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1996 National Summer School

January 1996

In January 1996 the seventh National Summer School in Computer Generated Art and Interactive Multimedia for Artists was held at the Institute of the Arts Lab at the Australian National University in association with the Australian Centre for the Arts and Technology (ACAT).

The School is unique in that it provides the only intensive training program in Australia devised specifically for artists who do not necessarily have previous computer experience.

The tutors for the school this year were Linda Dement and John Tonkin, two of Australia's leading new media artists. Marciano Telese, from the Australian Centre for the Arts and Technology (ACAT) also conducted sound workshops during the School. The school was held in a Macintosh lab at the Canberra Institute for the Arts, and students were taught programs such as Macromedia Director, Adobe Premier, Photoshop, Infini-D and Pagemill.

This year 14 artists were selected to participate in the school. They were:

  • Elizabeth Abbott, Mt Gambier, SA
  • Alastair Page, Hobart, Tas
  • Phillippa Harvey, Sydney, NSW
  • Louise Paramor, Melbourne, Vic
  • Eliza Hutchinson, Melbourne, Vic
  • Shiralee Saul, Melbourne,
  • Jeremy James, Canberra, ACT
  • William Seeto, Brisbane,
  • Russell Milledge, Cairns, Qld
  • Laurens Tan, Woollongong, NSW
  • Ann Morrison, Sydney,
  • Mark Themann, Melbourne, Vic
  • Tony Newport, Adelaide, SA
  • Trinh Vu, Adelaide, SA

A forum and open day was also held on Tuesday 23 January at the Canberra Institute for the Arts to coincide with the National Summer School. The forum emphasised the major contribution artists working with technology have made to the cutting edge of art practice and to the development of the fledgling multimedia industry. The intention of the forum was to generate dialogue between industry and artists, and provide the Summer School participants with an insight into the variety of ways that artists are participating in the production of multimedia content: from exhibition based work, to working in the commercial multimedia sector.

Speakers at the forum were:

  • Linda Dement
  • John Tonkin
  • John Colette
  • Shu Lea Cheang
  • Lyn Tune

As an adjunct to the forum, and in order that those attending the forum could view the results of the training being undertaken at the school, the summer school participants had prepared, with the assistance of the tutors, a demonstration of a range of the work they produced during the summer school. Despite the fact that they still had not completed the school, the Macromedia director demo had a fantastic array of the work in process in quick time movies, sound and still images.

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