Transgender Day of Visibility: Keynote by micha cárdenas

Date and Time

Thursday, March 28, 2019 4:00 PM


Kirkhof Center » RM 2263


Speaker: micha cárdenas

Title: "we want more than just to live: trans of color art and activism"

Description: Through examples of contemporary digital game design, this talk argues for the value of direct experience as a basis for writing algorithms aimed at bringing about social change. I consider embodied practice as a mode of practice-based research through the operation of the shift, continuing my algorithmic analysis of trans of color media art. This talk argues that personal experiences of shifting can be a powerful basis for creating digital games in which writing algorithms becomes a way of bringing the ways forms of oppression and identity to life for players. I first consider the game Mainichi by Mattie Brice to think about the ways that games can allow players to feel some part of an experience that an artist has had. I then describe my game Redshift and Portalmetal and show how it allows one to understand national borders as algorithms. The talk demonstrates my method of algorithmic analysis by looking at the ways artists are creating algorithms to help others understand their experiences, and to better understand them themselves.

Bio: micha cárdenas, PhD, is Assistant Professor of Art & Design: Games + Playable Media at the University of California, Santa Cruz. cárdenas is writing a new algorithm for gender, race and technology. Her book in progress, Poetic Operations, proposes algorithmic analysis as a method for developing a trans of color poetics. cárdenas’s co-authored books The Transreal: Political Aesthetics of Crossing Realities  (2012) and Trans Desire / Affective Cyborgs (2010) were published by Atropos Press. Her artwork has been described as “a seminal milestone for artistic engagement in VR” by the Spike art journal in Berlin. She is a first generation Colombian American. micha is a member of the artist collective Electronic Disturbance Theater 2.0. Her solo and collaborative artworks have been presented in museums, galleries, and biennials including the House of Electronic Arts Basel (2018); Zeppelin Museum Friedrichshafen (2018); Henry Art Gallery (2017); the Museum of Modern Art, New York (2015); ZKM Center for Art and Media, Karlsruhe (2014); the Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto (2014); Centro Cultural del Bosque, Mexico City (2015); the Zero1 Biennial, San Jose, CA (2012); and the California Biennial, Newport Beach, CA (2010). 




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