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Bookwork
Medium to Object to Concept to Art
Garrett Stewart
University of Chicago Press, 2011

“There they rest, inert, impertinent, in gallery space—those book forms either imitated or mutilated, replicas of reading matter or its vestiges. Strange, after its long and robust career, for the book to take early retirement in a museum, not as rare manuscript but as functionless sculpture. Readymade or constructed, such book shapes are canceled as text when deposited as gallery objects, shut off from their normal reading when not, in some yet more drastic way, dismembered or reassembled.” So begins Bookwork, which follows our passion for books to its logical extreme in artists who employ found or simulated books as a sculptural medium. Investigating the conceptual labor behind this proliferating international art practice, Garrett Stewart looks at hundreds of book-like objects, alone or as part of gallery installations, in this original account of works that force attention upon a book’s material identity and cultural resonance.

Less an inquiry into the artist’s book than an exploration of the book form’s contemporary objecthood, Stewart’s interdisciplinary approach traces the lineage of these aggressive artifacts from the 1919 Unhappy Readymade of Marcel Duchamp down to the current crisis of paper-based media in the digital era. Bookwork surveys and illustrates a stunning variety of appropriated and fabricated books alike, ranging from hacksawed discards to the giant lead folios of Anselm Kiefer. The unreadable books Stewart engages with in this timely study are found, again and again, to generate graphic metaphors for the textual experience they preclude, becoming in this sense legible after all.

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The Double Screen
Medium and Representation in Chinese Painting
Wu Hung
University of Chicago Press, 1997
In the first exploration of Chinese paintings as both material products
and pictorial representations, The Double Screen shows how the
collaboration and tension between material form and image gives life to
a painting. A Chinese painting is often reduced to the image it bears;
its material form is dismissed; its intimate connection with social
activities and cultural conventions neglected.

A screen occupies a space and divides it, supplies an ideal surface for
painting, and has been a favorite pictorial image in Chinese art since
antiquity. Wu Hung undertakes a comprehensive analysis of the screen,
which can be an object, an art medium, a pictorial motif, or all three
at once. With its diverse roles, the screen has provided Chinese
painters with endless opportunities to reinvent their art.

The Double Screen provides a powerful non-Western perspective on
issues from portraiture and pictorial narrative to voyeurism,
masquerade, and political rhetoric. It will be invaluable to anyone
interested in the history of art and Asian studies.

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The Double Screen
Medium and Representation in Chinese Painting
Wu Hung
Reaktion Books, 1997

This book contemplates a large problem: what is a traditional Chinese painting? Wu Hung answers this question through a comprehensive analysis of the screen, a major format and a popular pictorial motif in traditional China. With a broad array of examples ranging from the early centuries C.E. to the 1800s, he explores the screen’s position in art – as an important site for artistic imagination, as an illusionary representation on a flat surface, and as an architectural device defining cultural conventions. A screen occupies a space and divides it, supplies an ideal surface for painting, and has been a favourite pictorial image in Chinese art since antiquity. With its diverse roles, the screen has provided Chinese painters with endless opportunities to reinvent their art.

The author argues that any understanding of Chinese painting must include discussion of its material forms as well as its intimate connection with cultural context and convention. Thus, The Double Screen offers a powerful non-western perspective on diverse artistic and cultural genres, from portraiture and pictorial narrative to voyeurism and masquerade, and will be invaluable to anyone interested in the history of art and Asian studies as well as to students and specialists in the field.

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front cover of Intelligent Control of Medium and High Power Converters
Intelligent Control of Medium and High Power Converters
Mohamed Bendaoud
The Institution of Engineering and Technology, 2023
The growing share of renewable energies, as well as the rising demand for electricity for transport and heating, are increasing the importance of power converters and the requirements for reliability and control. Intelligent control can increase converter efficiency, reducing size and weight. The application of intelligent control techniques to power converters has therefore recently become a focus of research.
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Medium, Messenger, Transmission
An Approach to Media Philosophy
Sybille Krämer
Amsterdam University Press, 2015
This rich study provides a comprehensive introduction to media philosophy while offering a new perspective on the concept and function of transmission media in all systems of exchange. Krämer uses the figure of the messenger as a key metaphor, examining a diverse range of transmission events, including the circulation of money, translation of languages, angelic visitations, spread of infectious diseases, and processes of transference and counter-transference that occur during psychoanalysis.
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The Medium of the Video Game
Edited by Mark J. P. Wolf
University of Texas Press, 2002

