blog This'. Click on that button and you should see the link for your blog. Click on the link and you see a template where you can add text or not and 'Post Entry'. Voila!

2) If you want to Add a Gadget and have a permanent side bar link:

Go to the Layout page in your blog and Add a Gadget.

If you would like to add a slideshow: In Configure Slideshow, give it a title, and then pick source: Flickr. Type in your username and it should identify your photos. When you see your photos appear in the little window, click 'Save'.

If you want to add a photo as a sidebar: Go to Flickr, pick the photo that you want and click on it to get the large size in a separate window.

Click on button above the image 'All sizes". Below the photo, you will see a box that says 'Grab this photos url'. Copy the url. Then go to Blogger/Layout/Add a Gadget. Choose 'Add a Picture'. You will get a small window that gives you Title: whatever you want, Caption: whatever you want, Link: leave blank. Image: check the box for 'From the web" and paste in the url for your photo. The url code starts with http://and ends with.jpg. If you don't have the .jpg code, then you have grabbed the wrong code. you cannot use the url from the browser address line as it does not end with .jpg. Click 'Save" and you are done.

3) Linking a photo from Flickr in the body of a text without blogging from Flickr (i.e you might be using someone else's image).

Go through the steps to find the url of the image listed above (All sizes and then below the image). In your posting template for your blog, choose the picture icon. A new window appears that allows you to upload from your computer or add an image from the web. Paste in the url into the web address box. Click 'Upload Image" and you are done.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

How to photograph a heterotopia

When I say walk around New Brunswick and photograph heterotopias, what I actually mean are spaces that are "time out of time" and "place out of place"... which, in Foucault's terms, are parks, contained spaces, mirror reflections, prisons and insane asylums (but I doubt anyone is photographing these), hospitals (maybe), schools (maybe), but in general, things in everyday life that seem like contained, separate spaces.

It is interesting to see what you glean from the reading and how you interpret this in your photographs. This is actually quite challenging but I just made your life a lot easier by giving you these hints.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Richard Long



Audio Moblog

powered by Hipcast.com

Tenement Museum Folksongs

Check this out as a sound map of New York

Folk Songs for the Five Points

Audio Moblog

powered by Hipcast.com


The Situationist International and Guy Debord experimented in the 1950s by wandering around urban cities, recording the emotional pulse emitting from the metropolis. Known as drifting, these artists would chart human experience to a geographic map to create psychogeography.

Networked Performance on the Turbulence web site displays different projects that operate in the realm of psychogeography:


and from Wikipedia, a definition of Psychogeography


The Situationist International and Guy Debord experimented in the 1950s by wandering around urban cities, recording the emotional pulse emitting from the metropolis. Known as drifting, these artists would chart human experience to a geographic map to create psychogeography.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Of Other Spaces

After reading the essay "Of Other Spaces," you may realize that the argument can be made that the mixed reality spaces that are created by the simultaneous experience of real place and the metaverse of Cyberspace is a third, heterotopic space - a time out of time, and a place out of place.

Here is a brief summation of the paper by Rickie Sanders, Professor of Geography, Temple University:

In his paper, “Of Other Spaces” Michel Foucault called attention to the centrality of space in the 20th century. Indeed it has surpassed history as the great obsession of our time. In his paper he moves along a theoretical trajectory which builds on a medieval hierarchical notion of space, substitutes it with a modern theory of extended space, and ultimately displaces both with the postmodernist claim to site. The site, is both central to the culture and at the same time, set aside – the cemetery, the prison or the hospital – mirrored in the actions that take place there.

