“Mapping”: collaborative creation practices and digital media

Elisenda Ardevol, Débora Lanzeni and Gemma San Cornelio are going to ECREA Conference, the 24-27October in Istanbul.


Here the abstract:

This paper explores new ways of cultural production based on collaborative creation practices that strongly relay on media sociality. Concretely, we present the case study of video projection mapping by members of Telenoika, an audiovisual open creative community sited in Barcelona that uses and promotes opensource software in the context of the free culture movement. Video Projection Mapping is an exciting projection technique that can turn almost any surface into a dynamic video display. This technique, especially when done by open code, implies a sophisticated coordination of software and hardware in real time, which means that the projection is both a technical and artistic performance that takes place in an unique event that mobilizes a great deal of expertise, people and things.

 Through an ongoing ethnography, we examine how “mapping” is the result and the intersection between creative practices and mediated sociability that take place in a thickish digital environment or media ecology (Horst, 2008). First of all, we discuss how creative practices have been understood in terms of the art product instead of an ongoing process of doing and explain mapping as a set of creative practices where art and technique, code and space, merge. This brings us to the second point, which is how social media organizes and coordinates the dynamic of “mapping”, emphasizing the collaborative and political dimensions of the creative performance.

 In opposite to the conception of Social Media as Internet interconnected platforms for social sharing, we argue for an understanding from a broadly perspective as referring to the different processes of socialization in MediaSpace (Couldry, 2004). At least in the case of Telenoika creative practices, social media are more than Internet based applications ready-made for content sharing (Kaplan and Haenlein, 2010).  Media sociality is constituted by peer-to peer practices. Sharing, creations and debates are carried out on different technological devices on the Internet on “a technological and human federation” that includes sites performed to interchange experience as well as code repositories. What is named creative autonomy by Castells (2007) and digital environment by Benkler (2006) is defined by its feasibility of producing information, knowledge, and culture through social relations based on cooperative peer production and coordinate individual action. Creative practices and social media are both constitutive to “mapping” as a collaborative practice. It’s not only a question of “ideology”.  They need to collaborate in order to keep going the creative process through improvisation to innovation. By their doings they do not only create a cultural product or an artistic performance, but a moral order.



 Benkler, Y (2006) The Wealth of Networks : How Social Production Transforms Markets and Freedom. New Haven, CT/London: Yale University Press.

 Castells, M. (2007) Communication, Power and Counter-power in the Network Society. In: International Journal of Communication

 Couldry, N. and McCarthy, A. (2004) Media Space. Routledge.

 Horst, H (2007) Potrait of a Silicon Valley family in Hanging out, messing around, and greeking out. Cambridge: The MIT Press.

 Ingold, T. (2007) Creativity and Cultural improvisation. Berg.

 Kaplan, A. and Haenlein, M. (2010) Users of the world, unite! The challenges and opportunities of Social Media. Business Horitzons, 53, pp. 59-68.

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