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The Computer Arts Society

Established 1968, celebrating 50 years. #CAS50

Playing, Making And Knowing - Art in a High Tech Culture

Mon, 27 Feb 2012

Playing, Making And Knowing - Art in a High Tech Culture

7:00 for 7:30 Wednesday November 4 2009

Speaker: George Mallen

The BCS Computer Arts Society SG is pleased to announce that our next presentation is by computer arts pioneer and CAS co-founder George Mallen. George's talk will be preceded by our AGM (members only) at 6:30 prompt.

Birkbeck College
Centre for Film and Visual Media
43 Gordon Square

Nearest tubes: Euston Square, Warren Street & Russell Square.

At a time of increasing worry about impending crises of many different sorts - climate, food, water, energy, sociality and politics etc etc - is art in danger of being chucked into the corner as mere wealth absorption for those who have and irrelevant for those who haven't? Often it seems that the critical achievements of our culture are quietly made by scientists and engineers while artists apparently achieve great public acclaim for rather questionable work. Why is that? My talk will try to place art, and particularly computer art, in our growing understanding about the relationship between making, knowing and the computer as both knowledge repository and engine of new symbolism.

George has worked with computers since 1962 having had a graduate appointment in the Mathematics Dept at the Royal Aircraft Establishment where many of the early pioneers of computing from Manchester and Bletchley Park had gathered. From there he went on to work with Gordon Pask on various cybernetic ideas. He co-founded System Simulation Ltd in 1970 and that has been his focus since. Diversions along the way have included academic involvements such as helping create the Department of Design Research at the Royal College of Art and introducing computing activities to the RCA. Another academic innovation was the creation of the Department of Communication and Media at Bournemouth University. But, these diversions included, over the years, SSL has supported computer art and the role of computers in cultural activities in many ways since its inception.

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