Images and eventfulness: expanded cinema and experimental research at the University of New South Wales

Barker, T. (2012) Images and eventfulness: expanded cinema and experimental research at the University of New South Wales. Studies in Australasian Cinema, 6(2), pp. 111-123. (doi: 10.1386/sac.6.2.111_1)

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In Expanded Cinema Gene Youngblood develops an understanding of cinema as an open form, with its production expanded far beyond the confines of conventional film studios, and its reception taking place in sites outside the traditional space of the theatre and its flat projection screen. The expanded cinematic image, rather than confined to one time and space, instead circulates over networks, distributed by users who now participate in its construction. Much of Youngblood's thoughts are directed by developments in computing technologies and his vision for their future use in the arts. The computer, for Youngblood, shares creative agency with humans. More than a tool, it is fundamental to his new expanded cinematic language, providing a new system for the reformulation of old information. Since its publication in 1970 the ideas presented in Expanded Cinema have influenced a generation of media artists, no least the prominent Australian artists Dennis Del Favero and Jeffrey Shaw. For the last ten years, Del Favero and Shaw have been developing an interactive and immersive cinema at the University of New South Wales' iCinema Research Centre. This paper explores two recent projects conducted at the iCinema Centre and examines their place within a history of expanded cinema in Australia. The first of these is Scenario, which uses research in artificial intelligence and motion detection to create a cinematic environment where human users and artificially intelligent digital characters cohabitate. Secondly, it investigates a work in progress, iLAND, which allows online users to collaboratively build a cinematic landscape in an immersive space. The paper investigates firstly how Youngblood's ideas have influenced the design of these immersive cinematic environments. Secondly, the paper uses the critical analysis of these works to describe what the term 'expanded cinema' might mean in an age of social media, mixed reality and increasingly intelligent machines.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Barker, Professor Timothy
Authors: Barker, T.
Subjects:N Fine Arts > N Visual arts (General) For photography, see TR
College/School:College of Arts & Humanities > School of Culture and Creative Arts > Theatre Film and TV Studies
Journal Name:Studies in Australasian Cinema

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