Mark Tribe's - New Media Art, book.

Posted by marc garrett | Wed Aug 9th 2006 3:47 p.m.

Mark Tribe's - New Media Art, book.

I would like to ask Mark Tribe why www.furtherfield.org is not included
in his recent book 'New Media Art'?

http://www.taschen.com/pages/en/catalogue/books/art/all/facts/03684.htm

I would also like to open this question up for others on this list to
explore, it would be interesting to know why groups such as ourselves
have been and are ignored by such individuals, when we have also
contributed much to the culture and history of media art for quite while
now.

One could suddenly start thinking that there is a 'gate-keeping'
scenario going on, put in place by certain academics, who are
consciously creating a deliberate historical divide for an elite - by
repeatedly representing and proposing the same names, over and over and
over and over and over.........................again.

confused/disturbed but sadly, not actually that surprised.

marc garrett.
  • marc garrett | Wed Aug 9th 2006 3:58 p.m.
    Mark Tribe's - New Media Art, book.

    I would like to ask Mark Tribe why www.furtherfield.org is not included
    in his recent book 'New Media Art'?

    http://www.taschen.com/pages/en/catalogue/books/art/all/facts/03684.htm

    I would also like to open this question up for others on this list to
    explore, it would be interesting to know why groups such as ourselves
    have been and are ignored by such individuals, when we have also
    contributed much to the culture and history of media art for quite while
    now.

    One could suddenly start thinking that there is a 'gate-keeping'
    scenario going on, put in place by certain academics, who are
    consciously creating a deliberate historical divide for an elite - by
    repeatedly representing and proposing the same names, over and over and
    over and over and over.........................again.

    confused/disturbed but sadly, not actually that surprised.

    marc garrett.

    --
    Furtherfield - http://www.furtherfield.org
    HTTP - http://www.http.uk.net
    Node.London - http://www.nodel.org
  • Eric Dymond | Wed Aug 9th 2006 7:57 p.m.
    marc garrett wrote:

    > Mark Tribe's - New Media Art, book.
    >
    > I would like to ask Mark Tribe why www.furtherfield.org is not
    > included
    > in his recent book 'New Media Art'?
    >
    > http://www.taschen.com/pages/en/catalogue/books/art/all/facts/03684.htm
    >
    > I would also like to open this question up for others on this list to
    > explore, it would be interesting to know why groups such as ourselves
    > have been and are ignored by such individuals, when we have also
    > contributed much to the culture and history of media art for quite
    > while
    > now.
    >
    > One could suddenly start thinking that there is a 'gate-keeping'
    > scenario going on, put in place by certain academics, who are
    > consciously creating a deliberate historical divide for an elite - by
    > repeatedly representing and proposing the same names, over and over
    > and
    > over and over and over.........................again.
    >
    > confused/disturbed but sadly, not actually that surprised.
    >
    > marc garrett.
    >
    > --
    > Furtherfield - http://www.furtherfield.org
    > HTTP - http://www.http.uk.net
    > Node.London - http://www.nodel.org
    >

    Well it would be nice if these books/documents were compendiums of innovative work but they never are. Whether it be Marks book or Rachels earlier book on Internet Art, in the end these *histories* end up being reflections of the authors interests and accordingly satiating their ids.
    This is such a common academic issue, however I doubt that there is any real attempt at the molding of public perception. The reality of net art is that I never reference a book for it. I always go online for comments and opinions.
    Will Mark's book have any impact on a field that seems to ignore linear history? I doubt it. He will pick up a few dollars for a few months, and then it will sit on the shelf, then the discount bin.
    So far, not a single book on Net Art can be considered an academic success, but then again, how would I know, I don't read them.
    It's just not the same as writing a history of painting, things dissolve too quickly.

    Eric
  • marc garrett | Thu Aug 10th 2006 5:46 a.m.
    Hi Eric & all,

    >Well it would be nice if these books/documents were compendiums of
    innovative work but they never are.

    I would have to disagree here, I think that there are some innovative
    works by some interesting groups/artists in this book. I actually admire
    some of the works by some of these people presented in the publication
    but also admire many who are not included.

    In my humble opinion, there are a few profound and 'blinkered' items
    that are questionable, in how the book assumes its branding as an
    absolute, think of the title - 'New Media Art'. By naming it in such a
    way, it proposes that, anything outside of the edited, vicinity of the
    book is, not 'new media art'. This migt not even be conscious but, this
    is what it does. Creating an 'all too regular' binary situation of
    'them and us' - 'winners and losers' of history, which is a
    patriarchical and modernist syndrome supported by institutional (and
    capitlaist) default. This is a very common mistake and I find it
    disturbing that such singular 'whole' representations are re-introduced
    far too regularly by, 'supposed' intellegent and critically engaged,
    learned individuals.

    The premis of the book puts across the notion that it is seriously
    engaged in declaring to the world, a wholesome set of (supposed) truths,
    beginning from the position of cultural status in respect of the writer
    being a co-founder of Rhizome etc (for example), and of course the use
    of academic cache. Which initself, is not a negative mannerism; yet -
    out of this lazy or prhaps even cynical nuances can prevail, with the
    incorporating, and acceptance of misinterpretions, ignoring the possible
    relational nature of what such a book could be.

    *IMPORTANT FACT TO REMEMBER*
    -just because a writer is involved in such an interesting and
    increasingly diverse and contemporary culture, does not mean that they
    are going to be more critical in tbe imaginative sens, and democratic
    their representation of that culture...

    If one considers who the writer feels that they are actually writing for
    - one would have to say that it is for themselves first of all (no
    problem), to peers, associates, institutional rhetoric and of course, 'a
    certain history', not artists and related groups, in the larger scheme
    of things. For if it was really about critical exploration of a
    contemporary practise and its various interconnectness, and
    crossing-overs between other cultures and those interesting people
    coming out of that, it would be more open and generous to include less,
    already supported individuals, and focusing more on groups that infuence
    culture on their own terms (such as grass root groups and individuals),
    not just via already regurgitated, historicized protocol. Not just
    because they have successfully managed to conform to a controlling set
    of mechanistic and masculine orientated, regimes and processes - who
    have adapted their behaviour and potentialiaties to the lowest form and
    level of function, 'pissing up the post of insitutionlized territorialism'.

    "It is no longer enough to experiment, ponder serendipitously, discover.
    There is a crushing competitive pressure to be first with a formula, a
    method, a product. The first to publish may get a Nobel award; the first
    in the market makes the most gain. We are in the age of the short-cut,
    corporate espionage and falsified results — because of competition. As
    in a foot race, only the one coming in first qualifies; the others are
    losers. A culture that promotes winners gets more and more losers."
    James Hillman - The Virtues of Caution.

    So, one is left to (casually) assume that the writer is not aware of
    other groups who have and are currently inputing equally relevant
    creative works out there, which is worrying.

    The introductory title to the 'New Media Art' book, is - 'Art in the age
    of digital communication' - perhaps it would be honest to call it 'Some
    Art in the age of digital communication', or 'My personal choice of Art
    in the age of digital communication'...etc.

    How and why was the content chosen? Does the writer see that that they
    have a responsibility to declare an already well provided canon of
    history to their readers of such information, or are they interested in
    enlarging the ever expanding circle of media arts?

    I have received quite a few off-list emails regarding this, which is
    interesting in its own right.

