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The Finger Lakes Environmental Film Festival from the interns' point of view
Tuesday, March 29, 2016
Dr. Dale Hudson’s role within the Finger Lakes Environmental Film Festival is digital curator. What does a digital curator do you ask? His goal is to situate the festival’s annual theme around various new media installations and technological platforms that engage with various relevant environmental and social debates. Dr. Hudson has been working with the film festival for nine years through his past involvement screening FLEFF films within classrooms for students and fellow faculty while working at Ithaca College. Currently, Dr. Hudson is working as a professor of film and new media at Abu Dhabi NYU. His love for FLEFF is what drives him to continue working with FLEFF regardless of how far landscape if from Ithaca's. FLEFF allows for an opportunity to learn about new projects and technologies that are intellectually, aesthetically, and politically smart through the ways in which they create opportunities for discourse between participant’s engagements.
Throughout Dr. Hudson’s relationship working with FLEFF he has witnessed great changes in the online projects he has curated and studied. He reflects on earlier projects he has curated that focused on glitches and video streaming which emphasizes the methods audiences face to absorb data and information. Recently his projects focus on Web 2.0 and Web 3.0. Web 2.0 media examines social networks, interactivity and user-generated content. The shareable and spreadable content found on the internet. Web 3.0 shifts attention to media that highlights meta levels of connectivity and intelligence.
When discussing the work that is done to successfully program digital works for FLEFF the challenges that accompany the process come in the form of learning how to engage with global new media beyond American – European methods of critique. This is where the benefit of working and living in Abu Dhabi gives Hudson a close proximity to South Asian, North African, East African, and Middle Eastern spaces where contemporary new media is being created. Exposure to these forms of new media allow for participating in debates that are very hard to find in Western cultures where particular forms of knowledge are not mainstream.
In 2015, Dr. Hudson and FLEFF co-director, Dr. Zimmermann collaborated on a book, Thinking Through Digital Media that encapsulates the digital curating the two do for the festival every year. This book is seen as a “celebration of collaboration” as the essays within the book directly stem from deep critical examinations of various FLEFF new media exhibits. The topics range from remixing media as a political act and locative media as documentary.
Check out the ways in which our digital landscapes intertwine with knowledge and communication throughout various FLEFF events this week on Ithaca College's campus and downtown at Cinemapolis all weekend!