Art & Video Games: Monday, April 7th

Art & Video Games: A Look at how Video Games are Breaking Free

Monday, April 7, 2014

  • Anyone who’s spent a few frustrated hours playing Flappy Bird knows that video games have been rapidly evolving and diversifying over the past two decades, aided in part by the diminishing costs of development and distribution. These falling costs have helped usher in a new wave of creativity in video games, allowing artists and developers to experiment more with video games as a diverse artistic medium. Full-body motion tracking and control, immersive virtual reality headsets, touch screens, open-source software libraries and inexpensive, hackable hardware have given artists and developers a broader canvas than ever before.

    This meetup will explore the unique ways that artists, developers, universities, museums, and galleries have been: creating new forms of physical input and feedback, interrogating the traditional paradigms of play mechanics, locating universities as sites of study and creation of games as emergent, multi-disciplinary art forms, defining criteria for the exhibition and inclusion in gallery and museum space, and even pushing the boundaries of what type of electronic games qualify as “video” games.


    7:00pm – Doors

    7:30-8:30pm – Presentations and question-and-answer session

    8:30-10:00pm – Conversation continues over wine & snacks

    Jamin Warren
     is the founder of the arts and culture company Kill Screen. Formerly a culture reporter for the Wall Street Journal, Jamin has been a vocal advocate for games as culture and serves as an advisor to MoMA’s department of Architecture and Design. Jamin hosts also PBS’s Game/Show and his thoughts on games and digital culture have been featured in the New Yorker, New York Times, Paris Review and others. Jamin is also a frequent contributor to NPR, and has spoken at SXSW, Tribeca Interactive, XOXO, and more.

    Phoenix Perry focuses on embodied games and user experiences. As an adjunct Professor at NYU she teaches game development and design, visual design and web development. From digital arts practitioner to Creative Director, she has extensive experience in new media, design, and user interfaces. A consummate advocate for women in game development, her speaking engagements include GDC, The Open Hardware Summit at MIT, Indiecade, Comic Con, Internet Week, Create Tech and NYU Game Center among others. Perry’s creative work spans a large range of disciplines including drawing, generative art, video, games, interfaces and sound. Her projects have been seen worldwide at venues and festivals including the GDC, E3, Come out and Play, Maker Faire at the New York Hall of Science, Lincoln Center, Transmediale, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, LAMCA, Harvest Works, Babycastles, European Media Arts Festival, GenArt, Seoul Film Festival and Harvestworks. In 2011 she co-authored the book, Meet the Kinect with Sean Kean and Johnathan Hall. Finally, she has curated since 1996 in a range of cultural venues, the most recent of which is her own gallery, Devotion Gallery until 2014. Devotion was a Williamsburg gallery focused on the intersection of art, science, new media, and design.

    Jason Eppink creates interactive experiences, curates events and exhibitions, and throws raging art parties as the Associate Curator of Digital Media at the Museum of the Moving Image in New York City. When he’s not doing that, Jason Eppink engages in public space magic, open source scheming, moving image mischief, photon reappropriation, and linguistic subterfuge. Good Magazine proclaimed him one of the top 100 most important, exciting, and innovative people making our world better and changing the way we live. Jason also corrupts young minds as an
    adjunct professor at New York University, where he teaches students how
    to make animated GIFs and video games under the auspices of art.

    Kaho Abe is a NYC-based game designer and media artist interested in improving social and personal experiences through the use of technology, fashion, and games. Kaho is currently the Artist-in-Residence at the NYU Game Innovation Lab where she develops games with custom controllers with the goal of fostering more face-to-face interaction during play. An important part of her practice is sharing her work, methodologies, and techniques with youth and adults through teaching classes, workshops, and afterschool programs on designing and building alternative physical-game controllers. She is an Educational Fellow at Eyebeam where she co-hosts a monthly play-testing event with Come Out and Play.