    I would like to add here that I have no personal dislike of Mark Tribe
    in any way at all, it is not an attack on him personally but, more to do
    with the processes and poltical nature of his action in writing such a
    book. I have met Mark one, and he seemed charming and fine to me. I am
    thankful that he has been a part of introducing a platform such as
    Rhizime to the world, in which we are currently sharing ideas and
    communicating on at present. but, please - let's change the record. I
    can help him in this...

    marc garrett
    --

    Furtherfield - http://www.furtherfield.org
    HTTP - http://www.http.uk.net
    Node.London - http://www.nodel.org

    >marc garrett wrote:
    >
    >>Mark Tribe's - New Media Art, book.
    >>
    >>I would like to ask Mark Tribe why www.furtherfield.org is not
    >>included
    >>in his recent book 'New Media Art'?
    >>
    >>http://www.taschen.com/pages/en/catalogue/books/art/all/facts/03684.htm
    >>
    >>I would also like to open this question up for others on this list to
    >>explore, it would be interesting to know why groups such as ourselves
    >>have been and are ignored by such individuals, when we have also
    >>contributed much to the culture and history of media art for quite
    >>while
    >>now.
    >>
    >>One could suddenly start thinking that there is a 'gate-keeping'
    >>scenario going on, put in place by certain academics, who are
    >>consciously creating a deliberate historical divide for an elite - by
    >>repeatedly representing and proposing the same names, over and over
    >>and
    >>over and over and over.........................again.
    >>
    >>confused/disturbed but sadly, not actually that surprised.
    >>
    >>marc garrett.
    >>
    >>--
    >>Furtherfield - http://www.furtherfield.org
    >>HTTP - http://www.http.uk.net
    >>Node.London - http://www.nodel.org
    >>
    >
    >Well it would be nice if these books/documents were compendiums of
    innovative work but they never are. Whether it be Marks book or Rachels
    earlier book on Internet Art, in the end these *histories* end up being
    reflections of the authors interests and accordingly satiating their ids.
    >This is such a common academic issue, however I doubt that there is
    any real attempt at the molding of public perception. The reality of net
    art is that I never reference a book for it. I always go online for
    comments and opinions.
    >Will Mark's book have any impact on a field that seems to ignore
    linear history? I doubt it. He will pick up a few dollars for a few
    months, and then it will sit on the shelf, then the discount bin.
    >So far, not a single book on Net Art can be considered an academic
    success, but then again, how would I know, I don't read them.
    >It's just not the same as writing a history of painting, things
    dissolve too quickly.
    >
    >Eric
    >+
    >-> post: list@rhizome.org
    >-> questions: info@rhizome.org
    >-> subscribe/unsubscribe: http://rhizome.org/preferences/subscribe.rhiz
    >-> give: http://rhizome.org/support
    >+
    >Subscribers to Rhizome are subject to the terms set out in the
    >Membership Agreement available online at http://rhizome.org/info/29.php
    >
    >

    --
    Furtherfield - http://www.furtherfield.org
    HTTP - http://www.http.uk.net
    Node.London - http://www.nodel.org

    >marc garrett wrote:
    >
    >
    >
    >>Mark Tribe's - New Media Art, book.
    >>
    >>I would like to ask Mark Tribe why www.furtherfield.org is not
    >>included
    >>in his recent book 'New Media Art'?
    >>
    >>http://www.taschen.com/pages/en/catalogue/books/art/all/facts/03684.htm
    >>
    >>I would also like to open this question up for others on this list to
    >>explore, it would be interesting to know why groups such as ourselves
    >>have been and are ignored by such individuals, when we have also
    >>contributed much to the culture and history of media art for quite
    >>while
    >>now.
    >>
    >>One could suddenly start thinking that there is a 'gate-keeping'
    >>scenario going on, put in place by certain academics, who are
    >>consciously creating a deliberate historical divide for an elite - by
    >>repeatedly representing and proposing the same names, over and over
    >>and
    >>over and over and over.........................again.
    >>
    >>confused/disturbed but sadly, not actually that surprised.
    >>
    >>marc garrett.
    >>
    >>--
    >>Furtherfield - http://www.furtherfield.org
    >>HTTP - http://www.http.uk.net
    >>Node.London - http://www.nodel.org
    >>
    >>
    >>
    >
    >Well it would be nice if these books/documents were compendiums of innovative work but they never are. Whether it be Marks book or Rachels earlier book on Internet Art, in the end these *histories* end up being reflections of the authors interests and accordingly satiating their ids.
    >This is such a common academic issue, however I doubt that there is any real attempt at the molding of public perception. The reality of net art is that I never reference a book for it. I always go online for comments and opinions.
    >Will Mark's book have any impact on a field that seems to ignore linear history? I doubt it. He will pick up a few dollars for a few months, and then it will sit on the shelf, then the discount bin.
    >So far, not a single book on Net Art can be considered an academic success, but then again, how would I know, I don't read them.
    >It's just not the same as writing a history of painting, things dissolve too quickly.
    >
    >Eric
    >+
    >-> post: list@rhizome.org
    >-> questions: info@rhizome.org
    >-> subscribe/unsubscribe: http://rhizome.org/preferences/subscribe.rhiz
    >-> give: http://rhizome.org/support
    >+
    >Subscribers to Rhizome are subject to the terms set out in the
    >Membership Agreement available online at http://rhizome.org/info/29.php
    >
    >
    >
    >

    --
    Furtherfield - http://www.furtherfield.org
    HTTP - http://www.http.uk.net
    Node.London - http://www.nodel.org
  • Eric Dymond | Thu Aug 10th 2006 9:27 a.m.
    marc garrett wrote:

    > Hi Eric & all,
    >
    > >Well it would be nice if these books/documents were compendiums of
    > innovative work but they never are.
    >
    > I would have to disagree here, I think that there are some innovative
    > works by some interesting groups/artists in this book. I actually
    > admire
    > some of the works by some of these people presented in the
    > publication
    > but also admire many who are not included.

    I think a few good works always slip in. But this is a 96 page "TOMB", and hardly a definitive study, it's part of the publishers 'Easy Art for Easy People' series.
    In the books on New Media/Internet Art, the focus is nearly always a refelection of what was discussed on Nettime and The Thing. Both provided an opportunity for the discussion of what was to ebcome New Media in the mid to late 90's. Whats always missing in these surveys is the west coast innovators who began arts conferences on the Well, took part in Xerox Parcs experimental arts program, founded networked activism and created the EFF. This is where the original net art came into being in the mid 80's. There was always a good deal of mistrust between the early adapters on the West Coast and the late comers on the East. But with enough books distorting history ( nuthin' like a little 'New York Spin') the actual history will be clouded in mist, just like the opening stanza of a M.U.D.
    Eric

    (this isn't the first time that
  • Alexis Turner | Thu Aug 10th 2006 2:57 p.m.
    The Internet is comprised of billions of pages and millions of sites. There is
    no such thing as a book that can be comprehensive or definitive about something
    as broad as net art, or even something as specific as mallard hunting sites
    from the American South. You need encyclopedias for something like that, and
    no book will ever include or exclude the "right" projects.

    SO I gues my question is, Are you suggesting that books not be written on the
    subject? (If you are, that is fine, but say that,don't complain about one
    specific book that fails for all the same reasons that they will ALL fail.) If
    you aren't suggesting that, then what are you suggesting?
    -Alexis
  • marc garrett | Thu Aug 10th 2006 3:24 p.m.
    Hi Alexis,

    2 points...

    - I am not complaining...

    - did you actually read the text?

    marc

    >The Internet is comprised of billions of pages and millions of sites. There is
    >no such thing as a book that can be comprehensive or definitive about something
    >as broad as net art, or even something as specific as mallard hunting sites
    >from the American South. You need encyclopedias for something like that, and
    >no book will ever include or exclude the "right" projects.
    >
    >SO I gues my question is, Are you suggesting that books not be written on the
    >subject? (If you are, that is fine, but say that,don't complain about one
    >specific book that fails for all the same reasons that they will ALL fail.) If
    >you aren't suggesting that, then what are you suggesting?
    >-Alexis
    >
    >+
    >-> post: list@rhizome.org
    >-> questions: info@rhizome.org
    >-> subscribe/unsubscribe: http://rhizome.org/preferences/subscribe.rhiz
    >-> give: http://rhizome.org/support
    >+
    >Subscribers to Rhizome are subject to the terms set out in the
    >Membership Agreement available online at http://rhizome.org/info/29.php
    >
    >
    >
    >

    --
    Furtherfield - http://www.furtherfield.org
    HTTP - http://www.http.uk.net
    Node.London - http://www.nodel.org
  • Eric Dymond | Thu Aug 10th 2006 3:40 p.m.
    Are you commenting on my comment or commenting on Marcs?
    Eric
  • Eric Dymond | Thu Aug 10th 2006 3:43 p.m.
    Alexis Turner wrote:

    > The Internet is comprised of billions of pages and millions of sites.
    > There is
    > no such thing as a book that can be comprehensive or definitive about
    > something
    > as broad as net art, or even something as specific as mallard hunting
    > sites
    > from the American South. You need encyclopedias for something like
    > that, and
    > no book will ever include or exclude the "right" projects.
    >
    > SO I gues my question is, Are you suggesting that books not be written
    > on the
    > subject? (If you are, that is fine, but say that,don't complain about
    > one
    > specific book that fails for all the same reasons that they will ALL
    > fail.) If
    > you aren't suggesting that, then what are you suggesting?
    > -Alexis
    >
    If someone publishes a book, and that someone is Mark, then he's open for criticism.

