[-empyre-] BOOKSHELF: Renate Ferro

Renate Terese Ferro rferro at cornell.edu
Thu Jun 9 02:34:35 AEST 2016

Bookshelf:  Renate Ferro

Summer for me in upstate New York is all about catching up with everything two semesters of teaching has side-tracked me from.  While Tim and I try to spend some down time on Lake Cayuga, in my studio I am in the midst of two new studio projects.  Gathering together a grouping of books that I have intended to read cover to cover has been a cathartic practice to begin my summer. I hope that many of our -empyre- subscribers will join in and share their own personal favorites. 

Here’s my list: 
Social Works by Shannon Jackson (Routledge, 2011)
Tactical Media by Rita Raley (University of Minnesota Press, 2009)
Feminist Consequences by Elisabeth Bronfen and Misha Kavka (Columbia University Press, 2002)
Performing Mixed Realty by Steve Benford and Gabriella Giannachi (MIT Press, 2011)
Astro Noise: A Survival Guide for Living Under Total Surveillance by Laura Poitras (Whitney Museum and Yale University Press, 2016)
Listening by Jean-Luc Nancy (Fordham University, 2007)
Digital Baroque by Timothy Murray (University of Minnesota, 2008)
The Botany of Desire by Michael Pollan (Random House, 2002)
Rainbow’s End by Vernor Vinge (Tom Doherty Associates, 2006)

Over the last year I have crossed personal (real and virtual) paths with Shannon Jackson and Micha Kavka inspiring their two titles to be included on my list.  Rita Raley’s Tactical Media I have read parts of but want the chance to read in its entirety.  It seems to be a favorite read by so many of my students and I just wanted to give it a bit more time.

My recent panel at the College Art Association on augmented reality and a studio project, Eye Spy a Storm, inspired me to include Benford and Giannachi’s text as well as the popular novel Rainbow’s End.

I lived through Tim Murray’s Digital Baroque while it was being written so while I have read it in bits and pieces while it was being written I thought it might be time to read it from cover to cover before his
new one comes out. 

Listening by Jean-Luc Nancy is another title that many colleagues from Cornell reference so I thought I would add that one to the list.

Perhaps the best exhibition I have seen in New York City thus far in 2016 is Laura Poitras’ Astro Noise at the Whitney Museum.  There is an interesting round table discussion online with Laura and the contributors here:  http://whitney.org/Exhibitions/LauraPoitras   but I am really looking forward to reading the catalog.

And lastly, The Botany of Desire will be a great companion to me this summer as I did in my vegetable garden.

There are a few other titles that are on my purchase list: 
Mass Effect:  Art and the Internet in the Twenty-First Century by Lauren Cornell and Ed Halter
Domain Errors: Cyber-feminist Practices by Fernandez, Wilding and Wright

And of course last but not least Ashley Ferro-Murray’s recent dissertation from Berkley, Choreography in the Digital Era:Dancing the Cultural Differences of Technology.
That one is getting extra special attention. 

Happy reading to all. 
Renate Ferro

Short bio: 
I am a conceptual new media artist who toggles between the creative skins of old and new technologies. My artistic practice embraces critical interactivity incorporating social and theoretical paradigms
of the psychological and sociological condition with networks of technology. By aligning artistic, creative practice with critical approaches to cyber-configurations, I actualize emerging creative skins whose resulting configurations include installation, interactive net-based projects, drawing, text, and performance.

I have taught in the art department at Cornell University since 2004.  My strong interest in collaborative research inspired me to found the Tinker Factory Lab, a creative research lab to enable
new collaborative initiatives. 

I am the managing moderator for –empyre- soft-skinned list-serv and have served on their moderating board since 2007.

Renate Ferro
Visiting Associate Professor
College of Architecture, Art and Planning
Department of Art
Tjaden Hall 306

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