Paul Catanese, Hybrid Media Artist

Expanded Artists' Books
2011 – present | Prototyping

Michelle Citron, Clifton Meador and I began a research project in 2011 entitled “Expanded Artists' Books” funded by a Columbia College Chicago technology fellowship. Our goal was to explore tablet-based computing platforms as a site for creative inquiry - and an expansion of the notion of the artists' book. Within the context of this research, each of us created projects using a variety of different development tools. For example, I created a number of prototypes for an expanded artist book with the working title: Eigengrau. Below are video samples of documentation of a selection from these prototypes that were completed in the Fall of 2011 using CoronaSDK. A final version of this project is currently in development, and is planned for release by the Fall of 2012.

With regard to the Technology Fellowship, we chose to focus on Apple's iPad in order to limit the number of development variables, though we are open to other technologies. Our specific aims were to evaluate several different development environments where native iPad apps can be created seeking a balance between a tool that would be appropriate for our students who have a range of programming experience in their backgrounds, and one that would be powerful enough to create truly rich experiences. For the purposes of the initial grant, we evaluated Adobe's Digital Publishing Suite, LiveCode, and CoronaSDK. Michelle Citron and I gave a presentation on our findings at the International Digital Media and Arts (iDMAa) Conference in the Fall of 2011.

Based on this initial research, and joined by Steve Woodall, director of the Center for Book and Paper Arts - a research center created within the Department of Interdisciplinary Arts at Columbia College Chicago, we submitted a proposal to the National Endowment for the Arts: Arts in Media grant to commission new projects in the arena of expanded artists books - which we were awarded. As outlined on the NEA Website, this grant was awarded To support Expanded Artists' Books: Envisioning the Future of the Book. The Center for the Book and Paper Arts working with the Arts and Media Department will develop an app to create virtual artists' books to be experienced via mobile devices and tablets.The apps will explore mechanisms for manipulation, interactivity, and feedback via features such as location monitoring. I am excited to be one of four principal investigators on this grant, and will be announcing more information about this project and its commissioning program over the Summer of 2012.