Congratulations to the first three funded Joint Pilot for Arts Research projects, co-sponsored by CARI, the Alabama Life Research Institute, and the Office of Research and Economic Development!
The funded projects include:
“Instruments of Culture and Agents of Change: Performing Arts Training as a Vehicle for Empowerment and Wellbeing among Alabama Youth,” which includes Dr. Courtney Helfrecht, assistant professor of anthropology; Dr. Stephanie McClure, assistant professor of anthropology; Dr. Alexis Davis-Hazell, assistant professor of music; and Alvon Reed, assistant professor of theatre and dance.
“Dangerous Landscapes: Legacies of Nineteenth-Century Progress in the age of Climate Change,” which includes Dr. Teresa Cribelli, associate professor of history; Allison Grant, assistant professor of art and art history; and Dr. Joan Barth, senior research social scientist at the Institute for Social Science Research.
“Seeing the Edges between Inking and Immunity,” which includes Dr. Christopher D. Lynn, associate professor of anthropology; and Mark Barry, assistant professor of advertising and public relations.
CARI Fellow Julia Brock is a member of the Selvage Collective, a curatorial collective that blends contemporary art and public history. The group’s exhibition titled “A Most Favourable Soil” opens in Kilkenny, Ireland in November 2019. CARI hosted Selvage member, Kirstie Tepper, to finalize research and present on the exhibit at UA.
The University of Alabama’s Collaborative Arts Research Initiative, or CARI—which is a new research incubator dedicated to interdisciplinary, arts-focused inquiry—is announcing applications for its inaugural faculty fellowships.
Applications will be open Feb. 4 through March 6, and information sessions for the fellowships will be held in January and February.
“The faculty fellowships are a critical mechanism by which CARI and The University of Alabama are supporting high impact, interdisciplinary research and creative projects led by faculty with the interest and talent to engage across campus and across disciplines,”said Dr. Russell J. Mumper, UA’s vice president for Research and Economic Development. “Moreover, the fellowships are an integral piece of UA’s strategic goal to increase creative activities that impact economic and societal development.”
Sponsored by the Office of Academic Affairs and housed in the College of Arts and Sciences, CARI Fellowships are open to faculty from all colleges and departments interested in exploring how collaborative research across disciplines can enrich the scope and impact of their work. Four information sessions for interested faculty will be offered in January and February, each of which will include a short presentation by a prominent arts researcher, the opportunity to network with other UA faculty and detailed information about the application and selection process.
R. Benjamin Knapp, the director of the Institute for Creativity, Arts and Technology, or ICAT, at Virginia Tech will be a guest speaker during information sessions for UA faculty held at 4 p.m. on Jan. 28 and noon on Jan. 29.
CARI also will host guest speaker Norah Zuniga-Shaw, the director of dance and technology at Ohio State University Department of Dance and Advanced Computing Center for the Arts and Design, or ACCAD, during sessions at 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. on Feb. 13. All sessions will be held in Maxwell Hall.
Knapp is the founding executive director for ICAT and a professor of computer science at Virginia Tech. ICAT seeks to promote research and education at the nexus of art, design, engineering and science. For more than 25 years, Knapp has been working to create meaningful links between human-computer interaction, universal design and various forms of creativity. His research on human-computer interaction has focused on the development and design of user-interfaces and software that allow both composers and performers to augment the physical control of a musical instrument with direct physiological interaction.
Shaw is an artist and creative director best known for her award-winning digital projects that center choreographic ideas as catalysts for interdisciplinary and intercultural discovery. Her newest project, Livable Futures brings together faculty and students from across the arts and humanities for creative resistance and collective resilience in response to planetary conditions of crisis. Since 2004, Shaw has been director for dance and technology at The Ohio State University Department of Dance and ACCAD where she is a professor and teaches interdisciplinary research, improvisation and intermedia.
Applications for inaugural CARI Faculty Fellowships can be found at www.cari.ua.edu beginning Feb. 4.
CARI is led by department of theatre and dance faculty member Rebecca Salzer, with assistant director Michelle Bordner.
“We are excited to see this collaborative research community taking shape with the selection of our first faculty fellows” Salzer said.“We hope the campus community as a whole will quickly feel the benefits and energy generated by this Initiative.”
With support from the National Endowment for Humanities, a dance professor at The University of Alabama will lead an innovative effort to improve online access to digital dance resources for education and scholarship.
“While digital video makes recording dance easier, archives of recorded dance have not been made available online for education and research, and dance scholars face significant geographical and financial barriers to access,” Salzer said. “Our project brings together dance scholars, archivists and educators for a three-day symposium during which attendees will explore expansion and aggregation of existing online dance resources along with the design of a new pilot resource.”
Despite the existence of several dance notation systems, dance remains largely an oral tradition; transferred from teacher to student and performer to performer. Film and video now serve as “text” for dance; making them key for both preservation and analysis. While the evolution of video technology has progressively made recording dance easier, methods of sharing these records have not kept pace with technologies allowing online delivery.
Dances available on video sharing and social media websites are not well organized and sometimes posted without the consent of the artist. Also, those websites usually contain only clips, rather than full-length recordings of the performance.
“Excerpts are of limited use to scholars and educators,” Salzer said. “It would be like teaching an art history class in which you could only show students one corner of a painting.”
The $50,000 grant will support a symposium at UA’s Collaborative Arts Research Initiative in May 2019, as well as presentation of the symposium’s findings to stakeholders in four major U.S. cities. Salzer is also working with the Alabama Digital Humanities Center, which will be the project’s online home.
“I believe that our project can improve access to the digital dance resources we have and also pave the way for dance to more dynamically inhabit digital space,” Salzer said.
It is one of 253 humanities projects recently funded by the NEH, many of which apply new technologies and digital methods to innovative humanities research and public programs. The Digital Humanities Advancement grants will also help document, preserve and ensure access to materials of critical importance to the nation’s cultural heritage, from fragile artifacts and manuscripts to analog and digital recordings subject to technological obsolescence.
Norah Zuniga Shaw is an artist and creative director best known for her award-winning digital projects that center choreographic ideas as catalysts for interdisciplinary and intercultural discovery. Her newest project, Livable Futures brings together faculty and students from across the arts and humanities for creative resistance and collective resilience in response to planetary conditions of crisis. Since 2004, Shaw has been Director for Dance and Technology at The Ohio State University Department of Dance and ACCAD, where she is a professor and teaches interdisciplinary research, improvisation, and intermedia.
R. Benjamin Knapp is the Founding Executive Director for ICAT and Professor of Computer Science at Virginia Tech. ICAT seeks to promote research and education at the nexus of art, design, engineering, and science. For more than 25 years, Knapp has been working to create meaningful links between human-computer interaction, universal design, and various forms of creativity. His research on human-computer interaction has focused on the development and design of user-interfaces and software that allow both composers and performers to augment the physical control of a musical instrument with direct physiological interaction.