[-empyre-] Introduction of Jim Barrett

James <Jim> Barrett
I am an Australian born male and have been living in the north of Sweden
since 2000. I have just begun a PhD at Umeå University in modern
languages, English Literature looking at narrative in digital texts (my
masters thesis on Chronotope (Time/Space) in digital texts is here:
I work in HUMlab (http://www.humlab.umu.se/), a multidisciplinary humanist
and IT enviroment that is closer to an art studio than a computer lab
(that's my angle on it anyway). I have a background in journalism,
perfomance and installation art and community activism. These combine now
in my cultural practice that spans a wide range of definitions ( and
defies some altogether). I construct as musician, 3D world builder, poet,
writer, web designer, theorist, photographer, teacher, installation and
sound artist.
Here are some recent projects:

Didgeridoo as Compass:
A multimedia installation performance involving film, flash animation,
audio, music, samples, sculpture, written text, paintings, spoken word,
maps, land and body art. It was originally commissioned for the September
2003 Umeå University HUMlab two day workshop ?Dynamic Maps?
(http://www2.humlab.umu.se/events/dynamicmaps.html) where it was performed
to an international audience of professionals in various fields of digital

The Lotus Pavilion:
This is a 3D interactive digital environment created using Adobe
Atmosphere 1.0. I have been working with this program since it was a beta
version (late 2002). This piece was commission for the Nätverket för
Informationsteknik i Akademisk Språkutbildning (ITAS) and is designed to
be used as a virtual meeting place and environment for both teaching and
discussion. It is possible to show video and run audio files in a
distributed environment using this program. In my building of this piece I
explored ideas of space as being an element of narrative and the use of
architecture to invoke both mood and understanding as our own narrative
scripts can be ?played? using familiar forms and places. The landscape is
based on my native Australia and the building is a cross between the Blue
Mosque/Hagia Sofia in Istanbul and the Parthenon of Rome. There are 17
screens in the space which are all capable of showing video and still
images to the avatars which represent those who have engaged with the

A moblog is a mobile web diary and with this one myself and a team of
?bloggers? from Umeå university attempted to document the 399th Sámi
Winter Market in Jokkmokk using the blog format. My original idea was to
make a film of the market and the Sámi culture of Lapland but such
technology is expensive and requires a large production process. The
moblog is fast, direct, cheap, and involves a sense of interactivity and
space that is difficult to attain with any other medium. This multimedia
blog used film, sound bites, still images, voice and text chat, GPS
technology, live video streams, interviews and tracking technology in its
production. It was visited by around 20 000 people during the Jokkmokk
festival. It was also a test for the technology involved as it reached
temperatures of -30 degrees. I formulated the original proposal, organized
and wrote for the blog. One reader commented that he felt like he was
really there!  This project was feature in The Guardian Unlimited
(online)London, Smart Mobs website and in several Swedish newspapers.

I see empyre as an interesting and stimulating concept and place...I am
very happy to have found it.....Jim %-)
My Blog: http://www.soulsphincter.blogspot.com

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