Adding student list

If you go into the Layout of Blogger and click on the sidebar selection of Add a Gadget, you get a small second window that then has a list of types of gadgets that you can choose from. You pick LINK LIST and then hit the little + sign. It will put you on a window called "Configure Link List". You give it the name "Students" and then you have to copy and paste into the new site name, the name of the student and into the New Site url, the url of the person's blog. It is a bit copy and paste intensive, but takes about 15 minutes to do everyone.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Blog Addresses

Here are all the blog addresses to add to the "Add a Gadget" function in the Layout mode of your blog. Call the gadget "Stundents" and add it as a list of urls. Also remember to put a link in for Main class blog with the url (http://rutgersspring09-nn.blogspot.com/) in a separate gadget.


Alexandra Stein http://astein-neighborhoodnarratives.blogspot.com
Amanda Downs http://amandadowns1.blogspot.com
Candace Lo http://blogcandace.blogspot.com
Cassandra Sebastian Pernia http://cassandra.blogspot.com/
Daniel Weingard http://danielweingardsblog.blogspot.com/
Danielle Ditaranto http://rutgers-nn.blogspot.com
Denise Christinereed http://denniissee.blogspot.com
Donna Joseph http://donnajo58.blogspot.com.
Emily Suzuki http://emilysuzuki.blogspot.com/
Gabriella Potievsky http://gabpot.blogger.com
Jamie Kulger http://jkugler.blogspot.com
Julia Weich http://jwiech.blogspot.com/
Justin Debrosse http://jdebross.blogspot.com
Kathryn Nguyen http://springnarratives.blogspot.com/
Kira McDonald http://gooselamp.blogspot.com
Kristie Alicia http://krisalicea.blogspot.com/
Lindsay Hulme http://disgustingthing.blogspot.com/
Mariam Ali http://psychgirl-thenandnow.blogspot.com/
Mary Finelli http://mfinelli.blogspot.com
Melanie Macdonald http://rutgersspring09-nn-melanie.blogspot.com/
Mindy Hsu http://itchyagnes.blogspot.com
Naeemah Davis http://naeemahi.blogspot.com/
Patrick Ree http://mysteree-mystery.blogspot.com/
Sarah Liguori http://sarahlig.blogspot.com/
Stephanie Danbrowney http://sdanbrow.blogspot.com/
Stephanie Schulman http://stepschu22.blogspot.com/
Sunny Eden http://sunnygulrajani.blogspot.com/

Foucault reading

I just made the link on the syllabus active, but for those of you who don't want to scroll down and find it, here it is again:


Thursday, February 5, 2009

Recording from your telephone

To record from your telephone, which is called Moblogging (meaning Mobile Blogging),
you can call (214) 615-6431.
When prompted, enter your PIN: 181-197-551 #
Your options will be: Record and Publish, or Record and Not Publish. If you select Record and Publish, you will be prompted for your Blog Number or Podcast Number.

The blog number is 1018.

Try it to test it!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Portraits in the 21st Century

The portrait I described in class is Merce Cunningham, with Shelly Eshkar, Paul Kaiser and Marc Downie: Loops

and here is the project again and if you click on the link where it says "Loops is opened up completely, you get the information for open source code, creative commons copyright liscence, all the motion capture data etc. You can build on the project, if you can code...:(

Public release of Merce Cunningham’s Loops Choreography
Tuesday, Feb. 26 at 6:30 PM
Merce Cunningham Studio

