Document Type

Conference Paper


Available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike 4.0 International Licence


6. HUMANITIES, 6.4 ART, Arts, Art history

Publication Details

Proceedings of ISEA2011, the 17th International Symposium on Electronic Art September 14-21, 2011, Istanbul, Turkey


This paper explores the connection between Locative Media (LM) a set of art practices centred on location aware technologies and current Location Based Services (LBS) and applications. To achieve this LM will be traced to the origins of the term and to the originary ambitions driving this unique mode of engagement with emergent location-aware technologies. This involves returning to the first principles of the Karosta Locative Media workshop, its associated texts and to Ben Russell's "Headmap Manifesto" [1] to locate the intentions and ambitions embedded in the term itself.

From its inception at the locative media workshop in Karosta, Latvia in 2003 it can be said that LM has set itself the task of defining modes of operation for emergent locative technologies. These emphasise the technology's ability to augment space through revealing layers of meanings and associations which act to foreground the rich lived experience of place. With the growing ubiquity of locative technologies I propose that LM exerted a significant influence on these unfolding technologies shaping the application of the technologies resulting in a more user centred experience which opens the technology to a wider constituency beyond the realm of specialists. This influence goes beyond the specifics of similarities in approach between particular applications and artworks, representing a more fundamental conceptual shift in thinking about location which has far reaching implications for the future of locative applications.