NUVE: Resizing the Digital Gesture

NUVE: Resizing the Digital Gesture

João Martinho Moura (EngageLab, University of Minho, Guimarães, Portugal), Adérito Marcos (EngageLab, University of Minho, Guimarães, Portugal & Research Centre for Arts and Communication, Universidade Aberta, Lisbon, Portugal), Né Barros (Balleteatro, University of Porto, Porto, Portugal) and Pedro Branco (EngageLab, University of Minho, Guimarães, Portugal)
DOI: 10.4018/ijcicg.2014070106
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Abstract

The project presented here aims to explore the artistic possibilities offered by digital performances in real time, in the form of dance, which is regarded as a privileged form of body language in the interaction between the performer and a digital artifact, interaction that establishes itself as the driving element of the whole scenic narrative. To research the aforementioned possibilities, a digital artifact, named NUVE, was conceptualized, developed, and implemented for the purpose of creating a dance performance where a performer will interact with the system, resulting in a fluid digital performance, based on the theme of the analog body versus the digital/virtual body, that will be exhibited in public.
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2. Digital Art And Interactivity

One can define digital art as art produced in digital environments (Paul, 2008), being characterized as a virtual process conducted through software. The term digital art is applied to contemporary art, which uses methods of mass production and resorts to digital media (Gere, 2005). Kuspit states that, in this area, the importance of “code creativity” goes beyond the creativity of the image, being the main element when it comes to artistic creation (Kuspit, 2005). Marcos, Branco and Carvalho define digital art as art that explores the computer medium as both a tool and material for the creation (Marcos, Branco, & Carvalho, 2009).

Interactivity is present in digital art when one can create a dialogue between the spectator and the artistic creation (Ascott, 2003) (Vairinhos, 2002). Thus, an artistic creation that involves interactivity allows the existence of communication, founded on a critical and reflective action. Interactivity thus becomes a tool for the artist, characterizing the relationship between the artist and the creation and the relationship between the creation and the spectator who experiences it (Oks, 2007).

To Ascott, the concept of interactive art encompasses several practices, means, structures and adaptable environments, allowing the action of the subject who experiences the creation in the system of that same creation, by participating and interacting with the work (Ascott, 2003). For the authors, the concept of digital art is closely linked to the concepts of interactivity, simulation and artificial intelligence. The development of systems, structures and strategies that mobilize feelings and emotions in the spectator, promote in the multimedia and hypermedia environments, the experimentation and acquisition of meanings.

For Marcos et al. (2009), digital art is supported by three basic concepts: Randomness, Virtuality and Interactivity:

  • Random Access: (Pseudo) non-deterministic instruction-based algorithms open the possibility of instant access to media elements that can be reshuffled in seemingly infinite combinations;

  • Virtuality: The physical object is migrated into a virtual or conceptual object. The concept itself becomes perceptible through its virtualization;

  • Interactivity: The viewer may assume an active role in influencing and changing the artwork itself.

The Figure 1 shows, according to the authors, the concepts presented in a structured way.

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