New York, NY—Merce Cunningham Dance Company and The OpenEnded Group present the public release of Merce Cunningham’s choreography for his signature solo dance Loops, and the accompanying digital artwork created by The OpenEnded Group, on Tuesday, February 26 at 6:30 PM in the Merce Cunningham Studio. This event is co-hosted by the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center. The evening will include a presentation of the choreography and of the digital artwork, remarks from Merce Cunningham as well as Paul Kaiser and Marc Downie of The OpenEnded Group, and a reception. The choreography for Loops will be made available under a “copyleft” intellectual property license (in the form championed by Creative Commons). This will permit anyone to perform, reproduce, and adapt this work for non-commercial purposes. Simultaneously, the digital artists of The OpenEnded Group (Marc Downie, Shelley Eshkar, and Paul Kaiser) will release their digital portrait of Cunningham, also entitled Loops, as open source software. This artwork derives from a highresolution 3D recording of Cunningham performing the solo with his hands. The artists will also unveil a completely new realization of the work, now in color. The open source release will give digital artists and scholars the freedom to study the artwork in detail and to adapt or remix the artwork creatively. The release will also constitute a kind of “living will” for the artwork so that it can be recreated long after current technology has been superseded. This open source release goes beyond Loops itself, for it includes the complete multimedia authoring system, Field, that underpins Loops as well as other of the most technically challenging artworks made to date, spanning realtime graphics, interactive performance, and digital music. The open source release of Loops is made possible through support from the Cunningham Dance Foundation with major support provided by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. All the original materials for Loops will become part of the Merce Cunningham Archive at The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts Dorothy and Lewis B. Cullman Center. The Merce Cunningham Archive was created unofficially by David Vaughan when he was hired by Merce Cunningham as studio administrator in December 1959. In 1976, his job as archivist was formalized by a National Endowment for the Arts grant for a two-year pilot project. At the end of that period, the Cunningham Dance Foundation asked him to remain as the first archivist in the history of American dance companies. The Merce Cunningham Archive’s works on paper include a virtually complete set of programs of performances, posters and flyers, Cunningham's personal choreographic notes from the 1930s to the present, books and periodicals of writing by Cunningham and Cage, as well as books and periodicals about Merce Cunningham Dance Company. The electronic media works include Cunningham's personal choreographic notes, dating from 1991, constituting some 50 hours of computer files; original moving camera recordings related to Cunningham's film/video collaborations; master films and videotapes; and recordings of performances and rehearsals, recorded interviews, documentaries, and newscasts featuring Cunningham and his work. There are approximately 1000 still images, approximately 200 hours of audiotapes and phonograph records of music relating to the repertoire; and sound recordings of music and of interviews, lectures and symposia, and oral histories. Merce Cunningham Studio is located at 55 Bethune Street, 11th floor, in Manhattan.

