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Pia van Gelder at Dorkbot CBR 29th November 2011

Pia van Gelder is a Sydney based electronic media artist / facilitator / teacher / student. Pia teaches Media Art at the College of Fine Arts, she is an MFA candidate at University of Sydney. She is a director at the Hybrid ARI Serial Space and the Overlord of Dorkbot (Sydney).

Image: Pia van Gelder

Image: Pia van Gelder

Van Gelder’s practice balances between two focuses for live performance and interactive installations – analogue audio/video synthesis and the modification or circuit-bending of pre-existing media-machines to facilitate their creation of unexpected and idiosyncratic outputs. She is interested in the idea of the “performing machine”, exploring the strange partnership or collaboration between artist and machine.

Van Gelder’s research is a form of media archaeology – discussing contemporary approaches to ‘composition inside electronics’ and new possibilities of ‘haunted media’ and ‘machine vision’. Van Gelder will be presenting some recent machines she has been working with and some ideas they are conjuring together.

6-8 PM

November 15, 2011 at 7:50 am Leave a comment

Ian Haig film Chronicles of the New Human Organism 30 June

Chronicles of the New Human Organism Ian Haig 2010


dorkbot cbr and ccas bring you a film and talk by

Thursday 30 June 6PM Canberra Contemporary Art Space Galleries Gorman House Art Centre Ainslie Avenue Braddon
bring cushions

Ian Haig works at the intersection of visual arts and media arts. His work explores the strangeness of everyday reality and focuses on the themes of the human body, devolution, abjection, transformation and psychopathology, often seen through the lens of low cultural forms.

His work has been exhibited in galleries and video/media festivals around the world. Including exhibitions at: The Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, Melbourne; The Experimental Art Foundation, Adelaide; The Australian Centre for the Moving Image, Melbourne; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; Artec Biennale – Nagoya, Japan; Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; Art Museum of China, Beijing and The Torrance Art Museum, Los Angeles. In addition his animation and video work have screened in over 120 Festivals internationally. In 2003 he received a fellowship from the New Media Arts Board of the Australia Council.

Chronicles of the New Human Organism
Short synopsis: part history, sci-fi / apocalyptic warning, contemporary spirit world, sect, nature documentary, post new age, futuristic vision, pseudo science, cult, mondo, recruitment, crank sci -fi, junk science, discovery channel from another dimension, educational video – exploring the extremes and the outer limits of human belief systems…
“Imagine putting a video camera into the hands of a Death Valley outsider artist convinced that the mother ship is about to land at any minute, and that when it does a new phase of human evolution will begin. Chronicles of the new human organism is such a film.

Taking the form of the nature documentary exploring the strangeness of the world around us as a starting point – Chronicles of the new human organism takes the viewer on a journey through a range of ideas, systems of knowledge and questions relating to the origins of the human species, the significance of the reptilian mind, new forms of human sexuality, parasites, the communication with the dead, and alien evolutionary technology.

The work references and cannibalizes ideas derived from Al Fry, JG Ballard, Rudolf Steiner, Wilhelm Reich, The Heavens Gate cult, Carl Sagan and Oscar Kiss Maerth. Delivered with a portentous, yet strangely soothing voiceover, Chronicles of the new human organism re-interprets the history of visionary thinking about the human species through the po-faced filter of Erich Von Daniken’s Chariots of the Gods and the shockumentary style of Mondo Cane.

One of the aims of Chronicles of the new human organism has been to make a work that defies categorization or another way of looking at the categorization of the human itself. It is a perverse and compelling hybrid of educational video, new age recruitment campaign and cult manifesto: the Mondo movie genre with a good dose of pseudo science.
The sound and music for the video was composed by PH2 (Philip Brophy and Philip Samartzis). Like the visuals, it draws on a range of references in its production from Jerry Goldsmith sci-fi scores such as Logan’s Run to pulsating electronic noise from Forbidden Planet and textural location field recordings of some of the weirdest places on the planet”. – Darren Tofts

June 14, 2011 at 11:12 am Leave a comment

Tim Boykett and Pippa Buchanan at Dorkbot Cbr Thurs 16 December plus Xmas drinks + ANAT meet and greet

Times Up - Moving Information Machine

Times Up - Moving Information Machine

Tim Boykett and Pippa Buchanan will join us for a chat to finish off a great year in dork!

