This is a report on a practice-based research project called ‘Journeys in Travel’, which investigates contemporary modes of nonlinear narratives in film, art and digital media practice. It is a single case study, which suggests as its main contribution to set new ground in the development of nonlinear narratives that the structural form of cinematic essay is a suitable adoption for nonlinear database film, which is referred to as ‘database essay’. The video installation ‘Journeys in Travel’ is based on an algorithmic computer-controlled system and tells a story of travel. The Open Source Software ‘PD’ (Pure Data), a real-time music and multimedia environment mainly used to create live-algorithmic musical improvisation and (interactive) music composition, controls here an infinite audiovisual narrative. It is a temporary, open-ended arrangement, which sets in motion a seemingly endless chain of references to related topics: Foreign places, tourism, ethnography, globalisation, a hyper-connected world, movement, pace, rhythm and the relationship of film (structure), narrative and travel. ‘Journeys in Travel’ is designed as a creative investigation into multiple modes of contemporary digital narrative constructions. The database of video and sound elements can act as a source for varying experimental approaches where the ‘data’ or ‘units’ of the story are arranged and assembled according to different computer algorithms.
|Keywords:||Digital Art, Nonlinear Narrative, Database Film, Cinematic Essay, Open Source Software PD|
Lecturer in Fine Art, Loughborough School of Art and Design, Loughborough University, Loughborough, Leicestershire, UK
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