    Eric
  • Alexis Turner | Thu Aug 10th 2006 5:26 p.m.
    I read all of your comments to the list, if that is what you mean (as opposed to
    the book itself). My question for you is, are you simply speaking rhetorically?
    The non-complaining points that you made seemed to be basically that the book
    doesn't cover what it should. My point is that any
    book that showcases something like "new media art" is going to miss certain
    things, include things that people don't think should be included, etc. etc.
    For every Marc that wants to know why project X wasn't shown, there's a Mark
    that doesn't think it should be - There is no such thing as a showcase book that
    includes all things for all people (or, in other words, everyone's a critic).

    To be honest, I thought that point was a given, and that is why I ask what YOUR
    point is. I feel like I must be missing something. Like maybe you have a
    different gripe that you haven't mentioned - perhaps the text sucks ass. But
    that's not what you brought up. You brought up its non-comprehensiveness. What
    am I missing?
    -Alexis

    On Thu, 10 Aug 2006, marc wrote:

    ::Date: Thu, 10 Aug 2006 22:29:38 +0100
    ::From: marc <marc.garrett@furtherfield.org>
    ::To: list@rhizome.org
    ::Subject: Re: RHIZOME_RAW: Re: Re: Re: Mark Tribe's - New Media Art, book.
    ::
    ::Hi Alexis,
    ::
    ::2 points...
    ::
    ::- I am not complaining...
    ::
    ::- did you actually read the text?
    ::
    ::marc
    ::
    ::> The Internet is comprised of billions of pages and millions of sites. There
    ::> is no such thing as a book that can be comprehensive or definitive about
    ::> something as broad as net art, or even something as specific as mallard
    ::> hunting sites from the American South. You need encyclopedias for something
    ::> like that, and no book will ever include or exclude the "right" projects.
    ::> SO I gues my question is, Are you suggesting that books not be written on
    ::> the subject? (If you are, that is fine, but say that,don't complain about
    ::> one specific book that fails for all the same reasons that they will ALL
    ::> fail.) If you aren't suggesting that, then what are you suggesting?
    ::> -Alexis
    ::>
    ::> +
    ::> -> post: list@rhizome.org
    ::> -> questions: info@rhizome.org
    ::> -> subscribe/unsubscribe: http://rhizome.org/preferences/subscribe.rhiz
    ::> -> give: http://rhizome.org/support
    ::> +
    ::> Subscribers to Rhizome are subject to the terms set out in the
    ::> Membership Agreement available online at http://rhizome.org/info/29.php
    ::>
    ::>
    ::>
    ::
    ::
    ::--
    ::Furtherfield - http://www.furtherfield.org
    ::HTTP - http://www.http.uk.net
    ::Node.London - http://www.nodel.org
    ::
    ::+
    ::-> post: list@rhizome.org
    ::-> questions: info@rhizome.org
    ::-> subscribe/unsubscribe: http://rhizome.org/preferences/subscribe.rhiz
    ::-> give: http://rhizome.org/support
    ::+
    ::Subscribers to Rhizome are subject to the terms set out in the
    ::Membership Agreement available online at http://rhizome.org/info/29.php
    ::
  • Rhizomer | Thu Aug 10th 2006 6:49 p.m.
    Personally I suspect the underlying problem is the idea of doing a book on
    new media. This somehow misses the point.

    Michael Betancourt

    www.michaelbetancourt.com
  • Eric Dymond | Thu Aug 10th 2006 8:29 p.m.
    Actually Marc, I think what you've done with Furtherfield is quite remarkable, I could never have done what you did. I remember an early project, DIDO, which seemed to lay the groundwork for the direction that Furtherfield was to take. It consumed a good deal of my online time then. I found it refreshing to see new works, works that weren't on Nettime, The Thing and Rhizome getting a venue.
    I do believe that your efforts are deeply respected by the New Media community, and hope that the largess of you and your collective continues.
    Whether it appears in a paper medium or not seems unimportant to me.
    I visit your site more often than any of the works mentioned in the text by Mark.
    But I should add that you could easily write a book about Furtherfield, and it would get published ( see the artists series on Taschen or any other Art publisher).

    Eric
  • Jim Andrews | Thu Aug 10th 2006 8:36 p.m.
    The Art of War
    Eyal Weizman

    Eyal Weizman is an architect, writer and Director of Goldsmith's College
    Centre for Research Architecture. His work deals with issues of conflict
    territories and human rights.

    http://infoshop.org/inews/article.php?story 060801170800738

    Intro:

    "The Israeli Defence Forces have been heavily influenced by contemporary
    philosophy, highlighting the fact that there is considerable overlap among
    theoretical texts deemed essential by military academies and architectural
    schools."

    Exit:

    "When the military talks theory to itself, it seems to be about changing its
    organizational structure and hierarchies. When it invokes theory in
    communications with the public
  • Eric Dymond | Thu Aug 10th 2006 9:52 p.m.
    Jim Andrews wrote:

    > The Art of War
    > Eyal Weizman
    He seems to be echoing Virilio 's thoughts.
    Virilio has always claimed that the next war (current war) would be a war fought in the timeless regions of human thought. Immediate and omnipresent.
    "A true deus ex machina, the electronic war machine is not neutral; politically, it represents a serious danger of contamination of conscience for men of goodwill"
    Virilio, Desert Screen, 1991, trans 2002.
  • Rob Myers | Fri Aug 11th 2006 3:27 a.m.
    Quoting Alexis Turner <subbies@redheadedstepchild.org>:

    > The non-complaining points that you made seemed to be basically that the book
    > doesn't cover what it should.

    That seems to be a substantive criticism.

    The Internet is global, and much net.art work, even some of importance, has
    taken place in that forgotten corner of the market known as The Rest Of The
    World.

    Attempts to streamline the emerging histroy of net.art in favor of ...?
    can and
    should be contested.

    > My point is that any
    > book that showcases something like "new media art" is going to miss certain
    > things,

    If I don't know who Barbara Kruger is and I write a book on 1980s American art
    that omits her I am incompetent. If I do know who Barbara Kruger is and
    I write
    a book on 1980s American art that omits her I have some explaining to do.

    Furtherfield is not unimportant.

    Omissions can be accounted for, and when those omissions are important they
    *should* be accounted for. The claim that "any book that showcases something
    like "new media art" is going to miss certain things" does kinda render things
    a bit opaque.

    > To be honest, I thought that point was a given, and that is why I ask
    > what YOUR
    > point is.

    In Soviet Russia, apologists accuse YOU! /slashdot

    I do agree that any "comprehensive" survey is going to be a mass of
    exclusions,
    score-settling, favors, boosting, covering-up and right moves.

    This doesn't mean that we are forbidden from asking what those are.

    > I feel like I must be missing something. Like maybe you have a
    > different gripe that you haven't mentioned - perhaps the text sucks ass. But
    > that's not what you brought up. You brought up its
    > non-comprehensiveness. What
    > am I missing?

    If a net.art text was well written but ignored Rhizome, nettime and (say) MTAA
    in favor of "Downloadables" (1996) by Rob Myers that would not be OK. Well I'd
    be happy obviously, but I'd have to admit that soemthing wasn't right. If a
    series of texts emerged that did this I'd want to know what was going on.

    Marc's critique deserves an answer packed slightly less with cubist straw men
    ("Are you suggesting that books not be written on the subject?"). I
    don't think
    that closing ranks is the best response.

    - Rob.
  • Jim Andrews | Fri Aug 11th 2006 6:53 a.m.
    Rob's post is very well-considered.

    I remember talking with a musician digital artist--he wasn't knowlegeable
    about net art, but he had Rachel Greene's book and one other, I can't
    remember which--and he said, basically, "you're not in these books. you
    don't rate as a net artist."

    How about your work, I asked him. Are you in the publications you think you
    should be in? You should know better than to take those sorts of books as
    definitive.

    Of course he reconsidered. But books that survey art, whether they want to
    or not, give the reader the impression that only the best work is considered
    therein. It isn't in the publisher's interest to give a different
    impression. That would diminish the value of the book. But, also, they *are*
    meant as arguments for the value of the work they consider. They *are*
    competitive by their nature for attention for the book itself and of course
    slightly less for the work they consider.

    > If I don't know who Barbara Kruger is and I write a book on 1980s
    > American art
    > that omits her I am incompetent. If I do know who Barbara Kruger is and
    > I write
    > a book on 1980s American art that omits her I have some explaining to do.

    That may well be. But concerning net art, isn't it really only Jodi about
    whom you could say the same? Only Jodi is sufficiently famous. And, even
    then, were the book about net art since 2000, well, wasn't it around then or
    perhaps even before when Jodi pretty much stopped making net art?

