Light Box

Selected items ()
Go to Light Box >

My Colleagues‘ News

Erkki Huhtamo
* 1958, currently based: Los Angeles, US
Affiliated institution: University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)
Erkki Huhtamo works as a professor at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA), Departments of Design Media Arts, and Film, Television, and Digital Media. He received his Ph.D. in cultural history from the University of Turku, Finland. Huhtamo is an internationally renowned media historian and theorist, and also a specialist in the history and aesthetics of media arts. He is one of the founders of an emerging approach to media studies known as media archaeology.

Erkki Huhtamo at JR’s ”Could Art Change the World?” solo exhibition at the Watari-Um Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo, 2013.Huhtamo has published extensively, lectured worldwide and given multimedia stage performances using both modern and original 19th-century media technology such as magic lanterns. With the artists Golan Levin and Zachary Lieberman, he developed and performed Musings on Hands: Media Archaeology Meets New Media Performance at Waseda University’s Ono Memorial Hall in Tokyo, Japan (2005) and at the Ars Electronica Festival in Linz, Austria the following year. His most recent magic lantern show, From Dole to the Pole, or Professor Huhtamo’s Daring Adventures, featuring musicians and foley sound effect artists, was performed at Los Angeles’ Velaslavasay Panorama theater in 2012. The multimedia performance Mareorama Resurrected has thus far been presented in Los Angeles, Chicago and Pittsburgh (an edited version can be watched on the Internet). The lecture-performance Panoramas in Motion: Reflections on Moving Image Spectacles Before Film was presented at the 60th International Short Film Festival Oberhausen, Germany, in 2014.

Huhtamo has curated numerous exhibitions in Europe, the United States and Australia. He created the major international exhibition “Outoäly / Alien Intelligence” for KIASMA Museum of Contemporary Art in Helsinki, Finland in 2000, and has curated retrospective exhibitions of the work of Toshio Iwai, Perry Hoberman, Paul DeMarinis and Bernie Lubell. In 1994, he was the quest director and curator of Sydney’s Australian International Video Festival. In 2000, Helsinki, Finland’s Museum of Cultures presented Phantasmagoria. Time Travelling in the Moving Image, an exhibition which featured Huhtamo’s extensive collection of antique magic lanterns, peepshow boxes, animation devices and other media archaeological artifacts. Parts of it have since been shown at UCLA’s libraries and the UCLA Hammer Museum of Art.

Professor Huhtamo’s most recent books are Media Archaeology: Approaches, Applications, and Implications (ed. with Jussi Parikka, University of California Press, 2011) and Illusions in Motion: Media Archaeology of the Moving Panorama and Related Spectacles (The MIT Press, 2013). His first Italian and Japanese language single-authored works will be published in 2014 and 2015. Recent research articles have discussed topics such as the history of media displays in public outdoor spaces; “peep media,” a notion Professor Huhtamo coined; the trottoir roulant, or the moving walkway at Paris’ Universal Exposition of 1900; astronomical demonstration instruments as a challenge to “screenology,” another concept he coined; the history of the Spirograph, a forgotten device that presents microcinematographed moving pictures from spinning discs; the invention and early reception of the Kaleidoscope; interactive museum displays as a contribution to what he calls “exhibition anthropology”; and the archaeological tradition in media arts.

Huhtamo is currently working on a number of new books. On the top of the list are a new monograph on the history of mechanical theaters and a volume tentatively titled “Media Archaeology as Topos Study.” The other projects deal with the “media apparatus” applied to a number of historical case studies, and the archaeology of interactive media.
Professor at the Department of Film, Television, and Digital Media, UCLA

Visiting professor at the Department for Design Media Arts, UCLA

visiting artistic director of The Australian International Video Festival, Sydney

1985 - 1989
exhibition curator and the programmer of the MUU Media Festival, Otso Gallery, Helsinki

2014 Professor at the Department of Film, Television, and Digital Media, UCLA
1999 Visiting professor at the Department for Design Media Arts, UCLA
1994 visiting artistic director of The Australian International Video Festival, Sydney
1985 - 1989 exhibition curator and the programmer of the MUU Media Festival, Otso Gallery, Helsinki

