CiTyFaCe_baseline_series

[… an] online/offline jamming workshop series
connecting […] cities across the globe
Concept for an application under the EU-programme MEDIA, 2004

idea alexandra reill
concept
alexandra reill [vienna] in coordination with ruth catlow [london], marc garrett [london], maya kalogera [zagreb] | vienna 2004
production
kanonmedia[…] [austria] in cooperation with furtherfield[…] [uk] / [maya] kalogera[…] [croatia] / libusa vanova institute for educational development [slovakia], foreseen for 2004 – 2005 | status: project not implemented

Concept

CiTyFaCe_baseline_series
the online/offline jamming workshop series
connecting the cities across the globe

table of contents

IDEA & CONCEPT OF THE CiTyFaCe_baseline_series
THE MOBILE MEDIA LABS OF THE CiTyFaCe_baseline_series
MEDIA TECHNIQUES
OPEN PERFORMANCE
THE INTERNET NODES OF THE CiTyFaCe_baseline_series
PROFILE & USAGE
DESIGN & SURFACE
TEAMS
TEAM baselines
TEAM INTERNET
TECHNICAL PLATFORMS
TECHNICAL PLATFORM baselines
TECHNICAL PLATFORM INTERNET
INTERNET USERS’ TECHNICAL MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS
TIME SCHEDULE
LOCATIONS OF PRODUCTION

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CiTyFaCe_baseline_series
an online jamming workshop series
connecting the european south-east with the european south-west

IDEA & CONCEPT OF THE CiTyFaCe_baseline_series

The CiTyFaCe_baseline_series are a Europe-wide pilote project for the participation of young people between 15 and 22 years in the field of experimental media trainings. Coming from the idea that there is a distinct need for integrative and participatory youth welfare work in and for South-European nations joining the EC in 2004 or in the years to come, the Austrian media platform kanonmedia[…], based in Vienna, in cooperation with the British artists’ collective furtherfield, based in London, the Croatian media artist Maya Kalogera, based in Zagreb, and the Slovakian Libusa Vanova Institute for Educational Development, based in Bratislava, produces a series of mobile media workshops based on the approach of experimental, playful learning and the coaching of young people by international media artists.

A playful and experimental approach to make use of multimedia technologies serves the development of creativity, identity and the bringing into consciousness of autonomous strength of creative skills. The process of creative production is determined by the touching and realizing of self-owned, individual as much as collective scopes for development. It serves the realization and unfolding of identity and self-worthiness in a communal context, especially in young age and especially for girls.

In each of the participating South-Eastern cities – at the time being Bratislava and Dubrovnik [for a continuing phase the integration of further South-Eastern cities is planned] – in an internet café a five-days media lab is staged. Young people can participate without having to pay any fees, soft drinks and sandwiches are dished out during the workshop for free. In each city, the media lab is staged in a central urban area where young people like to spend their time. The workshops are announced by posters and flyers being spread in the streets.

In the framework of the mobile media labs the young people experiment with software for the multimedia/audiovisual production and produce visual clips (audiovisual collages and short movies developing during the workshops on the basis of visual mixing) and in the evening of the last workshop day present their works to a public audience consisting of young people, family members, friends, a culturally interested public and the representatives of national institutions in the fields of culture, education and youth welfare work. The presentation has the form of a street and internet café festival. The participants of a workshop show their works as an indoor or outdoor projection – as an Open Performance which musically is accompanied by a local Audio DJ.

In the mobile workshops the young people can plan and implement their creative ideas under use of multimedia technologies. A main focus within each of the media labs is the Visual DJing Station which can introduce to the participants editing technologies for imagery and sound, thus the playful integration of sound and music into the visual production. The young people can experiment freely with contemporary technologies of media production. They are introduced to audio and video techniques and can explore dramaturgical/visual options of creative production. An autonomous claim for creative quality arises through the motivation to present the experiences made to a public within the Open Performance.

