Anne Sophie Spanner Witzke (DK)
Technological ecologies in new media art

During the last decade we have witnessed an increasing interest in ecological issues within the new media arts world. Art works, exhibitions, conferences and research programs dedicated to the topic are emerging1, debating the relationship between technology, nature and ecology. While it seems like there is a consensus that ecological changes are important, it is less clear what role new media art can play in this context. This paper argues that central values and characteristics of non-commercial techno and net culture (such as open source, sharing and collectives) are re-emerging in new forms in the current ‘ecology paradigm’. In this context new media art projects might be able to articulate a critical awareness towards the larger transformations needed in society. Drawing on the theoretical framework of Bruno Latour (2004) the paper explores how a number of new media art projects reflect on ecological issues trough strategies such as art & science, data visualization and activism. The projects will be discussed with inspiration from the concepts of "Science", "Nature", "assemblage" and "ecologizing" formulated by Bruno Latour (1998, 2004, 2005, 2007). Also, insights from new media art theorists such as Sara Diamond (2010) and Alexander Galloway (2004) will be included.

Anne Sophie Witzke is currently doing a PhD in Media Art and Ecology at Aarhus University, Denmark. She has been working intensively with art, climate change and technology the last couple of years as project manager and co-curator of the Nordic Exhibition RETHINK – Contemporary Art & Climate Change. RETHINK showed contemporary artists dealing with the cultural dimension of climate change.

Litterature:
Diamond, Sara. 2010. "Lenticular Galaxies: The Polyvalent Aesthetics of Data Visualization".
http://www.ctheory.net/articles.aspx?id=651

Galloway, Alexander R. 2004. Protocol. How control exists after decentralization. Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Latour, Bruno. 1998. "To modernize or toecologize? That’s the question." In Remaking Reality: Nature at the Millenium, ed. N. Castree and B. Willems-Braun, 221-242. London and New York: Routledge.
http://www.bruno-latour.fr/articles/article/073.html.

2004. Politics of nature : how to bring the sciences into democracy. Cambridge Mass.: Harvard University Press. Democracy. MIT Press and ZKM Karlsruhe, Germany

2005. "From Realpolitik to Dingpolitik – or How to Make Things Public Making Things Public." Atmospheres of Democracy. MIT Press and ZKM Karlsruhe, Germany. Edited by Bruno Latour and Peter Weibel

2007. "A Plea for Earthly Sciences". Presented at the Annual meeting of the British Sociological Association, East London. www.bruno-latour.fr/articles/article/102-BSA-GB.pdf.