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New Media Futures: The Rise of Women in the Digital Arts captures the spirit of women working in digital media arts and education in the Midwest. These pioneers made essential contributions to the international technological revolution, helping to catalyze what we now think of as the age of digital and social media.

Our Herstory Screening Room features works that emerged from seminal events that took place at the University of Illinois and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in the 1980s-2000s, in a fertile environment combining social feminist change, artistic energy, and technological innovation. While women artists in Chicago, marginalized in traditional venues, built a network of independent galleries and exhibit spaces to house and highlight their work, interdisciplinary Renaissance Teams at the University of Illinois developed advanced academic computing communities that created a bridge to the humanities and forged new partnerships between the artist and the scientific environment. Behind this revolution lay a history of social change, artistic innovation, women’s civic leadership, and breakthroughs in science and technology.

Please enjoy a curated video art selection of featured works that were included in New Media Futures:

Colleen Bushell & NCSA : Study of a Numerically Modeled Severe Storm, 1989

A series of images from a time-evolving visualization that analyzes the data from a numerical model developed to understand thunderstorm behavior. The models consist of mathematical equations that can be solved on a supercomputer. Wind, temperature, pressure, and other values are calculated every few seconds for several hundred thousand locations in the area of the storm’s development. The numerical storm grows in wind and temperature conditions observed prior to an actual severe thunderstorm. 

Principal scientific investigators: Robert Wilhelmson, Harold Brooks, Brian Jewett, Crystal Shaw, Louis Wicker; Visualization by Stefen Fangmeier, Matt Arrott, Mark Bajuk, Colleen B. Bushell, Jeff Yost, Jeff Thingvold, Dan Brady, Bob Patterson; the complete video was produced by the Visualization Services and Development Group, NCSA, 1989. 

Courtesy of NCSA, UIUC. Featured in 'New Media Futures: The Rise of Women in the Digital Arts'.

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