Electronic Visualisation and the Arts London 2009 (EVA 2009) is co-sponsored by the Computer Arts Society and the British Computer Society, of which the Computer Arts Society is a specialist group. Since 1992, the EVA conference series has established itself as a natural home from which to explore the richly interdisciplinary and constantly evolving world of digital visualisation. Nothing illustrates this more than the great scope, depth and diversity of the papers contained within this year's Proceedings.
The latest research in digital arts and new media are explored, with contributors ranging from established scholars to the new generation of research students who will lead the field tomorrow. Conference papers cover reconstructive archaeology, virtual museology, digital arts concepts and practice, immersive environments, and digital performance and music.
EVA 2009 brought together a range of digital imaging, museum and visual arts practitioners from across the world. This demonstrates the diversity of interests within the field of digital visualisation, as did the range of contributors from graduate artists and PhD students to seasoned industry professionals who value EVA for this reason.
The conference included three keynote speakers: Kim Veltman, world authority on information organisation and visual culture; Professor Ernest Edmonds, organiser of Creativity and Cognition and editor of Leonardo Transactions; and digital artist Gordana Novakovic, currently artist in residence at the Department of Computer Science, UCL. They spoke about the growing impact of digital visualisation in different aspects of contemporary culture and the need for it to be extended by strong high-level research, and not relegated to the status of mere 'visuals'. A common theme was that visualisation can not only help science become more explicable, but can in fact draw out information that was previously concealed in data by rendering it visible in new ways. This was also alluded to by our chairman George Mallen in his summing up on the final afternoon, when he called for more support for this activity.
Specific themes included Archaeology, Digital History and Virtual Museology; Digital Art Theory and Practice; and Interfaces, Digital Performance and Digital Music. This structure helped to highlight the diverse interests of EVA members and allowed a range of new projects to be studied in relation to other aspects of the field. With contributions from researchers in university departments, museums and the private sector, as well as artists and independent developers, the breadth of concerns in digital visualisations was well-represented. Projects ranged from 3D scanning of prehistoric rock art to new techniques of rapid prototyping being used by printmakers at the Royal College of Art.
As with last year, the demonstrations and parallel Research Workshops enabled a variety of systems and interfaces to be experienced firsthand. This side of EVA is as important as its published transactions because it embodies the very interdisciplinarity that EVA seeks to encourage, drawing together the visual and computational fields.
EVA 2009 marks the second year of our very successful partnership with the BCS. All attendees remarked on the suitability of the venue and appreciated having a printed volume of papers accompanying their registration. We would like to extend our thanks to the BCS for their customary smooth and efficient organisation, and in particular to Gemma Liddiard for supporting us before and during the conference. We look forward to future collaborations with the BCS.