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Fascinate 2014 : Fascinate Conference & Showcase 2014 - thoughtful Technology & beautiful interfaces


When Aug 27, 2014 - Aug 31, 2014
Where Falmouth
Submission Deadline May 19, 2014
Notification Due Jun 1, 2014
Final Version Due Jul 31, 2014
Categories    art   music   games   performance

Call For Papers

DEADLINE: Monday 19 May

Taking place amidst the Falmouth Tall Ships Regatta, Fascinate 2014 invites artists, architects, choreographers, dancers, gamers, geographers, historians, illustrators, musicians, performance-makers, sculptors, technologists, educators and philosophers, the flooded and the land-locked to investigate, navigate and critique the outlands of technology, control and the uncontrollable.
Opportunities are presented for papers/presentations at conference, educators and demonstrations at workshops, and for artists and performers in the showcase.

Key themes for Fasicnate 2014

) The use of digital technologies in location based cultural practices
) Digital technologies in music, theatre, choreography and dance performance
) The application of contemporary arts and crafts practices in digital games worlds
) Current developments in networked and immersive telepresence performances
) Generative music, digital composition and digitally augmented musicians

Fascinate 2014 Schedule: 27-31 August 2014

) Weds 27 – evening reception, registration and orientation for workshops

) Thurs 28 – workshops day 1
Fri 29 – workshops day 2 + showcase preview evening in Falmouth

) Sat 30 – confrence day 1 + showcase afternoon/evening in Falmouth

) Sun 31 – conference day 2

We seek papers from a wide range of disciplines and perspectives. We welcome descriptions of practice as well as more philosophical reflections. All presenters are encouraged to maximise their use of visual media and performance when considering their paper and how it will be presented at conference. In your 500 word abstract please address how you intend to deliver your paper and how you might make your presentation engaging for a wider multi-disciplinary audience.


) 1. ART & CRAFT GAMES: the art and craft of digtal games & the use of contemporary arts & craft practices in building game worlds

The industrial landscape of digital games changes rapidly and radically; we are currently witness to an evolution born of changes to the distribution and market for games. Large game development studios are closing while small, independently developed games that bear the signature of authorship, craft and art are finding critical and surprising commercial success in ways impossible to predict only 5 years ago. This is due to several factors: distribution methods now enable small independent producers to reach global markets, the technology used to make games is becoming simpler to use and there seems to be a cultural desire for games generally and for those that explore new vocabularies and terrain, driven by developers who see games development as an art form rather than corporate venture.

The art and craft games track seeks papers from game makers, artists, illustrators, sculptors, musicians and sonic artists, critical and cultural theorists focused on:

) Games as expressive art forms
) Games which combine interactive elements with the conventions of art and craft aesthetics
) Games that interrogate normative values
) Games as a context for craft (either as a vehicle for showcasing art and craft, or as a structure and framework for creativity)
) The use of existing games as a material for art and craft: modding, skinning, and as an inspiration for creativity in other media.

) 2. DIGITISING ECOLOGIES: the vice and the virtue of digitising our environment

Contemporary, digital technologies are deployed by cultural practitioners to augment perceptions of time, space and process at immediate and remote locations. Devices might aim to increase a user’s awareness of more-than-human environments, or connect people to conditions framing a chosen social, historical or ecological aspect of location. Technology has also shown to produce and reinforce citizen-led alternatives to hegemonic practices; it for example enables more immediate collection of data on natural phenomena by people directly implicated by these conditions, such as farmers.
Environmental charities and lobbying organizations eagerly employ technicians and programmers to develop applications that interpret our environment and engage an audience with environmental causes. Yet these technologies are implicated more deeply and subtly in changes wrought upon us and our entangled worlds. With the gradual surge of these practices we call upon artists, theorists, practitioners, and other researchers to critically reflect on the use and implications of digital technologies and their advocacy in the field of ecology, nature conservation, geography, environmental education, and rural and sustainable development.

We seek proposals responding to the following lines of enquiry.

Digital technologies are often understood and critiqued as acting ‘between’ people and their natural environment. Does the digitisation of landscapes and natural phenomena produce an enhanced relationship between humans and their environment, forging and deepening our experience of elusive and dynamic conditions? Or does it create what Baudillard (1994) calls hyperreality, in which the digital representation of reality becomes more real and attractive than an ‘authentic’ world? Do such technologies contribute to an extinction of experience (Pyle 2011), whereby we lose the ability to meaningfully engage without a digital interface? How might we reframe technology’s role in the correlation between humans and non-human world?

Digital media have become an intricate part of all levels and areas of our society. We are masters of the technologies that we create, and their uses change our social and geopolitical environments. But not always in ways that we expect. Given ecological crises, how can we decide on the function and appropriateness of new interfaces and applications? Can technologies increase our resilience in the face of system collapses, responding in agile ways to unanticipated catastrophes and current socio-environmental challenges? Or are real-world, human and natural phenomena inherently uncontrollable? Do they allow the emergence of more sustainable practices by for example increasing the dissemination, preservation and adoption of traditional practices that have less negative impacts on the environment? How does this change our understanding of the world? How might we better negotiate the shifting boundaries between the planned and the contingent, the solid and the fluid, between tradition and progress?

) 3. ALL THE WORLDS' [ARE] A STAGE: augmented and distributed performance for a networked planet

Combine ubiquitous access (the Internet); low cost high performance graphics platforms; low latency codecs; virtual world engines such as Unity; projection mapping and visualisation using open source – or low cost tools – like openFrameworks, PureData. MaxMSP-Jitter, VVVV, MadMapper and Touch Designer; motion detection and imagination. Facilitate new realities in augmented, physically dislocated yet virtually united, performance places and spaces. Local or global platforms, digitally enabled, massively distributed amongst stages, performers and audiences, where future creatives can develop fitting narratives for a connected planet, reaching audiences beyond the walls that enclose the traditional places of first-person physical performance.

