Media & Performance explores emerging forms of experimental performance and audio-visual art that engage live media via the Internet. The objective of the course is to investigate critical concepts and fundamental artistic concerns inherent in live networked performance through readings, lectures, the critique of related artworks, and the application of these concepts to the creation of a new, collaborative work. Students are immersed in the study and application of networked art, exploring such topics as “the virtual body,” “distributed presence,” and the “third space” in order to understand and implement contemporary strategies in the creation of art for the Internet. Students work across interdisciplinary and geographical boundaries to conceptualize, design, produce, and perform a final performance project for the Internet.

The focus of the course this semester will be on “networked wearables, ” combining distributed computing and electronic textiles with dance movement, interactive media, live imaging, and real-time digital music. The course will examine the many categories of wearable technology, as well as closely related fields, such as wearable computing, electronic sensors, techno fashion, electronic textiles, intelligent jewellery and smart clothes. Students will research, experiment with and design wearable technology in conjunction with networked audio-visual manipulation and movement, from conceptual work to pragmatic solutions and applications.


Open Source Studio (OSS) courses are taught both locally and online, exploring forms of remote learning through weekly class sessions via Web-conferencing. Students work in a WordPress “multi-site” system designed specifically for the course, a virtual studio environment that integrates a broad range of Web tools for artistic production, collaborative research, and online writing. Each student has their own OSS site such that all video and media projects, work documentation, and research assignments are handed in via OSS.


This semester students in Media & Performance will create a collaborative class project directed by Randall Packer and Galina Mihaleva, with guest artist Angeline Young from Arizona State University. The project links Singapore and the US in a live networked performance broadcast to a global audience via the internet. The project is called Touch, a new work exploring virtual contact via the network and its implications despite geographical distance and separation: through movement, costume, interactive wearables and sensors, digital sound, image and light. Each student will participate in the project, which will be performed live at the end of the semester on Thursday, April 22nd. See Final Project for more information.


Open Source Studio: Media & Performance is intended to develop critical and artistic skills for the interpretation and creation of performance art that incorporates electronic media and non-traditional performance techniques. Through readings, lectures, performance projects, and the critique of related work, students are exposed to the aesthetic, historical, social, cultural, and technological issues inherent in the medium of performance art. Students will learn to conduct research through structured presentations; critically investigate the choice of media and design to arrive at the best solution relating to content and context; apply a firm understanding of the problems and needs of network practices and wearable technology design challenges and the manners in which they may be addressed; be fluent in current issues and techniques surrounding the Internet as an artistic medium and the design of wearable media as it applies to live performance.


One session per week will include lectures, micro-project assignments, hands-on sessions, guest artist workshops, group critiques, rehearsal, and individual mentoring. Students are expected to attend all weekly sessions. In order to be able to create wearable technology projects, it is essential to learn the basics of electronics and Arduino micro-controller coding. To ensure this, there will be a number of in-class technical tutorials. Students are required to revisit these tutorials outside of class time, and to practice and master the tasks set out in these basic tutorials. This is a tightly packed course, so any absences could potentially result in a large setback. Any potential absences should be communicated to the course coordinator via e-mail prior to the missed class. Additionally, students may seek assistance from the course coordinator during office hours or by making appointments.

Learning Outcome

On successful completion of the course students will have a new understanding of the medium of performance and its incorporation of electronic media. Students will gain an in-depth understanding of the conceptual, aesthetic and technological skills required to create performance art that draws from digital media, communications, wearables, fashion, interactivity, video, sound, etc., as well as a deep understanding of both historical precedents and contemporary work.


Student Assessment

  • Class Participation and Attendance – 5%
  • WordPress & Social Media – 5%
  • Micro-projects – 15%
  • In-class workshops – 15%
  • Research Assignments – 15%
  • Project Hyperessay – 20%
  • Final Project – 25%

Grades for the course are based on the following general criteria:

  • The commitment to engage the process of online production, research, and dialogue
  • Developing and maintaining a WordPress site, gaining proficiency with assigned techniques and methodologies
  • Incorporate concepts and techniques drawn from the study of media & performance into student work
  • Come to class on time and participate in discussion
  • Complete work on time
  • Points are given for each assignment, such that students are responsible for the accumulation of the final score/grade (much like a game!)
  • Grades are then allocated according to the standard NTU system of percentages
  • The degree to which the idea of individual and class projects engage the audience and the coherence of the art / design concept.
  • The degree to which a variety of art / design concepts were explored to arrive at the result
  • The originality, creativity and innovation in projects and research assignments.
  • The mastery of the technical challenges of the project
  • The expressiveness of the project
  • The professionalism of the students ability to collaborate and contribute work to the final project

Points will be assigned for all assignments & attendance (this is approximate and subject to change during the semester):

  • Micro-projects: each 5 points
  • Workshop projects: each 10 points
  • Project hyperessays: each 10 points
  • Research critiques: each 10 points
  • Final project contribution: 100 points
  • Class attendance: 3 points per class (must also be on time)

Attendance & Class participation:

Students participate through discussion and presentation during weekly 3-hour class sessions held onsite for weeks 1, 2, 3, 4, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13 and online via Adobe Connect for the remaining weeks 5, 6, 7. Students are required to attend class and/or login without being late, or else a point will be deducted. Students should plan to login in for online classes no later than 9:00AM so the class can begin promptly at 9:40 AM. Students are also required to participate in class discussion and to present their work during critique. Students with more than 3 unexcused absences will automatically fail the course, which is a University policy.