The Open Performance is an offline as much as an online event: the participants of each workshop not only get in touch with a local audience in the framework of communal partying on occasion of the video wall projection of the [… young people’s] works and the performance of a local Audio DJ, but at the same time they also interact with an international community formed of media-interested young people and media artists: the big screen projection shows the ONLINE performance of the clips and movies produced during the workshop which now can be played with interactively by anybody – whether it is the participants themselves – under integration of the audience – or the internet users of the communities of all the producers’ websites, now jamming together online and being able to change the video wall’s projection in real time, from any point of the world. The ONLINE characteristics of the big screen projection until today is internationally unique and can be offered through the cooperation with the British artists’ collective furtherfield which conducts the individual software development of the Online Jamming SoftwareVisitors Studio as a Multimedia Real Time Chat Module and is prepared to integrate the Visitors Studio as much as the remarkable video server’s capacity needed for such an application into the cooperational project CiTyFaCe_baseline_series as a central module of the workshops as much as the continuing online presence of this highly innovative approach of youth welfare work.

The Visitors Studio is an individually developed software for the application of creative methods of visual mixing – audio and visual Djing, audiovisual editing, audiovisual collaging – with the worldwide unique and highly advanced option of the public live internet performance of a multitude of users at the same time. The Visitors Studio – as a Real Time Online Jamming Studio – offers an opportunity not having been realized before: the real time implementation of a communal creative production process. It can be performed from any place in the world and – last, but not least – in full autonomy of the creative process.

As an approach to social networking the project CiTyFaCe_baseline_series is a youth exchange program for all those being interested in […] [further] education in audiovisual production. As an immanent element of each media lab staged in a South-Eastern country each participant has the chance to apply for the participation in a follow-up workshop either in London or in Vienna. For the follow-up workshops a specification of themes is introduced to the contents of training: audio production is based in London, visual production is based in Vienna. The follow-up workshops are not staged in an internet café anymore but in a fully equipped media studio. Thus, the social networking of the young people coming from nations of South-Eastern Europe with an international community of young people as much as media artists can be guaranteed, with the integration of institutional support and lobbying. The participants of the baselines have the chance to explore creative scopes under use of innovative technologies, to work together, exchange ideas and material, communicate and learn from each other – on an international basis.

This cooperation between young people, the London.based artists’ collective furtherfield, the Zagreb.based media artist Maya Kalogera, the Vienna.based media platform kanonmedia[…] and the Bratislava.based Libusa Vanova Institute for Educational Development meets interdisciplinary approaches and forms the basis of the participative/interactive media project CiTyFaCe_baseline_series. The project intends to offer a variety of media technologies to be used for the realization and development of each individual’s potential of creativity, the development of capacities of self-expression, including the option to claim public space, to be able to transform one’s own wishes and longings into communal applications and to be able to manifest ideas relating to oneself and one’s environment as an individual, creative formula and see this formula [… as a] part of a communal, public setting. Youth welfare work, educational training and the staging of multimedia scenarios form a synthesis and become an overall oeuvre of young people out of different nations and cultures.

THE MOBILE MEDIA LABS OF THE CiTyFaCe_baseline_series

The project CiTyFaCe_baseline_series starts with two networking threads and youth exchange modules: the bratislava-vienna-london-baseline and the dubrovnik-vienna-london-baseline.

In Bratislava and in Dubrovnik a five-days workshop for the experimental production of audiovisual video and animation clips held in an internet café is publicly announced. In Bratislava as much as in Dubrovnik the participants – who do not have to pay any admission fees nor have to pass any admission criteria regarding prior relevant education or talent to be able to join – are coached by two media artists – one from London, one from Vienna. During each of the workshops, soft drinks and sandwiches are free for all participants. Visitors of the internet café can join the workshop at whatever point of the five days’ schedule.

At each of the workshops 10 participants can apply for the participation in an Audio Lab held in London or a Visual Lab held in Vienna. The admission of applicants is regarded at by the coaching media artists of each lab and now is based on criteria [… regarding] a talent for audiovisual creative production. Furthermore, at this point girls – as a socially and especially in the fields of technology even strongerly underprivileged group – are clearly favorized.

