Maria Mencia

Reading Rebooted includes two works by this artist. “Wordy Mouths” is a non-interactive, flash-based work that mixes images and words. The movement of the images is rapid, so that the the reader can hardly decipher the words or grasp them fully, without following the image loop through many cycles. As the title implies, Mencia here is questioning the relation between language in its different froms (spoken and written) and the creation and communication of meaning or, as she puts it, “the in-between the visual, the aural and the semantic.”

“Another Kind of Language” is an interactive work about the liminal spaces of meaning-making. Unlike the previous work, this work does not unfold automatically and the reader has a role in “activating” the work when he / she clicks on a letter to move to one of three grid-like screen (Arabic, English, or Chinese). Here the mouse cursor is accompanied by a snake-like, calligraphic visual effect that combines images (cultural symbols and icons) and letters (Arabic, Hebrew, Chnines, and latin) with an audio track of voices producing language sounds that are combined according to user choices. In this way, the relation between the visual and the semantic, and the cultural in this context is brought under scrutiny.

Maria Mencia is a London based artist and academic working in digital media to create interactive installations,, textual poetics and sound pieces. She is senior lecturer in Digital Media at Kingston University, London, UK and co-founder of IDEA (Innovation and Development in Educational Art) ,whose main activities involve running workshops and residencies with educational groups. She holds a practice-based doctorate in Digital Poetics and Digital Art, a MA in History and Theory of Art from Chelsea College of Art, a BA in Fine Art from Camberwell College of Art, The University of the Arts-London, and an English Philology Degree from the Universidad Computense, Madrid, Spain. Her doctoral dissertation was entitled “From Visual Poetry to Digital Art: Image-Sound-Text, Convergent Media and the Development of New Media Languages.”



Mohammad Aljayyousi