“Mapping”: collaborative creation practices and media sociability
“Mapping”: collaborative creation practices and media sociability ECREA, Digital Culture and Communication, 27th October 2012 Elisenda Ardèvol, Debora Lanzeni, Gemma San Cornelio Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (IN3)
Introduction • “Digital culture and cultural production” -- MEDIACCIONS research group- • “Creative practices and participation in new media” --CREATIVE research project, funded by MICINN (HAR2010-18982) • Research project on free culture movement
Methodological approach• Theories of practices. Theodor Schatzki (2001). Avoiding the "mediacentrics" approaches (media influence), "textcentrics" (based on the interpretation of texts or representations) or "technocentrics" (technological determinism).• Case studies. The production of empirical data is based on case studies; using techniques of netsurfing, participant observation and interviews, and their interpretation and analysis, taking into account the perspective of actors and their material practices... to attend to "peoples doings and sayings"...
Mapping and free software cultureThe work we present today isbased on an ethnographicfieldwork among free cultureactivist and technology makers •How mapping is characterized as amainly set in Barcelona. collaborative creative practice?People who support the •How the process of creation andmovement through create, the mapping performance arecirculate and connect knowledge shaped by the free-softwareand information and people who culture?make things such software,images, hardware, art, etc. •How mapping is related to social innovation?
Theoretical background Participation in digital culture • Hybrid identities and products: prosumer (consumer + producer); proam (amateur + professional); viewsers (viewers + users); produser, user- generated content, long tail. • Liberating discourses vs free labour discourses. The uncertainty around the restatement of creative work and professional roles: fusion of leisure and work through play. Free labor (Lazzaratto) The institutionalization of the bohemia (Neff, 2005) • Co-creation. The phenomenon of consumers that are increasingly participative in the process of making and circulating media content and experiences (Banks & Deuze, 2009). Relating (implicitly or explicitly) industries with external agents that include audiences, fans, amateurs, or independent artists.
Theoretical backgroundCreative industries and new media• “Fusion of traditional arts (individual) with cultural industries”. (Hartley,2005). Cultural and audiovisual industry currently is no such But aremultiple micro initiatives that are created for a specific purpose. Independent Industriesimportance of social networks (Hartley, 2005) creators• Based on individual work and free-lance, logic-based project, the hackerethic of work and pleasure (which has always been a feature of theartists). Features of the "creative class" (Richard Florida, 2002).• “Design thinking” as a driver of innovation instead of the cultural Users, prosumers,paradigm of the Information and Knowledge Society (Catells, 2002). Proams, etc.
Theoretical backgroundSocial innovation• Immaterial labor (Corsani, Negri, Lazzarato, 1996) Innovation is beyond thecontrol of corporations (Corsani, 2004:91). To produce this transformation isnecessary to forget the segmentation: labor / leisure, production / creativity,duty…• Mass creativity. (Leadbeater 2006:4-9). Innovation is not just a mass-produced thing but also produced by the masses. Wikipedia, or free softwareare a new paradigm in such modes of production. In this context ProAms(Professional Amateur), are the main drivers of innovation on the Internet,through spaces as Youtube, MySpace, etc.• Hidden innovation. (NESTA, 2007:17). There is innovation that is notcontrolled by scientific indicators located only in scientific and industrial centers.Create new indicators to account for all the invisible creativity. The concept of"open innovation" in which companies must learn to use ideas from externalsources rather than trying always invent for themselves.
Case Study: Mapping with TelenoikaVideo projection mapping byTelenoika, an audiovisual opencreative community sited in Barcelonathat uses and promotes open sourcesoftware in the context of the freeculture movement.
Theories of space• Augmented Space (Manovich, 2006) new aesthetic paradigm of the spaceexperience” “is the physical space overlaid with dynamically changing information”(Manovich, 2006, p. 220)• Informational territories (Lemos, 2010, p. 405), “the digital layer is in relationshipwith other layers like laws, regulations and subjectivities constituting then a “newsense” of the space. The intersection of the digital media with other uses andsocial conceptions of space is explored by artists and activists as a way of re-appropriation and creation of new meanings of a place.• “the technologically mediated world does not stand apart from the physical worldwithin which it is embedded; rather, it provides a new set of ways for that physicalworld to be understood and appropriated” (Brewer and Dourish, 2008, p. 969).
