On September 26, 2005 the haudenschild Garage presented the panel Cities and Circuits: Urban Detours into New Media Practice with the Visual Arts Department of UCSD. Shuddhabrata Sengupta (Raqs Media Collective, Delhi, India) was in conversation with Ricardo Dominguez (UCSD & Electronic Disturbance Theater). This panel was organized by Eloisa Haudenschild and Steve Fagin.
The haudenschild Garage wishes to thank inSite_05 for the presence of Shuddhabrata Sengupta.
About the Participants
Shuddhabrata Sengupta is a media practitioner, filmmaker and writer with the Raqs Media Collective, and one of the initiators of Sarai. His recent work involves textual explorations of aesthetics, surveillance and cyberculture. He is currently working on a series of new media and digital culture projects at the Sarai Media Lab.
Raqs Media Collective
Raqs Media Collective was formed in 1992 by independent media practitioners Jeebesh Bagchi, Monica Narula and Shuddhabrata Sengupta. Based in Delhi, their work engages with urban spaces and global circuits, persistently welding a sharp, edgily contemporary sense of what it means to lay claim to the world from the streets of Delhi. At the same time, Raqs articulates an intimately lived relationship with myths and histories of diverse provenances. Raqs sees its work as opening out a series of investigations with image, sound, software, objects, performance, print, text and lately, curation, that straddle different (and changing) affective and aesthetic registers, expressing an imaginative unpacking of questions of identity and location, a deep ambivalence towards modernity and a quiet but consistent critique of the operations of power and property. In 2001 Raqs co-founded Sarai (www.sarai.net) at the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies (CSDS) in Delhi where they coordinate media productions, pursue and administer independent research and practice projects and also work as members of the editorial collective of the Sarai Reader series. For Raqs, Sarai is a space where they have the freedom to pursue interdisciplinary and hybrid contexts for creative work and to develop a sustained engagement with urban space and with different forms of media. Click here to visit Raqs Media Collective’s website
Ricardo Dominguez is a co-founder of The Electronic Disturbance Theater ( Click here to visit EDT’s website), a group who developed Virtual-Sit-In technologies in 1998 in solidarity with the Zapatista communities in Chiapas, Mexico. He is co-Director of Thing (thing.net) an ISP for artists and activists. His recent Electronic Disturbance Theater project with Brett Stabaum, Micha Cardenas and Amy Sara Carroll the *Transborder Immigrant Tool* (a GPS cellphone safety net tool for crossing the Mexico/U.S border was the winner of “Transnational Communities Award”, this award was funded by *Cultural Contact*, Endowment for Culture Mexico – U.S. and handed out by the U.S. Embassy in Mexico), also funded by CALIT2 and two Transborder Awards from the UCSD Center for the Humanities. Ricardo is an Assistant Professor at UCSD in the Visual Arts Department, a Hellman Fellow, and Principal/Principle Investigator at CALIT2 (http://bang.calit2.net). He also co-founder of *particle group* with artists Diane Ludin, Nina Waisman, Amy Sara Carroll a gesture about nanotechnology entitled *Particles of Interest: Tales of the Matter Market* (http://pitmm.net) that was presented in Berlin (2007), the San Diego Museum of Art (2008), Oi Futuro, and FILE festivals in Brazil (2008).
inSite is dedicated to the realization of binational collaborative arts partnerships among nonprofit and public institutions in the San Diego-Tijuana region. Operating through a unique collaborative structure that is based on the active participation of cultural and educational institutions in the US and Mexico, inSite is focused on promoting artistic investigation and activation of urban space.
The distinctive character of inSite, understood as a cultural practice of intervention in the urban social weave, stems from a commitment to facilitate new works developed through a long-term engagement with the artists. The core of inSite, as it has evolved over the past twelve years, is commissioning projects as interventions in the extraordinary context of the San Diego-Tijuana border region. The axis of this project is a process of two-year periodic residencies that culminate in the realization of works sited in the public domain throughout the two cities. The flexibility to respond to the shifting interests of artists and institutions and, in turn, to test new structures of collaboration and venues for the presentation of innovative work, has been a fundamental characteristic of this project.