The Central City {Net Art } edition (2001)


An interactive net artwork by Stanza. Versions exist that can be exhibited as an installation for larger spaces and galleries. Over seventy exhibitions and screenings of this project worldwide. International Awards for this project VIDA 6.0. 2004. Links first prize Porto 2001, Videobrasil Sao Paulo 2001 first prize, Cynet art 2000 first prize.

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This project has also been exhibited at.

museo tamayo arte contemporáneo 2002 + fluxusonline 2002 + cosign germany 2002 + fcmm montreal 2002 + physical vs. logical space , austrailia + cinemania(c) croatia 2002 + arte digital cuba 2002 + isea japan 2002 + Garage Festival Germany 2002 + Senef korea 2002 + nimes 2002 + emaf 2002 + siggraph usa 2002 + soundtoys 2002 + cybersonica 2002 + Fused 2002 + Sao Paulo Bienale 2002 + Zeppelin Barcelona 2002 + in 4L Istanbul 2002 + Immedia 2002 usa + Net-working 2001 + Soeul Net art 2001 + Generative Art 4th GA2001 + A Fair Place Turkey.2001 + McLean Project Casting a Net USA 2001 + Art Image Graz 2001 + Video Lisboa Lisbon 2001 + Impakt Utrecht 2001 + Medi@terra Greece 2001 + Cynet 2001 Dresden + E.I.I.Festival edinburgh 2001 + Garage Festival Germany 2001 + Urban Myths.Israel 2001 Independent Newspaper best site of the week 2001 + DLUX 2001 Austrailia + Moscow International Festival 2001 + Sonar 2001 + net-z-lab 2001 + Vdor21/Break21 2001 + Thaw 2001 + arco 2001 + Transmediale 2001 + Architettura in Video 2000 + Netart 2000 + Independent Newspaper best site of the week 2000 + Macromedia's UCON 1999 + BIMA shortlist UK 1999 + emaf 1999 + Seafair 1998 +



The idea is to go deeper into analogies for the organic identity of the city. The micro city becomes an organic networks of grids and diagrams.The form and content of this work is a visual world of the city and its structure. Networks of information technology are contrasted with organic networks and city networks. The project fuses the sounds of specific places.The sounds of language impose a rhythm that the visual narrative can interact with. ‘The central city ‘, is an audio visual, interactive, internet art, experience. The central city consists of text pieces, embedded sounds, all made for the internet. The city becomes an organic network of grids and diagrams, juxtaposing urban sights and sounds.

I wanted to develop analogies for the organic identity of the city as an urban community and make links with electronic networks and virtual communities. This organic interplay is contrasted with man made structures, as well as patterns and forms of urban design. The online spaces are for dreaming, thinking, meditating and transience. The form and content of this work is a visual world of the city and its structure. A visual labyrinth, a maze of circumstance. The city itself is always changing; it is always in flux. Each aspect of city life seems to demonstrate specific characteristics, which can be developed into individual parts of the labyrinth, making up the images that will be used. A city experience consists of small unit blocks and cells which inter-relate and lock together to form the composite city identity. The city has moved from metropolis to megalopolis to the ecumenopolis. The city is everywhere, with lifeless design spreading upwards and forming a conundrum of physical objects in space. A city form is a conundrum of physical objects in space. Cities become "insect colonies", spreading upwards with giant towers looming over vacant lots, and empty spaces.


My artistic intervention tries to look at fragments of our experience of cities, that make up the whole city. The central city, is a place which appears out of control, but which we try to control through design. The city as grids, and repetition, can appear sublime or it can confuse and appear prison like. Giant cities paint a gloomy picture, of mass urban sprawl; the megalopolis is spreading upwards and everywhere to house a population of which 70 - 80% now lives in cites worldwide.

These online works represent spaces, they are idealised spaces. I don’t see ‘the central city’, as a simulation. In fact, I am not aiming or particularly interested in simulation. I view the final evolution of the project as a experience, an online internet experience, which can be viewed inside the white cube of the box which is a computer. The framework, the grid, that contains this work is the computer and the internet. Images of maps redrawing and reprocessing themselves. This allows the city a perpetual evolution, no single similar path need be followed.