Over a mere three decades, the video game became the entertainment medium of choice for millions of people, who now spend more time in the interactive virtual world of games than they do in watching movies or even television. The release of new games or game-playing equipment, such as the PlayStation 2, generates great excitement and even buying frenzies. Yet, until now, this giant on the popular culture landscape has received little in-depth study or analysis.

In this book, Mark J. P. Wolf and four other scholars conduct the first thorough investigation of the video game as an artistic medium. The book begins with an attempt to define what is meant by the term "video game" and the variety of modes of production within the medium. It moves on to a brief history of the video game, then applies the tools of film studies to look at the medium in terms of the formal aspects of space, time, narrative, and genre. The book also considers the video game as a cultural entity, object of museum curation, and repository of psychological archetypes. It closes with a list of video game research resources for further study.

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The Queer Games Avant-Garde
How LGBTQ Game Makers Are Reimagining the Medium of Video Games
Bonnie Ruberg
Duke University Press, 2020
In The Queer Games Avant-Garde, Bonnie Ruberg presents twenty interviews with twenty-two queer video game developers whose radical, experimental, vibrant, and deeply queer work is driving a momentous shift in the medium of video games. Speaking with insight and candor about their creative practices as well as their politics and passions, these influential and innovative game makers tell stories about their lives and inspirations, the challenges they face, and the ways they understand their places within the wider terrain of video game culture. Their insights go beyond typical conversations about LGBTQ representation in video games or how to improve “diversity” in digital media. Instead, they explore queer game-making practices, the politics of queer independent video games, how queerness can be expressed as an aesthetic practice, the influence of feminist art on their work, and the future of queer video games and technology. These engaging conversations offer a portrait of an influential community that is subverting and redefining the medium of video games by placing queerness front and center.

Interviewees:
Ryan Rose Aceae, Avery Alder, Jimmy Andrews, Santo Aveiro-Ojeda, Aevee Bee, Tonia B******, Mattie Brice, Nicky Case, Naomi Clark, Mo Cohen, Heather Flowers, Nina Freeman, Jerome Hagen, Kat Jones, Jess Marcotte, Andi McClure, Llaura McGee, Seanna Musgrave, Liz Ryerson, Elizabeth Sampat, Loren Schmidt, Sarah Schoemann, Dietrich Squinkifer, Kara Stone, Emilia Yang, Robert Yang
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front cover of Roast Beef, Medium
Roast Beef, Medium
The Business Adventures of Emma McChesney
Edna Ferber
University of Illinois Press, 1913
 
Edna Ferber, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Show Boat and Giant, achieved her first great success with a series of stories she published in American Magazine between 1911 and 1913. The stories featured Emma McChesney: smart, savvy, stylish, divorced mother, and Midwest traveling sales representative for T. A. Buck's Featherloom skirts and petticoats. With one hand on her sample case and the other fending off advances from salesmen, hotel clerks, and other predators, Emma holds on tightly to her reputation: honest, hardworking, and able to outsell the slickest salesman.
 
Like her compact bag of traveling necessities, Emma has her life boiled down to essentials: her work and her seventeen-year-old son, Jock. Her experience has taught her that it's best to stick to roast beef, medium--avoiding both physical and moral indigestion--rather than experiment with fancy sauces and exotic dishes. Yet she never shies away from a challenge, and her sharp instincts and common sense serve her well in dealing with the likes of Ed Meyer, a smooth-talking, piano-playing salesman; Blanche LeHay, prima donna of the Sam Levin Crackerjack Belles; and T. A. Buck Jr., the wet-behind-the-ears son of the founder of Featherloom.
 
Roast Beef, Medium is the first of three volumes chronicling the travels and trials of Emma McChesney. The illustrations by James Montgomery Flagg, one of the most highly regarded book illustrators of the period, enhance both the humor and the vivid characterization in this wise and high-spirited tale.
 
