2007 graphicSUMMARY
The 2007 Festival

The 2007 Festival took place April 20 - May 6, 2007 and represented the efforts of about 60 arts and educational organizations and over 200 artists, curators and professionals who explored the impact of technology on art and how artists throughout the world are using technology to advance traditional and evolving artistic disciplines. There were 81 related events in all media including visual art, music, dance, new media, public art, performance, web art, film, lectures, discussions, and conferences that took place over a course of two weeks, at museums, galleries, universities, and in public spaces throughout the Greater Boston area and on the world wide web.

Artists who participated in the 2007 Festival hailed from across the United States and around the world, including Australia, Germany, The Netherlands, Japan and Switzerland. However, the Boston Cyberarts Festival is also intended to celebrate the incredible wealth of artistic talent in its home region of the northeast. New England has been noted to have one of the highest concentrations of digital artists, making Boston the high-technology cultural center of the United States. Many of the area’s top artists in this field presented new work including Tony Cokes, Brian Knep, and Denise Marika.


Lumen Eclipse Welcomes You to Cyberarts kiosk, presented by Lumen Eclipse Public Motion Art Displays


   

Visual Arts

The 2007 Festival provided, venues, and organizations from around the New England area with opportunity for collaboration as well as curatorial and artistic exploration culminating in exhibitions such as Picture Show at The Photographic Resource Center, and Works from Aspect Magazine at Axiom Gallery that spanned the canon of new media and illustrated the many directions that artists and organizations within the field are exploring.

Picture Show featured works by five New England based artists whom actively engaged the idea of moving pictures through the presentation of work that evoked early optical and cinematic devices. Ken Johnson from the Boston Globe felt this “convergence of the old and the new turns out to be the most fascinating dimension of the Boston Cyberarts Festival… what I saw revolved around some of the oldest and most traditional ideas and aspirations in the history of art.”

Works from Aspect Magazine, collaboration between Axiom Gallery and Aspect Magazine featured works culled from past issues of the digital periodical. The exhibition featured single channel video with animation and LED work by Jim Campbell, Tony Cokes, Jill Magid, and Christopher Miner. Boston based arts magazine Big Red and Shiny had this to say about the exhibition “When artists engage with technology or the ideas inspired by new media, they often fold those ideas back into their explorations of more traditional media, creating hybrids that are inspired both by the past and the present”.

Included in this 2007 Festival were exhibitions and performances from the new media programs of Massachusetts College of Art and Design, Emerson College, Brown University and The School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. If it were not for the Cyberarts Festival, many of these artists would not have the opportunity to share their work with the public or to build partnerships with other cultural institutions.


Detail of The Dream of Timmy Bumble Bee, 2007, in Picture Show at the Photographic Resource Center at Boston University
credit: Courtesy of Musée Patamécanique

 

Musical Performance

The Puzzle Master, a multimedia opera based on the Daedalus and Icarus myth featuring music by Eric Chasalow, and video by Denise Marika, premiered at Brandeis University’s Spingold Theater; The Music Synthesis Department of Berklee College of Music presented Olivia Block with Students from Berklee College of Music in an evening entitled Freex To Geex II; Beat Research presented Analog Night at the Enormous Room with Pamelia Kurstin - The Greatest Living Theramin Player. Additional concerts of electronic music were presented by MEME@Brown University, the Dinosaur Annex Music Ensemble, New England Conservatory of Music and Halsey Burgund.


Video still from Jean Detheux’s Daydream in Visual Music Marathon at Northeastern University Raytheon Amphitheatre
credit: Jean Detheux

 

Screenings

The Goethe Institut presented three evening of 40 Years of German Video Art including two evenings of curated presentations and a panel discussion moderated by Ute Meta Bauer. Northeastern University organized The Visual Music Marathon, a daylong event that included screenings of new and historical video, film and computer animation that reflected the convergence of musical composition and moving images.

 

Dance

Boston Cyberarts continued its dance programming with Ideas in Motion: The Body’s Limit. The 2007 event series featured a central conference at Green Street Studios in Cambridge (April 21 –22) and additional dance performances and public installations at partner organizations occurring throughout the Festival. The conference included a keynote talk by Johannes Birringer, Physical Intelligence, Artificial Intelligence, and Augmented Bodies; presentations by artists such as Sarah Drury and Norah Zugina Shaw; a variety of artists and engineers affiliated with MIT participating in Physical Intelligence: A roundtable discussion on the body’s body of knowledge; performances including Peter Kirn & Pauliina Silvennoinen’s Palinopsia, Antony Rizzi’s Every Body Tells a Story, Xavier Le Roy’ Self Unfinished (1998) and Andrea Haenggi/AMDaT’s LET'S TAKE A SEAT! at the Swiss Consulate in Cambridge; and a screening of Hans Beenhakker’s Shake Off. Additional events included: Electric Haiku; Calm as Custard, a concoction of dance, video and sound by Cathy Weis, at the ICA Boston; the world premiere of Denizen, a multimedia work by Kinodance Company presented by the Bank of America Celebrity Series at the Tsai Performance Center.


