I am an artist-scholar whose research and practice explore the speculative aesthetics and affect of expanded cinema, physical computing, net art, visual effects and attractions.
I received my PhD in Media Arts and Practice from the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts in December 2015. My research theorizes the novel epistemological and phenomenological regimes emerging in the wake of the increasing ubiquity of human and technological entanglement, characterized by the mainstreaming of robotics and the digital transformation of the built environment through smart networks of sensors and media displays. Drawing on scholarship around the cinema of attractions and special effects, cultural histories of scientific instruments, media archeology, science and technology studies, game design, art history and literary theory, my work focuses on investigating the philosophical relationship between information and form, the convergence between the object and the body in the context the emergence of sensate digital devices.
I am currently working on a book project based on my doctoral research Machines of the Unreal: Mapping the Passage between the Virtual and the Material in the Attraction and exhibiting its companion installation Polyangylene, a kinetic immersive environment with projection mapping.
While at USC I co-designed the Rilao Project with Alex McDowell, a transmedia narrative about a science fiction city distributed across games, virtual reality experiences, texts, and film at the World Building Media Lab, eventually curating and organizing an exhibition of emerging media artworks at the Science of Fiction Conference in Los Angeles in October 2014 . I was also a researcher and designer for the Annenberg Innovation Lab Public Interactives research division, an interdisciplinary team of designers, scholars and students sponsored by IBM, Intel and Warner Brothers, amongst others. The AIL incubates projects that use emerging media technologies to critically engage the way people interact with culture and effect social change. I collaborated with the Los Angeles County Museum of Art to design an augmented reality app and, in partnership with Microsoft Research and the University of Iowa, to develop digital touch interfaces for the AIDS Memorial Quilt, exhibited in Washington D.C. at the Smithsonian Folk Festival in 2012.
In the fall of 2012 I interned at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) in the department of Time-Based Media Exhibitions, working with media artists such as Michael Heizer and Katy Grannan to ensure the integrity of their works across different technological platforms. I also collaborated on the installation of the multimedia Stanley Kubrick show at LACMA (November 2012 – May 2013), as well as participated in an initiative to organize the archiving and restoration of media works in the museum’s collection.
My artworks include a multimedia cabinet of curiosities with pocket-sized projections and a miniature Pepper’s Ghost effect (The Book of Luna, with Clea T. Waite), a distributed narrative experienced through a body-scale, tangible interface (The Interactive GeoSurface Map, with the Center for Land Use Interpretation and Onomy Labs), stereoscopic animations of speculative nanotechnological creatures projected onto architecture (Nano Flow), an experimental Flash game that critically engage cinematic montage, affect and remix (Cinema Detour, workshopped at the University of Chicago), animated short films (Remainder and Paroxysm, exhibited at the Chapman Gallery, L.A.), an interactive video installation controlled by a stuffed animal interface (Almost Everything Can and Shall Be Cut, at the Fischer Museum,L.A.) and electronic art-toys like the Inflatable Synthesizer, an Arduino-powered haptic and musical experience that takes the form of a series of playful inflatable chairs.
In 2007 and 2008, thanks to a Fulbright Scholarship, I filmed a documentary called “Altai Jan” in the Altai Republic in southern Siberia, about the effects of post-Soviet globalization on indigenous Altaian culture.
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