In London and Vienna each of the workshops lasts for three days. The media lab starts in the afternoons only, so that the young people on their days of arrival and departure and during the mornings have the chance to attend a sightseeing tour. Characteristic elements of each city tour [… are] not only the specific contents of the media lab but […] the sightseeing tour  [… has]a special focus on museums showing contemporary art and multimedia events. The participants receive free admission tickets for such exhibitions and events.

Each group of participants in cooperation with youth hostels and a catering service are fully taken care for and [… is]accompanied by a […] trainer during the group’s journeys to and from London and Vienna, respectively, the sightseeing tour[s]and during the workshop. The […] trainer comes from the local environment of the young people, so for the Croatian group it is a Croatian coach and for the Slovakian group it is a Slovakian coach. It can be a teacher or a social worker, and each of these coaches needs to have training or similar education and – as the optimum situation – on top can rely on audiovisual training.

So, during the Audio Lab in London the participants of the dubrovnik-vienna-london-baseline are coached by a London media artist and a[…] coach from Croatia; [while] the young people participating in the Visual Lab in Vienna […] are supported by a[…] coach from Croatia and a media artist from Vienna. In the same way, the participants of the bratislava-vienna-london-baseline are supported by a Slovakian coach in London and Vienna and a media artist from Vienna in Vienna and a media artist from London in London.

In the mobile media labs the young people go into creative production on the basis of the media techniques listed below. Bratislava and Dubrovnik form phase I of each baseline during which audiovisual production is performed as one process of creative work, whereas London and Vienna form phase II [follow-up phase] of the workshop series. In phase II the contents of production are split into audio production in London and visual production in Vienna. This method of phasing co-relates with the specification for locations, first being publicly based – in an internet café with public access, with the option for a café’s visitors to integrate themselves into the workshop and under fully free experimentation with audiovisual material and techniques -, to transform into a fully equipped media studio – with the focus on matter-specific/technological problem solutions, even if in all situations the prioritary attention to the exploration of creative worlds of imageries and sound and the understanding of such worlds as scopes of freedom to develop individual identity is maintained throughout the full process.

MEDIA TECHNIQUES
Filming & Sound Rehearsals
The interactive scenario in the framework of each workshop itself serves the young people as exploring ground for the production of video and sound material. For this purpose, they receive a digital video camera and a microphone which can be used throughout the whole workshop. The material shot can be captured into a computer.
Photographing
With a digital photo camera the young people can make photos and directly load them into the computer.
Sketching, Drawing, Painting, Scanning
For the analog-sensuous exploration of colours, forms, graphics and individual imagery the young people receive paper, pens, markers and water colours and can use a scanner to digitize their material. Through the integration of analog production processes young people, especially at the beginning of a workshop, can work with material they are confident with to be able to focus on their individual creativity before learning more or less complex techniques of digital production.
Image Editing & Animations
Image editing and animation tools, i.e. Photoshop, Fireworks, Flash, are introduced to the young people in a general way. The special focus for the use of these software applications lies on features allowing the young people the simple and fast changing of images through the use of colour and graphic filters. In the field of animation methods are favorized that allow to produce an animation out of a sequence of images on click.
Music & Sound Production
After the playful experimenting with visual techniques the young people are introduced to main sound editors, i.e. Cool Edit, Sound Forge. The media artists supply the young people with own music and sound tracks which now are manipulated – edited, atmospherically and/or rhythmically changed – by the participants.
Playful Production of Video Clips/VJing
The participants load the audiovisual material produced into the software Resolume, a digital Visual DJing Station allowing to newly arrange multimedia components, to re-compose audiovisual files and to produce out of the existing material individual movies with sound which now can be saved as individual clips. This approach allows the participants to playfully experiment with audiovisual editing and composing methods and to reach joyful results in a short period of time.

