The Festival has had the privilege to have many important digital media artists and curators as participants and attendees. In this picture, from 2011, Marcin Ramocki speaks during a panel session with Magdalena Sawon and Mary Flanagan at the Norman Williams Public Library, which has played host to many Festival events.
Mary works as an artist, scientist, and humanist. Her groundbreaking explorations in these arenas represent an innovative use of methods, tools, and technologies to bind research with cultural production. Known for her theories on playculture, activist design, and critical play, Flanagan has achieved international acclaim for her novel interdisciplinary work, her commitment to a theory/practice dialogue, and contributions to social justice design arenas. Her research examines the boundaries between the personal and the public, perception, power, and what technology can teach people about themselves. Using the formal language of the computer program or game to create systems which interrogate seemingly mundane experiences such as writing email, using search engines, playing video games, or saving data to the hard drive, Flanagan reworks these activities to blur the line between the social uses of technology, and what these activities tell us about the technology user themselves. Her artwork ranges from game based systems to computer viruses, embodied interfaces to interactive texts; these works are exhibited internationally at venues including the Laboral Art Center, Whitney, SIGGRAPH, Beall Center, The Banff Centre, The Moving Image Center, Steirischer Herbst, Ars Electronica, Artist's Space, Guggenheim, Incheon Digital Arts Festival, and and venues in Brazil, France, UK, Canada, Taiwan, New Zealand, and Australia. Mary has written more than 20 critical essays on digital art, cyberculture, and gaming in periodicals such as Art Journal, Wide Angle, Intelligent Agent, Convergence, and Culture Machine, as well as several books. Her books in English include reload: rethinking women + cyberculture (2002), re:SKIN (2007), and the most recent,Â Critical Play (2009), all with MIT Press. She writes about popular culture and digital media such as computer games, virtual agents, and online spaces in order to understand how they affect and reflect culture. She is also co-author with Matteo Bittanti of Similitudini. Simboli. Simulacri ( SIMilarities, Symbols, Simulacra) on The Sims game (in Italian, Unicopli 2003). Mary is the Sherman Fairchild Distinguished Professor in Digital Humanities at Dartmouth College.
Marcin is a new media artist and documentary filmmaker. His recent projects have been exhibited in MoMa NYC, Whitney Museum, Wexner Center, ArtMoving Projects and Pacific Film Archives. Marcin lives and works in Williamsburg, Brooklyn and teaches new media art at Jersey City University. He is also a founder and co-curator of vertexList art space in Brooklyn.
Magdalena Sawon and Tamas Banovich
Owners/directors of Postmasters. Postmasters Gallery opened in East Village in December 1984, moved to Soho in 1989 and in September 1998 the gallery relocated again to a large ground floor space in Chelsea. Postmasters is the primary gallery for all the artists we represent. During its 25 years Postmasters is showing young and established artists of all media. We actively seek new forms of creative expression and show them in a context of painting, sculpture and photography. Painters (Steve Mumford, David Diao), sculptors (David Herbert, Jack Risley), installation artists (Diana Cooper, Sally Smart), and artists for whom form follows conceptual ideas (Spencer Finch, Mary Kelly) are represented along the video and new media artists like Katarzyna Kozyra, Jennifer and Kevin McCoy, Omer Fast, Eddo Stern, Guy Ben-Ner, Anthony Goicolea, Natalie Jeremijenko, 0100101110101101.ORG (Eva and Franco Mattes), Wolfgang Staehle, and Kenneth Tin-Kin Hung. The artworks are generally content oriented, conceptually based, and - most importantly - reflective of our time.