Distributed creativity

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The term distributed creativity is used to describe networked cultural production that allows for the creative interplay of geographically dispersed participants.


Distributed creativity is not one artist working on one object but rather a group of authors contributing to an artwork. In media art, one can trace a movement from artwork to network. The obsession with objects as described by Walter Benjamin is replaced with an enthusiasm for the process of interaction. Bill Nichols describes the latter in his essay "The Work of Culture in the Age of Cybernetic Systems."

Distributed Creativity has recently been used to describe network performance practices, especially by composers and performers working in the area of network music performance. With the idea of distributing performers across the globe, also come considerations of how people listen when in different spaces, which has been explored under the theme of networked listening. A special issue in the 2009 publication of Contemporary Music Review on network performance investigated the topic of network music. Theorists are considering how distributing performers and audiences in a performance space impacts on the experience of music making on behlaf of the performers but also on the audience. Discussions on how each performance or concert space is built or set up are discussed under the theme of network dramaturgy. There are several centres around the world that have dedicated network performance spaces and teams researching how to make music with people in distributed environments, for instance SoundWIRE Research Group at CCRMA, Stanford University and the Sonic Arts Research Centre in Belfast.

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