    Kunal Gupta is one of several founders and a co-director of the Silent Barn, an all-ages studio, residency, and event space in Brooklyn.  He is also founder and director of Babycastles since 2009, an art games movement in New York City with exhibitions at the Museum of Natural History, La Gaite Lyrique, Museum of Art & Design, Telfair Museums, Science Gallery, Museum of Modern Art, Museum of the Moving Image, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Clocktower Gallery, and SFMOMA.


ArtsTech Meetup Welcomes ArtsTechLA !

#ArtsTechLA is bringing together LA’s community of artists, makers, technophiles, museums, creative professionals and labs for our first meetup. #ArtsTech founder and Director of the New Museum’s Incubator for Art, Technology and Design, Julia Kaganskiy, will be leading a panel discussion for our inaugural gathering.

ulia will share her experiences and learnings running #ArtsTech for the past 5 years. She and a panel of LA’s artists, technologists and museums will also guide an exploratory discussion about the unique terrain of LA’s Art + Technology communities and culture.
The panel will include:
Julia Kaganskiy, Director, New Museum’s Incubator for Art, Technology, and Design
Bret Nicely, Associate Director of Digital Media at MOCA
Amy Heibel, VP Technology, Web and Digital Media at LACMA
Mileece, Sonic and environmental installation artist
Mark Allen, Founder of Machine Project
Sharon Ann Lee, Culture Analyst, Co-Creator Maker City LA
George Bloom, Executive Producer at CBS Digital/Visual Effects
Come join us for a casual gathering of communities and conversation. We hope this is the beginning of many fun programs and projects.
The event will take place on Saturday 3/22/14 3pm at the CultureBrain Academy inside Maker City LA. Maker City LA is located in downtown LA at 1933 S. Broadway, 11th floor, LA 90007.
There is metered parking on Broadway and two self pay lots.
We’re also 2 blocks from the Blue Line Grand Station at Washington and several bus stops so consider taking public transit :)
Check out their tumblr page and twitter page for updates on future meetups!

Summer Art & Design Cruise!


DID Full Logo



Sunday, June 23rd from 2:00-6:00pm
Departs from East 23rd Street @ FDR
(Boat Leaves Promptly at 2:30pm and Disembarks at 5:30pm)

Open Beer & Wine Bar

Light Appetizers

Interactive Sound Workshop, Musical Performance & Dance Party provided by Michael Feld & John Jagos
Mix and Mingle with the most interesting designers, artists, start-ups, and techies in NYC aboard LUCILLE! For 3 hours you’ll experience breathtaking views, connect with like-minded people, and relax in ultimate summertime mode!

The sound workshop will offer an in depth look into the world of
music performance technology & design and provide ways to use these tools in your work and play. Participants will take part in creating an interactive soundscape that changes over time and get the chance to experience using this incredible technology first hand.
The workshop will be followed by an epic dance party!


Many Thanks To Our Generous Sponsors

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Connect with A.I. Friedman:

A.I. Friedman has grown to be one of the largest independent dealers in art materials, graphic art supply and office products.

See.Me is a community of hundreds of thousands of artists, musicians, photographers, designers and creative enthusiasts who are collaborating, connecting and celebrating their work with an audience of millions. Over the past few years we have hosted dozens of shows, events and exhibitions, displayed the work of thousands of artists and have distributed over $1.5 million dollars worth of cash grants and other awards.

ArtsTech is designed to explore the ways in which social media and technology can help bring arts and culture to the masses. “Democratizing” the arts has been a long-standing goal in the art world, and no medium makes it more feasible than the web.

The purpose of this group is to bring together those working at the intersection of arts and technology to share ideas, strategies, successes, challenges and failures, and to explore the following questions:

  • How can the new technology available help raise awareness about the arts and enrich the audience experience?
  • How can cultural institutions interact and engage with each other and their audience in meaningful ways?
  • What can they learn from their audience and how can they use this knowledge to improve the way in which they present their content?
  • As well as countless others that we hope to uncover at future meetups!

