Jeffrey Bardzell on machinimatic realism (upcoming seminar)

I am pleased to announce the final HUMlab seminar for the spring semester. Our seminar guest this time is Jeffrey Bardzell from Indiana University, and the seminar is a joint venture with the Department of Informatics and Institute of Design. Highly recommended!

[Tuesday June 8, 1:15 pm CET]
Machinimatic Realism:
Capturing and Presenting the “Real World” of Video Games

Jeffrey Bardzell, Indiana University

ABSTRACT:
“Realism” describes a cultural work, such as a film or novel, that is judged to represent reality accurately. For machinima–videos produced within video games–realism is a difficult concept to wrestle with, for what is the “reality” of a video game? In which world–that of the game or that of real life–is it “realistic”? This tension is the source of considerable creativity. For example, machinimators can seek to represent the inner diegetic world of the game, or they can offer their take on “what it’s really like” as a real-life player of that game. In film studies, generations of theorists have explored cinematic realism, elaborating a technical vocabulary that teases out connections among production techniques, experiential qualities, and even the ethics of cinematic representation. In this talk, I use some of these theories of cinematic realism as a means to explore emergent visual languages of machinima, from production techniques to reality effects.

BIO:
Jeffrey Bardzell is an Assistant Professor of HCI/Design and new media at the School of Informatics in Indiana University – Bloomington. With a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature and Minor in Philosophy, Bardzell brings a humanist perspective to HCI and is known for developing a theory of interaction criticism. His other HCI specialties include aesthetic interaction, user experience design, amateur multimedia design theory and practice, and digital creativity. Currently, he is using theories from film, fashion, science fiction, and philosophical aesthetics to theorize about ‘the user’, especially in the context of user experience design. In more applied work, he is developing user experience evaluation methods.

The seminar will also be broadcast live and archived.

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