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Hazel Smith, Will Luers, & Roger Dean, Motions


Hazel Smith is a research professor in the Writing and Society Research Centre at the University of Western Sydney. She is author of The Writing Experiment: strategies for innovative creative writing, Allen and Unwin, 2005 and Hyperscapes in the Poetry of Frank O'Hara: difference, homosexuality, topography, Liverpool University Press, 2000. She is co-author of Improvisation, Hypermedia And The Arts Since 1945, Harwood Academic, 1997 and co-editor with Roger Dean of Practice-led Research, Research-led Practice in the Creative Arts, Edinburgh University Press, 2009. Hazel is also a poet, performer and new media artist, and has published three volumes of poetry, three CDs of performance work and numerous multimedia works. Her latest volume of creative work, with accompanying CD Rom, is The Erotics of Geography: poetry, performance texts, new media works, Tinfish Press, Kaneohe, Hawaii, 2008. Formerly a professional violinist, she is a member of austraLYSIS, the sound and intermedia arts group She has performed her work extensively in US, Europe, UK and Australasia. Hazel was the founder editor of infLect, an online international journal of new media writing based at the University of Canberra (2004-6), and is now co-editor with Roger Dean of soundsRite, a journal of new media writing and sound, based at the University of Western Sydney. Her website is at

Will Luers is a visiting professor at the Creative Media & Digital Culture program at  Washington State University, Vancouver, USA, where he teaches multimedia authoring, video production and mobile app design. His current research and artistic interests are in database narratives, remix video and the multimedia book. In 2010, he was awarded the The Vectors-NEH Summer Fellowship to work on his database documentary, The Father  Divine Project. In 2005, he won the Nantucket Film Festival and Tony Cox Award for Best Screenplay.

Roger Dean is a composer/improviser, and since 2007 a research professor in music cognition and computation at the MARCS Auditory Laboratories, University of Western Sydney. He founded and directs the ensemble austraLYSIS, which has performed in 30 countries. His creative work is on 30 commercial audio CDs, and he has released many digital intermedia pieces. His creative work revolves around keyboard improvisation, and computer music composition, though he also writes instrumental music and performs  ensemble jazz with the austraLYSIS Electroband and in other contexts. Improvisation and computer-interaction merge in his MultiPiano Event, a solo performance exploiting live piano, real-time audio processing, generative physical synthesis piano, and electroacoustic sound. His 400 substantive research publications include 7 humanities books. Previously he was CEO of the Heart Research Institute, Sydney, researching in biochemistry, and then Vice-Chancellor and President of the University of Canberra. His website is at and his brief biography is on Wikipedia at Roger_Dean_(musician).


Motions by Hazel Smith (text), Will Luers (image and coding), and Roger Dean (sound) is conceived as a multimedia web book, and optimized for swiping and scrolling on tablets and computers. It is also a performance piece. It is programmed in HTML 5/Javascript. Motions takes human trafficking and contemporary slavery as its focus. Human trafficking is an accelerating form of crime and is a world-wide problem.  It is one of the darker outcomes of globalization, the breakdown of the nation-state, and increasing ease of travel. Static and moving, variable and sequential, the piece presents image and text fragments from different genres: documentary, journalism, poetry and narrative. These fragments are programmed to evoke the subjective experience of enslavement in motion. The sound is constructed as an interactive mosaic. It includes musical transformations of train and plane journeys. It also features two compositions that use instrumental, timbral, rhythmic and harmonic devices characteristic of very different parts of the world. These materials are compositionally transformed with electroacoustic music techniques, including a range of algorithmic compositional devices. The sound is optimally delivered in 4 channels, but can also be delivered in stereo. Motions was the outcome of an Australia Council for the Arts Digital and New Media Writing Grant, awarded in 2012.

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