Connect with ArtsTech on Tumbler at and on Facebook at

Damsels in Design is a cross-disciplinary networking organization for women in design. We foster professional and educational opportunities for female design professionals through career development workshops, design industry lectures, private tours and events. Damsels connects, supports and promotes its members through its events, outreach partners, blog and social media. Connect with Damsels on Twitter at and on Facebook at

Michael Feld is director and sound designer who specializes in the creation of live and composed sound for performance. Utilizing live sampling, foley art and digital production techniques, he creates soundscapes and immersive worlds for audiences. He has designed sound for numerous theaters including The Brick, Bushwick Starr, Manhattan Rep, Brooklyn Arts Exchange, NYU Steinhardt and The Metropolitan, among others. He most recently directed and co-designed an adaptation of Dante’s Inferno featured this month as part of The Brick’s sound scape festival.

John Jagos is an audio engineer, sound designer, and electronic musician living in Brooklyn, NY. He has been active in the music and theater scenes for the past 3 years, touring the USA and Europe as Brothertiger, an electronic synthpop project started in 2009. John has also composed music and created sound effects for a variety of theater installations at Ohio University, where he graduated in 2012, as well as in the Greater New York City area. He is currently prepping for his 2nd LP release on Mush Records this year, and he is starting to accumulate more recording and mixing work at The Gallery Recording Studio, where he works.

ArtsTech community came out to make our first Unconference an unbelievable success

Saturday’s First ever ArtsTech UnConference was a huge success with no small thanks to ever impressive featured session presenters and our amazing members who kept the conversations and spontaneous sessions going. The attendees got into the swing of things and added sessions on the spot to the schedule, in addition to our featured sessions that the ArtsTech team profiled on Tumblr leading up to the Conference. At the end, there were 36 sessions that we had on the official schedule! If you missed any of the write-ups on our impressive line-up of speakers, here’s a previously posted breakdown of who was featured. Sylvia Heisel should get a special shout-out for her endurance, hanging out for the entire day, to showcase all the innovations in Wearable Tech materials, and letting Conference goers stop by and try on some of the fabrics for duration of hgh therapy themselves. The Twitter conversations were flowing, and some members even used it as a way to follow the conversation on what they were missing in one session while in another.

We wanted to offer another sincere thank you to our sponsors food and beverage sponsors, Plated and Dark Horse, to Marius Waltz for designing our totes, to Ian Smile for coming through on branding and wayfinding designs in the clutch, and of course to our hosts and supporters Solo Foundation, Wix, and AOL, for which all of this was possible. We’re looking forward to next year, and we’d love to hear feedback that we can use to make 2014 even better.

To relive some of the action, be sure to check out our photos and a storify post highlighting some of Saturday’s most memorable moments.

Unconference Featured Sessions

We’re gearing up for a full day of art & tech nerdery and revelry at the #ArtsTech Unconference on Saturday, April 27th. The event will bring together:

- Arts professionals and artists who are using digital media to connect with audiences

- Artists using technology in their creative practice

- Arts & tech start-ups

We asked the #ArtsTech community to submit some ideas for featured sessions, and have selected the best ones from the incredible ideas we received.

Join us on the 27th to participate in one of these sessions or come to lead one of your own. RSVP HERE:

Venue Sponsor: AOL Artists

A Bit About AOL Artists: Unconference Partner


Food Demo will be provided by Plated: Food Meets Tech Meets Creative Good Eats


Session Type: Panel discussions and case studies dealing with digital strategy, social media, online identity management for individuals and organizations.

Unlearning without Deskilling – a Case Study of Art Historians and Engineers on an Impossible Misison

Presenter: Daniel Doubrovkine

This presentation will explain how engineers and art historians worked together to create the Art Genome Project for Artsy. Daniel will explore the tools and methods used in this exciting collaboration between art and science.