I am interested in the sounds of specific places, and how the sounds reflect this identity and re-impose characteristics back onto the location or environment. Cities all have specific identities, and found sound can give us clues to the people that inhabit these spaces, as well as provoking us and stimulating our senses in a musical way. The sounds of language impose a rhythm that the visual narrative can interact with. The intention within newer sections of the central city, is to create an audio visual experience that evokes place, both as literal description but also developed musical composition. These are the ideas that are informing my new ‘soundmaps’ series , and ‘soundcity’. The city codes itself up into a growing patterns, based on algorithmic patterns. The digital city experience. This is a playfulness not far or dissociated from the playfulness of the situationist critique. And like the situationists, they also wanted to build cities.

My initial response in the central city project for example was to deconstruct a language of the urban and city environment, and then to build it back up as an art image to try to constitute both a new form and new meaning. By placing oneself in the middle of this particular structure, the meaning or the aesthetic experience is only encountered when you decide to move from any one place to the next. I use these small fragments as rhythms, to interact with the next part, and evolve into something new. These parts are cells, or parts of a whole that generate itself. The nature of the sounds and noise of cities varies in tone and language. A background rhythm can come into the foreground. It mixes itself, and evolves. The city is its own music, constantly evolving, a beautiful composition of squeaks, clanks, and pulses. We are familiar but distracted as it bombards our conscious slipstream. Yet the sounds evolve, generate, move, die, fade and shift. The sounds of the city are out there all the time, there is no silence, the code does not stop. The children, the trains, the drills, the animals, the micro sounds, the sounds of our bodies, the sounds of the street, the insides of our souls. Familiar forms, identities and sounds are common to all cities, and yet each have special forms that separate and identity particular places and spaces.

All the sounds are recorded from mini -disc and originally sourced they are then fed into the central city. The sounds files work in differing way, some are looped, some are mixed, and some are generative. There is even a jukebox section, where sounds stream down off the juke box from the server and you can re-enact you own karaoke at home, by reciting the words over the top of the industrial city soundtrack.

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Artist Statement

THE CENTRAL CITY.... bySTANZA.. (Version 2001)

NEW version 3.... includes generative audio and image environments built into three d spaces and user controlled three d spaces. NEW section include. Transortron, maprouter, evolver . Six new section thirty new movies. Each have multi soundtracks and multiple choices of picture, three d environments and generative sounds.

This is the work of Stanza, an interactive art and text piece with embedded sounds, made for the internet.

There are now over 30 areas of the Central City, and each area has lots of things within each section so chances are you won't find everything. (IN TOTAL OVER 200 MOVIES some movies can only be found by clicking through areas) These areas are:- universa constructor videotron megalopotron univercity smallworlds textourama elevator maputor proser city central citoxity fostexity textus sounder randomizer cuboid matrixity advercity fibrinet.

The Central City area an organic networks of grids diagrams relationships. The juxtaposition of urban sounds and sights. Towers, maps, the sounds of the city, an audio visual city experience. Images from computer based drawings and sounds of London. Themes or motifs that occur within the context of this work include: Networks of information technology contrasted with organic networks and city networks as grids.

This "city" is a visual collage reflecting on the themes within our urban consciousness. Forms are related to cellular structures of nature. This is contrasted with man made structures, as well as patterns and forms of urban design. The project is about the relationship to the audio visual world of the city and its structure.The project is a reservoir of collage, text, computer graphics, stills, video and sampled sounds and will form a composite, a conundrum, a view of our city experience at the end of the twentieth century. The city itself is always changing it is always in flux. The space is for dreaming, thinking meditating and transience.

In some ares city cells mutate and grow move around the screen and birth new spaces. The music SOUNDER features a streaming audio cd player which plays 30 mins of industrial ambient music, streaming into your home. A VIDEO AREA called videotron plays video artitextures built into a video wall. Motifs of urban design deconstructed and repeated in a grid. A series of videos shot in london and continually edited and reprocessed to form isolated fragments of our city experience. From the video "Artitextures."

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