Publications & References
Huhtamo, Erkki. »The Brown-Urban-Joy Spirograph: A Postscript.« Early Popular Visual Culture (July 30, 2014).
Huhtamo, Erkki. »Illusion and its Reverse: About Artistic Explorations of Stereoscopic 3D.« In Expanded Narration: Das neue Erzählen: B3 Biennale des Bewegten Bildes, edited by Bernd Kracke and Marc Ries, 123-141. Frankfurt am Main: transcript, 2013.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »(Un)walking At The Fair: About Mobile Visualities at the Paris Universal Exposition of 1900.« The Journal of Visual Culture 12, no. 1 (2013): 61-88.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »Screen Tests: Why Do We Need an Archaeology of the Screen?.« Cinema Journal 51, no. 2 (Winter 2012): 144-148.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »What's Victoria Got to Do with It? Toward an Archaeology of Domestic Video Gaming.« In Before the Crash: Early Video Game History, edited by Mark J. P. Wolf, 30-52. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 2012.
Huhtamo, Erkki and Jussi Parikka, ed. Media Archaeology. Approaches, Applications, and Implications. Oakland: University of California Press, 2011.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »Monumental Attractions: An Archaeology of Public Media Interfaces.« In Interface Criticism: Aesthetics Beyond Buttons, edited by Christian Ulrik Andersen and Soeren Bro Pold, 21-42. Aarhus: Aarhus University Press, 2011.
Martin Rieser. »The Mobile Audience.« In The Mobile Audience: Media Art and Mobile Technologies, edited by Martin Rieser, 23-38. Amsterdam/New York: Rodopi, 2011.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »Pre-envisioning Mediatecture: A Media-archaeological Perspective.« In Mediatecture: The Design of Medially Augmented Spaces, edited by Christoph Kronhagel, 20-27. Vienna/New York: Springer, 2010.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »Thinkering with Media: On the Art of Paul DeMarinis.« In Paul DeMarinis: Buried in Noise, edited by Ingrid Beirer and Sabine Himmelsbach and Carsten Seiffairth, 33-46. Heidelberg/Berlin: Kehrer, 2010.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »On the Origins of the Virtual Museum.« In Museums in a Digital Age, edited by Ross Parry, 121-135. London: Routledge, 2010.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »The Sky is (not) the Limit: Envisioning the Ultimate Public Media Display.« The Journal of Visual Culture 8, no. 3 (December 2009): 329-348.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »Resurrecting the Technological Past: An Introduction to the Archeology of Media Art.« In Art and Electronic Media, edited by Edward A. Shanken, 199-201. London: Phaidon, 2009.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »Tactile Temptations: About Contemporary Art, Exhibitions and Tactility.« In Interface Cultures: Artistic Aspects of Interaction, edited by Christa Sommerer and Laurent Mignonneau and Dorothee King, 129-139. Bielefeld: transcript, 2008.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »Twin-Touch-Test-Redux: Media Archaeological Approach to Art, Interactivity, and Tactility.« In MediaArtHistories, edited by Oliver Grau, 71-101. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2006.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »The Pleasures of the Peephole: An Archaeological Exploration of Peep Media.« In Book of Imaginary Media: Excavating the Dream of the Ultimate Communication Medium, edited by Eric Kluitenberg, 74-155. Rotterdam: NAi, 2006.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »Slots of Fun, Slots of Trouble: Toward an Archaeology of Electronic Gaming.« In Handbook of Computer Games Studies, edited by Joost Raessens and Jeffrey Goldstein, 1-21. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2005.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »Elements of Screenology : Toward an Archaeology of the Screen.« Iconics: International Studies of the Modern Image 7 (2004): 31-82.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »Peristrephic Pleasures, or the Origins of the Moving Panorama.« In Allegories of Communication: Intermedial Concerns from Cinema to the Digital, edited by Jan Olsson and John Fullerton, 215-248. Rome: John Libbey, 2004.
Allen, Rebecca and Erkki Huhtamo. »I Always Like to Go Where I Am Not Supposed to Be.« In Women, Art, and Technology, edited by Judy Malloy, 224-241. Cambridge, MA: Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2003.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »WEB STALKER SEEK AARON: Reflections on Digital Arts, Codes, and Coders.« In Ars Electronica 2003: Code – The Language of our Time, edited by Gerfried Stocker and Christiane Schöpf, 110-128. Ostfildern-Ruit: Hatje-Cantz, 2003.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »Media Art in the Third Dimension: Stereoscopic Imaging and Contemporary Art.« In Future Cinema, edited by Jeffrey Shaw and Peter Weibel, 466-473. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2003.
Huhtamo, Erkki and Perttu Rastas, ed. Outoäly - Alien Intelligence. Helsinki: Kiasma Nykytaiteen museo - Museum of Contemporary Art, 2000.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »From Cybernation to Interaction: A Contribution to an Archaeology of Interactivity.« In The Digital Dialectic: New Essays on New Media, edited by Peter Lunenfeld, 96-110. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1999.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »Seeing at a Distance: Towards an Archaeology of the 'Small Screen'.« In Art@Science, edited by Christa Sommerer and Laurent Mignonneau, 262-278. Vienna/New York: Springer, 1998.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »From Cybernation to Interaction: A Contribution to an Archeology of Interactivity.« In Wunschmaschine Welterfindung: Eine Geschichte der Technikvisionen seit dem 18. Jahrhundert, edited by Brigitte Felderer, 192-207. Vienna/New York: Springer, 1996.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »Digitalian Treasures, or Glimpses of Art on the CD-ROM Frontier.« In Clicking In: Hot Links to a Digital Culture, edited by Lynn Hershman Leeson, 306-317. Seattle: Bay Press, 1996.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »Time Machines in the Gallery: An Archeological Approach in Media Art.« In Immersed in Technology: Art and Virtual Environments, edited by Mary Anne Moser and Douglas McLeod, 232-268. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1996.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »Jeffrey Shaw´s EVE and the Panoramic Tradition.« InterCommunication 14 (1995): 138-139.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »Seeking Deeper Contact: Interactive Art as Metacommentary.« Convergence 1, no. 2 (Autumn 1995): 81-104.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »Encapsulated Bodies in Motion: Simulators and the Quest for Total Immersion.« In Critical Issues in Electronic Media, edited by Simon Penny, 159-186. Albany, NY: State University of New York Press, 1995.
Huhtamo, Erkki. »Twenty Fragmentary Thoughts on Video Installation.« In Interface: Nordic Video Art, edited by Pål Wrange, 18-23. Stockholm: Stiftelsen Nordisk Videokonst, 1990.