Performing Arts for a Wired, 21st Century Audience

Presenter: Kathryn Jones

The performing arts industry is in a crisis – audiences continue on a 30 year declines, revenues are falling, and there are fewer jobs in the performing arts today than there were in 1990. How should the performing arts industry evolve to meet the expectations and desires of a 21st century audience? This panel discussion will explore how technology can help the performing arts adapt to remain relevant today.

Multimedia Storytelling

Presenter: Brendan Schlagel

Brendan will lead a discussion on how multimedia is changing the nature of storytelling. He will explore everything from specific creative techniques and the pragmatics of telling an engaging story to the fundamental principles that will guide this field forward.

The Audience as Users

Presenter: Ben Elgart

Artists and creative technologists now engage their audiences not just as recipients or participants, but also as users. Methods from a user-centered design approach can help refine your vision to ensure that it opens the appropriate dialogue for your audience. This overview will provide a framework to think about your process and help you identify what techniques will advance your work and when to put them into action.

The Top Ten Strategies for Mastering Social Media in Real Time

Presenters: Susi Kenna & Lucy Redoglia

From press conferences to live performances to public art to high-profile parties—topics will touch on planning techniques, tools of the trade, managing participation, post-event tips and how to be a live tweeting pro. From the initial discussion, participants will compile a useful guide to planning and executing timely social media campaigns.

[Sponsor Session]: SOLO Foundation


[bits and flow] Digital and Social Media for Artists

[Sponsor Session]: Wix

 wix logo

Brand Yourself Online

Session Type: Theoretical discussions around art and digital technology, touching on new media art, media theory, and the aesthetics of code.

Concepts, Code, & Creativity

Presenter: Robert Strati  

This roundtable discussion led by Robert Strati explores issues concerning the conceptual connections and trends between contemporary art and technology. Participants will look at examples such as GLI.TC/H Conference, ArtStack, and Mechanical Turk to examine what the current landscape reveals about our intellectual and creative state.

Tactile New Media – Digital Arts meets Traditional Craft

Presenter: Ken Amarit

Part demo, part presentation, part discussion, Tactile New Media explores the role traditional crafting plays in creating works that are ultimately digital. Ken Amarit will begin this session with a demo of his game, Voyager, crafted from wool, stop-motion animated and digitized video game.

Beyond the Algorithm – Beyond the Content of Tech Art

Presenter: Carla Gannis

Beyond the Algorithm will discuss the work of artstech practitioners generating critically and socially engaged content. Topics will include how digital artists use current social networks to traverse class stratification and ethnic divides and why does exclusion still exist once artists are off the network and in the gallery?

1 Second Everyday

Presenter: Cesar Kuriyama

After years working in advertising and frustrated with his memory, Cesar Kuriyama took a year off to record 1 Second Everyday, documenting every moment in his life. Kuriyama will present the project as well as the much-lauded iPhone App.

Session Types: Performance & Hands-on workshop with moderate to advanced technical skills required.

Blogologues: The Internet Performed

Presenters: Allison Goldberg & Jen Jamula

A discussion about why social media is relevant to theater, and how it’s changing storytelling, how theater artists can embrace tech more wholeheartedly, and possible performance of 1-3 short sketches based on live tweets from Unconference participants

Spacebrew Workshop

Presenter: Julio Terra

One hour hands-on workshop about Spacebrew – a project of the LAB, to build an open, dynamically re-routable software toolkit for choreographing interactive spaces.

Digital Sound Manipulations

Presenter: Michael Feld

A workshop on using every day sounds and objects as instruments as a source for digital music and sonic possibilities. Participants will gain hands on experience working with electronic instruments, working together as an ensemble, and how to use this art form as a teaching tool.

 Beautiful Code

Presenter: Zeeshan Lakhani

A presentation aimed at those without the background in the theory behind programming semantics and design patterns, to show how coding as a discipline that is just as important as the outcome or product of the code itself.  Participants will leave knowing how to write better code for collaboration, and recognize some of the elegant abstractions and paradigms that are generalized across the board for all programming languages.


