Vol. 9 No. 1 - Data

Call for Papers 2024

Vol. 9 No. 1 - Data

Call for Papers 2024

Membrana Vol. 9 No. 1 – Data, 2024

Recent developments in machine vision, algorithms, and artificial intelligence have re‑energized debates about the interplay between visualization, data, and the visual. Understanding notions of data, their visual forms, the processes of visualizing data, and not least the reconsideration of historical images and imaging as data visualizations has become relevant. These developments have also reframed and accentuated the dilemma regarding the perceived dichotomy between data extraction and data creation (echoing the dichotomy between positivism and correlationalism). This dichotomy entails both technical and ethical aspects and persists in our understanding of visual data – whether it is perceived as raw material, extracted from the visual world, or as data formulated through visualization technologies.

Even more significant, however, are questions about the processes, regimes, and discourses of data visualization. Key questions include the distinction between the image and the data: Is the image itself data, or does it merely contain data? What is the relation between the indexicality of the visual and the data it brings into focus? Does the distinction rely on the human eye, a machine, an algorithm, or on artificial “intelligent eye”? Can even historical images and the history of imaging be understood as data visualization; is there a revolution underway today, or is it just an evolution of previous regimes? Does data have an inherent purpose, and what intentions does data visualization convey? Further questions revolve around whether (and how) dominant regimes, discourses, or institutions shape the interpretation of visual data and whether (and how) they provide a framework for the visualization of data. How is data visualization utilized in contemporary decision-making, science, economics, and art, and what do respective applications reveal about the relationship between data and the visual in our culture?

Membrana Vol 9. No. 1 aims to explore the historical and contemporary interplay between photography-related technologies and data. We invite submissions from scholars and researchers in the fields of humanities, media theory, social sciences, philosophy, and art, visual artists, curators, and photographers whose work sheds light on data visualization through, but not limited to, the following topics:

  • Historical and Contemporary Connections between Photography-Related Apparatuses and Data (shifting relationship between art and science; early interconnections between data and photography; veracity, credibility, fidelity and data; photography as data)
  • Operational Aspects of Data Visualization (intentions, role, automatic data generation and interpretation; machine view: AI and data visualization; big data and the visual)
  • Contextual Usage of Data Visualization (cultural and creative industries, social systems and subsystems, data visualization and processes of imagination)
  • Social Impact and Data Visualization (ethical and aesthetic dimensions of data visualization; social and political processes: deliberative processes, climate change, conflict resolution; the visual and thought processes; visual data and the definition of social issues; advocacy through data visualization; usage of data in conspiracy theories and fake news)
  • Data as Art (contemporary data-based art practices; creative visualization; research-based art practices; evidence-based art practices)
  • Data-centrism of Science, Politics and Art (biases of big data; AI databases and West‑centrism, cultural implications of big data; data mining and the visual)
  • Natural Sciences and Data Visualization (scientific imaginaries and popular imaginaries of science; space research, exploration and visual data; data-driven storytelling; science communication; visualization of data as evidence; integrity, and data)
  • Data Visualization and the Everyday (shaping the everyday through data visualization; earth observation; representations of nature through visual data; weather, Global Navigation Satellite Systems: OSINT media and data visualization)
  • Data Visualization in Popular Culture and Art (representation of data and evidence; the role of interfaces, VR, AR and MR in popular culture)
  • Usage of Data in Conspiracy Theories and Fake News: How visual data is used to create false narratives and perpetuate alternative truths

Format of contributions

  • Articles, interviews – including notes, references, abstract, and biography: 21,000–49,000 characters / 3,000–7,000 words
  • Reviews, experiments: 10,500–21,000 characters / 1,500–3,000 words
  • Photographic projects and artwork: proposals for non-commissioned work or samples of work.  

Proposals and deadlines

  • The deadline for contribution proposals (150-word abstracts and/or visuals) is March 11, 2024 (extended to March 25, 2024). The deadline for final contributions from accepted proposals and other submissions is May 27, 2024. 
  • Please submit proposals (articles, interviews, projects and experiments) via the online form at https://www.membrana.org/proposal or contact us directly at editors(at)membrana.org.
  • For article submissions (excluding interviews, projects and experiments), please use the online form at https://www.journals.membrana.org/index.php/membrana/about/submissions or contact us directly at editors(at)membrana.org.

More information about the contributions and guidelines for authors can be found at https://www.journals.membrana.org/index.php/membrana/about/submissions.

Contributions will be published in the English edition – the journal Membrana (ISSN 2463-8501; eISSN: 2712-4894) and/or in the Slovenian edition – the magazine Fotografija (ISSN 1408-3566; eISSN: 1855-8941).


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