Artist Interview: ​Brain Sensing and Augmented Reality

Desi Gonzalez, Graduate Student, Comparative Media Studies, MIT
LACMA Unframed, Art + Technology
December 3, 2014


Desi Gonzalez is a graduate student in Comparative Media Studies at MIT. Her dissertation research includes investigating art and technology programs in museums, among them, our Art + Technology Lab. Recently, she talked to artist John Craig Freeman, one of the Art + Technology Lab grant recipients. Freeman is working on a project called EEG AR: Things We Have Lost. The acronyms in the title refer to two technologies the artist has been experimenting with: electroencephalography—or brainwave sensing—and augmented reality, which overlays computer-generated imagery onto the real world. Desi and John Craig sat down to discuss his project, its origins, and the use of public space as a site for technology-based art. Read the interview.

About John Craig Freeman

John Craig Freeman is a public artist with over twenty years of experience using emergent technologies to produce large-scale public work at sites where the forces of globalization are impacting the lives of individuals in local communities. His work seeks to expand the notion of public by exploring how digital networked technology is transforming our sense of place. Freeman is a founding member of the international artists collective Manifest.AR and he has produced work and exhibited around the world including at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, FACT Liverpool, Kunsthallen Nikolaj Copenhagen, Triennale di Milano, the Institute of Contemporary Art Boston, and the Museum of Contemporary Art Beijing, He has had work commissioned by the ZERO1, and His work has been reviewed in The New York Times, El Pais, Liberation, Wired News, Artforum, Ten-8, Z Magazine, Afterimage, Photo Metro, New Art Examiner, Time, Harper's and Der Spiegel. Christiane Paul cites Freeman's work in her book Digital Art, as does Lucy Lippard in the Lure of the Local, and Margot Lovejoy in Digital Currents: Art in the Electronic Age. His writing has been published in Rhizomes, Leonardo, the Journal of Visual Culture, and Exposure. Freeman received a Bachelor of Art degree from the University of California, San Diego in 1986 and a Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Colorado, Boulder in 1990. He is currently a Professor of New Media at Emerson College in Boston. Freeman writes, “If Andy Warhol set out to create a distinctly American art form in the twentieth century, I identify with those who seek to create a distinctly global art form in the twenty-first.”
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