Save the date: Thursday 16th December
Time: 5 – 7pm
Location: CCAS GALLERY, Gorman House Arts Centre
Street: Ainslie Ave. Braddon

And you are also invited to CCAS earlier at 3pm to meet Vicki Sowry, Program Manager for the Australian Network for Art and Technology, ANAT. Vicki is visiting Canberra and she would love to meet you and answer any questions you have about ANAT’s Synapse residency program and your project.

For the past two decades, Vicki has established and delivered professional programs for artists and filmmakers in partnership with industry. She has worked at Metro Screen, the Australian Film Commission, ABC Television and the Media Resource Centre. In 2007 she joined ANAT to manage the Art Science program and, in early 2010, was appointed Program Manager for the full suite of ANAT programs. for more info on ANAT please visit

Where: Canberra Contemporary Artspace, Gormon House
When: Thursday 16 December 3pm – 4.30pm

Please RSVP for catering purposes

And back to Tim and Pippa…

Tim Boykett, was born and grew up in Australia, has been living in Austria since 1991. Operating between the areas of mathematics and media art, performance and interaction: the boundaries have been and remain fluid.

Pippa Buchanan, runs the P2PU / MOzilla WebCraft project and will talk about this project

As a continuing founding member of Time’s Up, Tim has been involved in conceptualising, planning, building and presenting extended interactive mediated physical environments for the past ten years. There have been four main phases of work: the Hyperfitness Studio series, the BodySPIN series the Sensory Circus and the current series of Physical Narratives. Interwoven in these developments and installations have been a series of smaller experiments, workshops, performances and other events, including a series of “Closing the Loop” workshops. Essential to this work has been an ongoing theoretical development that rests upon a protoscientific world view (both for the development and for the participant) with an understanding of the axes of Control, Perception and Biomechanics. Parallel to this, Tim has been active as a researcher in algebra, combinatorics and computer science with several publications in international journals. His work here has included the analysis of computational models for physical processes, modelling of processes and the generation of combinatorial designs.

The cross-fertilization from the theories of mathematical and computational spaces and environments to the creation of experimental situations, leads to a abundance of possibilities. The problems of implementation and realisation are significant; one of the strengths of the Time’s Up work has been the continuing concentration upon reliable and solid physical structures for their spaces. Current developments include the development of character based physical narratives as well as investigating the parallels between mathematical and aesthetic research

Selected recent publications include:

“Notation und visuelle Musik” with Andrei Smirnov, in “Klangmaschinen zwischen Experimenten und Medientechnik” editor Daniel Gethmann and Elisabeth Shimana, September 2010.
“Aesthetic and Mathematical Research” in Bridges 2010 Proceedings, Tesselations Publishing, 2010.

“Designing performativity for mixed reality installations” with Andrew Morrison, Alex Davies, Geska Brečević, Idunn Sem & Robert Brečević, FORMakademisk, volume 3 number 1, July 2010.

“All difference families are derived from groups” in Algebra and Discrete Mathematics, Nr 2009-1, 2009.

“Conservation laws in rectangular CA” with Jarkko Kari and Siamak Taati, Journal of Cellular Automata, 2007.

“An Orderly algorithm to determine the UPP2 graphs of small order” Acta Math. Sinica 23(2), pp 249-264, 2007.

“Playing the Game: Notes on Games, Play and Gameplay in Interactive Installations” in proceedings of the Game-Art-Interface session, CGIE Conference, Perth, Australia 2006.

“Extensive multiscale interactive situations” in Proceedings of the International Digital Games Conference 2006, Portalegre.

“The Care and Feeding of Transient Realities” in TRG: On Transient Realties and their Generators, Edition TOX, Maribor, 2006.

“Sensory Circus: Yes, you will go to the Moon” in “Timeshift” edited by C Schöpf and G Stocker, Hatje Kantz Publishers, September 2004.

“Efficient exhaustive enumeration of reversible one dimensional cellular automata,” Theoretical Computer Science, Vol 325/2 pp 215-247, 2004.

