Course Title: From Remeditaion to Cyberspace: Understanding Multimedia and its Frontiers

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: From Remeditaion to Cyberspace: Understanding Multimedia and its Frontiers

Credit Points: 12

Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


345H Media and Communication


Course Coordinator: Tony Paice

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 9838

Course Coordinator

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities


Course Description

“There is nothing new under the sun”
Creative concepts are, by means of new technology, mediated and remediated in such a fashion as to suggest a unique and distinct discipline. In reality the making of truly creative and useful content requires a clear understanding of many disciplines and a practical mastery of the digital tools, in order to communicate the work in a focused and seductive fashion. We consider the mediation and remediation from an historic perspective with reference particularly to the art of the 17th century. Here we study the worlds within worlds that constitute the hyper-mediacy of visual artists like Vermeer and Velasquez, in order to analyse for our own use what makes the delightful, the communicative, the profound and the eminently desirable in new media.

The concept of multimedia as a single discipline in this course is analysed and questioned in order to elucidate a true understanding of the practical realities for practitioners in the many and varied media which come under the broad heading of multimedia.

Having developed an understanding of the concept we then move on to look at the potential trajectory for multimedia across the next decade. The second half of the course focuses upon developing distinctions between myth and fantasy on the one hand and a scholarly overview of the limits of multimedia representation in the following terms: “Symbolic Environments”; “The Development of Self”, “Meaning and Survival”; and “The limits of Representation within Virtual Cultures”.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

In this course students will develop:
•    A clear understanding of the place of multimedia in the continuum of art, design and communication and ability to communicate the concept at Masters level.
•    The intellectual rigor necessary to argue for and defend the discipline and to present their work in a public forum.    
•    The skill to avoid technological clichés common to multimedia in their own work and to advise others on the subject of emerging technologies and their usefulness in creating multimedia work.
•    An understanding of immediacy, hypermediacy and remediation.
•    An understanding of the concepts of the virtual, the networked and the remediated self.
•    an understanding of the meaning of objects and spaces.
•    an understanding of the relationship between humans and objects
•    an understanding of the relationship between human and symbolic environments
•    the ability to analyse and discuss the arguments proposed by the new gurus of cyberspace
•    the ability to present a critical analysis of the proposals for cyberspace and to provide their own coherent alternative visions for meaning and survival in virtual cultures.
  •    some insight into the possible limits, technical and imaginative, to representation.

Graduates of this course will be able to provide to the broad professional base of the Creative Industries a critical and analytical overview of future directions in multimedia theory and will be well positioned to look into the future of multimedia at a higher research level.

Overview of Learning Activities

Students will be taught by tutorial. Learning activities will revolve around the discussion, analysis and criticism of emerging theories of Multimedia and of Cyberspace during in-class sessions and self-directed research, out of class. Staff will make a consultation time available for individual guidance and feedback.

Overview of Learning Resources

Prescribed References:
Bolter J.D. and Grusin R. Remediation: Understanding New Media. MIT Press 2000.
Manovich, L.; The Language of New Media. MIT Press 2001.
Haraway D, Simians, Cyborgs, and Women: The Reinvention of Nature, Routlidge, 1991
Tofts D and McKeich M; Memory Trade: A Prehistory of Cyberculture,  Craftsman House 1998.

Recommended References:
Hardt M and Negri A, Empire, Harvard University Press 2001.
Warwick K, I, Cyborg, Garnder Publishing 2004.
Fukayama F, Our Posthuman Future-Consequences of the Biotech Rev’tion Picador 2002.
Tofts D et al, Prefiguring Cyberculture, MIT Press and Power Publications 2003.
Arandt H, The Human Condition, University of Chicago Press 1958.
Wertheim M, The Pearly Gates of Cyberspace: A History of Space from Dante to the Internet, WW Norton & Co 1999.
Lunenfeld P, The Digital Dialectic: New Essays on New Media, Leonardo Books 1999
Packer R. et al , Multimedia: From Wagner to Virtual Reality, WW Norton Publ. 2001
Wilson S, Information Arts : Intersections of Art, Science, and Technology. MIT Press 2001.

Overview of Assessment

Students must complete all assignments to pass the course. Students should complete assignments within the allotted time-frame.
Assessment of item 1 will be provided orally during individual feedback.
Assessment of item 2 will follow from completion of the reflective essay and will be in written form delivered within two weeks of completion of the assignment.
Assessment of item 3 will follow from the delivery of the agreed project paper, in written form, within two weeks of the delivery deadline.