Archiving New Media Art Lift Project

Nola Farman, a Western Australian artist, has never had a consistent practice. The Lift Project (1979-1982), her major work, is an important contribution to Australia’s history of new media art. The Art Gallery of Western Australia now wants to deaccession it. Farman set sail for Toronto after her fellow students fled Perth to London in search of postgraduate opportunities.

Many people found a sanctuary in a particular medium. They continued exploring its possibilities through regular exhibitions at commercial galleries. She moved from drawing and painting to animation and writing. Farman was a pioneer in the adoption of new technologies and sought out collaborators during a time when solo artists were the norm.

It was never a matter of contrariness. Artists use whatever tools are available to realize their ideas. Farman’s ideas are complex, multifaceted and varied. This makes it more important to have a wide range of tools. She spent four years in Canada and returned to Perth in the late 1960s. Produced exhibitions of paintings and drawings, as well as smaller sculptures, in rapid bursts.

She began a two-year study in 1983 of the psychological and physical effects of lift travel. As Perth boomed, and concrete and glass towers made St Georges Terrace a replica of every other city in the world, vertical lift travel became a common occurrence.

Lift Discussed Or Considered

It was not discuss or consider by anyone else. Farman did. Farman and Michael Brown worked together for two years to create a lift environment. The lift was equip with fully automate steel doors and computer-control operation. Spectators were treat to a 12-minute audio-visual program.

It was the 1980s, and computer-based immersive and interactive works were just beginning to emerge in Europe and the USA. This was thanks to the efforts of Roy Ascott, Paul Sermon and Jeffrey Shaw. Farman’s insight, diligence, and openness was at the cutting edge. This project created an intellectual buzz that attracted many engineers, scientists, architects, artists, and tech-heads.

Farman led visitors to The Lift, which was located on the top floor at Ed Jane’s Fremantle Furniture Factory, an old warehouse in the heart of the port city. The Lift was a symbol for the structured and unconscious experiences that the audience had when they were lift-traveling. Images and sounds recreated the lift’s upward motion as it stopped at each floor. Serial images explored the fears associated with lift travel.

Individuals who entered the environment through Johns Perry doors accidentally left the safety of the art gallery. They were force into dangerous territory where they would have to confront their fears and phobias. Farman explained this in the accompanying Lift Manual.

Illegal Activity Lift

It was important to me because it is a social space. In this space, looking becomes an illegal activity and the close scrutiny of others becomes more appealing and desirable. The lift is a point of rupture from reality. The lift is a place to embark, but the journey involves more than a physical displacement of ascent or descent. It also involves a psychological displacement. The Lift was complete and display at the Art Gallery of Western Australia. It was then acquire for the permanent collection.

It was awarded a Diploma of Honor by the Prix Ars Electronica Interactive Art award in 1991. Complex work that involved slide projectors, computers, elaborate screens installations, and Johns Perry doors. This work is a key to the development of new media art. It is still a vital presence, though it is mostly recollected because it is not often shown in consciousness of critics, practitioners and curators all over the world. The Lift is the latest item to be removed from the Art Gallery of Western Australia collection.

Museums And Galleries

Museums and galleries are responsible for maintaining works in their collections for future generations. However, there are many problems that can arise from keeping them in working order in light of rapid technological changes and intellectual property issues.

This area has seen a lot of research. In 2002, the Guggenheim Museum, along with the Daniel Langlois Foundation for Art, Science and Technology based in Montreal, created the Variable Media Network to establish best-practice benchmarks for preservation and collection of new media art.

Leading galleries, like the Tate in London have initiated programs to continue to exhibit their collection of new media art. Their conservators work with artists, technicians, and curators to figure out how to do this.

The Lift is an important work that should be preserved and maintain. It perhaps time for a partnership to be form between major state and national institutions, universities art museums, and private organizations holding new media works. This will prevent similar works from being lost in the future.

Perth Is The Tip Of The Iceberg Disappearing Oceans History

This Thursday is World Oceans Day. The United Nations convenes a high-level conference to discuss the future of the oceans. Although the conference’s main focus ocean conservation, a second aspect of our seas that often overlook is the immense human history found underwater.

Millions upon millions of shipwrecks lie beneath the ocean. The most famous is the Titanic, which lies almost four kilometers below the North Atlantic. These relics, which preserve a history about our relationship with the seas, are as important as terrestrial ones like the Egyptian pyramids and the temples in Angkor. This underwater cultural heritage, like other marine ecosystems is under threat from climate change, pollution and development as well as fishing and looting.

Just this week, maritime archaeologists from Australia and Indonesia reported that HMAS Perth (a World War II shipwreck lying in the Sunda Strait, where hundreds of men rest) has sustained extensive and recent damage. The ship is now down to half its original size.

