What we seem to know as perceptual experience cannot be taken for granted. Conscious perceptual experience, that which we think we know that we see and feel, is a matter of our cultural, sensorial and neurological conditions for experiencing things in a particular manner. My work develops from a combined curiosity and concern with human perceptual experience in relation to art and media aesthetic phenomena, especially in perspective of how our experience is increasingly cued by algorithmic processes.
I research, teach and disseminate in the domain of art, technology and (digital) culture. I lean on philosophies, methodologies, tools and thinking frameworks from various disciplines – as well as academically anchored life experiences – which, in the theoretical or analytical experiment deem useful to examine how our experience with art and other aesthetic phenomena is constituted. My research especially concerns mechanisms by which art and other media aesthetic phenomena are experienced and manifest in human cognition and perceptual-sensory experience. Rather than pursuing answers to epistemological questions, my research departs from concerns with ontologies of media aesthetic phenomena and how their experience condition us to sense in a particular manner and evoke a sense of possibility and change. This inquiry continues explorations into art as an anchor point of human consciousness and into how art’s sensibilities and political aesthetics entangle with the sensorial ecologies from which our cultures and innovations emerge.
My curatorial research and practice has drawn on methods and epistemologies beyond the domain of art, for example, from sociology’s understanding of human dynamics, music’s composition of the audience sphere, architecture’s analysis and production of space, physics’ examination of matter, and biology’s examination of conditions for life forms and becoming. By combining multiple perspectives in transdisciplinary methodologies I am interested in art’s role in relation to pressing challenges in the world – across humanitarian, environmental, biological, and others – with which the art deals and evolves.
My most recent work on memory and technogenesis in expanded reality experience examines how our sense of reality is technologically expanded (or, reduced) with art and media aesthetic phenomena. Along this path of research I examine subjectivity as a transdisciplinary configuration, leaning on cultural theory, neuroscientific theory, computer science, optical innovation, feminist science studies and philosophies of time. My work specifically addresses how temporality in experience affects emotion and memory structures, habits, and intuitions, not only conceptually or theoretically but also technogenetically. This channels into my current work on the theme art of our times, which is focused on meanings and implications of intratemporal modes and roles of art’s existence, from the formation of civilizations in ancient times and up until today’s hypertechnical milieus.
Tanya Ravn Ag, Ph.D, is a curator and researcher. Her work examines perceptual experience, memory and technogenesis in relation to art and urban media aesthetic phenomena. She studied Media Studies at The New School and Modern Culture with a specialization in Urbanity and Aesthetics at Copenhagen University before gaining her doctoral degree from the Department of Arts and Cultural Studies at Copenhagen University. Her dissertation explores a critical, temporal perspective on urban media art. She has taken up visiting research at Columbia University, The New School and Konstfack University of Arts, Crafts and Design (CuratorLab). In 2018-2020 she was a research fellow at the School of Creative Media at City University of Hong Kong. Ag has taught at Copenhagen University and at various universities worldwide in the framework of the Urban Media Art Academy, which she co-founded in 2017. She is editor of Digital Dynamics in Nordic Contemporary Art (Intellect, 2019) and co-editor of What Urban Media Art Can Do – Why, When, Where, and How? (av edition, 2016). She is Chair of the IIAC, the International Advisory Committee to ISEA (International Symposium on Electronic Art) and a member of various conference and gallery boards (Media Art Histories – RE:SOUND 2019, Media Architecture Biennale 2018, Human-Computer Interaction Conference (HCI) 2017 and 2018, Open Sky Gallery in Hong Kong 2015-2016).
Ag’s curatorial practice engages media art and media architecture in urban and hybrid environments. She was curator of the Screen City Biennial 2017 in Stavanger and led the biennial’s artistic research program. Since 2011 she has been associate curator of the Streaming Museum (New York City), and between 2012-2014 she was curator of the SP Urban Digital Festival and various public space exhibitions in São Paulo, produced by Verve Cultural. Her independently curated exhibitions include Voyage to the Virtual at Scandinavia House in New York City in 2015 and Here All Alone in a closed-down factory in Copenhagen in 2015.
Contact: tanyaravnag (at) gmail . com