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FACE TO FACE PORTRAITURE IN A DIGITAL AGE 14 July – 29 August 2010 Face to Face, a national touring exhibition presented by d/Lux/MediaArts opens at the Bundaberg Regional Art Gallery in July. Featuring works by fourteen leading Australian artists Face to Face revisits the human portrait and provide a contemporary perspective on how digital technologies are reshaping our understanding and experience of human identity. Key themes of mutation, shifting identity, code and the influence of popular culture are played out in a sophisticated and sometimes disturbing array of works ranging from artificial intelligence ‘softbots’ to highly poetic video and photographic work. Daniel Crooks exceedingly cool and sophisticated studio portraits in which he literally slices and layers time mark a departure from his more well known video works and illustrate how software and code are the tools of the trade of many of the artists in this exhibition. In John Tonkin’s interactive work time and motion study, audiences can literally navigate backward and forward through time playing with their own image in a richly layered three dimensional environment. Visitors to the exhibition can have a deep and meaningful “conversation” with artist Stelarc’s huge projected Prosthetic Head avatar powered by sophisticated artificial intelligence software which learns and talks the more audiences interact and probe. The influence of popular culture and media on self image are important themes in Face to Face and the video work by Rachel Scott Hot Not, and photo portraits series by Emil Goh capturing on-line virtual environments explore the clash of reality and fantasy in an idealised world. Together with six other works on exhibition, Face to Face provide audiences with a rich and provocative engagement with the contemporary expressions of identity through an exploration of new forms of portraiture. In keeping with the theme of “life in a digital age” a significant amount of information about this exhibition and the artists is published and available online with a free downloadable catalogue and education kit suitable for all audiences.