Interface Is the Place: Augmented Reality and the Phenomena of Smartphone–Spacetime

  • Rewa Wright


This chapter explores the emergent field of mobile augmented reality (AR) art as articulated on smartphones and tablets, and the impact of these new technologies on participatory art practices. Examples for analysis are drawn from recent geo-located mobile art by influential practitioners J. C. Freeman, J. Cardiff and G. B. Miller, W. Pappenheimer and T. Thiel. All have recently produced smartphone art apps and mobile AR apps that advance the concept of a parallel reality to the real world. These artworks are examined to articulate further the technical processes that produce art as a differentiated socio-cultural experience to the conventional gallery-based model of spectatorship. This chapter argues that this experience sits within the emergent field of posthuman digital humanities, as discussed by the eminent theorist Rosi Braidotti (2013).


Augmented reality Smartphone-spacetime 


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Artworks and Apps. Cited

  1. Cardiff, J., & Bures Miller, G. (2014). The City of Forking Paths. Augmented reality app. Geo-fenced to The Rocks, Sydney, Australia. Retrieved from Walk duration, 66 mins.
  2. Freeman, J. C. (2013–ongoing). Things we have lost: EEG AR, artwork was performed as iterations at FACT Gallery (Liverpool 2013), Los Angeles County Museum of Art (California 2015), and Coimbra, (Portugal 2014) and
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  4. Thiel, T. (2016). Mi Querido Barrio [My Beloved Community]. Augmented reality walk made with members of the Puerto Rican Community, presented by the Caribbean Cultural Centre African Diaspora Institute (, East Harlem, New York, USA.
  5. Thiel, T., & Pappenheimer, W. (2013–ongoing). Biomer Skelters. Augmented reality app. Available in various locations, dimensions variable. Retrieved from

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.UNSW Art and DesignUniversity of New South WalesSydneyAustralia

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