The group Umane Energie and the Flussi section of Le Arti in Città festival had promoted a seminar called Open Source Meeting at the Fondazione Accademia di Belle Arti Pietro Vannucci in the city of Perugia.
Lecturers: Marco Mancuso, Evan Roth e James Powderly (Graffiti Research Lab), Pier Luigi Capucci, Laura Colini
Marco Mancuso and Moreno Barboni were called to imagine a day of lectures and seminars, a round table of experts, researchers, curators and artists all with different but complementary expertises. This will offer the opportunity to reflect over the enormous potential, however mostly unsaid, of open digital technologies, their impact on the social, operational and political context in which we live, on their interaction with architecture and the social spaces in our urban areas and on comprehending their emotional impact on our perception of new art forms and creative languages.
The Open Source Meeting is dedicated to the ever-expanding circulation of open computer resources and is meant to get territorial subjects, such as Confinidigitali and Umane Energie, to meet. Their Beduino open-source platform, derived from the international Arduino project, will be the base of a multimedia park featuring national and international guests, so as to elaborate on and divulge the possibilities of open-source in the domain of digital arts and multimedia communication, both from an artistic and planning perspective.
Evan Roth and James Powderly are the Meeting’s international guests, founders of Graffiti Research Lab, for the second time in Italy after their first public performance Laser Tag, curated by Marco Mancuso in December 2007 in Rome and projected on the façades of the Colosseo and the Cestia pyramid. Graffiti Research Lab is wholly dedicated to developing technologies and experimental media to enhance public resources for urban communication. GRL have therefore been invited to explain their artistic/activist project, to describe their performances in cities round the world, to talk about the possible risks and the enormous potential for communication that lies behind applying open source technologies to graffiti and media art.
Pier Luigi Capucci, critic and professor, deals with communication systems and languages and, since the early Eighties, has been investigating the relationship between technologies, culture and society and between art forms, science and technologies. His task in the Meeting will be to trigger the debate around the collective and social impact of open-source technologies. The opportunities of choosing and accessing information and new tools have, in fact, enabled new possibilities for communicating and sharing knowledge extending the awareness of the cognitive, operative, social, and political uses of these same tools.
Laura Colini, researcher at the Bauhaus University in Weimar in the department of Architecture, Media and Urban Sociology, will focus on technologies and participated city-making projects. She will describe the concept of participation in urban planning confronting it with the participation to the city entailed by ITC practices. A sort of shared-practices taxonomy to city-making, called ICT spatial practices, that allows to build up critical thinking and awareness around the urban theme of collective planning.
Lastly, the collaboration between Confini Digitali and Umane Energie that has lead to Beduino, an open-source electronic device meant to develop interactive, artistic installations. It features audio controls, sensor interfaces, led and motor controls. Slightly bigger than a packet of cigarettes Beduino, based on the more famous ‘Arduino’ hardware/software, can be used without having to write any code by those who are not necessarily computer geeks. It can be used as a real-time audio and video controller, as a MIDI control, it is useful for interactive installations, to control led lights, robotic controls and much more.