    In the early nineties I wrote a little essay called "On the impossibility of
    the mere existence of the great works of the late twentieth century". Not
    that great work is not being produced. But only through humbug can there be
    even the pretence of concensus on just which ones are most worthy. Because
    there is so much art being produced and it is so relatively heterogeneous.
    The Internet exposes us to net art around the globe. And fails to expose us
    to much other net art from around the globe. Also, there are many
    conflicting ideas of what makes 'good net art' and also conflicting ideas
    whether there even can be any 'good net art'. New York is well situated as a
    center of international net art, but we see less real development of the
    notion of international net art, these days, as "a mass of exclusions,
    score-settling, favors, boosting, covering-up and right moves". The theory
    of the 'rhizome' does not seem to cover this.

    I saw an interesting little interview with David Cronenberg on rocketboom
    about the influence of the Web on film. He said he felt the big influence
    was on further splintering of the audience. He said that might end up
    meaning that $200 million dollar movies stop being made because it's only
    when you can summon a mass audience that those sorts of projects are
    possible. He also talked of the conception of audience historically,
    mentioning that painters before the twentieth century certainly didn't paint
    for a mass audience, mentioned that our conception of the size and scope of
    audience is changing in the light of splintering shards of media.

    > I do agree that any "comprehensive" survey is going to be a mass of
    > exclusions,
    > score-settling, favors, boosting, covering-up and right moves.
    >
    > This doesn't mean that we are forbidden from asking what those are.

    Well said.

    ja
    http://vispo.com
  • marc garrett | Fri Aug 11th 2006 7:43 a.m.
    Hi Jim & all,

    I think that you have answered for me some of the questions that I was
    going to say to Alexis - well explained :-)

    marc

    >Rob's post is very well-considered.
    >
    >I remember talking with a musician digital artist--he wasn't knowlegeable
    >about net art, but he had Rachel Greene's book and one other, I can't
    >remember which--and he said, basically, "you're not in these books. you
    >don't rate as a net artist."
    >
    >How about your work, I asked him. Are you in the publications you think you
    >should be in? You should know better than to take those sorts of books as
    >definitive.
    >
    >Of course he reconsidered. But books that survey art, whether they want to
    >or not, give the reader the impression that only the best work is considered
    >therein. It isn't in the publisher's interest to give a different
    >impression. That would diminish the value of the book. But, also, they *are*
    >meant as arguments for the value of the work they consider. They *are*
    >competitive by their nature for attention for the book itself and of course
    >slightly less for the work they consider.
    >
    >
    >
    >>If I don't know who Barbara Kruger is and I write a book on 1980s
    >>American art
    >>that omits her I am incompetent. If I do know who Barbara Kruger is and
    >>I write
    >>a book on 1980s American art that omits her I have some explaining to do.
    >>
    >>
    >
    >That may well be. But concerning net art, isn't it really only Jodi about
    >whom you could say the same? Only Jodi is sufficiently famous. And, even
    >then, were the book about net art since 2000, well, wasn't it around then or
    >perhaps even before when Jodi pretty much stopped making net art?
    >
    >In the early nineties I wrote a little essay called "On the impossibility of
    >the mere existence of the great works of the late twentieth century". Not
    >that great work is not being produced. But only through humbug can there be
    >even the pretence of concensus on just which ones are most worthy. Because
    >there is so much art being produced and it is so relatively heterogeneous.
    >The Internet exposes us to net art around the globe. And fails to expose us
    >to much other net art from around the globe. Also, there are many
    >conflicting ideas of what makes 'good net art' and also conflicting ideas
    >whether there even can be any 'good net art'. New York is well situated as a
    >center of international net art, but we see less real development of the
    >notion of international net art, these days, as "a mass of exclusions,
    >score-settling, favors, boosting, covering-up and right moves". The theory
    >of the 'rhizome' does not seem to cover this.
    >
    >I saw an interesting little interview with David Cronenberg on rocketboom
    >about the influence of the Web on film. He said he felt the big influence
    >was on further splintering of the audience. He said that might end up
    >meaning that $200 million dollar movies stop being made because it's only
    >when you can summon a mass audience that those sorts of projects are
    >possible. He also talked of the conception of audience historically,
    >mentioning that painters before the twentieth century certainly didn't paint
    >for a mass audience, mentioned that our conception of the size and scope of
    >audience is changing in the light of splintering shards of media.
    >
    >
    >
    >>I do agree that any "comprehensive" survey is going to be a mass of
    >>exclusions,
    >>score-settling, favors, boosting, covering-up and right moves.
    >>
    >>This doesn't mean that we are forbidden from asking what those are.
    >>
    >>
    >
    >Well said.
    >
    >ja
    >http://vispo.com
    >
    >
    >+
    >-> post: list@rhizome.org
    >-> questions: info@rhizome.org
    >-> subscribe/unsubscribe: http://rhizome.org/preferences/subscribe.rhiz
    >-> give: http://rhizome.org/support
    >+
    >Subscribers to Rhizome are subject to the terms set out in the
    >Membership Agreement available online at http://rhizome.org/info/29.php
    >
    >
    >
    >

    --
    Furtherfield - http://www.furtherfield.org
    HTTP - http://www.http.uk.net
    Node.London - http://www.nodel.org
  • Alexis Turner | Fri Aug 11th 2006 1:01 p.m.
    I have/had no intent to close the ranks on this one, merely to suggest we
    analyze the things we take for granted. Perhaps I got someone's hackles up.
    Good. Maybe that person will ask themself why. Hackles only get raised when
    something sacred or scary is stepped on, and both fear and idols prevent progress.

    The difficulties pointed out on here have simply been pointed out, but I'm still
    not seeing a significant effort at tackling the root of the problem -
    ultimately, it's just a bit of grumbling about what is/isnot included in
    Volume X or Y. We've pointed out the trouble with people interpreting such
    books as definitive, but nt whether or not they are actually CAPABLE of being
    definitive. It's very easy to stamp feet and say something is not definitive.
    Much harder to find a way to address the problem. Do we need a new way of
    publishing? Should the book be pimped to a different audience (non-general,
    specifically) who will be savvy enough to understand these difficulties?
    Should these sort of books stop being published altogether because there IS no
    other solution? Do we need to go so far as to improve education on a
    general level, so that ANYONE reading such a volume would be aware of these
    inherent difficulties and not make such a simple but stupid mistake? Those
    questions are real ones, not a way of "closing the ranks." I prefer to think
    of it as opening them up.

    -Alexis

    (As an aside, the message is the important thing, is it not? Why do we
    care so much how it is delivered? It's a fascinating question to turn over.)

    On Fri, 11 Aug 2006 rob@robmyers.org wrote:

    ::Date: Fri, 11 Aug 2006 10:26:54 +0100
    ::From: rob@robmyers.org
    ::To: list@rhizome.org
    ::Subject: Re: RHIZOME_RAW: Re: Re: Re: Mark Tribe's - New Media Art, book.
    ::
    ::Quoting Alexis Turner <subbies@redheadedstepchild.org>:
    ::
    ::> The non-complaining points that you made seemed to be basically that the
    ::> book
    ::> doesn't cover what it should.
    ::
    ::That seems to be a substantive criticism.
    ::
    ::The Internet is global, and much net.art work, even some of importance, has
    ::taken place in that forgotten corner of the market known as The Rest Of The
    ::World.
    ::
    ::Attempts to streamline the emerging histroy of net.art in favor of ...? can
    ::and
    ::should be contested.
    ::
    ::> My point is that any
    ::> book that showcases something like "new media art" is going to miss certain
    ::> things,
    ::
    ::If I don't know who Barbara Kruger is and I write a book on 1980s American art
    ::that omits her I am incompetent. If I do know who Barbara Kruger is and I
    ::write
    ::a book on 1980s American art that omits her I have some explaining to do.
    ::
    ::Furtherfield is not unimportant.
    ::
    ::Omissions can be accounted for, and when those omissions are important they
    ::*should* be accounted for. The claim that "any book that showcases something
    ::like "new media art" is going to miss certain things" does kinda render things
    ::a bit opaque.
    ::
    ::> To be honest, I thought that point was a given, and that is why I ask what
    ::> YOUR
    ::> point is.
    ::
    ::In Soviet Russia, apologists accuse YOU! /slashdot
    ::
    ::I do agree that any "comprehensive" survey is going to be a mass of
    ::exclusions,
    ::score-settling, favors, boosting, covering-up and right moves.
    ::
    ::This doesn't mean that we are forbidden from asking what those are.
    ::
    ::> I feel like I must be missing something. Like maybe you have a
    ::> different gripe that you haven't mentioned - perhaps the text sucks ass.
    ::> But
    ::> that's not what you brought up. You brought up its non-comprehensiveness.
    ::> What
    ::> am I missing?
    ::
    ::If a net.art text was well written but ignored Rhizome, nettime and (say) MTAA
    ::in favor of "Downloadables" (1996) by Rob Myers that would not be OK. Well I'd
    ::be happy obviously, but I'd have to admit that soemthing wasn't right. If a
    ::series of texts emerged that did this I'd want to know what was going on.
    ::
    ::Marc's critique deserves an answer packed slightly less with cubist straw men
    ::("Are you suggesting that books not be written on the subject?"). I don't
    ::think
    ::that closing ranks is the best response.
    ::
    ::- Rob.
    ::
    ::+
    ::-> post: list@rhizome.org
    ::-> questions: info@rhizome.org
    ::-> subscribe/unsubscribe: http://rhizome.org/preferences/subscribe.rhiz
    ::-> give: http://rhizome.org/support
    ::+
    ::Subscribers to Rhizome are subject to the terms set out in the
    ::Membership Agreement available online at http://rhizome.org/info/29.php
    ::
  • ryan griffis | Fri Aug 11th 2006 2:57 p.m.
    On Aug 11, 2006, at 2:01 PM, Alexis Turner wrote:

    > I have/had no intent to close the ranks on this one, merely to
    > suggest we
    > analyze the things we take for granted. Perhaps I got someone's
    > hackles up.
    > Good. Maybe that person will ask themself why. Hackles only get
    > raised when
    > something sacred or scary is stepped on, and both fear and idols
    > prevent progress.

    Alexis, you usually raise pretty good and irreverent questions, but i
    think your statement here is a bit presumptuous and iconoclastic.
    Criticism is not ALWAYS grounded in fear of "progress." And, more
    often than not, "progress" is a simple way of naturalizing and
    neutralizing politics (of whatever form you like).
    >
    > We've pointed out the trouble with people interpreting such
    > books as definitive, but nt whether or not they are actually
    > CAPABLE of being
    > definitive. It's very easy to stamp feet and say something is not
    > definitive.

    i don't want to speak for anyone here, but i don't think the issue is
    really one of the ability of a book to be comprehensive or complete.
    Or whether anthologies and compilations should exist or not. It's an
    entirely different concern to point out that any collection of ideas/
    people/places/etc. inherently contains a perspective and that
    perspectives can and should be critiqued for the narratives they
    create (i think Rob made this point rather well). It's (not-so-)
    simply a matter of contesting history and not letting dominant voices
    write it so smoothly and cleanly at the expense of others' stories.
    One value of such texts is in their ability to generate reaction and
    revisions to the histories they attempt to solidify.
    >
    > -Alexis
    >
    > (As an aside, the message is the important thing, is it not? Why
    > do we
    > care so much how it is delivered? It's a fascinating question to
    > turn over.)

    not sure if this is a rhetorical and ironic gesture... on a "new
    media" list to separate the "message" from the "media"...
    ryan
  • Rob Myers | Fri Aug 11th 2006 3:13 p.m.
    On 11 Aug 2006, at 20:01, Alexis Turner wrote:

    > I have/had no intent to close the ranks on this one, merely to
    > suggest we
    > analyze the things we take for granted.

    I'm *calling* for analysis of what is taken for granted: the
    omissions & inclusions in a particular cultural work. Discussing
    future ideal systems would be interesting, but is not a substitute
    for this.

    Furtherfield are in fact part of the future you propose: an open site
    for review, discussion, education and creation. I personally like
    this glimpse of your future but if I were you I'd feel a little
    slighted by the fact that it doesn't seem to be considered suitable
    for inclusion in a book about net.art . ;-)

    > (As an aside, the message is the important thing, is it not? Why
    > do we care so much how it is delivered? It's a fascinating
    > question to turn over.)

    There are various useful concepts around this. Hofstadter talks about
    "framing message" in "Godel Escher Bach", McLuhan claims that the
    medium is the message, and The Fun Boy Three claim that "It ain't
    what you do it's the way that you do it" (with some asistance from
    Bananarama). The delivery is part of the message, there are no
    incidentals in communication, certainly not in autographic work.
    Allographic work may have some leeway, although noise can be ironised
    into signal by nostalgia, Trip Hop music, 8-bit art and music and
    Glitch Art are good examples of this.

    I wish I had time to format that in Mez-speak to underline it. :-)

    - Rob.
  • Rob Myers | Fri Aug 11th 2006 3:34 p.m.
    On 11 Aug 2006, at 13:52, Jim Andrews wrote:

    >> If I don't know who Barbara Kruger is and I write a book on 1980s
    >> American art
    >> that omits her I am incompetent. If I do know who Barbara Kruger
    >> is and
    >> I write
    >> a book on 1980s American art that omits her I have some explaining
    >> to do.
    >
    > That may well be. But concerning net art, isn't it really only Jodi
    > about
    > whom you could say the same? Only Jodi is sufficiently famous. And,
    > even
    > then, were the book about net art since 2000, well, wasn't it
    > around then or
    > perhaps even before when Jodi pretty much stopped making net art?

    Oh for general fame, yes, although Soda have done very well with
    Constructor. The context for net.artists would be net.art, rather
    than American art or art in general, so MTAA, Glorious Ninth, Stanza
    et al would all be included along with Jodi, assuming as you say it
    wasn't net.art since 2000.

    - Rob.
  • Alexis Turner | Fri Aug 11th 2006 4:05 p.m.
    ::> Good. Maybe that person will ask themself why. Hackles only get raised
    ::> when
    ::> something sacred or scary is stepped on, and both fear and idols prevent
    ::> progress.
    ::
    ::Alexis, you usually raise pretty good and irreverent questions, but i think
    ::your statement here is a bit presumptuous and iconoclastic. Criticism is not
    ::ALWAYS grounded in fear of "progress." And, more often than not, "progress" is
    ::a simple way of naturalizing and neutralizing politics (of whatever form you
    ::like).

    I wasn't referring to criticism, I was referring to annoyance/anger/upset, and I
    still stand by fear and insult/offense as the causes of those reactions.
    Likewise, I use the word progress in its most simplistic way - getting
    somewhere on an idea.

    ::i don't want to speak for anyone here, but i don't think the issue is really
    ::one of the ability of a book to be comprehensive or complete. Or whether
    ::anthologies and compilations should exist or not. It's an entirely different
    ::concern to point out that any collection of ideas/people/places/etc.
    ::inherently contains a perspective and that perspectives can and should be
    ::critiqued for the narratives they create (i think Rob made this point rather
    ::well). It's (not-so-)simply a matter of contesting history and not letting
    ::dominant voices write it so smoothly and cleanly at the expense of others'
    ::stories. One value of such texts is in their ability to generate reaction and
    ::revisions to the histories they attempt to solidify.

    Well what is the sound of one hand clapping? The point being
    contested/critiqued/what have you is currently the very nature of the academy.
    There is a heirarchy. Some things get left out. The story is not complete. We
    pick and choose. Some would pick and choose one thing, some would pick and
    choose another. We're discussing the very NATURE of the thing, something that
    ISN'T in question right now, insofar as everyone has agreed on the point that
    an anthology says as much by what it leaves out as what it doesn't. It's a
    pretty old critique. I guess I'm just a
    little unclear on where repeating an existing critique gets us. I can -quote-
    Foucault till I run out of breath, but I don't add or take away from the body of
    knowldge. Likewise, I can make the factual statement that a book has pages or
    a compendium makes choices.

    ::> (As an aside, the message is the important thing, is it not? Why do we
    ::> care so much how it is delivered? It's a fascinating question to turn
    ::> over.)
    ::
    ::not sure if this is a rhetorical and ironic gesture... on a "new media" list
    ::to separate the "message" from the "media"...

    Just my little form of a joke. New media doesn't separate them, nor does
    academia. Which is probably why so many bad arguments that look pretty continue
    to exist in its walls, and why good arguments that don't follow the rules get
    ignored as crazy or stupid. Form. Function. Content. We take their relation
    as a given, to our detriment, only because people smarter than us made some
    statements once upon a time.
    -Alexis
  • Alexis Turner | Fri Aug 11th 2006 4:11 p.m.
    lol, slighted
    -A.

