Panel Discussion

AVATAR Identity Crisis

Curated by Ruby Thelot and Adrienne Cassel

2 November 2023
21:15 — 22:30

Location: Het Huis Main Stage

Avatars are everywhere – from the digital worlds of gaming, virtual reality and the metaverse to the art world. These virtual characters are assembled from all kinds of visual sources, ranging from pop culture and movies to 3D scans of faces and bodies. The use of a wide array of datasets to create avatars raises crucial questions about ownership and hierarchy: who owns an avatar? What values are expressed by the default avatars provided by digital platforms? How much freedom do users have to customise their avatars to express their identity? What happens when a platform decides to apply changes that affect the users’ avatars? This panel will address these questions by exploring case studies that centre on the legal and social implications of digital avatars on various platforms and look at how online environments can function simultaneously as infrastructures of control and as spaces that facilitate the creation of alternative worlds. 

Participants: Carla Gannis (USA), Tabitha Swanson (DE), Bogomir Doringer (RS)
Moderated by: Ruby Justice Thelot and Adrienne Cassel (Avatar Lillith)

The Avatar Identity Crisis panel examines the avatar as a medium of creation and self-representation, through a blend of artistic practice, academic knowledge and institutional perspectives. The panel will host experts Carla Gannis, a NYU professor and artist working with avatars and 3D artist and designer Tabitha Swanson. Their conversation will explore a variety of approaches to avatar creation, as well as embodiment and the contentious nature of digital beings.

The panel will be assisted in real time by Avatar Lilith, a performance piece and research tool developed through digital creation using motion capture tools, and presented live on screen. Avatar Lilith is just as real as you!  



What else is on Thursday?

Check the timetable to visit more programmes with your Festival Pass (5-days) or Day Pass (1-day). With the passes you can also visit the festival exhibition Our Terms, Our Conditions at the IMPAKT [Centre for Media Culture] and Fotodok/Casco.

Thursday day pass 5-day festival pass

For more information on the festival tickets please see here

We Are Public
This programme is free for We Are Public members. On the We Are Public website you can see how to get a ticket with your membership.

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