Sosna Nina & Fedorova Kseniya

a media researcher and curator, PhD. She has been an initiator of the “Art. Science. Technology” program at the Ural branch of the NCCA (Ekaterinburg) and has curated a number of research, educational and exhibition projects in the field of media art. She has published widely in Russian and international editions. She has taught classes on media art theory and history in Russia, the USA and Austria. She is currently a PhD candidate in Cultural Studies at the University of California Davis.

Media between media and technology

The book presents various aspects of understanding the phenomenon of media and technologically mediated culture, including aesthetic, media-archeological, socio-political, and anthropological approaches.
The totalizing effects of mass media, contradictory reactions to technological achievements and their supposed freedoms contribute to the ongoing importance of this concept for cultural criticism. Media are often seen as mediators only, but if studied carefully, they conceal deeper issues about the structures of mediality and the connections between the technical and the anthropological, the mechanic and the aesthetic, the ‘immaterial’ and the corporeal. The categorical research of contemporary media theorists goes beyond idiosyncratic descriptions, apocalyptic claims, and techno-visionary prophecies – it is more rigorous and directed towards efficacious knowledge. The questions are raised based on the diverse material – contemporary art (Bill Viola, Anne-Sarah Le Meur, biofeedback art), art history (taken both in a systematic way, e.g. to prove that “there are no visual media” (W.T.Mitchell), and specifically, e.g. the history of photography in J.Ranciere’s argumentation), video games, and “apparata”. Media, mediality, and technicality are presented here as philosophical categories that are crucial in fundamental understanding of contemporary culture. The authors of the book offer detailed and convincing ground for this, in many cases for the first time in Russian context.

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