Papers are invited that explore:

) Physical, augmented and virtual: identities and realities
) Reach and interaction with local, remote and distributed audiences in a physical performance context
) Immersive telepresence environments for distributed stages
) Motion tracking and processing
) Projection mapping of performance spaces for music, dance and theatre
) Very low latency audio visual streaming in networked performance
) Fusions of virtual and real world technologies in performance environments
) Co locating and expressing the audience interaction in distributed performances
) Related developments and applications of enabling technologies

4. GENERATIVE, LIVE & DANGEROUS: digital elements in music composition, live coding, hybrid instruments/instrumentalists and performance involving sound

From generative composition to live coding and algoraves, retro-digital and high performance digitally enabled music creation and presentation platforms. Our sonic environment is embraced, enhanced, distorted and confused, by the motivation of experimentation or entertainment. Musicians, coders and sound creators that work with binary wire harnesses, loops, tools such as Super Collider, Ableton, Fluxus, Overtone and Max/MSP.

Papers are invited that explore:

) Improvised interactive coding for live music
) Sensor and sensory sound at the conjunction of space and performance
) Hybrid instruments and hybrid musicians
) Sound for digital game environments
) Abstract interfaces for music creation and performance
) Dislocated and multi-site performance
) Composing for distributed near real-time environments
) Related developments and applications of enabling technologies

SHOWCASE: installations and performances for a tall ships town of 100,000 guests

In 2013 the Fascinate Showcase instantly established itself as a must-attend evening for anyone wishing to see outstanding performances incorporating the latest digital techniques and technology applied to music, dance, projection, improvisation, theatre, installations and a team of VJs. Some 400 visitors experienced 50 performances and installations in 2013's 12 hour Showcase evening. Checkout the 2013 Fascinate Showcase line up, pictures and video.

In 2014 the Fascinate Showcase will relocate to down town Falmouth – shoreside, waterfront and afloat - running alongside the tall ships regatta and fireworks on the afternoon and evening of Saturday 30 August, with some installation opportunities available for the entire week of the regatta In addition to Fascinate delegates we anticipate 30,000+ visitors will be in Falmouth on the same day as the main Showcase events to see the Falmouth Tall Ships Regatta and evening fireworks which the Showcase is also a part of. All Showcase performances and installations will be open for viewing by the general public providing an amazing audience for participants in the Fascinate Showcase!

Last year we showcased a diverse range of digitally enabled artists from 30+ countries. In 2014 we are seeking proposals for the following:

) Installations – screen, projection, sculptural, kinetic, interactive, data driven, augmented reality
) Media – digital animation, interactive film
) Street & Site Specific Artists – digital graffiti, projection mapping and digitally augmented/enabled performances/activities
) Musicians – performing with digitally enhanced/enabled instruments, accompanied by projection/animation, hybrid digital/analogue instruments
) Dancers / Choreographers – working with motion/position tracking, in conjunction with controlled lighting/projection/animation, with VJs
) Digital Games – that can be deployed to mobile during the Showcase or played at Showcase venues

For additional information on the Fascinate 2014 Showcase:, including themes, and venues around the town of Falmouth see:

Please Note: An earlier call for Showcase proposals - with deadline date of 15 April - is still valid and we encourage artists and performers to meet this earlier date in order to obtain the best venues and options on bursaries for your project.

Showcase Bursaries: A limited number of bursaries will be available for artists and performers participating in the Showcase to cover e.g. registration, travel, accommodation and materials. If you would like to apply for a bursary then please state this in your submission together with details of expenditure requested.


Due to demand for more in-depth and extensive workshops these have been increased to 2 full days at Fascinate 2014. Key workshop leaders have mostly been identified but we welcome proposals from track specific educators and technologists who would like to help run workshops or demonstrate specific technologies based on themes of conference. There is also an alternative workshop strand which will comprise several half or single day workshops; we are also open to proposals for these.


Document Formats: please submit your written proposals in only PDF, OpenOffice (.odf) or MSWord (.doc) formats. PDF is preferred.

Video: if you wish to provide video or other large files in support of your proposal then please provide links where they can be viewed online or link to a dropbox folder.

Proposals for papers (to be peer reviewed) should include:

) n abstract (500 words maximum including bibliography)
) Details of any special technical requirements for your presentation
) Full name and contact details (address, email and phone)
) Which conference track you are submitting to

Proposals for installations and performances for the Showcase should include:

) A description of the work (500 words maximum including bibliography)
) Supporting media (video, images, sound) showing a previous performance of same work or that will enable us to understand the work you are proposing
) Details of any other artists or performers that will be working with you
) Full name and contact details (address, email and phone)
) Details of any equipment that a) you will be bringing; b) that you are requesting us to supply
) Details of any special technical or space requirements
) Details of any health and safety considerations


Please submit your proposals no later than Monday 19 May 2014 to


ADDITONAL RESOURCES (see: for links)

Guidelines for Fascinate Authors
Fascinate Conference Paper Template

Fascinate 2013 archived website
Videos from Fascinate 2013 Conference, Workshops and Showcase
Pictures of Fascinate 2013 Conference, Workshops and Showcase
Fascinate Blog
Falmouth Tall Ships Regatta 2014
Tall Ships Falmouth
Falmouth University

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