    On Fri, 11 Aug 2006, Rob Myers wrote:

    ::Date: Fri, 11 Aug 2006 22:13:36 +0100
    ::From: Rob Myers <rob@robmyers.org>
    ::To: Rhizome Raw list <list@rhizome.org>
    ::Subject: Re: RHIZOME_RAW: Re: Re: Re: Mark Tribe's - New Media Art, book.
    ::
    ::On 11 Aug 2006, at 20:01, Alexis Turner wrote:
    ::
    ::> I have/had no intent to close the ranks on this one, merely to suggest we
    ::> analyze the things we take for granted.
    ::
    ::I'm *calling* for analysis of what is taken for granted: the omissions &
    ::inclusions in a particular cultural work. Discussing future ideal systems
    ::would be interesting, but is not a substitute for this.
    ::
    ::Furtherfield are in fact part of the future you propose: an open site for
    ::review, discussion, education and creation. I personally like this glimpse of
    ::your future but if I were you I'd feel a little slighted by the fact that it
    ::doesn't seem to be considered suitable for inclusion in a book about net.art .
    ::;-)
    ::
    ::> (As an aside, the message is the important thing, is it not? Why do we care
    ::> so much how it is delivered? It's a fascinating question to turn over.)
    ::
    ::There are various useful concepts around this. Hofstadter talks about "framing
    ::message" in "Godel Escher Bach", McLuhan claims that the medium is the
    ::message, and The Fun Boy Three claim that "It ain't what you do it's the way
    ::that you do it" (with some asistance from Bananarama). The delivery is part of
    ::the message, there are no incidentals in communication, certainly not in
    ::autographic work. Allographic work may have some leeway, although noise can be
    ::ironised into signal by nostalgia, Trip Hop music, 8-bit art and music and
    ::Glitch Art are good examples of this.
    ::
    ::I wish I had time to format that in Mez-speak to underline it. :-)
    ::
    ::- Rob.
    ::+
    ::-> post: list@rhizome.org
    ::-> questions: info@rhizome.org
    ::-> subscribe/unsubscribe: http://rhizome.org/preferences/subscribe.rhiz
    ::-> give: http://rhizome.org/support
    ::+
    ::Subscribers to Rhizome are subject to the terms set out in the
    ::Membership Agreement available online at http://rhizome.org/info/29.php
    ::
  • ryan griffis | Fri Aug 11th 2006 4:50 p.m.
    On Aug 11, 2006, at 5:05 PM, Alexis Turner wrote:
    >
    > I wasn't referring to criticism, I was referring to annoyance/anger/
    > upset, and I
    > still stand by fear and insult/offense as the causes of those
    > reactions.
    > Likewise, I use the word progress in its most simplistic way -
    > getting
    > somewhere on an idea.

    So, criticism can't be generated from "personal" stakes? Isn't this
    killing the messenger?
    >
    > Well what is the sound of one hand clapping? The point being
    > contested/critiqued/what have you is currently the very nature of
    > the academy.
    > There is a heirarchy. Some things get left out. The story is not
    > complete. We
    > pick and choose. Some would pick and choose one thing, some would
    > pick and
    > choose another. We're discussing the very NATURE of the thing,
    > something that
    > ISN'T in question right now, insofar as everyone has agreed on the
    > point that
    > an anthology says as much by what it leaves out as what it
    > doesn't. It's a
    > pretty old critique. I guess I'm just a
    > little unclear on where repeating an existing critique gets us. I
    > can -quote-
    > Foucault till I run out of breath, but I don't add or take away
    > from the body of
    > knowldge. Likewise, I can make the factual statement that a book
    > has pages or
    > a compendium makes choices.

    No, YOU'RE discussing the "NATURE of the thing." Some of us aren't
    interested in ontological problems about the "nature" of anything. In
    fact, trying to argue for the "Nature" of anything is exactly what i
    would argue is a neutralizing force that masks politics. No one is
    disputing that an author of a compendium makes choices. The point is
    to look at what those choices are. If i'm not mistaken, that's what
    is being discussed here. This may seem an ancient point to you, and
    one preventing the "progress" you're looking to make, but it's not an
    end game problem. Have those "existing critiques" lost their value?
    If so, why? You seem to suggest that a "body of knowledge" consists
    solely of generalizations without any contribution made by looking at
    specifics. Using an existing critique to look at a new circumstance
    may not add to the body of canonized continental philosophy, but that
    hardly makes such activity useless.
    Maybe people are more interested in abstract theorizing and end games
    than i am, however.
    >
    > Just my little form of a joke. New media doesn't separate them,
    > nor does
    > academia. Which is probably why so many bad arguments that look
    > pretty continue
    > to exist in its walls, and why good arguments that don't follow the
    > rules get
    > ignored as crazy or stupid. Form. Function. Content. We take
    > their relation
    > as a given, to our detriment, only because people smarter than us
    > made some
    > statements once upon a time.

    i figured it to be a joke. And the point about "bad arguments that
    look pretty" is a well worn (and well founded) crit of a lot of art,
    not to mention NM art. But what "good arguments that don't follow the
    rules" are being ignored? Academia and art are hardly monolithic
    industries, and i can find prominent people in both that stand on
    opposing sides of your point. And that's not being an apologist. No
    one here has equated form and content - they can be distinct in
    intention but inseparable in reception, for example.
    What is your proposition for how to better understand the relation
    between form/content than what someone like John Berger or Beatriz
    Colomina gives us? Or even the examples Rob listed earlier.
    i realize such discussions as this tend towards the ossification of
    positions, and i think there are a lot of parallel points going by
    each other. i'm just honestly disinterested in/suspicious of an
    attempt to "get at" the "NATURE of the thing." For what purpose? To
    decide once and for all the REALITY of publishing on New Media? To
    continue the tradition of iconoclastic posturing just because it's
    fun, available and convenient? Or is there something more substantive
    and enlightening than what you've shared so far that gives us a
    position from which to consider the topic at hand other than
    established critiques? i'm all about embracing positivism lately,
    just give me a way to do it that isn't politically regressive.
  • Alexis Turner | Fri Aug 11th 2006 6:30 p.m.
    ::>
    ::> I wasn't referring to criticism, I was referring to annoyance/anger/upset,
    ::> and I
    ::> still stand by fear and insult/offense as the causes of those reactions.
    ::> Likewise, I use the word progress in its most simplistic way - getting
    ::> somewhere on an idea.
    ::
    ::So, criticism can't be generated from "personal" stakes? Isn't this killing
    ::the messenger?

    That has nothing to do with what I said since I wasn't refering to criticism.
    Perhaps if you read further you will better understand what I was referring to.

    ::No, YOU'RE discussing the "NATURE of the thing." Some of us aren't interested
    ::in ontological problems about the "nature" of anything. In fact, trying to
    ::argue for the "Nature" of anything is exactly what i would argue is a
    ::neutralizing force that masks politics. No one is disputing that an author of
    ::a compendium makes choices. The point is to look at what those choices are.

    To what end? It is a statement of fact that leaves are green, and it is known
    why leaves are green. Finding a new tree with green leaves and engaging in a
    discussion about the new tree with green leaves is still talking about a tree
    with green leaves - ubnless we are five years old and do not yet understand the
    greenness of leaves, it isn't a useful discussion, it doesn't stengthen the
    idea that leaves are green. It doesn't do anything at all except water down
    the body of knowledge by diluting the pool.. This is why I have said that the
    discussion is about the
    nature of compendiums -a thing which I most assuredly do NOT want to discuss.
    Precisely because all that is offered by a new critique about a new
    compendium that has made choices is that the particular compendium did not exist
    before.

    If
    ::i'm not mistaken, that's what is being discussed here. This may seem an
    ::ancient point to you, and one preventing the "progress" you're looking to
    ::make, but it's not an end game problem. Have those "existing critiques" lost
    ::their value?

    No, they haven't. But new critiques that do not do anything except endlessly
    point out that leaves are green do not have value. It's like the fingerprinting
    conundrum - every different fingerprint found "reinforces" that
    fingerprints are all different, but no one cares anymore because it is a given
    that that is a fact. It is only when a fingerprint comes along that is
    the same that it is any longer worth speaking about.

    If so, why? You seem to suggest that a "body of knowledge"
    ::consists solely of generalizations without any contribution made by looking at
    ::specifics. Using an existing critique to look at a new circumstance may not
    ::add to the body of canonized continental philosophy, but that hardly makes
    ::such activity useless.

    See above. Initially, items that reinforce views are useful for giving
    strength to the argument. But There is a tipping point at which a fact is so
    widely accepted (compendiums make choices), that finding a new one that does so
    no longer does anything, either to reinforce or not.

