George Fifield is a new media arts curator, writer, teacher, artist and the founder of the Boston Cyberarts The Boston Cyberarts Festival is the first and largest festival of artists working in new technologies in all media in North America, encompassing visual arts, dance, music, electronic literature, web art, and public art. In addition, Fifield has written on a variety of media, technology and art topics for Artbyte, Bomb, Communication Arts, Digital Fine Arts and The Independent Film and Video Monthly among others. More recently he curated Act React: Interactive Installation Art at the Milwaukee Art Museum.

This lecture will examine the path artists took in the 20th century, which blurs the distinction between the reader/viewer and the author. The interactive artist has voluntarily relinquished a degree of control over the viewer’s experience in a way that the linear artist has not. In digital literature, web art, interactive installations, even in the popular art form of computer gaming, the audience had the ability to control their experience within the work. Visitors to a work of interactive art choose the path they take through it, giving them a hand in determining their own experience. New environments grow from simple and branching hyperlinked structures to become complex dynamic systems, virtual worlds in which people engage with their surroundings and with one another.


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