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Project Description:

Life to the Second Power (L2) will re-animate the existing archive of Lynn Hershman Leeson, now housed in the Special Collections Library at Stanford University. Converting the archive into a digital format of hybrid genre will allow users of the content to dynamically revisit the past while simultaneously expanding the audience for this material.

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An online meta narrative will integrate real and virtual architecture, artificial intelligent avatars, artifacts, somatic characters and situational components such as site tagging, GPS, and GIS modeling into a mixed reality and pervasive gaming environment. Using content drawn from the archive, fragments of information embedded within the storyline of a crime scene will reveal multi-level clues, each of which leads toward a search for lost identity. The missing person will be traced through a trail of artifacts and partial and even erased information. Underlying conspiratorial motivations, duplicity, speculation and surveillance systems and rendered drawings of the tracking process will become components of this situational strategy. Characters will integrate the A.I. brains of several existing characters in the archive (Agent Ruby and DiNA). A new bot character will be created to incorporate deviance into his code stream.

Housing the project in Second Life, an existing online world with tools already in place, wll allow integration of converging media. This project will use mixed reality and media convergence across multiple channels, through which users will be invited to participate in a deeper exploration, investigation and contemplation of both the nature of archives and the context for documentation of contemporary art.

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Broad intellectual context for Life Squared is provided by "Performing Presence", an international collaborative research project.


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