Cunningham created Loops as a solo dance for himself in 1971 and continued to perform it until 2001. Though he originally danced it with his full body, Cunningham soon started channeling its intricate movements entirely into his fingers, hands, and arms. In this form, Loops became the signature solo work of Cunningham’s later career, often inserted as a cameo into Merce
Cunningham Dance Company Events. Cunningham eventually set Loops on an artificial “performer,” a software intelligence embodied in an abstract body coded and created by The OpenEnded artists for a virtual version of the work. This digital version of Loops was commissioned by the MIT Media Lab in 2001 and derives from a definitive recording of Cunningham performing the work in a motion capture studio. This recording preserved the intricate performance as 3D data, which portrayed not Cunningham’s appearance, but rather his motion. Cunningham’s joints become nodes in a network that sets them into fluctuating relationships with one another, at times suggesting the hands underlying them, but more often
depicting complex cat’s-cradle variations. These nodes render themselves in a series of related styles, rendered to resemble gesture drawings. The Loops soundtrack has two elements. The first is Cunningham reading carefully compiled diary
entries from his first three-day visit to New York City in 1937 at age 17, a marvelous evocation both of the spaces of Manhattan and of the young Cunningham. The second is a musical response to the sound and semantics of the narration as well as to the structural changes occurring on screen. This work draws upon sounds from the prepared piano of long-time Cunningham collaborator John Cage and, like the visual elements, creates itself in real-time. Just as the Loops imagery constructs a set of interacting processes that observe and recast the motion of Cunningham’s hands, the new score takes a set of interacting musical processes that listen to and restate the sound and language of Cunningham’s narration. Like Loops the physical dance, Loops the digital artwork is always "performed" live (computed and rendered in real-time), with no two performances the same. As a live performance it suggests the immortality of a dance that would appear to be fleeting and ephemeral. As a subject for creative reinterpretation, the digital work offers something radically new. Since the internal structure of Loops is revealed completely in its visibly open source, re-implementations of it can go far beyond the present-day practice of “remixes,” which operate only on the surface rather than on the structure of the original work. Merce Cunningham, born in Centralia, Washington, received his first formal dance and theater training at the Cornish School (now Cornish College of the Arts) in Seattle. From 1939 to 1945, he was a soloist in the company of Martha Graham and presented his first New York solo concert with John Cage in April 1944. Cunningham has choreographed nearly 200 works for his company. Cunningham's interest in contemporary technology has led him to work with the computer program DanceForms, which he has used in making all his dances since Trackers (1991). In 1997 he began work in motion capture with Paul Kaiser and Shelley Eshkar of Riverbed Media to develop the decor for BIPED, with music by Gavin Bryars, first performed in 1999 at Zellerbach Hall, University of California at Berkeley. Another major work, Interscape, first given in 2000, reunited Cunningham with his early collaborator Robert Rauschenberg, who designed both décor and costumes for the dance, which has music by John Cage. In the 2002–03 season MCDC celebrated its 50th anniversary, beginning with performances at the 2002 Lincoln Center Festival in New York City and ending in the Brooklyn Academy of Music’s Next Wave Festival in October 2003, when a new work with music by two rock bands, Radiohead and Sigur Rós, Split Sides, was presented. The décor was by the photographers Robert Heishman and Catherine Yass, with costumes by James Hall and lighting by James F. Ingalls. Merce Cunningham: Dancing on the Cutting Edge, an exhibition of recent design for MCDC, opened at the Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami, in January 2007. The major exhibition Invention: Merce Cunningham & Collaborators at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts closed on October 13, 2007. Cunningham’s most recent dance, XOVER, was presented at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire in October 2007, featuring décor and costumes by Robert Rauschenberg, music by John Cage, and lighting by Josh Johnson. The Company also performs regularly at Dia:Beacon, Riggio Galleries as part of the Hudson Valley Project, a series of residencies continuing into 2009.

The OpenEnded Group (openendedgroup.com) has its roots in film, dance, drawing, writing, computer graphics, and artificial intelligence, creating digital artworks like no others. Artists Marc Downie, Shelley Eshkar, and Paul Kaiser have created numerous acclaimed works for stage, screen, gallery, and public space. Prior to Loops, their most notable collaboration with Cunningham was BIPED (1999), a tour-de-force of dance and technology that remains in Cunningham’s repertory. They have also worked with two other choreographers, Trisha Brown (how long does the subject linger on the edge of the volume... [2004]) and Bill T. Jones (Ghostcatching [1999] and 22 [2005]). Other OpenEnded works include the public art installation Pedestrian (2002), which has been extensively exhibited around the world, and two public art commissions from Lincoln Center: Enlightenment (2006) and Breath (2007).

# # #
Merce Cunningham Dance Company
Merce Cunningham Studio, 11th floor
55 Bethune Street, New York, NY 10014
tel: 212.255.8240 x14 fax: 212.633.2453

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Yi Fu Tuan

From the paper "Neighborhood Narratives, New Dialogues With/in the Mediated City", by Hana Iverson and Rickie Sanders. 2008.

Place, according to Yi Fu Tuan (1977) combines a sense of position within society and a sense of identity with a spatial location. Places have historically been viewed as physical sites, with natural and emotional endowments that speak to the limits of human freedom. Not only are our human identities bound up with the hills and valleys in which we live but our very humanness and humanity is bound in this way. It is place that gives rise to humanness – in the form of feelings, attachments, longing, nostalgia, desire, melancholy, and fear.

... Space is perhaps best thought of as a three dimensional void where things are held to exist only if they occupy volume. Location based technologies negate the consideration of volume and view space along the lines of abstract Cartesianism.

...Similarly, beginning with the 16th century, the conception of space which relied on the Cartesian coordinate system set in motion a marginalization of place. Space with its numerical properties was regarded as absolute and finite. Thus it was perceived as scientific and crucial to the goal of imperialism.

