The SIGGRAPH Art Gallery’04: Synaesthesia exhibition was held during the 31st Annual International SIGGRAPH Conference on Computer Graphics and Interactive Techniques August 8 - 12th 2004 at The Los Angeles Convention, Los Angeles, CA, USA.
In 2003 I was selected by ACM SIGGRAPH to the voluntary position of SIGGRAPH’04 Art Gallery Chair, for the 31st International Conference on Computer Graphics and Techniques, held in Los Angeles, USA, the first European to be selected for this prestigious role.
The annual SIGGRAPH Art Gallery has achieved worldwide recognition for excellence in showing digital and electronic art, it showcases the best digital artwork being produced and performed in all its diversity.
My vision and title for the SIGGRAPH 2004 Art Gallery was Synaesthesia. Synaesthesia is defined as an involuntary physical experience of a cross-modal association. Having one sense stimulated causes stimulation in another sense as well, a joining of sensations.
My aim was to showcase original digital work that explored the connections between the senses - the technological, the aesthetic and the critical. That showed new works of art emerging from the conjunction of cybernetics and human vision – inner as well as outer.
I was selected by ACM SIGGRAPH, as Art Gallery Chair’04 because of my primary research on 'the impact of new technology within the practice of Fine Art'. As a pioneer of early computer art, I have continuously explored this relationship between technology and the arts and have written extensively on this subject. This also includes my past experience with organizing and curating international digital art exhibitions ArCade I –V, The UK Open International Exhibition of Electronic Art & GAMUT I & II (1995 – 2007) and my past participation in past SIGGRAPH Art Galleries as a contributor, juror and Art Gallery Subcommittee Member (2000 – 2007).
A record number of 1,000 pieces were submitted to the Synaesthesia Art Gallery’4. A jury of art professionals reviewed each piece. There were four juries, which included 2D & 3D Jury, Screen-based Jury Papers Jury (Online peer referrer reviewers) (22 papers submitted, six were referred selected and published), and an Art Animation jury who were also the main jury for the Computer Animation Festival (CAF).
Named Synaesthesia, the SIGGRAPH 2004 Art Gallery exhibited work by visionary artists that stimulated the senses using new technology. 150 pieces of artwork were finally selected, where the viewers were encouraged to see, hear and touch the art. It included 2D, 3D, interactive works, installation pieces, multimedia, animation and screen-based work.
The work selected ranged from low-tech digital plotters to high-end computer graphics and animation. I also curated in work by three artists who were prizewinners and exhibitors at the prestigious Ars Electronica 2003 (Linz, Austria) and featured work from both digital art pioneers, such as Roman Verostko and Hans Dehlinger, and a younger contemporary artists Casey Rees.
I also chaired the 2004 selection panels for associated published critical essays and artists’ talks, including; 25 years of the Digital Avant-Garde: Celebrating 25 Years of Ars Electronica, * Researching the future: (*CAiiA-STAR-and the Planetary-Collegium).
As a SIGGRAPH conference volunteer it requires a considerable investment of time. Volunteers are not compensated monetarily for their time spent working on the conference. The conference is sponsored by a not-for-profit organization, ACM SIGGRAPH. There is a small budget to attached to the Art Gallery, to enable me to implement my strategic vision.
As SIGGRAPH Art Gallery Chair I was responsible for the planning, selection process, and implementation of the annual conference Art Gallery’04, working closely with the Conference Chair, in the strategic planning for the SIGGRAPH Conference’04 as a whole. To recruit and manage a subcommittee to assist in administering the Art Gallery and organize and implement a thorough Art Gallery review process.
ACM SIGGRAPH Reports 2004
11 August 2003
"And as the week of SIGGRAPH comes to a close, countless compliments are made on behalf of Sue Gollifer and her amazing work with the 'Synaesthesia' gallery. This vision was one that can never be recreated and while “ evoking the sensation of another,” it sure will never be like this one!"
(SIGGRAPH Interviews’04’, Veronica Lucas)
"Synaesthesia titles the Art Gallery perfectly because advances in the computer science realm run hand in hand with the advances with the diagnosis of synaesthesia. They are both at a point of true growth and insight. Artists are able to use technology to successfully recreate the ways in which one sense evokes another. Artists are fascinated by this phenomenon and have dedicated their lives to this research and “recreating” artwork expressing synaesthesia. Walking through the Art Gallery is like seeing through the eyes of a synaesthete."
Spectrum: Interactive Media & Online Developer News
16 Aug 2004
"Other highlights included the always-inspiring art gallery, this year dubbed 'Synaesthesia,' and lots of fascinating papers and panels, random encounters, much to do and see on the exhibition floor, and more. I can't wait till next year."
(Reported, written and edited by David Duberman)