Performance still from Andrea Haenggi/AMDaT's Lets Take a Seat!, at Green Street Studios
credit: Andrea Haenggi/AMDaT

 

   

IBM Innovation Award

The 2007 Festival culminated on Friday, May 4th, with a Gala event hosted and funded by Boston Cyberarts’ partner the Hotel @ MIT. 250 guests from participating organizations, artists, Cyberarts fans and sponsors attended this event. 2007 marked the first year the IBM Innovation award was given in recognition of the outstanding exhibitions and events featured in the 2007 Boston Cyberarts Festival. The grand award of $5,000 went to Moonwalk by Clea T. Waite, seen at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study. Two Merit Awards of $500 went to Aging by Brian Knep, seen at the Judi Rotenberg Gallery and Animated Gestures by Camille Utterback seen at Art Interactive.

The awardees were selected by a three-person jury of leaders in the art and technology community; Pattie Maes, an associate professor in MIT’s Program in Media Arts and Sciences and interim head of the Program in Media Arts and Sciences; Michael Rush, the Henry and Lois Foster Director of the Rose Art Museum at Brandeis University; and Martin Wattenberg, artist and researcher at the Collaborative User Experience Group of the IBM Watson Research Center in Cambridge.


Still fromClea Waite's Moonwalk: Work-in-Progress, at Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study
credit: Clea Waite
 

   

Youth activities

The 2007 Festival also included multiple youth oriented events taking place around the Boston area. Cloud Foundation served as the 2007 CyberArtCentral for Youth presenting three weekends of artist talks, interactive artworks and performances including: Bigprotochoice by Jonathan Bachrach an organic, volumetric, and interactive light and sound sculpture that embodies myriad of choices we make during a lifetime; Video artist and choreographer Nell Breyer demonstrated interactive technologies used in visualizing motion. Kinodance Company also showed excerpts from Denzien. Also taking place at Cloud Foundation was a performance and demonstration by Jazz musician Neil Leonard who discussed how he uses the computer to redefine jazz performance through a number of custom software-based systems to extract thematic material from his improvisations to allow him to respond and jam with him in real time. In addition, The Computer Club House at the Museum of Science hosted a Computer Clubhouse Animation Workshop, in which Clubhouse members and staff lead an informal workshop where participants can create animations using stop motion equipment and Scratch programming and animation software.


Neil Leonard

 

 

Survey Info

We conducted a survey of Festival attendees, which generated over 200 responses. We are in the process of analyzing those responses so that we can better understand our audience and the economic impact that the Festival has on the communities in which it takes place.


 

   
The media had this to say about the 2007 Boston Cyberarts Festival:


Camille Utterback's
Animated Gestures
at Art Interactive
credit: Camille Utterback

 


Video still from Brian Knep's Aging at the Judi Rotenberg Gallery
credit: Brian Knep

 


Carmin Karasic, Rolf van Gelder and Rob Coshow's Handheld Histories as Hyper-Monuments presented by New Radio and Performing Arts, Inc. at the Judi Rotenberg Gallery
credit: Carmin Karasic

 

Denizen integrates film, a scenic design, and lighting into the dance to create a theatrical experience with enormous dramatic impact.”
—— Boston Globe, May 4, 2007

“Once more Boston’s progressive arts communities and high-tech institutions meet each other somewhere at a futuristic crossroads with a variety of interactive arts experiments … This eclectic mix is made possible by collaborations from many of the area’s most prestigious and forward-looking cultural organizations.”
—— Dorchester Reporter, April 26, 2007

“For the next two weeks, the ‘Athens of America’ will resemble Renaissance-era Florence with a strongly modern twist, as elite artists from around the world converge on the city for a celebration.” —— Daily Free Press (Boston University), April 23, 2007

“It’s the festival at which to nourish your inner geek.”
—— Six New Things, April 22, 2007

“Is it art that draws on the latest technological advances in software-driven interactive imagery? Yes. Is it art that reconnects with primitive mechanics like those reminiscent of 19th-century circus sideshows? That too. Could it be digitally manipulated film stills enlarged to the size of hotel windows? You guessed.”
—— Boston Phoenix, April 20, 2007

“Move over music and film festivals – technology enthusiasts have lined up their own celebration … Hundreds of events across the city are linked by one common thread – technological interaction between man and machine.”
—— Boston Herald, April 20, 2007

"Cyberarts ... is the most distinctive sector of Boston-area art these days, and this year's Cyberarts Festival is the big biennial gathering of artists from all over the world. It's when all art is electric, when interactive is the watchword, when the future is now."
—— Boston Globe, April 19, 2007

“The phrase Cyberarts Festival may evoke vague images of science fairs and video installations, but the fifth festival is a wide-ranging events that brings together artists from all disciplines, from painters to musicians and even dancers.”
—— Bay Windows, April 19, 2007

“If Vincent van Gogh painted today, he might jazz up his sunflowers with Photoshop. And if Igor Stravinsky had a computer, audiences could listen to ‘Rites of Spring’ on their iPods. Lovers and makers of art today looking for the next frontier of creativity and technology should visit the Boston Cyberarts Festival.”
—— Metrowest Daily News (Framingham, MA), April 19, 2007

"It's hard to believe a festival of the epic scale of Cyberarts could thrive in our disorganized, highly territorialized and heavily divided little burg - but eight years since its inception, the bi-annual fest is still going strong."
—— Weekly Dig, April 18, 2007

“Among the imponderables we’re mulling: Is art the best thing to happen to technology, or technology the best thing to happen to art?”
—— Boston Magazine, April, 2007

"Bohemia will be rubbing elbows with cyberspace this spring."
—— Beat Magazine, April, 2007

 

   
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