...Certain activities are accorded special spatial status, while others are not. Driving a truck is spatial (hence, work), talking on the phone is less spatial (hence, bureaucratic), and pondering an idea is simply ethereal (Sack, 1980, p. 17) hence, indolent.

Yi Fu Tuan refers to the kind of properties that create a sense of place. He also questions, what is space, and how does one have a sense of spaciousness? In what ways do people attach meaning to space and place? The answer goes beyond the cultural; there are certain "animal" relationships to space and place... one could say, embodied senses of how we orient ourselves to space and place. We are interested in how space and place are understood, so that we can question how technology disorients our sense of space and place, or amplifies our sense of space and place.

Try to think of some ways you would answer this question.

Three themes run through Yi Fu Tuans book:

1) The biological facts

2) The relations of space and place

3) The range of experience or knowledge.

He amplifies these themes on page 6 of the Introduction. Please refer to that and fill out the meanings.

A key term in the book is "experience." What is the nature of experience and the experiential perspective? (Yi Fu Tuan, p.7)
Our class is also based on the development of experiential exercises. How has each one informed your sense of space or place?

Chapter 2 focuses on the Experiential Perspective. Experience is made up of sensation, perception and conception. These influence on a continuum, emotion and thought.

Experience is directed to the external world. Seeing and thinking clearly reach out beyond the self. Feeling however, reflects the way in which the self is inwardly affected. (p. 9).

This is important to think about because as you come to define your own experiences, it helps you think about how to design experiences for other people. The final project will be the result of a complex experience design.

These are ideas that caught my attention:

tactile perception is at the extreme opposite of visual perception. The skin is able to convey certain spatial ideas and can do so without the support of other senses, depending on the structure of the body and the ability to move. (p. 14)

--- which leads me back to the push/pull exercise and the experience of touching your partner. How much information was communicated through touch? How do you spatially organize yourself in open and closed space?

Sounds, though vaguely located, can convey a strong sense of size (volume) and of distance. For example, in an empty cathedral the sound of footsteps tapping sharply on the stone floor creates an impression of cavernous vastness. (p15)

--- which makes me think of the creative possibilities of sound to create, record or alter space.

Three principal types of space (p. 17), with large areas of overlap, exist - the mythical, the pragmatic, and the abstract or theoretical. Mythical space is a conceptual schema, but it is also pragmatic space in the sense that within that schema a large number of practical activities, such as planting and harvesting of crops, are ordered. A difference between mythical and pragmatic space is that the latter is defined by a more limited set of economic activities.... When an ingenious person tries to describe the soil pattern cartographically, by means of symbols, a further move toward the conceptual mode occurs. In the Western world systems of geometry - that is highly abstract spaces - have been created out of primal experiences. Thus sensorimotor and tactile experiences would seem to lie at the root of Euclid's theorems concerning shape congruence and the parallelism of distant lines; and visual perception is the basis for projective geometry. (p.17)

---so how would you design an experience that would separate the senses, and give a single sense experience of space.

--- Where in New Brunswick, do you find mythical space and pragmatic space overlapping?

An object or place achieves concrete reality when our experience of it is total, that is, through all the senses as well as with the active and reflective mind. (p. 18)

---How can you deconstruct a place to recreate it as a new, whole, concrete experience?

Spatial Ability, Knowledge and Place


P. 68 - Walking is a skill, but if I can "see" myself walking and if I hold that picture in mind sp that I can analyze how I move and what path I am following, then I also have knowledge. That knowledge is transferable to another person through EXPLICIT INSTRUCTION IN WORDS, WITH DIAGRAMS, AND IN GENERAL BY SHOWING HOW COMPLEX MOTION consists of parts that can be analyzed or imitated.

P. 73 - When space feels thoroughly familiar to us, it has become place. Kinesthetic and perceptual experience as well as the ability to form concepts are required for the change if the space is large.

