The poetics of augmented space – Lev Manovich

The poetics of augmented space – Lev Manovich

Visual Communication 5 (2) Article

Copyright © 2006 SAGE Publications (London, Thousand Oaks, CA and New Delhi: /10.1177/1470357206065527
Vol 5(2): 219–240 [1470-3572(200606)5:2; 219–240]

Throughout the article, augmentation is reconceptualized
as an idea and cultural and aesthetic practice rather than as
technology.  마노비치의 기본적 입장.(220)

Does the form become irrelevant, being reduced to functional and ultimately invisible
support for information flows? Or do we end up with a new experience in which the spatial and information layers are equally important? In this case, do these layers add up to a single phenomenological gestalt or are they processed as separate layers?

I will give them a new name – an augmented space. The term will be explained in more detail later, but here is the brief definition: augmented space is the physical space overlaid with dynamically changing information. (220)

Here are a few more examples of the technological applications that dynamically deliver dynamic data to, or extract data from, physical space – and which already are widely
employed at the time of this writing:2 (221)

작가의 정의는 Overlaying the physical space with the dynamic space이다. 

As a result, the physical space now contains many more dimensions than before, and while from the phenomenological perspective of the human subject, the ‘old’ geometric dimensions may still have the priority, from the perspective of technology and its social, political, and economic uses, they are no longer more important than any other dimension. (223) 종속관계나 우열관계가 아니다. 

I derived the term ‘augmented space’ from the already established term ‘augmented reality’ (AR).10 Coined around 1990, the concept of ‘augmented reality’ is normally opposed to ‘virtual reality’ (VR).11 In the case of VR, the user works on a virtual simulation; in the case of AR, the user works on actual things in actual space…  In contrast, a typical AR system adds information that is directly related to the user’s immediate physical space.(224-25)

Having analyzed at some length the concept of augmented space, we are now ready to move to the key questions of this article. What is the phenomenological experience of being in a new augmented space? What can be the new cultural applications of new computer- and network-enabled augmented spaces? What are the possible poetics and aesthetics of an augmented space? 저자의 질문들. 


One trajectory that can be traced in 20th-century art runs from the dominance of a two-dimensional object placed on a wall, towards the use of the whole 3-D space of a gallery. (Like all other cultural trajectories in the 20th century, this one is not a linear envelopment; rather, it consists of steps forward and steps back that occur in rhythm with the general cultural and political rhythm of the century: the highest peak of creativity took place in the 1910s–1920s, followed by a second peak in the 1960s.) Already in the 1910s, Tatlin’s reliefs broke the two-dimensional picture plane and exploded a painting into the third dimension. In the 1920s, Lissitzky, Rodchenko, and other pioneering exhibition designers moved further away from an individual painting or sculpture towards using all surfaces of an exhibition space – yet their exhibitions activate only the walls rather than the whole space. 아직은 whole space가 아니라 walls에 그쳐 있다. 
In the mid-1950s, assemblage legitimized the idea of an art object as a three-dimensional construction (The Art of Assemblage, MOMA, 1961). In the 1960s, minimalist sculptors (Carl Andre, Donald Judd, Robert Morris) and other artists (Eva Hesse, the Arte Povera group) finally started to deal with the whole of the 3-D space of a white cube. Beginning in the 1970s, installation (Dan Graham, Bruce Nauman) grew in importance to become, in the 1980s, the most common form of artistic practice of our times – and the only thing that all installations share is that they engage with 3-D space. Finally, the white cube becomes a cube – rather than just a collection of 2-D surfaces. 드디어 whole 3D space를 쓰기 시작함. 

rather than creating an object that a viewer would look at, they placed the viewer inside the object. Now the artists have a new challenge: placing a user inside a space filled with dynamic, contextual data with which the user can interact. 이 부분을 PM하고 연결해 봄. 나랑 유사한 입장(227)



The contrast between the continuity of cellspace in theory and its discontinuity in practice should not be dismissed. Rather, the contrast itself can be the source of interesting aesthetic strategies. (229)

