CFP: Experimental Arts and Mainframe Computing in 1960s and 70s (7/1/05; collection)

full name / name of organization: 
Douglas Kahn
contact email: 

Mainframe Experimentalism: early digital computing and the experimental
arts, edited by Douglas Kahn and Hannah Higgins.

We invite proposals for an interdisciplinary collection on the encounter of
artists, musicians, poets and writers, and filmmakers working within
avant-garde, experimental and artistically innovative traditions with
mainframe computers and institutionally-bound digital technologies during
the 1960s and 1970s.

We are interested in three classes of materials: (1) substantive accounts of
artistic engagements, critical motivations and contexts, institutional and
collaborative settings within the social, political and cultural
transformations of the period; (2) discussions of representations of
computing during the period by individuals who would be of interest to
artists, and (3) original documents, including unrealized plans.

Topics might include the digital work of John Whitney, Jackson MacLow, Stan
Vanderbeek, John Cage and Jerry Hiller¹s HPSCHD, OULIPO, among many others.

The editors have already assembled papers and commitments by Benjamin
Buchloh (Columbia University) on Alison Knowles¹ House of Dust poem, Hannah
Higgins (University of Illinois-Chicago) on the intermedia aspects of the
House of Dust, Douglas Kahn (University of California-Davis) on James Tenney
at Bell Labs, Christoph Cox (Hampshire University) on Alvin Lucier¹s North
American Time Capsule, Owen Smith (University of Maine) on Dick Higgins¹
Computers for the Arts, and Edward Shanken (Savannah College of Art and

Please send 600 word proposals for essays of approximately 50,000 characters
(including spaces) and/or publication of documents by July 1, 2005, to
Hannah Higgins <> or Douglas Kahn <>

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Received on Fri Apr 29 2005 - 14:03:30 EDT