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Television after TV
Essays on a Medium in Transition
Lynn Spigel and Jan Olsson, eds.
Duke University Press, 2004
In the last ten years, television has reinvented itself in numerous ways. The demise of the U.S. three-network system, the rise of multi-channel cable and global satellite delivery, changes in regulation policies and ownership rules, technological innovations in screen design, and the development of digital systems like TiVo have combined to transform the practice we call watching tv. If tv refers to the technologies, program forms, government policies, and practices of looking associated with the medium in its classic public service and three-network age, it appears that we are now entering a new phase of television. Exploring these changes, the essays in this collection consider the future of television in the United States and Europe and the scholarship and activism focused on it.

With historical, critical, and speculative essays by some of the leading television and media scholars, Television after TV examines both commercial and public service traditions and evaluates their dual (and some say merging) fates in our global, digital culture of convergence. The essays explore a broad range of topics, including contemporary programming and advertising strategies, the use of television and the Internet among diasporic and minority populations, the innovations of new technologies like TiVo, the rise of program forms from reality tv to lifestyle programs, television’s changing role in public places and at home, the Internet’s use as a means of social activism, and television’s role in education and the arts. In dialogue with previous media theorists and historians, the contributors collectively rethink the goals of media scholarship, pointing toward new ways of accounting for television’s past, present, and future.

Contributors. William Boddy, Charlotte Brunsdon, John T. Caldwell, Michael Curtin, Julie D’Acci, Anna Everett, Jostein Gripsrud, John Hartley, Anna McCarthy, David Morley, Jan Olsson, Priscilla Peña Ovalle, Lisa Parks, Jeffrey Sconce, Lynn Spigel, William Uricchio

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Television in the Age of Radio
Modernity, Imagination, and the Making of a Medium
Sewell, Philip W
Rutgers University Press, 2014

Television existed for a long time before it became commonplace in American homes. Even as cars, jazz, film, and radio heralded the modern age, television haunted the modern imagination. During the 1920s and 1930s, U.S. television was a topic of conversation and speculation. Was it technically feasible? Could it be commercially viable? What would it look like? How might it serve the public interest? And what was its place in the modern future? These questions were not just asked by the American public, but also posed by the people intimately involved in television’s creation. Their answers may have been self-serving, but they were also statements of aspiration. Idealistic imaginations of the medium and its impact on social relations became a de facto plan for moving beyond film and radio into a new era.

In Television in the Age of Radio, Philip W. Sewell offers a unique account of how television came to be—not just from technical innovations or institutional struggles, but from cultural concerns that were central to the rise of industrial modernity. This book provides sustained investigations of the values of early television amateurs and enthusiasts, the fervors and worries about competing technologies, and the ambitions for programming that together helped mold the medium.

Sewell presents a major revision of the history of television, telling us about the nature of new media and how hopes for the future pull together diverse perspectives that shape technologies, industries, and audiences.

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When Artists Curate
Contemporary Art and the Exhibition as Medium
Alison Green
Reaktion Books, 2018
An increasing proportion of exhibitions are curated by artists rather than professional curators, and in this book Alison Green provides the first critical history of visual artists as curators. Green’s curatorial artist emerges as a seemingly contradictory figure: someone who carries a special responsibility for critiquing art’s institutions, for bringing considerable creativity to the craft of making exhibitions and, through experimentation, someone who has changed the way exhibitions are understood to be authored and experienced—but at the same time, someone who is curiously ubiquitous.

Rather than portraying artist curators as exceptional or rare, Green establishes the fact that artists curate all the time and in all kinds of places: in galleries and in museums, in studios, in borrowed spaces such as shopfronts or industrial buildings, in front rooms and front windows, in zoos or concert halls, on streets and in nature. Seen from the perspective of artists, showing is a part of making art. Once this idea is understood, the story of art starts to look very different. Beautifully illustrated and featuring in-depth explorations of the work of revered artist curators like Daniel Buren, Goshka Macuga, Thomas Hirschhorn, Rosemarie Trockel, Hito Steyerl, Andy Warhol, and Félix González-Torres, When Artists Curate will change the way we think about and look at exhibitions.
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