Article categories: Guest EditorialsIssue 63
July 31st, 2009

Broadcasted acts of terror, handheld devices recording atrocities. Democracy bloggers disappearing, totalitarian regimes active. Home theatre systems, labour rights eroded. A decade of conservative government, bad brains for P.M. Celebrity babies birth, children dying. Art in Australia, responding to fear and entertainment…

Graffiti Released Installation by Emile Zile

Graffiti Released Installation by Emile Zile

In the year 2006 some of the most vital, illuminating and socially engaged Australian media art is emerging from the streets, non-commercial servers and bedroom studios of this wide, brown land. Within this publication of ANAT’s Filter Magazine Lo-fi vs Hi-tech, is the filtered residue from four writers on the topic of lo-fi/hi-tech and interventionist Media Art, profiling artistic initiatives that utilise latest hand held mobile technology and internet as un-censored information portal, to outmoded, retro-engineered or public projection technologies that provide comment on Australian culture and society.

Unable to respond to these projects, government funding bodies generally remain on the outer – funding is neither sought out or given for a large range of interventions that use underground or illegal methods to reach a public audience. Whether out of economic necessity, political conviction or as a means to sabotage the techno-fetishism that large-scale Media Art can be beholden to, the artists filtered into these pages prioritise hybrid processes, a playful criticality and a ‘Do It Ourselves’ ethos.

Kirsten Bradley covers outdoor renewable energy audio-visual systems including the mobile video projection units that Stealthvideo unleashed on the streets of Sydney as the year 2000 Olympic Games loomed large. Meg Mundell interviews the filmmaking duo behind the Seditious Intent film festival, which uses the net as a distribution point for autonomous real-world film screenings. Jean Poole gives examples of Australian art practice that voices environmental concerns (while putting its money where its mouth is), and art that questions social and cultural sentiment in Australia. Finally, Megan Patty goes browsing in the avant-pop dissection of shopping and architecture performed by spat+loogie for the multi-artform Next Wave Festival 2006.

As always,
Just Do It™

Emile Zile
Emile Zile is a Melbourne-based media artist.

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‘Graffiti Released’ from Emile Zile on Vimeo.

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One Response to “Lo-fi vs Hi-tech – mash up culture: do it ourselves”

  1. admin says:

    For a review of Zile’s work by Megan Patty visit