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<nettime> New book Special Offer: A Computer in the Art Room
Catherine Mason on Tue, 28 Oct 2008 18:48:36 +0100 (CET)

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<nettime> New book Special Offer: A Computer in the Art Room

A new book on the history of British digital arts is published:

A Computer in the Art Room: the origins of British computer arts 1950-80
by Catherine Mason
with a Foreword by Professor Clive Richards, Coventry School of Art & Design
published by JJG: 2008

SPECIAL OFFER LIST:  GB£17.50 to include UK & Europe
Postage to US, Canada & Australia - postage + GB£10.00)

Order from http://www.catherinemason.co.uk/ and pay with Paypal

This book uncovers the little-known history of early British
computer arts.  An amazing story, it is hard to comprehend that
before the onset of personal computers, propriety software and
the internet there was a real struggle for access which touched
off an explosion of true British pioneering spirit.  The art
schools which played a crucial role in fostering these important
cross-disciplinary digital collaborations are described for the
first time here, along with over 140 illustrations, many not seen
in print before.

Based on four years of research and numerous interviews with
practitioners, the book introduces British artists in the
post-war period who were inspired by science and began to
consider the use of computing. They found the requisite
technology and expertise at innovative art schools including the
Royal College of Art, the Slade School of Art and regional
polytechnics. The battle for acceptance may have been won but the
provenance of computer arts and its direct links back to
cybernetics in the 1950s and 1960s is a unique and previously
unpublished period of art history.  These pioneers had a real
vision of the arts and sciences coming together for greater
understanding and creativity on both sides.  With the opening
chapters titled ?White Heat? and ?British Art Postwar? the nine
chapters conclude with ?Computer animation? and include
biographical essays on the likes of Roy Ascott, Richard Hamilton,
Edward Ihnatowicz, Darrell Viner, Stephen Willats and other
protagonists.  This develops into a scholarly source book laced
with exciting elements of artistic adventure.

About the author:

Catherine Mason began researching the history of British computer
arts at Birkbeck, University of London with the CACHe Project
(Computer Arts, Contexts, Histories, etc.), funded by the UK?s
Arts & Humanities Research Council.  In 2006 she produced Bits in
Motion, a screening of early British computer animation, at
London?s National Film Theatre.  She has contributed to Futures
Past: Twenty Years of Arts Computing published by Intellect, 2007
and White Heat, Cold Logic: British Computer Art 1960-1980,
forthcoming MIT Press.

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