Interactive painting: an investigation of interactive art and its introduction into a traditional art practice

McMorran, Susan Mary (2007) Interactive painting: an investigation of interactive art and its introduction into a traditional art practice. Doctoral thesis, Northumbria University.

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Abstract This practice-based study investigates the application of an individual studio practice, grounded in Painting, to notions of interactive art, and seeks to establish how the interactivity might impact upon the meaning and the affective power of the work. It investigates the current state of interactive art, its ancestry, development and contextualisation, leading up to its presumed current location within New Media. The thesis examines a range of both theoretical and practical artistic research outputs. It investigates interaction models and taxonomies from New Media, and a range of other interactive disciplines, in order to inform the development of successful paradigms for interactivity as a parameter of an emotionally engaging and communicative art. A number of problems are identified in conflicting conceptual models; an emphasis on the technical and behavioural over the visual, and on human- human over viewer-work interaction; an emphasis on the open meaning and the dispersed author undermining notions of intrinsic meaning; and a foregrounding of play, of pleasure, rather than a deep emotional engagement. The practice, supported by comparisons with related practices, peer discussion and viewer feedback, develops a language of small gestures, textures, layers, sounds and behaviours. It develops away from New Media towards an exploration of the specific nature of the computer as painting medium, and identifies specific models which are useful in informing the development of screen-based painting as interactive. It identifies the model of Interactive Painting as a way of conceptualising the work, which is informed by several key models. Firstly, it identifies Elemental Interactivity; intrinsic, related to both the form and the content, an integrated element, in which the work and its behaviour are one. This is supported by models of Intuitive Interaction and Real-World Models, supporting viewer perception of real-world activities, and informed by characteristics of Simplicity (of interaction and process), and by a small scale and intimate kinaesthetic or Gestural Interactivity. The study identifies a successful model in Open-Ended Exploratory Interaction within a Navigable Space, which is informed by the concept of Wholeness, of the interactive artwork as a holistic or integrated object, which behaves. It identifies Interpretive Interaction as a means of building layers into the work and including a model of Making Cognitive Interaction Concrete. This Interpretive Interaction is contrasted by elements of goal-driven or creative interactivity, providing a shifting dynamic and dramaturgy. It identifies this dramaturgy, the use of humour, pace, mood and elements of and surprise as means of producing the important shift between Immersion and Reflection. Finally, the study examines the visual qualities of the medium. Through comparisons between this medium and Painting, it identifies a specificity for a genre of Interactive Painting, as expressive, immersive, rich, imaginative - a dynamic, controllable and Human re-interpretation of old and new media.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Subjects: W100 Fine Art
Department: Faculties > Arts, Design and Social Sciences > Arts
University Services > Graduate School > Doctor of Philosophy
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Depositing User: EPrint Services
Date Deposited: 12 Apr 2010 08:07
Last Modified: 11 Oct 2022 08:45

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