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With the decreasing size and cost of computer vision, digital components, and advances in virtual reality, we are faced with a renewed awareness of the impact of current digital practices on the physical body. Returning for its second year, MVR is a lecture event series focused on new forms of exchange between body and technology developed by Eyebeam Alumni Nancy Nowacek and David Sheinkopf, Director of Technology at Pioneer Works. MVR is a platform for sharing projects and ideas concerning these new interactions between body and information, device, and action and explores an expansive breadth of subjects and technologies including Virtual Reality, Augmented reality, robots, video games, choreography, and machine learning. Speakers represent a wide spectrum of expertise—coding, dance, anthropology, furniture design— and have included Gene Kogan, Liat Berdugo, Amelia Winger, and Daniel Temkin.

Since the mid-1990s the Internet has impacted Ursula Endlicher’s practice, where she focuses on the physical, structural, and metaphorical aspects of networks: She builds frameworks for Internet artworks and performances, but lets real-time data be the lead for their choreographies. She extracts rule sets from the Web and repurposes them for installations and objects. Her videos often feature characters depicting anthropomorphized code.

She is currently a project resident at Eyebeam where she is developing a new networked-performance installation.

Endlicher’s work is part of the permanent collection of the Whitney Museum of American Art, and the ursula blickle videoarchiv at the Belvedere in Vienna, and has been exhibited and performed in venues such as transmediale, SIGGRAPH, ISEA, the xMPL/Contemporary Art Center in Irvine, the WUK in Vienna, the Center for Contemporary Art in Warsaw, the Center for Performance Research in Brooklyn, Air Circulation in Brooklyn, and Postmasters Gallery in NY. She has been teaching Interactive Media in the Digital Arts Department at Pratt.

At MVR Ursula will be talking about some of her projects that combine code and choreography. Among them, html_butoh—a project that uses HTML tags as instructions for movement—and Website Impersonations, which is also choreographed by the real-time HTML structure of websites and fed by the html-movement-library.

Brian House is an artist whose performances, installations, and interventions address the rhythms of the body (human or otherwise) in contact with computation. His work is informed by his background in computer science and by the act of making sound.

Brian’s work has been shown by MoMA (NYC), MOCA (LA), Ars Electronica, Transmediale, Cincinnati Contemporary Arts Center, Tel Aviv Center for Contemporary Art, Eyebeam, and Rhizome, among others, and has been featured in publications including WIRED, TIME, The New York Times, Neural, Metropolis, and on Univision Sports. He is currently a doctoral candidate at Brown University.

Ella Klik is PhD candidate in the department of Media, Culture and Communication at New York University. Her dissertation work “Erasable Media: Media Archaeology from Letters to Bits” is situated at the intersection of philosophy of technology, media history and aesthetics. The aim of the project is to refine our assumptions regarding the relation between inscription and its negation, and to establish the centrality of the latter in various communication systems. Past projects include work on Viennese Actionism, French extremism and traumatic memory. She was recently a junior fellow at the Institute for Human Sciences in Vienna and NYU Berlin. Her work appeared in Media-N and is forthcoming in Memory Studies.

Leaks have become habitual; we do not know when they will happen, but we are almost certain that they will reoccur in the age of equally permeable boundaries, spaces and governments. These leaks have uncovered surveillance practices and technics of routine gathering, processing and storing of data via technological means. This talk will consider the proliferation of art works that delve into this issue of surveillance technologies in the public space; more particularly, works that offer a rumination on the topic of resisting registration. Surveying this growing corpus reveals multifaceted strategies for preventing images of our bodies (or faces) from being recorded, cataloged, and archived under the watchful eye of ubiquitous cameras and facial recognition algorithms. We will then explore the kinds of optic genealogies and philosophies that underpin some of the proposed tactics, as well as the conceptual possibilities they offer for refusing visibilities.

Rodrigo is a doctoral student in the Department of Media, Culture and Communication at New York University. His research focuses on various historical and contemporary forms of phenomenology as a means to investigate the effects of new media and representational technologies on the human self, his communicative relation to other human and non-human subjects, and their organization as material objects within diverse cultural, economic and political structures. Rodrigo holds a bachelor’s degree in Philosophy with Honors and a master’s degree in Humanities and Social Thought from New York University. During his master’s studies, Rodrigo presented his research at academic conferences at Stony Brook, Georgetown and Yale University; served as Editorial Director for Anamesa, a biannual peer-reviewed interdisciplinary journal; and worked as Publications and Communications Specialist for Latin America at J.P. Morgan Private Bank.

Nicholas Fortugno is a designer of digital and real-world games and co-founder of the game company Playmatics. Fortugno has been designer, writer, and project manager on dozens of games, serving as lead designer on the downloadable blockbuster Diner Dash, award-winning serious game Ayiti: The Cost of Life, CableFAX award winning Breaking Bad: The Interrogation, and MUSE award winner Body/Mind/Change as well as games with Red Bull, Disney, AMC, the Red Cross/Crescent, PBS, and USAID. Nick is co-founder of the Come Out & Play street games festival, and teaches game design and interactive narrative at Parsons School of Design.

Nick will present on the ways in which the body itself is a technology that can be used by interactive artists to create aesthetics. Psychology has proven repeatedly that there are reliable responses to stimuli that affect emotional and cognitive processes, and by manipulating people into moving their bodies in specific ways, we can leverage those processes for specific aesthetic effects.Fortugno uses this practice to design street games, and will present on some of these techniques by looking at specific street game work he’s done involving interval training, kung fu, and adolescent sexuality.