Poster for “CyberPowWow”, design by Laura Coombs
On December 10, 3pm EST at the New Museum, Rhizome will host a CyberPowWow panel discussion featuring artist Skawennati of Aboriginal Territories in Cyberspace (AbTeC), scholar Mikhel Proulx, and Rhizome Preservation Director, Dragan Espenschied. Launched by the Nation to Nation collective—Skawennati, Ryan Rice, and Eric Robertson—in 1997, CyberPowWow was among the first major online art exhibitions.
The panel accompanies a daylong exhibition of CyberPowWow in the Museum’s Sky Room, located on the Seventh Floor. Four computer terminals will be made available for visitors to engage with CyberPowWow in a legacy computer environment throughout the day. Rhizome staff will be on hand to discuss the project.
This presentation of CyberPowWow is co-organized by Mikhel Proulx and Celine Wong Katzman, Rhizome Curator, with Kayla Drzewicki, Rhizome Program Assistant.
Skawennati makes art that addresses history, the future, and change from her perspective as an urban Kanien’kehá:ka (Mohawk) woman and as a cyberpunk avatar. Her early adoption of cyberspace as both a location and a medium for her practice has produced groundbreaking projects such as CyberPowWow and TimeTraveller™. Skawennati is best known for her machinimas—movies made in virtual environments—but she also produces still images, textiles and sculpture. Her works have been presented internationally in exhibitions such as “Uchronia I What if?” (2017), HyperPavilion, Venice Biennale; “Now? Now!” (2015), Biennial of the Americas, Denver, CO; and “Looking Forward (L’Avenir)” (2020), Montreal Biennial. Her work is included in the collections of the National Gallery of Canada and the Musée d’art contemporain, Montreal, Canada, among others. She is the recipient of the 2019 Salt Spring National Art Prize Jurors’ Choice Award, a 2020 Smithsonian Artist Research Fellowship, and a Visiting Artist Fellowship at the Eccles Centre for American Studies at the British Library. She is represented by ELLEPHANT. Born in Kahnawà:ke Mohawk Territory, Skawennati belongs to the Turtle clan. She holds a BFA from Concordia University in Montreal, where she resides.
Mikhel Proulx researches contemporary art and network culture. He holds a PhD in Art History Concordia University in addition to degrees in drawing, media design and art history. He researches queer and feminist studies, participatory art, network culture, and Indigenous and settler-colonial histories of Canada.
Dragan Espenschied is the director of Rhizome’s Digital Preservation program, stewarding ArtBase, a collection of over 2,200 works of digital and net art. With a background in net activism, net art, and electronic music, Espenschied has mostly focused on infrastructure and field-wide action concerning web archiving, emulation, and linked open data, rather than singular artworks.
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