“Space from Nonspace: Emergent spatiality in dynamic graphs,” Proceedings of Bridges 2005, edited by R Sarhangi.
“The development of SPIN or On the seeming impossibility to realise virtuality in the midst of virtual realities” in “Art&D,” V2 publishers, 2005.

December 6, 2010 at 11:26 pm Leave a comment

Dorkbot now on Pandora

Dorkbot CBR is now being listed as part of the National Library of Australia’s Pandora Web Archive at

November 12, 2010 at 8:34 pm Leave a comment

David Worrall at Dorkbot Cbr Tues 30th November 2010

Dr David Worrall will join us for a dorkie chat this month.

Save the date: Tuesday 30 November
Time: 6 – 7pm
Location: CCAS GALLERY, Gorman House Arts Centre
Street: Ainslie Ave. Braddon

DAVID WORRALL is a freelance experimental composer and designer working in sound sculpture, sound design, software and immersive polymedia, as well as acoustic instrumental composition. He has won various awards and held composition and research fellowship positions in Australia, UK, Europe and the USA.

The Alien Garden immersive polymedia installation Floriade, Canberra. 2003.09-2003.10.

David joined the Faculty of Music at Melbourne University in 1979 where he taught twentieth-century music composition techniques and orchestration as well as undertaking research in computer music. In 1981 he designed and taught the first first undergraduate course in computer music in Australia.

In 1986 he was appointed Director of the Electronic Music Studios at the Canberra School of Music. He established and became the Foundation Head of the Australian Centre for the Arts and Technology at the Australian National University in 1989, a position he held for over a decade. During that time ACAT offered the first Australian postgraduate degrees in Electronic Arts.

David has held artist-in-residence and visiting fellowship positions in universities in Australia, UK, France, Spain and the USA. He was a founding member of the Music Council of Australia (MCA) and the Electronic Music Foundation and has served on a number of organisational boards, including the Australia Council’s Music and Innovative Projects (later Mixed Media) Boards, the Australian Music Centre and as president of the Australasian Computer Music Association. In 2009, the MCA awarded him honorary life membership “in recognition of his exceptional contribution to its activities.”

Worrall’s PhD was concerned with the development of a software framework for the sonification of information in large or high-frequency multivariate datasets. His creative practice encompasses a number of endeavours: instrumental and electroacoustic composition, sound poetry, sound and multimedia/polymedia installations including the design and construction of portable event theatres (PETs) and the development of software for frameworks for music composition, text transformation and the sonification of multivariate datasets.

November 12, 2010 at 12:24 pm Leave a comment

Robyn Backen at Dorkbot CBR Tues 6 July

Date: Tuesday 6 July 2010
Time: 6 – 7pm
Location: CCAS GALLERY, Gorman House Arts Centre
Street: Ainslie Ave. Braddon

Robyn Backen is an interdisciplinary artist whose work makes connections between art, science and philosophy. Her installations actively engage with the spaces in which they inhabit –whether gallery, landscape or building: the site provides the structural and associative framework for both formal and conceptual elements. Backen has a poetic approach which includes topics such as randomness and pattern, body and language, boarders and connections, distance and proximity. Backen investigates patterns of language and rhythms of nature to build works which engage with physical space.

Robyn Backen has shown in many national and international exhibitions including Urban Detritus, Australian National Gallery, Canberra (1991), Australian Perspecta (1991 and 1997), Bi Focal – Spirit and Place: The Spirit in Australian Art 1880-1996, Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney (1996), Flow, National Gallery Kuala Lumpur (2000), Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennial, Japan (2003) and Imagining Prometheus, Palazzo dell Ragione, Milan, Italy (2003). Her public art works include the building that speaks, New Farm Powerhouse, Brisbane (2001), Weeping walls, at the Sydney International Airport (2000) and Archaeology of bathing, for the Sydney Sculpture Walk in the Botanical Gardens (1999). Her work is included in major public collections in Australia, including National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, Art Gallery of Western Australia, Perth, Powerhouse Museum, Sydney and Australia Museum, Sydney.

Recently she completed a work for the 50 year celebration of ABC television and a collaboration with a scientific researcher at the Garvan Institute. At present Backen is working on a number of larger commissions: one for Sydney Foreshore Authority and an installation for Den Haag in Holland.

