January 22, 2009

Make Software as Culture with Warren Sack

by Noah Wardrip-Fruin · , 5:50 pm

Warren Sack — the software artist and theorist behind projects like Agonistics and Conversation Map — is leading up a new MFA for “artists working with software art, software design, and software studies.” Michael and I plan to lend a hand. Application deadline is Feb 15th, and there’s more information after the jump.

Contact: Felicia Rice, Program Manager, 831-459-1554, danm@ucsc.edu
Application deadline: February 15, 2009


UC Santa Cruz is pleased to announce an MFA for artists working with software art, software design, and software studies. The university’s Digital Arts and New Media (DANM) MFA program has “Software as Culture” as one of its research foci for the collaborative faculty-student projects in 2010-2011. Applications to the DANM MFA program for Fall 2009 are being accepted through February 15, and are encouraged from the broad diversity of artists who develop and critically engage software.

The Digital Arts and New Media MFA Program at UC Santa Cruz brings together faculty and students from across the academic spectrum to pursue interdisciplinary artistic and scholarly research. At the core of the diverse DANM curriculum are collaborative research projects, in which small clusters of students work with professors on artistic, technical and theoretical research. Over the course of three quarters, these groups engage in the development of faculty-initiated research in one of four focused areas: Mechatronics, Participatory Culture, Performative Technologies, and Playable Media. These collaborations result in publications and exhibitions. In this intensive two-year program, students also take core and elective courses in the theory and practice of digital media arts, culminating in the development of individual thesis projects. These works are premiered in the program’s annual MFA exhibition. The Master of Fine Arts (MFA) is the terminal degree in the field of digital media arts, qualifying graduates for a variety of career paths including university-level teaching and research.

In the Software as Culture / Participatory Culture collaborative research group, MFA students will work with UCSC’s strong faculty to experiment with and investigate the software that underpins cultures of intellectual and everyday life. In many scientific disciplines today it is believed that software is the best model of the object of study. This is an operating principle in molecular biology, operations research, neuro-psychology, immunology, game theory, economics and many other sciences. This digital ideology of science should be distinguished from something far more pervasive: digital life leaks outside of professional circles and flows beyond the technical vocabularies of specialists’ dialogues. We propose a project group to interrogate these new, software-based conditions of life and collaboration through a combination of software studies, software design, and software art.

The Software as Culture collaborative research group will be led in 2009-2010 by Warren Sack (author of the entry on “Memory” in the recent MIT Press book “Software Studies: A Lexicon”; creator of the argumentation game “Agonistics” (see http://rhizome.org/art/exhibition/artbase101/); and the social technology “Conversation Map” (see http://rhizome.org/editorial/2262)). Other UCSC faculty in this area also include Noah Wardrip-Fruin (co-editor of MIT Press books such as the “New Media Reader” and associate director of the Software Studies Initiative (see http://lab.softwarestudies.com/) and Michael Mateas (co-creator of Independent Games Festival finalist Facade and contributor to the MIT Press “Software Studies” book).

More about DANM:

More about Software as Culture and the area of Participatory Culture at DANM:

Comments are closed.

Powered by WordPress