cyber*babes (1996)

cyber*babes is an early interactive hypertext piece (1996) that address the Telecommunications Act of 1996. It presents altered quasi pornographic images, a choice of texts and links to outside sources. The work looks at issues of internet censorship.

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Artist Statement

My research takes an interdisciplinary approach to the arts and new technology. My interest in using the computer as an artistic conveyance is a calculated one in my interdisciplinary strategy. The computer is a meta-medium which has permeated Western life because of its ability to convey various genres of information to the user. These varied genres of sound, text, images, and motion pictures, were formerly separate and distinct and this is why the computer as artistic device must be defined as a meta-medium.

    Recently, some of the most important dialog around computers as

meta-medium concerned the computer as a device which offers the user a choice. That is, the computer was seen foremost as an interactive media. If this is so, new genre artworks cannot be viewed as a conveyance for passive consumption. The impact of interactivity on narrative structure (now determined by the user and author in collaboration with the machine) is one of the most interesting facets of my research.

    Issues relating to theory and aesthetics in computer art need to be

re-examined and restated in the context of the rapid digital transformation that has been taking place over the past few years. This means that new definitions need to be attempted.

    While the critical and theoretical arguments for and against the

death of the author have proliferated since Barthes' seminal 1968 essay, "The Death of the Author," no conclusions have been reached. My research and creative manufacture remains, like that of a scientist, based upon and branching from a pre-existing base of information. As scientists appropriate the theories and findings of other scientists I appropriate from computer culture, critical theory, and academic discourse. If this defines a lack of authorship then we must re-examine the nature of science, literature, art, and all cultural achievements.

    The theory which drives much of my research allows the

observer/visitor/user/patron to contribute and interact. This creates a profound change in both the meaning and construction of narrative in works of art and liberates the work of art from both a singular interpretation by art critics and by the artist as the terminal creative voice. My theories are based in the use of chance operations by the early twentieth century avant-garde yet, are tempered and directed by both free choice and the illusion of free choice.

    My research has advanced the preceding theories by exploiting

distributed computing environments such the Internet. The Internet's conceptual origins as a network for the sharing of information, and the opening of that space from the scientific and military user to the public permits a fluidity of exchange between user and creator which defines avant-garde endeavor. Historically, all new media such as photography, film, and sound recording, the avant-garde artist develops new metaphors and methodologies for the media before the media is standardized and absorbed by commercial culture. 31 March 1998

http://www.walkerart.org/gallery9/beyondinterface/hutton_artist.html

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