Stories From The Sea Oceans

The human relationship to the ocean goes back thousands of years. Our oceans have been food sources, connected civilisations and facilitated trade, travel, conquest and conquest. They also serve as sacred places of veneration. The ocean floor is home to three million sunken cities and shipwrecks.

They include a shipwreck from the 9th century that was discover off Indonesia’s Belitung Island in 1998. It built in the Middle East and carry a lot of Chinese ceramics. It is the oldest evidence of maritime commerce between Southeast Asia, China Tang Dynasty and Middle Eastern Abbasid empire.

These vestiges of the past are not limit to shipwrecks. Archaeologists discover evidence of sunken civilisations that were bury beneath silt and soil for many centuries. Relics of Alexandria’s ancient city include temples and palaces as well as the Pharos Lighthouse measuring 130m, which is one of the Seven Wonders of Ancient World. Egyptian authorities are now planning to build an underwater museum in order to share their discoveries with a wider audience.

Sometimes the smallest objects found underwater can reveal more than a whole city. The 2000-year-old Antikythera mechanism, which was lost in the waters of Crete for centuries, is now known as the first computer to use gears and dials to track the moon phases and predict eclipses. Scientists hope to find genetic information from the bones to help them understand ancient shipwreck victims.

Mesopotamian Location Oceans

Inlays of mother-of-pearl collected by early breath-hold divers and made by artisans found at a Mesopotamian location indicate that humans have responded creatively to the ocean’s resources since 4,500 BCE.

These past activities have left an underwater heritage that bears witness to both ancient and modern civilisations. The significance of ocean artifacts goes beyond travel, trade and recreation. This heritage can be used to show the effects of rising sea levels on human lives. This information can serve as a stark reminder of the impacts of climate change and help us find solutions to the environmental problems that we face.

Ulrike Guerin, UNESCO Secretariat of the 2001 Convention on the Protection of the Underwater Cultural Heritage explains. Sea levels were lower for 90% of humanity’s existence than they are today. Humans have lived in close proximity to water for most of their development. Only in the last decade has there been an acknowledgement of the importance of the missing data from the submerged shelf.

The underwater cultural heritage can be used to help assess the effects of the ocean on human lives and monitor issues like oil pollution and unexploded ammunition from WWII shipwrecks. Guerin believes that the protection and research of this heritage can result in better conservation of coastline and marine areas. This will also bring about increased economic benefits for small islands developing countries and less developed countries through tourism.

A Sea Without History?

As with coral reefs and fish stocks, the underwater cultural heritage is at risk from over-development, climate change and marine pollution. Fishing and other industrial activities are becoming more of a concern.

Deep-sea fishing trawlers are use to destroy fishing stocks and well-preserve vessels. These bottom trawl nets are like ploughs. They dig up the ocean floor and tear down archaeological sites. Every year, thousands of artificial fishing nets lost in the Baltic Sea. These ghost nets become entangled in wrecks and trap fish and seals. The massive trawl nets that permeate every metre of the ocean floor in Southeast Asia have caused historic shipwrecks to be destroy in Thailand and Malaysia.

Illegal salvaging and looting of underwater heritage is just as dangerous as illegal poaching. Three near-pristine Japanese shipwrecks were recently disturb in Malaysian waters. This has resulted in the destruction of marine ecosystems. These wrecks have caused severe damage to small-scale fishermen and local diving companies. These illicit activities are becoming more sophisticated and bolder in Indonesia, with the latest damage to HMAS Perth.

Heritage At The Margins Oceans

Although underwater cultural heritage is a very important concept, it tends to be overlook by other policy and legal priorities. Plenary meetings at the UN Oceans Conference in New York this week are focus on marine pollution reduction, coastal and marine ecosystem protection, and ocean acidification. In a side event, the topic of underwater cultural heritage was also discuss.

Although the 2001 underwater heritage convention established basic principles for protecting these sites it faces many challenges. The convention has been ratified by 56 countries, while the US, China and the UK are the only major maritime nations to have. Australia has yet to ratify the convention, but it introduced new legislation on underwater cultural heritage in November 2016. The Heritage Convention also faces the problem of perceive opposition to the Law of the Sea which establishes the rules for how the oceans will be share and governed.

HMAS Perth? Strangely, the Australian Embassy in Jakarta discover that the bell of the ship’s vessel had found in an Indonesian salvage yard in 1970. The bell was exchange by the embassy, which is now house in the Australian War Memorial. This small piece of history has been save by cultural diplomacy.

Our oceans’ cultural heritage and our relationship to them is essential. It is vital to understand the history of humanity’s relationship with oceans. Our oceans are our future, as is our history.

