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Cyberarts/Cyberculture Research Initiative (CCRI)

A blending of arts and technology, Cyberarts is a recent course and research innovation at the University Scholars Programme at the National University of Singapore. The university's Cyberarts Initiative is the first of its kind in the region and one of the most comprehensive in the world with its Cyberarts database, Cyberarts resource library, Artist-in-Residence programme, Virtual Reality Collaboration Research, undergraduate, postgraduate and postdoctoral programme development in Cyberculture and Cyberarts.

Cyberarts is a part of Cyberculture, a new discipline with about twenty years of history in Europe, Japan and United States that studies digital and virtual aesthetics, creative impact of new technologies and collaborations between art and life sciences.

In Southeast Asia, the discipline is in its infancy. It is the goal of CCRI to encourage regional artists, scientists, and theorists to work in this field and to showcase their work on an international level. With that goal in mind, CCRI attracts some of the greatest artists and theorists working in the cyberarts scene, and serves as a clearinghouse for worldwide, but especially Southeast Asian, activities in cyberarts.

Recent guests to CCRI include prestigious international figures such as Jeffrey Shaw of ZKM, Gerfried Stocker of Ars Electronica, and Steve Dietz of the Walker Art Center. The participation of regional artists and theorists who figure prominently on an international scale is crucial to the mission of CCRI, and has involved such individuals as Malaysian curator and artist Niranjan Rajah, resident artist Margaret Tan whose work will be included in the upcoming International Symposium on Electronic Art exhibition in Japan, and resident artist Charles Lim who represents Singapore in the Documenta 12 exhibition in Germany. CCRI staff members not only facilitate the activities of the Initiative, but also work actively within the field of cyberarts. Head Irina Aristarkhova is a regular contributor to Undercurrents of thing.net and the creator of www.virtualchora.com and Research Assistant Melinda Klayman, as co-creator of the online game Anime Noir, was recently featured in Wired News.

For more information about the Cyberarts/Cyberculture Research Initiative, please contact the Head, Irina Aristarkhova at uspia@nus.edu.sg.


Behind the Scenes

Dr. Irina Aristarkhova
Dr. Irina Aristarkhova

Irina Aristarkhova teaches the pioneering studio-based course, Cyberart, in the University Scholars Programme. She was formerly Senior Lecturer at the LASALLE-SIA College of the Arts where she taught various courses, including Cybertheory, Technology and Embodiment, and Feminist Aesthetics. She holds an MA from the University of Warwick, UK, and PhD from the Russian Academy of Sciences. Aristarkhova, who has published and lectured widely on cyberculture and cyberarts has a range of research interests including issues of ethnicity and gender in cyberspace, net-art, immersive virtual environments, theories of power, technological embodiments, contemporary psychoanalytic theory, constructions of sexuality, postcolonial cybertheory, cyberethics and cyberaesthetics.

Ms. Lisa Marchenko
Lisa Marchenko

Lisa Marchenko, originally from the Ukraine, develops the Cyberart Database in Cyberart and Cyberculture Research Initiative. Her areas of expertise are Artificial Intelligence, Natural Speech Processing, and Database Management. Ms Marchenko was one of the technical collaborators of the "Cyberarts: Intersections of Art and Technology" at the Singapore Art Museum, which was part of the Nokia Singapore Art 2001. She received her Master's degree in Informational Systems and Bachelor's degree in Management from the Donetsk State Technical University.

Ms. Melinda Klayman
Melinda Klayman

Melinda Klayman comes to the Cyberart and Cyberculture Research Initiative from the United States, where she was previously working at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art in the department of Modern and Contemporary Art. She is co-founder of Playskins, a female-run venture that created the online role-playing game, Anime Noir, which has been featured in Artbyte, AVN Online, and Wired. Ms. Klayman holds a Masters degree in art history from the University of Texas at Austin. She has written publications and given numerous lectures on a variety of art historical and cultural topics, including computer game development, fetishism, performance art, feminist theory, historiography, and hair as a subject and medium in contemporary art.

Mr. Wu Yinghui, Freddie
Wu Yinghui, Freddie (吴颖晖)

Freddie Wu, from the People's Republic of China, is the webmaster for the Cyberart and Cyberculture Research Initiative. He just received his Bachelor's degree in Computing from the National University of Singapore in 2002. His areas of expertise are Digital Signal Processing, Software Engineering, Computer Security, and Database Management. Mr Wu was also one of the technical colaborators of the "Virtual Bodies in Reality" project, which was part of Nokia Singapore Art 2001.