Description of this interview feature (and why we pursued it):
The confluence of fine art with various emerging technologies in the past 30+ years has had its' impact felt within a variety of art institutions. There has been much discussion of the entry of the various "new media" and technology arts into traditional museums, and the birth of new institutions whose sole mission it is to support such media. (Such as the venerable Ars Electronica Center, the relatively newly minted ZKM, or institutions still in the forge like the Eyebeam-Atelier Chelsea Center in New York, and the Beale Center for Art and Technology in California.) But there has been far less discussion of the entrance of new media and technology art into art academics. This collection of interviews with representatives of degree granting institutions in the new media art field simply represents a modest attempt to collect some basic research about such institutions into one place. This effort should be considered as little more than a starting point for further research, and perhaps as a snapshot (circa 2K) of some of the pedagogical issues, ideas, and structures emerging in the field. I hope that any institutions not involved in this feature, or which did not have time to participate, will find it feasible to answer the questions I posed in the following interviews for possible inclusion in a future issue of switch. (email: firstname.lastname@example.org)
The methodology pursued involved little more than making a list of institutions and people whom I (or the network of CADRE researchers, alumna, and faculty ), were familiar with, or in some cases whom were found via search engines. I suspect that the methodology is reflected in the U.S. (and generally West coast) bias of the institutions represented, (although recently a number of people, not all from the North American West, have pointed out to me that the left coast seems to have a large concentration of such programs). After compiling my initial list of 28 institutions, I started making contact via email, and eventually garnered the participation of 18 institutions. There is no endorsement of the institutions implied nor witheld, nor any slight intended toward those institutions or parts of the globe not included. To reiterate what has been said above, I hope that institutions that have been overlooked will make contact with Switch for possible participation in future issues.
Thanks to all participants: Brook Knight, Daniel Bernardi, James Duesing, Jeff Jones, Joel Slayton, Kathy Rae Huffman, Kaucyila Brooke, Kenneth Rinaldo, Michael Martin, Natalie Bookchin, Paula Levine, Peter Lunenfeld, Robert Nideffer, Ron Wakkary, Roy Ascott, Sara Roberts, Shawn Brixey, Sheldon Brown, and Victoria Vesna. Also thanks to Stephen Wilson for providing some leads, and thanks for various kinds of little assists here and there to Joel Slayton, Ken Goldberg, Mary-Anne Breeze, Alex Galloway, Di Ball, Lucy Petrovich, Richard Loveless, and Greg Niemeyer.