Become A Space Tourist Have $250,000

Blue Origin, Jeff Bezos’s Space Launch Company, has announced that it will sell its first flights to microgravity to highest bidder. Blue Origin, along with its biggest competitors in space tourism, SpaceX and Virgin Galactic claim that they are advancing humanity by democratizing space. These joyrides don’t open up space access for everyone

The Changing Space Landscape

Space tourism is an exciting prospect. It promises a quicker path to space than that taken by astronauts who must complete rigorous training, higher education and compete for selection. Because few countries have human spaceflight programs, astronauts must have the right nationality.

The opening of commercial spaceflight should, in theory, make space more democratic and accessible. This is not true in all cases. What was once the exclusive domain of the wealthiest countries is now dominate by commercial entities.

These companies can take greater risks than government programs, because they don’t have to justify spending or failings to the public. Blue Origin and SpaceX both have witnessed many explosions during past tests. Yet, fans are more excited than dismay.

This has led to rapid advancement of space technologies. SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket, which has just completed its tenth successful launch, is a reusable rocket that has lowered the cost of launch tenfold. Reusable technology not only reduces costs but also solves the problem of sustainability.

Considering Sustainability Space

Since 1957 when the Soviets launched the first human-made object (Sputnik I), there have been thousands upon thousands of launches. Except for Falcon 9, every launch vehicle was use once and dispose off immediately, much like an aeroplane being thrown away after one flight.

With 114 launches in 2020, the number of launches is increasing every year. The uncontrolled reentry by debris from China’s Long March 5B rocket was a major news story because of its size and potential for damage. This is only one example of the issues of space debris management and traffic management.

Safety is an important issue in human spaceflight. There are currently approximately 3,400 satellites and 128 million pieces debris in orbit. Each day there are hundreds of possible collisions. Operators can avoid them by costly and complicated manuevers, or wait for the risk to diminish enough to be avoid.

Countries will have to impose stricter requirements on satellites that are de-orbit at the end of their life, in order to ensure they do not burn up upon re entry, if we increase human spaceflight. It is acceptable to either de-orbit a satellite after 25 years or to place a satellite in an unoccupied orbit. This only slows down the problem for the future.

Nations will also have to follow the 2019 United Nations Guidelines on the Long-term Sustainability Activities in Outer Space. Another important aspect of launch operations is their environmental impact. SpaceX’s Falcon 9 burns more fuel than an average car over 200 years for one launch.

There are many impacts on the ground, including waterways and terrain. These should be considered when we build future Australian launch sites. Launch permits require that environmental impact statements be completed, but they should also include long-term effects as well as carbon footprints.

How To Keep Billionaires Under Control

It will be vital for independent spaceflight companies in the future to be strictly regulate. Virgin Galactic has advocated for a shirtsleeve environment where customers can enjoy the luxury of spaceflight without being restrict by uncomfortable spacesuits. Spaceflight is still dangerous, as evidenced by the 2014 death of one its test pilots. Comfort requires more caution and greater safety at high altitudes.

While space tourism regulators like the US Federal Aviation Administration have stringent safety standards, spacesuits that are pressurize are not. But they should. Space tourism operators may require passengers to sign waivers of liability in the event of an accident.

While it is admirable that Blue Origin and SpaceX are making technological leaps in the right direction, their business plans do not reflect diversity, inclusion, or global accessibility. All of the first space tourists were entrepreneurs.

Dennis Tito purchased a seat aboard a Russian Soyuz rocket in 2001 to visit the International Space Station (ISS). Eight more space tourists have paid between US$20 million-US$30 million to fly through Russia since then.

The 2022 flight of the Axiom crew to SpaceX Dragon to the ISS is plan for 2022. The privilege will paid for by three white, wealthy male passengers who all wealthy and well-off. Blue Origin’s auction will run for five weeks. The highest bidder will win a seat in microgravity for a few seconds.

Virgin Galactic’s 90-minute joyrides are also plan to fly as soon as 2022. They have sold out for US$250,000 already. Future tickets will likely be more expensive.

It’s Only A Matter Of Space Time

Conventional recreational air travel originally meant for the wealthy. Cross-continental flights to the United States were half the cost of new cars. However, technological advancements and increased commercial competition led to nearly five million people flying every day by 2019, pre-COVID.

It’s possible that space tourism will soon be accessible. This would allow you to fly from Sydney to London in just a few hours. Spaceflight is more risky and expensive than air flight. Even with reusable rockets, it’s still a viable option. These costs will continue to rise for a while before spaceflight can be democratize.

This compelling narrative is one that commercial spaceflight companies are keen to adopt. However, there will always be some people who won’t have the opportunity to enjoy this future. As science fiction stories often predict, spaceflight and habitation in space will only be possible for the wealthy.

Space-based technologies have many benefits. These include tracking climate change and enabling global communications. We also know that we can learn from experiments conducted on the ISS. Space tourism is more difficult because the payback for the average person may be less.