Harbinger Consultants

Culture + Complexity + Change

VISION | Australian Network for Art and Technology

by Linda Carroli

As the Chair of the Australian Network for Art and Technology (ANAT), a national organisation bridging art, science and technology to generate new creative and research methods and practices, I am fortunate to be exposed to some extraordinary, visionary and creative ideas and interdisciplinary practitioners.

In the last 12 months, ANAT has been attentive to a range of emerging technologies including mobile phone art, wearable art, electronic/digital graffiti, open source, virtual worlds, social networking, art-science and augmented realities. ANAT is the only national organisation that promotes this breadth of artist-led research, experimentation and concept development.

As a practitioner interested in enhancing experience, design and sensation in public and urban space, these initiatives are eye opening and adventurous. They skirt the boundaries between material and immaterial, virtual and physical. Through these innovations we may see the urban environment becoming increasingly interactive and responsive, perhaps where people can wrap the spaces around them. Rather than occupying space, we may have more of a sense of it folding around or embracing our own bodies and movements. We may become immersed in a different kind of social or play space. Harbinger endeavours to raise awareness of urban media in its planning, research and engagement, to generate as much enthusiasm about these potentialities as we can rouse. Cven if funds aren’t available to realise ambitious projects, simple, free and accessible technologies are always available.

This month, I am fortunate to be be participating in ANAT’s Open Source Lab in which international facilitators will work with 15 artists, scientists, writers and developers in each city to introduce open source modes of thinking and resources for collaborative and distributed development; to provide hands on experience; and to initiate local networks and projects. Lab Facilitators are publisher and media artist Alessandro Ludovico (Italy) editor in chief of the online and print publication Neural; free software hacker and new media activist Andy Nicholson (Australia) who is part of the Engage Media collective; and interdisciplinary artist and researcher Beatriz da Costa (USA), who works with open science.

Find out more about ANAT’s work and programs online at:


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