Presenter: Miriam Simun

The session will include a short presentation on the history and socio-technical history of POPS (Privately-Owned Public Spaces), a short presentation and ‘how-to-tips’ on making compelling VINE videos, and then a 20 minute sojurn into the three POPS in Astor Place, where participants will make their own VINE-POPS.

Session Type: Hands-on workshop, no technical skills required.

How Do You See Yourself? A Wearable Tech Workshop

Presenter: Sylvia Heisel

Experimental workshop where users will play with and photograph themselves wearing new tech materials and non-traditional clothing items such as reflective thread, tyvek, and LEDs.

Project Management Skills for Artists, Activists, Anyone

How to be A Secret (Change) Agent in your Organization

Presenters: Jen Leavitt & Michelle Paul

Participatory workshop that hopes to engage everyone in thinking about what makes an organizational change successful.

Data visualizations: techniques and data wrangling procedures

Presenters: Nathan Storey and Michael Thompson

This presentation will look at some awesome data visualizations. Michael will go through some of the techniques he uses in his work and Nathan will touch on some places to look for data, and how to wrangle the data into usable form once you get it.

Session Type: Demo Session with 5 minute lightning round presentations

EatSleepDraw & Beyond


Data Wrangling in NYC

Tonspur – the first truly global music blog

Creating Arts & Culture Mobile Experiences

Art Intelligence: iPad Apps for the Art Geeks

Do Good As You Go & ArtsTech

Thank you to Dark Horse for providing us with wine!


Sponsor Spotlight: S[edition]

s[edition] Logotype copy

Everything You Could Possibly Want To Know About The ArtsTech Unconference

#ArtsTech is bringing together our community of arts professionals, artists, makers and technophiles for a full-day event this April. Join us for the first ever #ArtsTech Unconference—an informal, day-long, participant-driven event where the attendees determine the topics and sessions.

The event will take place on Saturday, April 27th at AOL HQ with support from AOL Artists and the SOLO Foundation. Attendees will arrive in the morning to a complimentary breakfast and those who are interested in speaking, presenting or sharing their work at the #ArtsTech Unconference will have the opportunity to get their session ideas on the schedule. Select a session to attend or start a break-out discussion group of your own — this event is designed to empower our amazing community and facilitate skillsharing and collaboration around ideas in art and technology.

Below, we break it down in digest form. Hope to see you there!

Everything You Could Possibly Want To Know About The ArtsTech Unconference:

1. The Unconference is taking place on Saturday, April 27th at AOL’s offices near Astor Place. We’re taking over all 3 floors of their office space!
2. It’s a day-long event that will run from 9am-6pm.
3. Your ticket includes breakfast, lunch, beverages and snacks throughout the day. Yum!
4. The attendees (that’s you!) determine the unconference session topics on the morning of the event. You simply arrive early and claim a spot on the schedule.
5. We’re curating a couple of Featured Sessions ahead of time. Submit a Featured Session application by April 8th to get a guaranteed spot and a free pass.
6. An ideal Unconference session is much more informal than a typical conference session and can be a group discussion, a presentation, a workshop, a hacking session, a screening, a performance, a skillshare, a demo, and more. Think of this as an open forum for discussing interesting ideas, timely topics or new projects.
7. You don’t need to lead a session to attend. You can come just to learn, participate and meet people.
8. Sessions are not for self-promotion. Rather, this is an opportunity for conversation, collaboration, and knowledge-exchange.
9. Early Bird tickets are only $20 (+ $2.09 Eventbrite processing fee). Early Bird RSVP ends on Monday, April 1st.
10. It’s most fun when you team up with a friend to lead a session or attend the day.


This program is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.

Photos & Recap from March 25th Meetup @WixLounge

Monday night’s meetup, “Lighten Up: Humor, Playfulness, and Humanizing Orgs” was a great success! The ArtsTech team wrote some great articles on Wix Lounge, and on the speakers featured in the meetup. Check out the links to the articles below.