How well do you relate to small or large spaces? Do you become disoriented in large spaces? How would you design an experience that relates small and large spaces so that the viewer/user has to orient through some kind of maze like experience to orient themselves.

What are the spaces that have become places for you? Like Rutgers campus itself?

One quick thought

Today, while I was driving through a school district, there was an electronic sign that was posted next to the regular speed limit sign. The electronic sign told me of the fluctuations in my speed as I was passing through. Somewhere, an invisible sensor was monitoring my speed and making me aware of the relationship between my actual speed of travel with the regulated limit. Just one small moment of surveillance and control, limit and legalization. Inside my car, I was following the GPS directions to my destination. Colliding, intersecting signals, mixed with the music from my radio, which was transporting me back in mental time to an experience when I was 15.


What do these ideas mean for you?

Guglielomo Marconi invented the radio. That transmission has now exploded into a dense, global web of wireless infrastructure; "if you counted all of its terrestial, satelite and spacecraft linkage, it is now humankind's most extensive construction." (Mitchell, p.2) Simultaneously, the reception devise has scaled down to a fashion accessory.

"My natural skin is just layer zero of a nested boundary structure." (p.7) In the early years of the Cold War, outer defensive casements re-emerged, in extreme form, as domestic nuclear bunkers. The destruction of the Berlin Wall in 1989 marked the end of that edgy era...

"All of my boundaries depend for their effectiveness, upon sufficient capacity to attenuate flow with sufficient thickness." (p.8)

Georg Simmel was a German social scientist who observed that "a connecting creature who must always separate and who cannot connect without separating."

"To create and maintain differences between interiors and exteriors of enclosures... I seek to control these networked flows." (p.9)

The discontinuities produced by networks result from the drive for efficiency, safety and security....

"You can pause wherever you want when you are strolling along a dirt track (DRIFT), but you must use stations for trains, entry and exit ramps for freeways, and airports for airline networks - and your experience of the terrain between these points is very limited. You experience the architectural transitions between floors when you climb the stairs, but you go into architectural limbo between the opening and closing of the doors when you use an elevator."

"Now the body/city metaphors have turned concrete and literal. Embedded within a vast structure of nested boundaries and ramifying networks, my muscular and skeletal, physiiological, and nervous systems have been artificially augmented and expanded." (p.19)

"Telephones... are yet another network of infrastructure - one that now stretches my speech production and reception system around the globe and multiplied its points of presence...

You were never quite sure who would pick up on the other end, and the relationship to our bodies as neither continuous or intimate." (p.24, 25)

I am both a surveying subject at the center of my electronic web and the object of multi-modal electronic surveillance. All of these constructions of the gaze that the post-Foucaultians have alerted us to - the gaze of desire, the gendered gaze, the consumer's gaze, the critical gaze, the reflexive gaze, and certainly the gaze of power - are extended, reorganized, and reconstructed electronically." (p28)

Monday, January 26, 2009

Schedule of Classes and Assignments


Jan. 21

Introduction: What is Neighborhood Narratives?
The history of the class, case studies. Where am I? New Brunswick. What I carry with me. The bag exercise. The archeology of everyday life. Create your blog. Daniel Spoerri – An Anecdoted Topography of Chance.
Assigned Reading: William J. Mitchell, Me ++, The Cyborg Self and the Networked City, Introduction, Ch. 1 & 2
Assignment: Map your week on a T-shirt.

Jan. 28

Introduction to place and space.
Introduction to Locative Media and Locative projects
Psychogeography: One Block Radius (GlowLab)
Web 2.0 – Flickr, Twitter, Facebook, Ning, Hipcast
Assigned reading: From Yi-Fu Tuan, Space and Place: the perspective of experience
Assignment: Psychogeography I: Imagine a resident of New Brunswick, collect artifacts, create collage

Feb. 4

Place and Space.
Presentation of Cross/Walks: Weaving Fabric Row; Murmur Toronto;
Assigned Reading: Foucault, Of Other Spaces.
Assignment: Psychogeography II: Find the imagined person and interview

Feb. 11

Place and Space: Review of themes
Review Foucault.
Discussion of Foucault’s ideas about hetertopias; the archeology of place and space.
Richard Long. Sculpture in the landscape, tagging.
Assignment: Photograph a Heterotopia and post to Flickr. Link Flickr to your blog.

