An important dimension of what determines our actions and our perceptions is unseen: in the first place, networks. Little or not perceptible apart from their access points, these relational spaces are much more: they are operational and can be seen by their effects. In return, they can be apprehended by and in action. These systems have a name and inherit a conceptual history: they are “devices”. The arts appropriate them to work them, reroute them and reveal them as essential conditions of our modes of representation and operation, to arrange them and dispose of them.
Configuring dispositifs : towards an operational aesthetic
Artist, pioneer in the French digital scene, author and thinker, Samuel Bianchini has since the 1990s been exploring the impact of technology on artistic experience. His works are located at the intersection of contemporary art and digital art, mobilising the audience and inviting it to interact, to become an actor in an audiovisual performance, sensitive, collective and spectacular. To achieve this, he does not hesitate to collaborate with scientists and engineering research laboratories. The active relationship with the audience, the link between physical space, body and image, have become the common theme of his works exhibited in Europe and around the world (Paris, Berlin, Seoul, Athens, Moscow, Dresden, Toronto, Leuven, etc.). Samuel Bianchini is also a teacher-researcher at the Arts Deco school and director of the Reflective Interaction research group of EnsadLab, laboratory of EnsAD; he has written and collaborated in many publications on the digital arts. He recently published, in co-direction with Erik Verhagen, the collective work Practicable. From Participation to Interaction in Contemporary Art, MIT Press, 2016.