ATC Lecture — José Carlos Martinat & Enrique Mayorga, “Reality Environments”

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The video recording of the Art, Technology, and Culture Colloquium lecture by Jose Carlos Martinat and Enrique Mayorga is now live! It can be viewed below. The Art, Technology, and Culture Colloquium, hosted by the Berkeley Center for New Media, the Arts Research Center, and the David Brower Center, was proud to host Peruvian artist José Carlos Martinat and collaborator and engineer Enrique Mayorga on April 6, 2015.

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The Art, Technology, and Culture Colloquium, hosted by the Berkeley Center for New Media, the Arts, Research Center, and the David Brower Center, was proud to host Peruvian artist José Carlos Martinat and collaborator and engineer Enrique Mayorga.

Martinat described for the audience a variety of his projects that used technology to make viewers interact with the world in a new way. For example, in one piece a microphone in a room would follow or move away from viewers, while in another, the curator was forced to write or stop writing based on lighting cues. Enrique Mayorga then contextualized Martinat’s work, explaining how Martinat plays with the notion of “thing” and “personhood.” He seeks to make people act like things, and things like people, to question our relationship with the objects and activities of our daily life.

Martinat then went on to explore later works, in which he developed these ideas by working with the plethora of information on the internet. In one case, he mounted printers on a government building and the printers spat out ATM slips comprising the beginning of a local paper’s headline completed with Google’s search auto-complete and then an article made up of a sentence from each of the search results. Mayorga wrote the program for this work and he explained to the audience how Martinat is an “artist as an algorithm.”

Recontextualizing places, objects, and people, Martinat and Mayorga use technology to make timely, political, and essential art that invites reflection, resistance, and further inspiration.

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José Carlos Martinat and Enrique Mayorga present a series of projects carried out since 2003 where, through the use of software, programming, mechanics, objects and sculptural interventions, they analyze and question the performances of individuals and the contexts in which they operate.

About the Artists:

Jose Carlos Martinat (Lima-Peru) lives and works in Lima, Peru. Martinat creates art at the interface of real and virtual worlds; his sources of inspiration include architecture and the urban milieu, as well as human and cyberspace memories. His multimedia installations and sculptural assemblages incorporate a diversity of materials and strategies to alter preconceptions with regards to where things belong. For example, in one of his most controversial works, Martinat mounted printers on an old government building in Peru to print out state secrets that had been declassified.

Martinat’s work has taken part in various exhibitions in Latin-American, Europe and the USA including: Eva+a Ireland biennial, 7th Biennal de Mercosul (Brazil), 2nd Triennial Poli/Gráfica de San Juan (Puerto Rico), Nord Holland biennial with Marljolijn Dijkman, Bienal Shanghai Biennial (China) , Saatchi gallery ( London) Carrillo Gil de México, Tate Modern (London), Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Vigo (Spain), Ifa (Alemania), La Laboral (Spain), Mali (Lima), Pinacoteca (Sao Paulo), Tate (London), WWVF (Holland) among others. He is represented by Revolver gallery of Lima and Leme gallery of Sao Paulo.

Kiko Mayorga researches and promotes the social adaption of technologies in Lima, Perú. He has worked in a range of curatorial and medial experiments dealing with the particularities of local technological appropiation. He is an active participant of the OLPC volunteering community in Perú, promoting and organizing talks, workshops, field activities, etc. Since 2009 he co-directs the Escuelab.org project, an informal school/laboratory in the center of Lima that hosts processes bridging technology, education and local culture. The activities in Escuelab contribute to creating flexible networks of independent developers and researchers that are share experiences and start projects around technology in education, preservation of cultural diversity and the development of digital citizenship in the particular peruvian contexts.

About the Program:

Berkeley’s Art, Technology, and Culture Colloquium is an internationally recognized forum for presenting new ideas that challenge conventional wisdom about art, technology, and culture. This series, free of charge and open to the public, presents artists, writers, curators, and scholars who consider contemporary issues at the intersection of aesthetic expression, emerging technologies, and cultural history, from a critical perspective.

For the first time ever, the 2014/15 lecture series will be co-presented by the Arts Research Center, the Berkeley Center for New Media, and The David Brower Center, and will focus on the legacy of the Free Speech Movement here on the Berkeley Campus. All lectures will take place at The David Brower Center from 7:30-9:00pm.

Visit the ATC Colloquium’s home page at atc.berkeley.edu for tickets, directions, a list of speakers, and to join the mailing list.