CFP: Performance, New Media, and Surveillance

If you share my appreciation for the ctrl[space]: Rhetorics of Surveillance exhibit and book, linking surveillance, theory, and art, you might be interested in this call for papers for a special issue of Surveillance & Society on “Performance, New Media, and Surveillance”:

Special Issue of Surveillance & Society |

Performance, New Media, and Surveillance | guest editorsJohn E. McGrath and Robert W. Sweeny

The relationship between the visual arts and surveillance has been explored through large scale exhibitions (e.g.: CTRL [Space], ZKM), and texts such as Loving Big Brother (McGrath, 2004) have introduced questions of performance and performativity into the surveillance debate. However, as the technological possibilities available to artists grow, and the social impact of surveillance is increasingly recognized, there is a need for a thorough examination of the uses of surveillance in the visual arts, particularly in the genres of new media and performance art, where issues regarding technological engagement and embodiment come to the fore. The editors of this special volume of Surveillance and Society are seeking papers that examine the complexities of surveillance in new media and performance art. We intent to acknowledge various issues including but not limited to:

  • (Re)Examination of New Media and Performance Art through surveillance themes and theories.
  • Modes of spectatorship and participation in New Media and Performance Art that are complicated through surveillance technologies.
  • Examples from technological and live artistic practices that present novel forms of interaction and engagement.
  • Analysis of the gaze in its various forms (male, actuarial, scopic) as related to New Media and/or Performance Art.
  • Discussions regarding visualities produced in the spaces of surveillance, including the visual culture of technologies that measure gait, map surveilled populations, and monitor public spaces.
  • Examinations and articulations of surveillance space (including data space) through artistic practice.
  • Explorations of the performative nature or surveillance society and space.
  • Political, resistant and utopian currents in surveillance art practice.

We are also open to related subjects not outlined above. Projects by artists working in new media would be of particular interest, particularly those that make use of the digital nature of the Journal of Surveillance and Society. These might include media and methods such as hypertext, digital video, animation, videogames, and social/tactical/locative media.

Please contact the guest editors, John E. McGrath or Robert W. Sweeny in advance to discuss proposed topics.

All papers must be completed and submitted electronically, no later than March 31st, 2009, but after January 1st 2009 when the new Open Journal System-powered website will be fully operational.

The issue will be published October 31st, 2009.

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