Art Manifesto for the 21st Century

Dear Rhizomeans,

I post this eagerly interested in receiving feedback/discussion from whoever reads this. I work pretty much in a vacuum having only feedback from the PC. I admit it is a great silent partner without any argumentative personality except going blank once in a while. The Manifesto I request feedback is a personal statement since everyone else has one of their own even if it is not formulated on paper. I kept mine to a minimum without philosophizing on the technical details.

Manifesto: Art for the 21st Century by Alex Nodopaka April 2013


The advent of the computer eliminated the need of canvas and paint brushes and damn near the artist!


With the advent of the personal computer and the vast array of software programs to assist in the development of drawings, sketches, ready-made forms, architectural and engineering plans combined with their mix has in effect eliminated the need for long-hand execution for most artists except maybe for sculptors, and even at that 3-D drawing can translate in direct 3-D sculpting. The desire to paint, no matter how satisfactory the feel of the texture is, is a romantic notion of the past from which it is difficult to distance ourselves. Once the sketch or completed work is achieved with the PC, its reproduction by the numbers on traditional paper or canvas with traditional tools has become superfluous if not boring since the final creation is portrayed/demonstrated on the monitor screen!

In conclusion, one must take computer-assisted as a final portrayal with its attendant benefits of not cluttering our drawers with saved sketches and useless completed drawings and paintings, drying paints and varnishes, canvas stretchers etc.

Example of dynamic artwork & those of a static 2-D are not shown.

Glenn LaVertu April 21 2013 15:42Reply

"the feel of the texture is, is a romantic notion of the past" I take issue with this statement. We may "romanticize" it, but the fact is texture etc, (any sign of real physicality) is something that is innately human, and I believe will never really go away. The arguments about storage etc are valid enough, but I think rather than placing painting (or other methods of non, computer based art) in opposition to it, it might be best to find the qualities of digital work that satisfy other human needs and tendencies. There is no reason why both can't exist together and maintain an equal stance. One does not replace the other, except for those instances that have been fabricated in order to maintain a hierarchy, which is purely an art-market reality, or a commercial art reality. In both of these worlds a value has been put in place to satisfy the needs and wallets of those who run its course… but the truth is there is room for everything.

The notion of the monitor or screen could be a plus. I do find that it is redundant to print a work out (other than say a 3d printer, which needs to be enacted). The life of the digital work seems to belong on the screen and imposing it upon the paper/canvas is an attempt to make it something it is not.

At least that's how I feel now. Keep it up.

Alex Nodopaka April 21 2013 18:24Reply

Hi Glen,

Welcome and thank you for the verbal stretch. Yours is precisely what I was hoping for in terms of a reply. And it is OK to take sides and even take the devil's advocate position that I do so often for the sake of having a discussion and present contrarian views.

In re texture it is a good point you have underlined but in the way I propose is that an imaginary formulation of texture ought to be as good as any. I don't have to stick my hand in the fire to know it burns! So with the exception of an altogether novel physical feel we should be able to imagine it. Of course this is a philosophical debate and if proper words and visual illustrations are achieved it ought to be as good as the real thing. I also agree that both maybe should co-exist for a while longer but like any extraneous appendage it ultimately disappears. Had we not evolved we'd still be amoebas. Artist amoebas? lol

I like the idea that you bring the monitor into play. In fact it is a modern canvas for most of us as much of our artwork no longer ends up on paper or at least painted on paper or canvas or whatever. I believe each home ought to have canvas-sized thin screens displaying ever-changing art slow enough over the course of the day as to be almost imperceptible with changing scenery every 24-hours.

I hope our communications produce more responses from either one of us as it has so far or anyone out there.