About

Skins

new ways of telling old stories

Game “modding” is the term used to describe the adapting or creating of game content using commercial game engines. Modders are able to leverage the technical infrastructure of an existing game to create their own fully functionally yet fully personalized worlds. Skins has taken another word for this practice, “skinning”, as inspiration for a a year-long workshop series with Mohawk teenagers from the Kahnawake First Nation in Quebec. The students work in small teams building virtual environments incorporating stories and histories from their community. Our goal with Skins is three-fold. First, we want to facilitate inter-generational communication in a way that motivates the younger generation to take an active interest in the history of their community. Second, we are hoping to encourage the teens to embrace computer technology as a means of creative expression and production, not just consumption. Third, we are providing them with  a rigorous introduction to digital media production techniques so that  the computer becomes a tool which they can fully control and exploit. Please see www.skins.abtec.org for more information.

Skins is a project of the Aboriginal Territories in Cyberspace (AbTeC) research network, and produced by Obx Labs. www.obxlabs.net / info@obxlabs.net

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Aboriginal Territories in Cyberspace

Empowering First Nations with New Media Technologies

AbTeC is a network of academics, artists and technologists whose goal is to define and share conceptual and practical tools that will allow us to create new, Aboriginally-determined territories within the web-pages, online games, and virtual environments that we call cyberspace. Our multi-faceted effort will include a storytelling series, an ongoing gamesnight, a modding workshop, Machinima, and performance art.

Our main objective is to identify and implement methods by which Aboriginal people can use new media technologies to compliment our cultures. In other words, how can we use the exciting new tools now available on the personal computer to empower Native people, especially our youth, to both preserve and produce our knowledge, culture and language in this highly technological society?
AbTeC’s roots lie with a project called CyberPowWow, a pioneering on-line gallery and chat space for contemporary Aboriginal art. It was through CyberPowWow that we realized that, even on the Internet, Native people need a self-determined place to call home.

Visit Aboriginal Territories in Cyberspace (AbTeC)

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