    ::> Just my little form of a joke. New media doesn't separate them, nor does
    ::> academia. Which is probably why so many bad arguments that look pretty
    ::> continue
    ::> to exist in its walls, and why good arguments that don't follow the rules
    ::> get
    ::> ignored as crazy or stupid. Form. Function. Content. We take their
    ::> relation
    ::> as a given, to our detriment, only because people smarter than us made some
    ::> statements once upon a time.
    ::
    ::i figured it to be a joke. And the point about "bad arguments that look
    ::pretty" is a well worn (and well founded) crit of a lot of art, not to mention
    ::NM art. But what "good arguments that don't follow the rules" are being
    ::ignored? Academia and art are hardly monolithic industries, and i can find

    Why, my own, of course. The joke was about myself. Even in this e-mail you
    have trashed my views because I am not accepting the academic paradigm of
    picking a safe position (compendiums make choices and critiquing them is
    useful). How many other e-mails to this list have bashed me because I need to
    go read a book, or because I am not a high powered system administrator, or
    because I write a pugnacious response to a post and refuse to drop names like
    John Berger's or Beatriz blah blah blah's?

    ::i realize such discussions as this tend towards the ossification of positions,
    ::and i think there are a lot of parallel points going by each other. i'm just
    ::honestly disinterested in/suspicious of an attempt to "get at" the "NATURE of
    ::the thing." For what purpose? To decide once and for all the REALITY of
    ::publishing on New Media? To continue the tradition of iconoclastic posturing
    ::just because it's fun, available and convenient? Or is there something more
    ::substantive and enlightening than what you've shared so far that gives us a
    ::position from which to consider the topic at hand other than established
    ::critiques?

    No, I am not posturing because it's fun. I'm doing it because it makes a point,
    and because I am experimenting with understanding what is and is not
    considered acceptable in academia. Forgive me for making you all my unwitting
    subjects, but I have learned more than you can ever imagine from the responses I
    receive on this list. Contrary to what I am sure many of you believe, I am not
    anti-academic. I AM an academic, and I believe quite firmly that it is
    academia's mandate to use our brains to make the world a better place. There
    it is, my dirty secret - I actually think we need to do good and use our powers
    for that end. I think we need to serve people and produce useful, meaningful
    work that has an impact, and that people can understand and apply. Shh. Don't
    tell. It could probably kill my (future) career. Unfortunately for my personal
    desires, I also see us failing quite miserably because of our stubborn
    insistence on a system that does not work. My personal research is into fixing
    that system. I need to understand it that much better in order to do that.

    As for my "lack" of contribution to this discussion, I have previously posed
    several questions that I feel could actually SOLVE the dilemma of choices in
    anthologies, but since no one wishes to discuss them (for whatever reason,
    whether because they are simply not interesting, they are crappy ideas,
    academia really HAS devolved that completely into doing nothing but critiquing
    (as opposed to acting), or I simply didn't frame them "appropriately") I
    suppose I do not, at this point, have anything "more substantive" to add.

    ::i'm all about embracing positivism lately, just give me a way to do
    ::it that isn't politically regressive.

    Although I am sure you do not intend me to do so, I am going to personally read
    this as "I'm all about embracing new ideas, just tell me what they are so that I
    don't have to think of them by myself."
    -Alexis
  • Jim Andrews | Fri Aug 11th 2006 7:16 p.m.
    > > Only Jodi is sufficiently famous. And,
    > > even
    > > then, were the book about net art since 2000, well, wasn't it
    > > around then or
    > > perhaps even before when Jodi pretty much stopped making net art?
    >
    > Oh for general fame, yes, although Soda have done very well with
    > Constructor. The context for net.artists would be net.art, rather
    > than American art or art in general, so MTAA, Glorious Ninth, Stanza
    > et al would all be included along with Jodi, assuming as you say it
    > wasn't net.art since 2000.

    I recall you saying you worked for or with Soda on Constructor. Yes, that is
    a fully-realized piece, a fully-realized net app, and its been around for a
    long time. And has attracted a large general audience, not only an art
    audience. And it still works. A lot of net art doesn't. And the others you
    mention are significant artists as well.

    Net art is quite broad in its formal range. It spans various arts. Rhizome
    has usually been visual-art-oriented and affiliated with galleries. trAce,
    Webartery, the ELO, Poetics/EPC, and Alt-x have been writerly, primarily,
    with tendrils into the visual, sonic, programmerly, etc. Some have stressed
    the sonic more than other arts. And then there are others who are trying to
    do things with video on the Net. And then there are the artist-programmers
    developing software art. And there's the 'generative' as opposed to both the
    static and even the interactive. And also there's the crossover dimension
    into print or galleries or TV or film festivals or the music business or
    music festivals, or CDs/DVDs etc, the online-offline dimension. Some net art
    finds its audience within the art world whereas other work is only
    peripherally related to the art world and finds its audience in the pop net
    whose audience can be much larger. Turbulence and Furtherfield of course
    continue to be strong supporters of net art.

    And of course I will have missed several general vectors that should be
    included also.

    In any case, the edge is usually in some sort of hybridity, some sort of
    cross between arts and/or media and/or technology and/or other fields. In
    the nature of its connectivity and what that sparks. Although some could
    say, no, the edge of another large group is elsewhere, in connection with
    political reality regardless of the hybridity you mention; cut the formalist
    crap; make some way, please, for work that tries to do something other than
    mess with arts, media, technology, and science.

    The metaphor of the rhizome is really strong. The network is much like the
    rhizome. The basic thing about the network is connectivity. Connecting x and
    y. A "complete graph of n vertices" is such that each vertex is connected to
    every other vertex, has n(n-1)/2 edges or lines. Alexis mentioned how the
    internet is "a piece of crap" in that it is too centralized in its
    architecture. And, yes, the ideal is toward something less centralized.
    Similarly, in criticism of net art, the ideal is something that acknowledges
    the ideal of the rhizome/network as enabling a fully interconnected
    mentality, the impossibility of holding that all in mind at once, and ways
    to traverse the network, some sense of the larger picture. Not to the
    exclusion of the rest.

    ja
    http://vispo.com
  • ryan griffis | Fri Aug 11th 2006 7:53 p.m.
    On Aug 11, 2006, at 7:29 PM, Alexis Turner wrote:
    >
    > Why, my own, of course. The joke was about myself. Even in this e-
    > mail you
    > have trashed my views because I am not accepting the academic
    > paradigm of
    > picking a safe position (compendiums make choices and critiquing
    > them is
    > useful). How many other e-mails to this list have bashed me
    > because I need to
    > go read a book, or because I am not a high powered system
    > administrator, or
    > because I write a pugnacious response to a post and refuse to drop
    > names like
    > John Berger's or Beatriz blah blah blah's?

    is this, then an instance of "raising hackles"? Or is this "criticism"?
    i haven't "trashed your views" because i don't really know what they
    are. i've questioned your comments here, not much more.
    >
    > Although I am sure you do not intend me to do so, I am going to
    > personally read
    > this as "I'm all about embracing new ideas, just tell me what they
    > are so that I
    > don't have to think of them by myself."

    This is exactly my point about ossification and posturing. i've read
    the thread, and generally agree with your vague ideas about academia
    and "doing good," but am still waiting for something other than
    iconoclastic snarkiness. Maybe you have "new ideas," maybe not. i'd
    be interested to hear them if you do, since, as i said before, i
    generally find some resonance with your concerns.
    just to be clear about my earlier comments, i'm not interested in
    ontological knowledge, and don't think that's necessarily the way to
    "make the world a better place" given that that's been the motive for
    much of philosophy's history. i think pointing out the specifics
    within historical narratives matter precisely because they are
    specific, not because they help further some encyclopedic knowledge
    of mankind. this is just my personal experience and belief systems...
    that battles for a "better world" happen as much in the specifics and
    contingencies of life as they do in the "big questions."
    ryan
  • Rob Myers | Sat Aug 12th 2006 4:09 a.m.
    On 12 Aug 2006, at 02:16, Jim Andrews wrote:

    > I recall you saying you worked for or with Soda on Constructor.

    I left Soda before they made Constructor. I found out about it
    virally when I was working for H2G2, which is part of what I base my
    estimation of its impact on.

    But, yes, disclaimer, I was with Soda when they started. :-)

    - Rob.
  • Eric Dymond | Sat Aug 12th 2006 10:26 p.m.
    Not to spoil the fun everyone is having. But Marc's original post was about Mark's book on Net Art. He felt slighted and I must admit it was at least an error of omission.
    So now, just to raise the ire of everyone, How could Mark ( with a K) have made us all happy?
    It is a short, 96 page book, attempting to define Net Art. According to the Gay Times of London, "It is a pithy Tome". I'm sure he is already broiling over that review.
    Why was inclusion in such a simple offering so important?
    Were grants at stake?
    Mark gave up Rhizome a long time ago.
    Does he owe us academic recognition just because he helped author a monograph?
    Sorry, but If you need his "OK", then you should ask for it. If you believe Net Art books are a silly waste of time ( as I do) then you should agree with a few of the posts and move on, and move on quickly.
    And for gods sake, how does Mark's book bring verity to anyone on this list?
    Dumber by the minute
    Eric
  • Rob Myers | Sun Aug 13th 2006 3:24 a.m.
    On 13 Aug 2006, at 05:26, Eric Dymond wrote:

    > Dumber by the minute

    Email is such an old-fashioned medium. Why does anyone care what
    anyone says in it? Can't we just IM our opinions? etc.

