Besides the Screen

2019 Conference

Graphic Intelligences & Algorithmic Fictions
A conference about all things GPU
Vitória and São Paulo, Brazil, 03-08 June 2019

Call for papers, artworks and other contributions
Submission deadline: 02 March 2019

The passage from cinema to post-cinema is often heralded as a cleavage in image practices. Photography loses its ground to rendering, editing to compositing, and projection to streaming. New storytelling assemblages and their respective affects signalize the dissolution of the medium’s operational principles and their reconstitution in new technical underpinnings. This cinema of graphic processing, associated to interface design and videogames, allows for an unexpected epistemic stability. Ever since the – effective, if not symbolic – abandonment of celluloid film, never did we have a material component as expressive of the logic of cinematographic representation as in the figure of the graphics cards. Neither, paradoxically, so atypical.

Graphic Processing Units have become the unlikely bedrock of a wide range of prominent industries to emerge in the last decades. Their high parallel processing power has invited uses beyond the most obvious applications in fields such as computer vision and virtual reality. These computer architectures, historically developed to simulate appearances, are currently employed in the production of statistical truths. Untethered from screens, GPUs have been used in enterprises as diverse as machine learning and cryptocurrency mining. In this context, to the same extent they embody a new cinematographicrationale, graphic cards stand as an important territory of dispute and convergence between media industries and other contemporary sociotechnical systems.

The ninth edition of the Besides the Screen conference takes the economic and cultural centrality of video cards as the point of departure to explore the reconfiguration of audiovisual systems and the emergence of new media practices and politics. We invite abstracts for papers, workshops, single/multi-channel artworks, audiovisual performances, installations pieces, and/or panels that explore all things GPU, covering topics such as:- Procedural cinema, virtual/augmented/mixed reality, and videogames;
– Logic and applications of computer vision and cognition;
– Special effects, shaders, and new affective assemblages;
– Executable, performative, operational, and real-time images;
– Desktop documentaries, let’s play videos, and other performative appropriations of GUI;
– Probabilistic spaces, frame prediction, and the temporalities of rendering;
– Deep dreaming, deepfakes, and other generative forms based on neural networks;
– Political bias of artificial intelligence and machine learning;
– Cryptocurrency mining and / as infrastructural detours of GPUs. 

Submissions of individual papers, panels and lectures should include an abstract of about 250 words and a short biographical note (150 words). Artwork, demo and installation proposals should include a short description/ synopsis (250 words), links to available documentation (videos / pictures / drafts), a complete list of technical requirements, and short biographical note (150 words).

Proposals must be submitted by 02 March 2019 to the address besidesthescreen@gmail.com with the subject heading 2019 CONFERENCE PROPOSAL. 

We strongly encourage submissions from early career researchers and research-practitioners.

Participants will not be charged a registration fee.

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Besides the Screen is an international research network on the subject of experimental audiovisual media. It aims to reconfigure the field of screen studies by refocusing it on the seemingly secondary objects, processes, and practices that exist within cinema. Besides the Screen also means to promote an open and horizontal academic environment, favouring practice-based approaches to research and artist collaborations. Info from previous conferences can be found at besidesthescreen.com.