Acoustic Space: On Spectral Ecology and Art

acousticspace.jpgAcoustic Space Issue # 7: SPECTROPIA – On Spectral Ecology and Art :: CALL FOR PAPERS – Deadline for abstracts – April 21, 2007 :: We are seeking manuscripts for the upcoming Acoustic Space journal to be published for the next Art+Communication Festival. Entitled SPECTROPIA, this year festival edition will take place in Riga, October 16 – 19, 2008.

The print journal, Acoustic Space is a forum for, sound art and creative explorations in the networked electro-acoustic environments. Now in its 7th edition, Acoustic Space – SPECTROPIA issue investigates the rapid transformation of the usage of the radio frequency spectrum that we are witnessing in the 21st century. It doesn’t refer only to a quantitative increase in mobile, satellite and wireless networks, locative and pervasive media, but also to a qualitative shift in the way people communicate and the way spectrum is used in arts, education, science and commerce. The recent scientific research and artistic explorations of electromagnetic (EM) spectrum will be published in this issue, in order to introduce which chances and risks this tranformation process bears for artists and the populations at large.

For the first time, Acoustic Space journal will come out as ‘peer review’ (refereeing) publication. It will be published by the MPLab (Art Research Lab) of Liepaja University in collaboration with the RIXC, The Center for New Media Culture in Riga, Latvia.

Therefore, the publication will contain 2 main sections:

Section 1 – RESEARCH texts (‘academic style’ writings with references, etc.)
Section 2 – ARTISTIC abstracts: ideas, concepts, pictures (this part will include mainly artists’ proposals for upcoming Spectropia festival exhibition – open-call is announced, deadline: April 21, 2008)


Deadline for submissions: May 19, 2008 – for completed research texts.
(For abstracts – April 21, 2007)

We encourage you to submit abstracts first. Proposals and inquiries regarding submissions should be made to Rasa Smite: rasa [at]

The RESEARCH texts should consist of 12000 – 15000 characters (i.e. 8 pages A4, 12 pt) + references.
(the ARTISTIC abstracts/texts – 2000-4000 characters)

Language: English (all texts will be also translated in to Latvian).


The publication will cover wide range of topics under 4 main sections:

ELECTROMAGNETIC COSMOLOGY, SPECTRAL ECOLOGY AND EMF (ELECTRO-MAGNETIC FIELDS) RESEARCH: Modern cosmology constitutes the world we live in and our understanding about it by reducing ” the physical reality – galaxies, starts, planets, atoms – to electrical or electromagnetic configurations” – as stated by Bureau d’etudes (in their “Industrial dogma”). Could it be that “understanding the electromagnetic field is the only way to understand ourselves and our surroundings”? In such context the issue of “spectral ecology” will be investigated in the broadest sense possible. This section provides a critique of the industrial dogma and propaganda of electromagnetism, health and ‘green’ issues stemming from electrosmog and meriting more research, as well as sustainability and energy usage and other aspects in relation to communication and information technologies.

CULTURAL INTELLIGENCE: FROM IDEOLOGY AND CULTURE OF SPYING (AND SECURITY) TO CONVERSION OF MILITARY TECHNOLOGIES: This topic studies secret past of communication technologies of military origin. Espionage phenomenon is explored, tracing back to its origins in military history of ancient culture. This part also brings up an issue of “cultural intelligence” – contemporary conversion and culturalisation process of military technologies by exploring how former military facilities have been conversed to become important social and cultural centers and objects.

FREE SPECTRUM: WAVES AND ELECTROMAGNETIC POLITICS: This field looks at electromagnetic spectrum as a socio-political space, investigating political practices in spectrum and bringing up debate on “free waves” and “open spectrum”. The spectrum is regulated and divided: for commercial use, military, radio amateurs, etc., yet wireless community networks continue to explore the exempt part of the spectrum, making small parts of the spectrum available for all.

TECHNOLOGY MYTH, ARTISTIC INTERPRETATIONS AND CONTEMPORARY GHOST STORIES: Electromagnetic fields have become the ghosts of today – invisible and surrounding us, opening up the boundaries of our imagination and bringing technology myths to life. This topic explores the place of those myths and stories in the life of modern society.

Scientific editorial board:

Armin Medosch – PhD., Goldsmiths, University of London, UK.
Rasa Smite – PhD., Riga Stradina University; researcher at MPLab of Liepaja University; director of the RIXC, The Center for New Media Culture, Riga, Latvia.
Inke Arns – Dr. phil., artistic director of the Hartware MedienKunstVerein (HMKV), Dortmund, Germany.
Douglas Kahn – Prof. and Head of Technocultural Studies at University of California at Davis, USA.
Andrey Smirnov – Head of the Theremin Center for Electroacoustic Music at Moscow State Conservatory, Russia.
Florian Dombois – Prof. and Head of the Institute for Transdisciplinarity (Y) at Berne University of the Arts, Switzerland.
Atau Tanaka – Prof., Culture Lab of Newcastle University, UK.

Apr 4, 2008
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