MediaSpace MediaSpace (Couldry, 2004) is a multidimensional approach to the relations established between media and place. “the artefactual existence of media forms within social space, the links that media objects forge between spaces, and the (no less real) cultural visions of a physical space transcended by technology and emergent virtual pathways of communication. It is also expanding too. We can no longer ignore what Thrift and French (2002) call the automatic production of space through software, a condition of spatialized governance in which media and space quite literally merge in architectural infrastructure”. (Thrift and French 2002:314, 317). “ the politics of media images and economies are not separate from the politics of space”.
MediaSpace: The moment of performing mappinge presents itself simultaneously as all of society, as part of society,ment of unification. As a part of society,lly the sector which concentrates all gazing iousness. (Debord 1983, paras 2-3)
MediaSpace: The moment of performing mapping • Space ecology is not only present during the event or mapping display, but also in every step of the practice, from the very creation of it. •This technique, especially when done by open code, implies a sophisticated coordination of software and hardware in real time. • Open software vs private software. The risk of projection. •The ideological position of sharing. •The necessity of collaborating
SharingSpace: The moment of creating mappingThe process of creating the mapping could be considered as a kind of iterativedesign process where the work of the computer engineers is being produced inparallel to the creative or audiovisual work, full of specific moments of‘illumination’, for instance when they create a line of code to make a window orany other effect:
SharingSpace: The moment of creating mappingWe hear waves of uplifting and happy if!, Ohhh!, Well,Molt Be!, Que bonic! in unison, coming from the row in front of computers ofthose who were playing with software doing mapping. Enric, who was with theprojector comes running "what happened, what happened?”"Oh, you missed it, you had to be to see it!" Oliver replied sarcastically. Whathad happened is that, in real time, they had managed to open a "window" thatworked with pyton from blender and wormap, but what everyone saw it was ared shadow crept symmetrically from the outside right towards the western sideof the same building-image taken from the film Metropolis and projected on thewall on which was mapping. The same effect for about 30 minutes.Here, several parallel activities began while Carles, hastily opened the wormapand began writing new lines of code that would be able to share to the Blendercommunity. Not 10 minutes had passed when they got the first comment.
WorkSpace: Labour aspects and organization• The members of the collective are working professionally for other companiesor individually as free-lancers. So the teams of work are variable in scale andcomponents.•They organize themselves in relation to the projects and their own availability.• They develop software and other technical solutions for collectives, or even forinstitutions, but also their own projects•“they do things”
WorkSpace: Labour aspects and organization•They often mention the notion of ‘play’ regarding their professional practice.“We gather togheter to play for a while and make mapping”.•They discuss every project in terms of being payed depending on the client-ehtic dilemmas.•They are sustainable
ConclusionsMapping is the result and the intersection between creative practices andmediated sociability that take place in a thickish digital environment or mediaecology (Horst, 2008).For Telenoika members Creative practices and digital media are bothconstitutive to “mapping” as a collaborative practice.They need to collaborate in order to keep running the creative process. Sincethey are using open software, many hands, minds and creativity is needed inorder to produce their works. Collaboration is not only a choice, is a necessity.Sharing is a constitutive element of the creative practice, influencing thecreative process and also the results. By this process of sharing they do notonly create a cultural product or an artistic performance, but a certain moralorder (that they need to continue creating). They know that the only way ofcreating and developing new products freely is by sharing.
ConclusionsAgain, it is a necessity, since they know that if they don’t share, they will dependon the private programmes which are inaccessible for young creative artists andengineers. So the gate of innovation will be closed. They must be socialinnovators if they want to continue developing their technical expertise andartistic expressions.By doing so, they believe that they move from improvisation to innovation. Thatis, they are social innovators.Their innovations are intrinsic to the practice of hardware design and mapping.They want to influence the market.But they also want to change the world.