    - Rob.
  • Eryk Salvaggio | Mon Aug 28th 2006 12:36 p.m.
    Dear Internet,

    I was making net.art in the mid 90's. At the same time, there was a record label coming out of Olympia, Washington, called K Records. The idea of the internet and the idea of K Records will always be lodged together in my brain: a label consisting
    of guys hanging out in a basement, putting out records that were half punk, half indie rock, printing the records in another room in the basement, and distro'ing it themselves. The label spawned some semi-major bands, but also bands that never went
    anywhere, in terms of coverage in Rolling Stone. I doubt that K is in any music encylopedia, but it's spawned homemade documentaries...

    I've always thought of net.art as more of a "scene" than an industry. In music scenes, you find the people who are naturally enthusiastic about your work, and you build a structure to support that work, together. If the industry wants some of that
    action, it comes and absorbs you. But if not, you just exist, making what you're making for the people who are into it. (furtherfield seems to get this).

    In net.art, "the scene is dead, man!" Few people ever seemed to nurture this; they wanted someone else to construct a scene and place them into the mold. (For "they", think of anyone who has ever started, contributed to, or actively read a rhizome
    thread about why galleries just don't care). In music-scene terms, Net art's been selling out since it was invented. And it's baffling, because it is the art scene that is the least dependant on institutional support to thrive.

    Point is: In a DIY culture, where you can do whatever you want, who gives a damn whose list you're on? If it doesn't sound like rock and roll, you're not gonna be a rock star. So what? I'm bored of rock and roll. And I'm bored with rock stars.

    Except for Jodi.

    Godspeed,
    -er.

    marc <marc.garrett@furtherfield.org> on Thursday, August 10, 2006 at 7:51 AM -0500 wrote:
    >Hi Eric & all,
    >
    > >Well it would be nice if these books/documents were compendiums of
    >innovative work but they never are.
    >
    >I would have to disagree here, I think that there are some innovative
    >works by some interesting groups/artists in this book. I actually admire
    >some of the works by some of these people presented in the publication
    >but also admire many who are not included.
    >
    >In my humble opinion, there are a few profound and 'blinkered' items
    >that are questionable, in how the book assumes its branding as an
    >absolute, think of the title - 'New Media Art'. By naming it in such a
    >way, it proposes that, anything outside of the edited, vicinity of the
    >book is, not 'new media art'. This migt not even be conscious but, this
    >is what it does. Creating an 'all too regular' binary situation of
    >'them and us' - 'winners and losers' of history, which is a
    >patriarchical and modernist syndrome supported by institutional (and
    >capitlaist) default. This is a very common mistake and I find it
    >disturbing that such singular 'whole' representations are re-introduced
    >far too regularly by, 'supposed' intellegent and critically engaged,
    >learned individuals.
    >
    >The premis of the book puts across the notion that it is seriously
    >engaged in declaring to the world, a wholesome set of (supposed) truths,
    >beginning from the position of cultural status in respect of the writer
    >being a co-founder of Rhizome etc (for example), and of course the use
    >of academic cache. Which initself, is not a negative mannerism; yet -
    >out of this lazy or prhaps even cynical nuances can prevail, with the
    >incorporating, and acceptance of misinterpretions, ignoring the possible
    >relational nature of what such a book could be.
    >
    >*IMPORTANT FACT TO REMEMBER*
    >-just because a writer is involved in such an interesting and
    >increasingly diverse and contemporary culture, does not mean that they
    >are going to be more critical in tbe imaginative sens, and democratic
    >their representation of that culture...
    >
    >If one considers who the writer feels that they are actually writing for
    >- one would have to say that it is for themselves first of all (no
    >problem), to peers, associates, institutional rhetoric and of course, 'a
    >certain history', not artists and related groups, in the larger scheme
    >of things. For if it was really about critical exploration of a
    >contemporary practise and its various interconnectness, and
    >crossing-overs between other cultures and those interesting people
    >coming out of that, it would be more open and generous to include less,
    >already supported individuals, and focusing more on groups that infuence
    >culture on their own terms (such as grass root groups and individuals),
    >not just via already regurgitated, historicized protocol. Not just
    >because they have successfully managed to conform to a controlling set
    >of mechanistic and masculine orientated, regimes and processes - who
    >have adapted their behaviour and potentialiaties to the lowest form and
    >level of function, 'pissing up the post of insitutionlized territorialism'.
    >
    >"It is no longer enough to experiment, ponder serendipitously, discover.
    >There is a crushing competitive pressure to be first with a formula, a
    >method, a product. The first to publish may get a Nobel award; the first
    >in the market makes the most gain. We are in the age of the short-cut,
    >corporate espionage and falsified results
  • Eric Dymond | Fri Sep 29th 2006 12:28 a.m.
    I hate to bring this topic up again, but in light of the dearth of new and interesting conversations feel that it is time.
    Marc rightly felt that the community he was a part of had ignored his efforts.
    This brings to the forefront the reality of community or lack of it in what is designated as Rhizome.
    I myself have gone elsewhere for commissions and community.
    I believe that Rhizome has lost its edge re. new media.
    How can Rhizome expect to proceed when the members/posters/curators don't support the very members that contribute on an a vital and ongoing basis???
    In the *golden days* of art, artists supported their confreres without heavy judgement or criticism. (see de Kooning and Johns and Warhol and a million others). The deal was that you helped out the users, and makers in their efforts.
    Today, community means very little.
    The Cedar Bar can't exist in a mediated environment that requires new "hits" (like heroin hits, chase it baby from the suburbs, its gonna be cheap this year, record harvest in Afghanistan).
    Could any community ever survive the art worlds need for "NEW HITS>>!!!!!"
    I doubt it.
    Can we actually go forth knowing that all we do ends up in vapour?
    Rhizome now needs new hits, discussion falls to the wayside, and the average becomes the ideal.
    Nothing left to talk about , only static to observe, an endless feed of noise.
    Still smiling ( as the endtrails hit the floor),
    Eric
  • Eric Dymond | Fri Sep 29th 2006 12:49 a.m.
    Maybe Rhizome should just shut down, close it's doors and re-emerge as an arts magazine.
    Still smiling, (no, it's a grimace)
    Eric
  • Alexis Turner | Fri Sep 29th 2006 10:36 a.m.
    Being too tired to really get into this right now (damn 6am language class
    bitch. Coffee, why are you failing me right now?), I will simply posit the
    following single thought and leave it at that:

    You want community. Community made up of many and that caters to
    (all|many|broad) interests.

    You complain about the average as the ideal.

    I ponder this conundrum.. or Oxymoron? Paradox? Oversight? Unexpected
    optimism?
    -Alexis

    On Thu, 28 Sep 2006, Eric Dymond wrote:

    ::I hate to bring this topic up again, but in light of the dearth of new and interesting conversations feel that it is time.
    ::Marc rightly felt that the community he was a part of had ignored his efforts.
    ::This brings to the forefront the reality of community or lack of it in what is designated as Rhizome.
    ::I myself have gone elsewhere for commissions and community.
    ::I believe that Rhizome has lost its edge re. new media.
    ::How can Rhizome expect to proceed when the members/posters/curators don't support the very members that contribute on an a vital and ongoing basis???
    ::In the *golden days* of art, artists supported their confreres without heavy judgement or criticism. (see de Kooning and Johns and Warhol and a million others). The deal was that you helped out the users, and makers in their efforts.
    ::Today, community means very little.
    ::The Cedar Bar can't exist in a mediated environment that requires new "hits" (like heroin hits, chase it baby from the suburbs, its gonna be cheap this year, record harvest in Afghanistan).
    ::Could any community ever survive the art worlds need for "NEW HITS>>!!!!!"
    ::I doubt it.
    ::Can we actually go forth knowing that all we do ends up in vapour?
    ::Rhizome now needs new hits, discussion falls to the wayside, and the average becomes the ideal.
    ::Nothing left to talk about , only static to observe, an endless feed of noise.
    ::Still smiling ( as the endtrails hit the floor),
    ::Eric
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