Polish Scholar Researching Digital Poetry in the Electronic Literature Lab

Monika Górska-Olesínka, faculty in the Department of Theatre, Film, and New Media at the University of Opole and a specialist in cyberculture, digital textuality, and electronic literature, will be conducting archival research during September in the Electronic Literature Lab at Washington State University Vancouver. Her project focuses on the award-winning hypertext poem, True North, published by digital poet Stephanie Strickland in 1997 on 3 ¼-inch diskette.

Górska-Olesínka is author of the books, Words in the Web: Electronic Discourses; Liberature, e-Literature and Remixes; and From Liberature to E-Literature, as well as numerous articles on Polish digital poetry and writing.

The Electronic Literature Lab (ELL), directed by Dr. Dene Grigar, is one of a handful of media archaeology labs in North America. It specializes in cataloging and documenting digital, expressive writing––a form of art referred to as Electronic Literature––and holds a collection of 200 works dating back to 1984 and 47 vintage computers, beginning with the 1977 Apple II, on which to access them. The lab is currently the site of the cataloging and documentation effort for the archives managed by the Electronic Literature Organization, such as those from the trAce Online Writing Centre and Turbulence.org, as well as the NEH supported Pathfinders project.

On Wednesday, September 21, from 2:10-3:00 p.m. Górska-Olesínka will give a public lecture on the collaborative installation between Polish poet, Stanisław Dróżdż, and scientist Bogdan Cichocki from the Institute of Theoretical Physics of the Warsaw University. Entitled “Alea iacta est” (2003), the installation consisted of a room “inlaid” from ceiling to floor with nearly 280,000 dice, arranged in a sequence of 46,656 of all the combinations of possible outcomes of a traditional game in which six dice are thrown. The work was featured at 50th Venice Biennale. Her talk will take place in VMMC 111 and is free and open to the public.