OPEN PERFORMANCE
Whether in Bratislava, Dubrovnik, Vienna or London – each of the media labs on its last day transforms into a party. Technically seen, it needs to be dark to start the final event.

With the setup of a catering bar offering soft drinks and popcorn [free for workshop participants] and a musical introduction of a local Audio DJ the party officially starts. During the workshop the VJing- and the audio teams were working without projection and with headphones – now – as it has become dark – their audiovisual movies are shown from the online platform on the projection – either outdoor [being projected onto …] the facade of a building or indoor on[to] a video wall. The participants direct the visual online performance, integrating the local audience as much as the international online community joining them. The media coaches […] support[…] this process.

The local Audio DJ has set up his DJing Station, is connected with the audio tracks of the participants via headphones, directs the audio performance and mixes the individual tracks with his own music. The audio mixes are played out via loudspeakers [placed in public space].

Whoever out of the participants would like to shoot with the digital video camera, can use the camera and – if needed – is supported by one of the media artists.

THE INTERNET NODES OF THE CiTyFaCe_baseline_series

PROFILE & USAGE
The central online module of the CiTyFaCe_baseline_series during, before and after the workshops is the open, international and fully autonomously administered Multimedia Chatting Platform Visitors Studio which allows to re-compose multimedia files online and in real time. This Internet Jamming Software, produced by furtherfield, is an interactive exchange forum and an internet tool for the production of audiovisual collages which can be created, manipulated and viewed in real time by a multitude of online users. 

The participants of the CiTyFaCe_baseline_series as much as any internet user can freely compose own and others’ audiovisual material, create new material, edit collected material, upload images, photos, graphics, animations, video clips, music and sounds, thus [re-] offering such material to an open community for further compositioning. Everybody is invited to playfully and creatively experiment with audiovisual performances.

Each of the producing cooperation partners of the CiTyFaCe_baseline_series runs a website and within the CI of such a site integrates an internet node, a module, a menued site section introducing the project CiTyFaCe_baseline_series to the site-connected community and the public and integrating a link to the Visitors Studio to connect different user groups, to be able to offer different access to this module and to contribute to the international production process.

For the international offline-use before and after the workshops each of these internet nodes of the CiTyFaCe_baseline_seriesoffers Free Editing Software out of the production fields graphics, animation, sound and video for the free download for all internet users and the offline-editing of audiovisual material.

Thus, the participants of the workshop baselines can stay in contact and continue with the communal creative process, they can develop their ideas further and exchange them. The teams open up and get in touch with the teams of the other participating cities to step into interaction with every user interested in experimental creative production. Especially through the Online Chatting Function the young people have the chance to exchange and be in touch with others not only through their creative works but by accompanying these with comments, notes and expressions of the spoken word. They can have direct contact with each other, can react to each other easily. Individual, personal acquaintances can be made, friendships can develop.

The specification of each user’s email address with the inauguration of his/her online account […] can enable the initiation of a youth-oriented, creatively producing emailing community [– in a follow-up phase]. Every member of the emailing group can communicate with the others, individuals can step into autonomous email-contact. Pen friendships can develop on an international scale.

Through the noding of this youth online platform to different kinds of websites – media artists’ ones as much as educational ones based in different countries – a continuous exchange of the young people with an international community is enhanced. From all noding sites uploads and compositions can be performed, flow into the same database, thus – without the charge of any user licences – being available for a diversity of user groups for common creative media production, further use and applying, in the context of a synthesis of grown up and [… adolescent] works. Young people get in touch with an international public which again is enhanced to pay attention to the impact of interdisciplinary communication and the participative integration of […young] media production.

DESIGN & SURFACE
Formal Language
The layout and design of each internet node of the CiTyFaCe_baseline_series are conditioned and partly pre-defined by each of the corporate designs of the cooperating parties: http://www.wowm.org/csdvu, http://www.furtherfield.org, http://www.kanonmedia.com, (The Libusa Vanova Institute for Educational Development is currently setting up a website). Each of the nodes, though, is characterized by a […adolescent]-dynamic, modern-experimental language of form as much as by the intense integration of graphics, images and animated sequences also on the static pages of each node.