Feb. 18

Embodiment. Walking.
Push/Pull and stabilization: outside (weather permitting)
Akitsugu Mayebashi, Sonic Interface
Assigned Reading: The Situationists
Assignment: In pairs, have one person lead you to a location where you took a photograph. Close your eyes and have your partner lead you around the place. Phone in the description of what you are feeling and experiencing to Hipcast.

Feb. 25

Embodiment. Urban Planning and Mapping.
Design, politics and economics.
The geoweb, Google Earth, new neighborhoods without proximity
Review Situationists + assignments
Assigned Reading: Chapter 1: Mapping Cyberspace
Assignment: Emotional Maps

March 4

Janet Cardiff

(Public Art. Kystof Wodizcko and “Public Address”. Public memorials, counter-memorials.)

Review Maps.
Assigned Reading: Mapping the Homonculus.
Mid-term Assignment: MyMap of your personal geography.

March 11

Mixed Reality and Locative Media.
Review: MyMaps.

A variety of Locative Arts projects will be presented including MilkProject.
Assigned Reading: Locative-Media Artists in the Contested Aware City; Views from Above: Locative Narrative and the Landscape

Mid-term Review

March 18

No Class; Spring Break

March 25

Janet Cardiff, Sophie Calle
Assigned Reading: Locative Arts
Assignment: Following

April 1

Public/Private II
Review Following.
Outline requirements for final projects. Discuss locations.
Assignment: On-line following and the idea of driving a project on the street from the web.

April 8

Blast Theory – Uncle Roy All Around You.
Class Map as interface for final projects.
Begin discussion of final projects.

April 15

Project Development
More Locative examples.

April 22

Final projects due. On-site presentations.

April 29

Final projects due. On-site presentations.

May 5 or 6

Reading Period: Class critique and wrap up.


Neighborhood Narratives

Spring 2009, Rutgers University
Fordham New Media Lab at the Douglass Library
Wednesdays, 11:30 – 2:30
Instructor: Hana Iverson
Guest Instructor: David Gordon
Email: hiverson@rci.rtugers.edu; hanaiver@gmail.com
Office Hours: Wednesdays after class, by appointment.


In Neighborhood Narratives, the urban landscape is a canvas where analogue and digital media, text, sound, and image are applied to real places in order to document the definable aspects of place that simultaneously reveal and construct their essence and trigger authentic engagement. The goal is to create a set of site specific annotations; such as sound maps, community histories augmented by websites, audio interviews authored and distributed over the cell phone, site specific installations that integrate radio and other communications technology, scavenger hunts along with many other types of combinations that when connected would produce a neighborhood narrative. This process encourages participants to combine the skills of the storyteller (the grounded expert with detailed everyday knowledge) with the flaneur (the mobile observer of the city with a broad overview).

Neighborhood Narratives uses alternative technologies, basic mobile recording devices, on-line open-source tools such as blogging, and Google Maps along with analog resources such as sketch maps to produce context rich stories that portray the world, city, or neighborhood. In Neighborhood Narratives we explore the real and metaphorical potentialities of mapping, walking, and wayfinding as methods of developing attachments, connecting, and constructing narratives in a virtual and spatial locality (neighborhood).

The final assignments are presented on location in the city. No prior technological expertise is required.

The course is divided into three themes:

Theme one: Place and Space. The course begins with a close examination of the concept of place. We explore questions such as: What is place? What is the difference between place and space? How are places mapped? What is the relationship of place to location?

