Welcome to Polyangylene, Lauren Fenton‘s wunderkammer blog, mindmap and portfolio site. You can find out more about my fellow PhD candidates in the Interdivisional Media Arts and Practice program at the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts and iMAP’s advisors and faculty at imap.usc.edu.
I am an artist, designer and scholar whose research and practice explores the speculative worlds of tangible interactives, sensate computational networks, interactive architecture, robots, toys, emerging media, and situated play in general.
My work as a Ph.D. candidate re-imagines the technological everyday as a network of poetic agencies by critically engaging the emerging epistemologies of wearable computing, personal robots and computationally mediated interaction of the built environment. It invites speculation as to what extent the increasing ubiquity of human and technological entanglement allows us to envision a world in which the everyday is constituted by poetic technologies.
My dissertation, Polyangylene, is an interactive polymedia installation in which a mesh network of biomorphic robots collaborate with visitors to control different animated visual and textual narratives, which are projected and mapped onto a sculpture of found objects.
In the course of my time in the iMAP program 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 helped design and install the multiple projection and sound systems 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.
I was also a researcher and designer at the Annenberg Innovation Lab, an interdisciplinary team of designers, scholars and students sponsored by IBM, Intel, and Verizon. The AIL incubates projects that use emerging media technologies to revolutionize the way people can interact with culture and effect social change.As a research assistant in the AIL’s Public Interactives Research track, I collaborated with the Los Angeles County Museum of Art to design an augmented reality app and with Microsoft Research and the University of Iowa to develop digital touch interfaces for the AIDS Memorial Quilt.
I have designed a a narrative tangible interface (The Interactive GeoSurface Map, with the Center for Land Use Interpretation and Onomy Labs), themed spaces (Singularities, SCA Gallery), experimental Flash games, animated short films (Remainder and Paroxysm, exhibited at the Chapman Gallery, L.A.), an interactive film 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, a haptic music visualizer that takes the form of a series of playful inflatable chairs.
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