Alumni Megan Pitcher & Leo Selvaggio Impress at ISEA


For the artist interested in technology as part of their practice, the annual ISEA (International Symposium on Electronic Art) Conference is an critical event. This year’s conference, titled ISEA 2015: Disruption, was held August 14-18 in Vancouver, Canada, and two 2014 alumni, Megan Pitcher and Leo Selvaggio, both were selected to present their work.

photo credit: Leo Selvaggio

Pitcher, who says that ISEA gave her “unprecedented access to top artists and professionals in the fields of new media and computing,” presented as part of MOCO, an international workshop on movement and computing held in conjunction with ISEA. Pitcher presented “The Adaptive/Responsive Movement Approach (A/RMA),” a generative tool for interdisciplinary, new media, and movement artists. Pitcher has presented the A/RMA approach workshops through American College Dance Association and during a residency at the Chicago Cultural Center. She will be doing more workshops in Michigan during her work with DITA/Site Lab/ArtsPrize this summer and fall, and offer workshops again in Chicago as opportunities arise.

photo credit: Paul Catanese

Selvaggio, who has recently been selected as a Featured Artist for Chicago Artists Month, presented his URME surveillance project. “As an artist, I investigate the entanglements of identity with technology,” writes Selvaggio in his paper for the conference. “I treat identity as data that can be manipulated, hacked, or even corrupted in our increasingly digital and networked society. Within the larger context of surveillance, my work examines how this data is subject to systems of oppression and patriarchal power that exploit and co-opt our personal identities for institutional gain.” Selvaggio also showed his work at the Vancouver Art Gallery in the FUSE: Disruption exhibition among 50 projects curated to challenge preconceptions of media and electronic art. Selvaggio summarizes his experience at ISEA: “it has been the most productive experience of my professional career so far.”