The static pages of each node represent the project CiTyFaCe_baseline_series online, and the central, dynamic module Visitors Studio […] is embedded such representation [via linking]. So, also design-wise it holds a central function in all nodes and as a multimedia composition tool contains a rich spectrum of autonomous audiovisual creation, thus a rich spectrum of stylistic approaches.

Atmospherically seen, the claim of young people to have the right to manifest their individual emotional and psychological processes within growing up, within becoming an adult, within their search for the individual positioning/identity/scope of creative freedom and content is important. At the same time, all child-like expressions are welcome: [… young people] are allowed to feel as a child, to be a child whenever they feel the need for corresponding forms of expression.

TEAMS

TEAM baselines
During the mobile media labs [–] as sensibilizing-advising-inspiring coaches [–] the following media artists are part of the project: Ruth Catlow [UK], Marc Garrett [UK], Maya Kalogera [HR] und Alexandra Reill [A]. A cooperation with a Slovakian media artist is currently researched.

Organizational activities are covered by the following structure: international coordination by kanonmedia[…][A]; national organization, local public relations and networking in Croatia by kanonmedia[…] in cooperation with Maya Kalogera; in Slovakia by Libusa Vanova Institute for Educational Development, in Great Britain by the artists’ collective furtherfield, in Austria by kanonmedia[…].

Regarding educational specifications, in each country contact is made with schools and other relevant local or regional institutions, especially for guaranteeing that the educational coaches active in London and Vienna can come from the local environment of the participants from Croatia and Slovakia.

TEAM INTERNET
The contents of each internet node as defined by the above list of websites is produced by each producer of the specific website.

On an international basis, the contents of the Visitors Studio are produced continuously and autonomously by the baselines’participants, other young people and an open community of media artists and node-connected user groups interested in audiovisual production.

The Visitors Studio is a furtherfield-application [… forming a …] central module of the online and offline performances [in the project CiTyFaCe_baseline_series]without the need of project-related adaptation or any other kind of software development.

TECHNICAL PLATFORMS

TECHNICAL PLATFORM baselines
The specifications define the infrastructure needed for 1 workshop:
HW
10 Pentium IV set up as a network, broad bandwidth internet access for all computers, 1 scanner, 1 audio mixer with 2 channels, 1 video mixer with 2 channels, 2 record players pitchable, 1 receiver, 2-4 loudspeakers, 1 beamer min. 3.000 Lumen, 1 video wall if there is no outdoor projection possible, ev. 1 generator for electric power, diverse cables
SW
Photoshop, Fireworks, Flash, visual mixing SW – i.e. Resolume, audio mixing SW – i.e. Dez/Hex, audio editing SW – i.e. Cool Edit, Sound Forge, collection of freeware (to be researched)

TECHNICAL PLATFORM INTERNET
HW
Webserver with min. 2 GB server space and SQL-service at provider
SW
Real Media Streaming Server, Visitors Studio, HTML- and JavaScript editors, i.e. Dreamweaver, image editing SW, i.e. Photoshop, Fireworks, Avid XPress DV, Quicktime, Flash

INTERNET USERS’ TECHNICAL MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS
HW
Pentium III or Apple G3, Internet Explorer 6.0

TIME SCHEDULE 

Phase Preparation: June – September 2004
Phase baseline_series: October 2004 – March 2005
Phase Evaluation: April – Mai 2005

LOCATIONS OF PRODUCTION

Bratislava: 1 organizational office, 1 internet café; Zagreb: 1 organizational office; Dubrovnik: 1 internet café; Vienna: 1 organizational office, 1 media studio in cooperation with [i. e.] inter>face or kforumvienna; London: 1 organizational office, 1 media studio: Media Studio furtherfield.

Please note: Due to too high risk of co-finance needed under EU-funding, the partnering organizations decided to not submit the application.

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