Natalie Bookchin

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Born 1962. Artist working with the internet, computer games and other art forms. Lives in Los Angeles. Is co-director of the Photography and Media Program in the Art School at California Institute of the Arts. Works collaboratively and independently and exhibits, performs and lectures widely in the United States and Europe and on the Internet. Published numerous articles on Internet art, culture and theory.

She received a bachelor of fine arts degree from the State University of New York at Purchase in 1984 and a master of fine arts degree in photography from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1990.

Started as a fibre artist, then moved to photography. Collaborated with Lev Manovich on the three-piece work Digital Snapshots (1995). After digital photography, she moved to CD-ROM and Internet. In 1996, she produced an interactive CD-ROM titled The Databank of the Everyday that relies on still photography of the human body, banal actions and movements, the idea of photography's documentary role, and the principles of the contemporary database. In 1997, Bookchin forayed into interactive computer and video installations with Marking Time (1997). In a dark room, a text is projected onto a wall letter by letter, describing the activities of three prisoners during the four days leading up to their execution in an Arkansas prison. With RTMark was involved in the gatt.org prank they organized spoofing the 1999 GATT talks, and also in the for DNAid, an initiative developed by Creative Time and dedicated to exploring the cultural and social implications of genetic research. The Intruder (1999-2000) is her first Internet-based "game" and in 2000 was presented as part of the exhibition Over_Game, a show dedicated to artists inspired by game culture in Montevideo (Amsterdam). Her recent projects include the online work agoraXchange, created with Jackie Stevens, commissioned by the Tate Online. Metapet (2003) was an online game commissioned by Creative Time in association with HAMACA. The beta version was launched at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles; Version 1 was launched on May Day, 2003 and linked from the Whitney Museum’s online gallery.

From 1998-2000, she was a member of the collective RTMark, and frequently collaborates with others, including Alexei Shulgin, Heath Bunting, Jin Lee and Lev Manovich. In 2000, Bookchin earned an honorary mention in the .net category of the Prix Ars Electronica (Linz). In 2000-1 she received grants for project development from Creative Time, Media Center for Art and Design in Barcelona. She was a 2001-2002 Guggenheim Fellow.

In 1999-2000, Bookchin organized and curated <net.net.net>, an eight month series of lectures and workshops on art, activism, and the Internet at Cal Arts, MOCA in Los Angeles, and Laboratorio Cinematek in Tijuana. Lecturers included Critical Art Ensemble, Alexei Shulgin, Jenny Marketou, Geert Lovink, Mongrel, RTMark, Fiambrera, Vuk Ćosić, Olia Lialina, Florian Schneider, Rachel Baker,and Heath Bunting. Also organised Street Action on the Superhighway, a series about the relationship between art and activism, and between the streets and the net.

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