Theme two: Embodied Practice. We investigate how a constantly changing environment affects the ways in which we physically stabilize our sense of orientation. We consider ways to ask strategic questions about encounter, gathering, and location; exploring our sensory alignment of the world, and how it is synthesized by the social mix of influences that affect both physical and virtual environments.

Theme three: Merger of Mixed Reality and Mobility. Mobile media are tools that connect the physical to the virtual, by handheld connectivity to networks and webs. New public sites are emerging as a result of this mix - situated storysites, community mapping, environmental installations that incorporate technology, to name a few - that create a new form of experience and authorship.




The class is 3 hours long once a week.
The class will introduce methods of collecting data and artifacts, internet and field observation, mapping and scoring, "show and tell" and the examination of project presentations with rigorous discussion. Mobile city-wide exploration (public transportation, on foot) will include the presentation of the final project on location in the city. The class will also engage in peer dialogue and interdisciplinary teamwork, to extend the breadth of a project through collaboration. Students will keep semester long blogs including observations, photos, video and audio recordings (where equipment and resources allow) - a personal diary of the Neighborhood Narrative experience.

Internet Access

All students are expected to have frequent, dependable access to the internet. It is essential that you have an active email account that you ACCESS FREQUENTLY, for email with faculty and with each other. IT IS ESSENTIAL THAT YOU CREATE AND ACTIVELY MAINTAIN A BLOG. If you have any difficulties with either Internet access, your email account or your blog, please see the instructor after the first class.

Technology Requirements

You will need some form of memory stick to save and transport your work. Access to a mobile phone and digital camera is recommended.


Readings will be handed out in each class.

Course Costs

There may be a charge for the xeroxes over the semester, up to and no more than $20/student. As expected with production courses, you may need to purchase supplies to produce your final project. Also, while it is not required, I would like to encourage you to use the communications features of your mobile phone: costs for voice calls and text messaging will depend on your phone plan.

Instructor Contact

The best way to reach me is by email. I am on campus once a week and am available to set up individual appointments, if requested.

Attendance and Lateness Policy

Attending the sessions outlined in the schedule is a requirement of this course. More than two unexcused absences will decrease the overall grade by one unit for each additional missed class. Five absences will result in a failing grade for the course. If you are going to be absent, please inform me by email at least 24 hours in advance. If you are absent, it is your responsibility to make up any work in a timely fashion. Three times arriving late will be considered as one unexcused absence. Being more than 10 minutes late will be counted as an absence.

Evaluation and Assessment


Research, attendance and participation 35%
In class assignments 30%
Final project 35%


Late assignments and exercises will not be tolerated. Failure to hand in an assignment by the due date and time will result in a zero grade for that assignment.

Research, Attendance and Participation

Group work, communicating and sharing knowledge through discussions, posting to the class blog, in-class presentations, and overall student participation are an essential part of the process of understanding course material.

Readings and blog postings are mandatory.

Prior to each class you will be required to complete a short reading and make notes of relevant points to bring up in class discussion.

Blog postings
Each week you will be required to a) make one post to your NEIGHBORHOOD NARRATIVES blog and b) to comment on at least one other student’s blog. Your post can be on: 1) a locative media project and your reaction to it or 2) a new media technology and how it relates to former ideas about photography (e.g. Spellbinder) or 3) if applicable, one of the required assignments.

International assignment (maybe)
You will be assigned to an international team of students and asked to complete an exercise. Success of the assignment depends on your ability to negotiate and communicate with fellow team members who are based in different time zones and have varying electronic communication styles. Please keep in mind that working internationally can be incredibly rewarding, but has its frustrations: Solving frustrations is integral to the creative process!

Assignments and Final Project

The remit for the final project is to create an urban, on-site, locative (cell phone, GPS, mapping, sensory altering) media art project that engages visual as well as embodied (spatial + body) ideas, and document the final project on your blog.

The assignments will provide you with the skills and knowledge required to realize your final project.