Interactive Communication: Nam June Paik’s Participation TV Experiments

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Since 1960s, the art world had anticipated and prepared for a change in consumer behaviour. Interactive art objects no longer exist, but only through their use by the receiver. The artist changed from a creator to a service, the audience from a passive consumer to an active user. In the 1960s, Fluxus artists force to reconsider the role of the art and artist, the relationship between action and objects. As Beuys, Fluxus artist declared that “everyone is an artist”, audience participation has been an important part of many Fluxus events and performances. One of the best known artists of Fluxus is Nam June Paik. Audience - participation, for which video is a highly suitable medium, played an important role in his work, as with many other Fluxus artists. Paik wanted to use technology to bring people closer together, he wanted to humanise technology by audience participation. Paik attempted to gain audience participation through his TV experiments, it is considered as a process in Television participation. This paper explores the presentation of the participation TV works with the concepts of participation arts and also redefine the blurring the boundaries of creator and audience. Paik creates participation and interactivity from viewer.


Keywords: TV, Video art, Fluxus, Participation, Nam June Paik
Stream: Media Arts Practices: Television, Multimedia, Digital, Online and Other New Media
Presentation Type: Paper Presentation in English
Paper: Interactive Communication


Youjin Chung

Ph.D Student, History of Art and Architecture, The University of Reading
Reading, Berkshire, UK

From 2002, I studied BA, MA in History of Art and Architecture at the University of Reading, UK. As I am an Eastern I developed interest writing dissertation about Korean artist. So I did BA dissertation on “Nam June Paik, as a seminal figure in Video Art” and studying Nam June Paik led me to World, his inspiration was not only Western Technology but also Eastern philosophy particularly Zen. Therefore, I did MA dissertation on “Nam June Paik’s Video Art through Zen.” Paik was Fluxus artist, so I read about Fluxus. I found Fluxus was linked with Zen and influenced by Zen. It was interesting there was a Western/Eastern mixed period, and had a boom period and not only Fluxus also there are many Western artists were influenced by Eastern philosophy and tried to apply to their work. Recently, I presented my paper “Dhyana Space on the works of Yves Klein and Wolfgang Laib” at the Art, Religion, Identity symposium on 23 to 24 September 2008 at the University of Glasgow. Currently, I am doing PhD thesis titled "Fluxus and Zen Buddhism".

Ref: A09P0292