“Meet Wix user and talented blogger/copywriter Kristin Rossi!”

“John Powers at Lighten Up.”

“Aaron Straupe-Cope will be speaking at the ArtsTech meetup.”

“Noel Hidalgo at Lighten Up.”

“Sebastian Chan to speak at the next ArtsTech meetup.”

“Meet Zoa Martinez!”

Here are some photos from the event. Photo credit: Galo Delgado.


IMG_4819 IMG_4816 IMG_4814 IMG_4809 IMG_4804 IMG_4795 IMG_4775 IMG_4771 IMG_4770 IMG_4758 IMG_4769 IMG_4754 IMG_4748 IMG_4722 IMG_4734 IMG_4720


March 25th Meetup: Lighten Up: Humor, Playfulness, and Humanizing Organizations

Monday, March 25, 2013 7:00 PM    Wix Lounge 10 West 18th St., 2nd Floor, New York, NY RSVP

Reputation is often the most valuable asset you have as an organization or individual, and the bigger and more prestigious you become, the more important it usually seems to preserve your status in public perception. When we trade on our authority, do we run the risk of taking ourselves too seriously? Do we become averse to taking risks and showing any signs of personality? Our speakers will talk about how integrating humor, playfulness and personality helps humanize organizations and keep individuals true to themselves.

Schedule: 7:00pm – Doors. Mingling over wine and snacks.

7:30-8:30pm – Speaker presentations.

8:30-10:00pm – Conversation continues over more wine!

Speakers: Sebastian Chan is director of Digital & Emerging Media at the Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum in New York. He is responsible for the Museum‘s complete digital renewal and re-imagining. Previously based at the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney, he is known for his expertise in open access, mass networked collaboration, digital strategy, cultural sector metrics, and cultivating innovation in the cultural sector. He has also worked as a consultant for museums and libraries worldwide helping them adapt and change to the digital age. He was a member of the Australian Government’s Gov 2.0 Taskforce, and currently serves on several nonprofit advisory boards. He has a former life writing an aborted PhD, and as a festival and event organizer in new electronic arts and founded Cyclic Defrost magazine. He blogs at and enjoys a sweet botrytis after dinner.

Aaron Straup Cope is Canadian by birth, American by descent, North American by experience et Montréalais au fond. He usually just tells people he is from the Internet. Aaron is currently Senior Engineer (Internets and the Computers) at the Smithsonian Institution’s Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum. Before that, Aaron was Senior Engineer at Flickr focusing on all things geo, machinetag and galleries related between 2004 and 2009. From 2009 to 2011 he was Design Technologist and Director of Inappropriate Project Names at Stamen Design, where he created the prettymaps and map=yes projects.

Noel Hidalgo organizes Open NY Forum, an open space where civic-minded communities and institutions can build civic engagement and civic technology. From 2009 till 2011, Noel served the New York State Senate as the Director of Technology Innovation where his team launched, one USA’s premier state legislative portals; organized the first unconference inside a State house,CapitolCamp. From June 2011 till October 2012, he worked at the World Economic Forum. In November 2012, Noel joined Code for America as their NYC Program Manager.

John Powers is a sculptor who writes about culture. He was born in Chicago and now lives works (and plays) in New York City.

About Wix: Located steps from Union Square, the Wix Lounge is a completely free co-working and eventspace for creative professionals. Grab your laptop, pop into the Lounge and enjoy a productiveworkday, great networking opportunities, and amazing events. Active since 2010, the WixLounge is run by, a free drag-and-drop web publishing platform providing user friendlytools for building beautiful, easy-to-make desktop, mobile, and Facebook sites. The Wix Loungeprovides free support to users, giving them help and advice for making the idealwebsite. To learn more about the Wix Lounge, please visit

Want to sponsor #ArtsTech NYC? Email Julia at jkaganskiy[at]gmail[dot]com.