we are about to begin our discussion on
What does STEAM have to do with it
but johannes goebbel sends us a final though on
our discussion with job ippolito and rick rinehart
on re-collection and conservation of new media art
Adding a couple of pointers to the discussion of authorship of
"technicians" (allow me to put that in quotes"). I am writing
currently a longer text for our production and curatorial teams at
EMPAC on these questions – not only form the point of view of the
individual as contributor or contributing/collaborating author, but
also from the point of view of the institution. If you are employed by
an institution (as opposed to be an artist who may get a commission)
like a university (or museum), you are a co-author, but your work
(contribution) belongs legally speaking to the institution ("work for
hire"). But that is yet another question.
The way film credits are handled should be a guide-line for all time-based arts.
Since the recording systems in the fifties allowed the role of
sound-engineers to become a major shaping agent in music, the issue
how these main forces in creating a "sound" are credited (be it in
pop/rock music or in classical music – they have had an equal
influence on the final music). Are they "technicians" - are they not
"interpreters"/"artists" as much as the musicians? What about the role
of the producer (different role in music than in film)? Yes, they
are. How are they credited?
Music with live-electronics has a long tradition of dealing with the
question of disappearing technology and the port from analog to to
digital – and then from one generation of digital environment to the
next. There are two categories: Performing artists (and sometimes
composers) who keep a composition with electronics alive as part of
their performance praxis. And then institutions – where the
institutions decide which piece/compser is worth being ported.
A major undertaking was with the live-electronic works of Luigi Nono
(may be known to some on this list - "famous", "big name" - great
music). He had done his live electronic works with the then analog
equipment of the Experimentalstudio Freiburg at the South-West German
Radiostation. The Experimentalstudio was the largest studio for music
with live-electronics in the analog age – and is still a major force
having switched to digital technology.
It was a major, major initiative by the Experimentalstudio to document
the eletronics how they were used in Nono's pieces. Not only to
describe the "patches" and technology used, but to actually annotate
the scores with all details what had to be "manipulated" during a
performance at which point in time. This was started while the
founding director of the studio and the first generation of
technicians – who had all performed the pieces many times - were
The switch of the very expansive analog equipment to the digital
world, was a painful process – but eventually successful.
I do not know how IRCAM in Paris is managing the situation of porting
music from one digital generation to the next. The works by Pierre
Boulez come to mind which certainly will be maintained as flag-ships
Just to mention two institutional examples of time-based arts in the
much more contained area of music.
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