The Mobile Aesthetic: Exploiting the possibilities for Creative Practice
Mobile phones are intimate personal devices that are ideal for capturing ephemeral sights, sounds and experiences of the everyday. Their use has become second nature and they are an integral part of a postmodern habitus. We use them to communicate with others, for entertainment, to find our way through city streets, to meet people and to capture and share moments of personal significance.
Camera-phones enable visual artists and filmmakers to extend their creative practice whilst challenging perceptions and conventions surrounding the production and screening of digital video projects. Images and video captured on the mobile phone are generally not afforded the same status or prestige so often attributed to visual mediums such as photography and cinema, but this may also be viewed as an advantage, as it frees both the artist and the viewer from the intellectual baggage associated with more traditional visual media forms.
In this paper, with particular reference to art works produced by the authors, we examine the mobile aesthetic; looking at how camera-phones may be adopted as tools for the creation of video works that exploit the unique image quality of the camera-phone. The portability and technical capabilities of mobile technologies significantly alters relationships with media and creative practice, presenting new opportunities and strategies for artists to interrogate and interpret the ephemera of everyday experiences.
Dean is a Visual Artist and Lecturer in Digital Media at Swinburne University, Melbourne. He has been active in mobile art movement since 2004 and has exhibited work in national and international forums. The focus of his research is mobile media, emerging digital technologies and memory studies.
The 2 works below are both example of single channel mobile phone video installations.
Marsha’s research trajectory started in humanities with a focus on ethnography, ethnomethodology, language and performance studies. She has applied and extended her background in ethnography and post-structural critical discourse analysis to the emerging field of digital media.
Her creative practice includes photography, video art and poetry. Since 2007, she has explored the connections between technology, memory, place and displacement in her practice. She has exhibited her video art and images nationally and internationally. Her poetry has been published in Indian and American literary journals. Her current research projects investigate mobile social media, shifts in Vietnam and cultural memory studies.