June 8, 2010 at 10:42 am Leave a comment

July 2009 meeting – Mitchell Whitelaw

Announcing our July meeting in association with Canberra Contemporary Art Space (CCAS), Dorkbot CBR presents Mitchell Whitelaw.

Date: Tuesday, 28 July 2009
Time: 6:00 pm – 7:30pm
Location: The Fireplace Room, Gorman House Arts Centre
Street: Ainslie Ave. Braddon

The visible archive - Mitchell WhitelawThis month we would like to welcome long standing Canberra dorkbot affiliate Mitchell Whitelaw to talk about a recent project he has been working on with the National Archives of Australia under their Ian Maclean Award.

The Visible Archive is a research project in the visualisation of archival datasets, supported by the National Archives of Australia under their Ian Maclean Award (2008). It explores the potential of interactive visualisation to navigate, interpret and analyse large cultural and historical datasets. In this talk Mitchell will present interactive sketches from the project, visualising the Archives entire collection – made up of some 65,000 Series – and navigating a single Series, A1, containing thousands of pages of digitised records.

Mitchell Whitelaw is an artist, researcher and writer with interests in data aesthetics and generative systems in art and design. He leads the Master of Digital Design program in the Faculty of Arts and Design at the University of Canberra.

July 21, 2009 at 10:22 pm Leave a comment

Dorkbot CBR March Meeting

This month at Dorkbot following on from the opening of Collars at Canberra Contemporary Art Space.
Project artist Alexandra Gillespie will talk about the project beginnings, development and exhibition of the installation in the CCAS gallery amidst the work. Project programmer and electronics maestro Ben Lippmeier will talk about the technical aspects behind the project development.

At the centre of Collars, is the symbolic significance of the collar in its role as an indicator of power, control and social stratification. The artists have collected stories from significant others including friends, family and fellow artists. These stories are implanted in the collars, as it were; computer programmed electroluminescent lamps that project texts through the fabric. Through this multi-layered interconnected display of the technologies of spoken word, written word and symbolism, Gillespie and Langley literally shed light on complex personal narratives through the use of a deceptively simple, yet, loaded object, the collar.

-David Broker CCAS, Director.

Ben Lippmeier is a final year PhD student and occasional lecturer in Computer Science at the ANU and dorkbot cbr regular.

Alexandra Gillespie is a media artist whose work is primarily concerned with responding to particular sites and spatial/temporal experiences. She often utilises projection, sound, and found objects to create installations, video and photographic works. As a hybrid media artist she has worked in a range of contexts including public works, gallery exhibitions, architectural collaborations, performance and festivals.

Her work has been exhibited in Australia, Asia, America and Europe.

Alexandra holds a B.A. in Media Studies from the University of Queensland and a Masters degree in Communication Design from Queensland University of Technology. She is currently a PhD Candidate, School of Art, Photography and Media Arts, ANU. In 2007, Alexandra co-founded the Canberra chapter of dorkbot with Tracey Meziane Benson.

Currently Co-Director of the Electrofringe festival, sound/media artist, Somaya Langley also worked as co-collaborator on the project.

Date: Tuesday, 31 March 2009
Time: 6:00 pm – 7:00pm
Location: CCAS, Gorman House Arts Centre
Street: Ainslie Ave. Braddon

March 25, 2009 at 6:29 am Leave a comment

Links from ISEA talk

Hi all,

Good to see you all at the meeting, great turnout and excellent to see some new faces.

Here are my links from Isea2008 – Urban Climate Camp and Luminous Green:

Dorkbot Canberra May Meeting

We are giving over this months meeting to discussion and planning for our upcoming exhibition at CCAS manuka in November.

We need to talk about equipment, installation, publicity

So all those who submitted work for the exhibition it would be
great if you could make it along.

(Mitchell Whitelaw, Josh Wodak, Nathan McGinness, Michael Honey,
Alex Thorogood, Benjamin Forster + Tracey Meziane-Benson and
Alexandra Gillespie)

Date: Tuesday 27 May 2008
Time: 5:30pm – 7:00pm
Location: The Fireplace Room, Gorman House Arts Centre
Street: Ainslie Ave. Braddon

For everyone else our next meeting is Tues June 24 speaker to be

May 22, 2008 at 12:14 am Leave a comment

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