New Media Down Under

A new issue of Real Time, an Australian Arts pub that pays a lot of attention to New Media, is out in print and online.

The pub includes several reviews of books on new media and cyberculture:

Andrew Murphie & John Potts, Culture & Technology.

Darren Tofts, Annemarie Jonson & Alessio Cavallaro eds, Prefiguring Cyberculture. An Intellectual History.

Geert Lovink, Uncanny Networks. Dialogues with the Virtual Intelligentsia.

Terry Flew, New Media: An Introduction.

Adrian Mackenzie, Transductions, Bodies & Machines at Speed.

Joanna Zylinska ed., The Cyborg Experiments: the Extensions of the body in the Machine Age.

Additionally, it includes reviews of several new media conferences and events around the Pacific and in Europe this year:

New media pleasure & pain: Anna Davis at DEAF03
The art of da Rimini and Tonkin
Melinda Rackham goes to Graphite2003
Plus news from ACMI, Jeffrey Shaw, Electrofringe 03
Tatiana Pentes on New Media Industry Awards

I thought the review of DEAF03 of interest. The festival featured “Erotogod,” a “futuristic media altar linking auto-erotic touching to stories of Creation; a sensory fusing of religions” as well as “Painstation,” which is “based on the early video game Pong, but in an interesting twist, if you miss the ball in PainStation you actually get hurt.” One of the exhibits at another Australian festival reviewed also featured physically immersive media — a cockfighting game in which the players don chicken heads, flap their wings, kick and peck at each other to control the movement of their onscreen avatars.

There's something disturbing about this insertion of the whole body into new media that I can't quite put my finger on, something that reminds me vaguely of reality television.

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