My starting point for the discussion of the poetics of this type of augmented space is the current practice of video installation, which came to dominate the art world in the 1990s. Typically, these installations use video or data projectors. They turn a whole wall or even a whole room into a display or a set of displays, thus previewing and investigating (willingly or not) the soon-to-come future of our apartments and cities when large and thin displays covering most surfaces may become the norm. At the same time, these laboratories of the future are rooted in the past: in the different traditions of ‘image within a space’ of 20th-century culture.
What are these traditions? Among the different oppositions that have structured the culture of the 20th century, and which we have inherited, has been the opposition between the art gallery and the movie theatre. One was high culture; the other was low culture. One was a white cube; the other was a black box. (229)

Given the economy of art production – one-of-a-kind objects created by individual artists – 20th-century artists expended lots of energy experimenting with what could be placed inside the neutral setting of a white cube by breaking away from a flat and rectangular frame and going into the third dimension: covering a whole floor; suspending objects from the ceiling; and so on. (229)

Given this history, the 1990s’ phenomena of omni-present video installations taking over the gallery space goes against the whole paradigm of modern art – and not only because installations bring moving images into the gallery.Most video installations adopt the same physical interface: a dark enclosed or semi-enclosed rectangular space with a video projector at one end and the projected image appearing on the opposite wall. Therefore, from a space of constant innovation in relation to the physical and software interface of an art object, a gallery space has turned into what was, for almost a century, its ideological enemy – a movie theatre that is characterized by the rigidity of its interface. 이 부분이 제일 활용 가능성 높음. 
Since the early days of computer culture in the 1960s, many software designers and software artists – from Ted Nelson and Alan Kay to Perry Hoberman and IOD – have revolted against the hegemony of mainstream computer interfaces, such as the keyboard and mouse, GUI, or commercial web browsers. Similarly, the best of video or, more generally, moving image installation artists go beyond the standard video installation interface – a dark room with an image on one wall. Examples of such artists include Diana Thater, Gary Hill, and Doug Aitken, as well as the very first ‘video artist’ – Nam June Paik. The founding moment of what would come to be called ‘video art’ was Paik’s attack on the physical interface of a commercial moving image – his first show consisted of televisions with magnets attached to them, and TV monitors ripped out of their enclosures. 이 부분에 대해서는 동의하지 않는다. (230)

INFORMATION SURFACE- venturi 이부분 활용 가능.

To discuss the use of electronic images in architecture further, let us turn to Robert Venturi. His projects and theories deserve special consideration here since, for him, an electronic display is not an optional addition but the very center of architecture in the information age. Since the 1960s, Venturi continuously argued that architecture should learn from vernacular and commercial culture (billboards, Las Vegas, strip malls, architecture of the past). Appropriately, his books Complexity and Contradiction in Architecture and Learning from Las Vegas are often referred to as the founding documents
of post-modern aesthetics. Venturi proposed that we should refuse the modernist desire to impose minimalist ornament-free spaces, and instead embrace complexity, contradiction, heterogeneity, and iconography in our built environments (Venturi, 1966). In the 1990s, he articulated the new vision of ‘architecture as communication for the Information Age (rather than as space for the Industrial Age)’ (Venturi et al., 1972). Venturi wants us to think of ‘architecture as an iconographic representation emitting
electronic imagery from its surfaces day and night’. Pointing to some of the already mentioned examples of the aggressive incorporation of electronic displays in contemporary environments, such as Times Square in NYC, and arguing that traditional architecture always included ornament, iconography, and visual narratives (for instance, a medieval cathedral with its narrative window mosaics, narrative sculpture covering the facade, and narrative paintings),Venturi proposed that architecture should return to its traditional definition as iconography, i.e. as information surface.17 Of course, if the messages communicated by traditional architecture were static and reflected
the dominant ideology, today’s electronic dynamic interactive displays make it possible for these messages to change continuously, making the information surface a potential space of contestation and dialog, which functions as the material manifestation of the often invisible public sphere. (232)

Having stepped outside the picture frame into the white cube walls, floor, and the whole space, artists and curators should feel at home taking yet another step: treating this space as layers of data. This does not mean that the physical space becomes irrelevant; on the contrary, as the practice of Cardiff and Libeskind shows, it is through the interaction of the physical space and the data that some of the most amazing art of our time is being
created. (236)



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s