what exactly IS new media?

Posted by Plasma Studii | Fri Jul 15th 2005 8:52 a.m.

help me/us all out here if anyone knows more.

been confused for over a decade until today. but as far as i can
tell, "new media" means the equipment is available in metallic but
not chrome. it's easy to be mislead when everybody says it like we
all know, but probably nobody really does and they're just
pretending. don't sweat it.

for instance, a toaster is available in metallic, but it is chrome,
so it is clearly NOT "new media". digital cameras and hand-held
camcorders usually come in brushed metal or titanium, so obviously,
they do qualify. even cell phones that are equipped with cameras are
generally silver, but never chrome. the term is misleading. you'd
be right in thinking video and photos really ARE old technology,
based on inventions that have been around for 100+ years . the
"digital" stuff is actually far, far lower resolution and far, far
higher priced than the analog predecessors. but this equipment was,
for years, always heavy and painted black. not interesting. only
recently did everything become exciting when it got a shiny new
casing.

the real tricky part to making the extra conceptual leap that the
phrase "new media" essentially indicates potential retail mark-up
value. every era in art has its name. after impressionism, abstract
impressionism, modernism, and post-modernism, we are now in
silverism, which will be followed by shiny silverism. the term "new
media" will be considered obsolete and un-hip, in favor of "new new
media", meaning "shinier than ever".
--

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

PLASMA STUDII
art non-profit
stages * galleries * the web
PO Box 1086
Cathedral Station
New York, USA 10025

(on-line press kit)
http://plasmastudii.org
  • Eric Dymond | Sat Jul 16th 2005 9:58 a.m.
    well are biologic works new media?
    (phosphorescent rabbits?)
    they're newly mediated through technology.
    ah.., I see now.
  • mark cooley | Sun Jul 17th 2005 10:11 a.m.
    Plasma Studii wrote:

    > help me/us all out here if anyone knows more.
    >
    > been confused for over a decade until today. but as far as i can
    > tell, "new media" means the equipment is available in metallic but
    > not chrome. it's easy to be mislead when everybody says it like we
    > all know, but probably nobody really does and they're just
    > pretending. don't sweat it.
    >
    > for instance, a toaster is available in metallic, but it is chrome,
    > so it is clearly NOT "new media". digital cameras and hand-held
    > camcorders usually come in brushed metal or titanium, so obviously,
    > they do qualify. even cell phones that are equipped with cameras are
    > generally silver, but never chrome. the term is misleading. you'd
    > be right in thinking video and photos really ARE old technology,
    > based on inventions that have been around for 100+ years . the
    > "digital" stuff is actually far, far lower resolution and far, far
    > higher priced than the analog predecessors. but this equipment was,
    > for years, always heavy and painted black. not interesting. only
    > recently did everything become exciting when it got a shiny new
    > casing.
    >
    > the real tricky part to making the extra conceptual leap that the
    > phrase "new media" essentially indicates potential retail mark-up
    > value. every era in art has its name. after impressionism, abstract
    > impressionism, modernism, and post-modernism, we are now in
    > silverism, which will be followed by shiny silverism. the term "new
    > media" will be considered obsolete and un-hip, in favor of "new new
    > media", meaning "shinier than ever".
    > --
    >
    > ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    >
    > PLASMA STUDII
    > art non-profit
    > stages * galleries * the web
    > PO Box 1086
    > Cathedral Station
    > New York, USA 10025
    >
    > (on-line press kit)
    > http://plasmastudii.org

    i think you hit on something that makes me uncomfortable about the term and practice (for after all names of things are important insofar as they reflect attitudes and practice) of "new media". while much of the art produced under the title of new media (whether given that title by artist of institution) clearly questions modernist assumptions about art i.e. its supposed autonomy from politics, class, cultural biases etc. also, the modernist constructed hiarchy and assumed autonomy of media (as in Medium) are questioned: it is also true that New Media is much more dependent and quiet often a conscious byproduct of new dominant technologies, sometimes working as a lubricant to make new technologies hipper and more appealing to those who like to feel that they are not bound by corporate interests because they make art with their cell phone. anyway, subversion, i believe, is still possible. detournement is still possible. or is it? artists can still subvert the intentional uses of new technologies and claim to not be a corporate whore, can't we? or is ambivolance the right attitude (yes i am part of the problem, yet still i resist and work to reveal the problems that bright and shiney new technologies/media work to make invisible.

    it seems that New Media takes from modernism in that more emphasis is placed on the medium (a thing that picks up the voices of the spirit world and deciphers them for the average (yet initiated) person. with all the criticism that came out of so-called postmodernism - the critique of the modernist assumption of the artist genius, the supposed autonomy of Art etc. it seems that another term would have been chosen to express what is going on with visual culture at the moment. with New Media it seems the previous faith in the artist genius has been passed on to blind faith in media itself. with all the problems with modernist philosophy it still took an artist to transform house paint into a Medium - now, it seems, it takes a new media(medium) to make a person an artist.

    .but i don't know - just some thoughts.
  • Sean Capone | Mon Jul 18th 2005 8:16 a.m.
    Plasma Studii writes:

    >> we are now in silverism, which will be followed by shiny silverism.

    Sorry mate, silverism peaked in the 80s already. New media is 'post-Silver Age':

    http://www.moma.org/education/openends/guide/overview/12koons.html
  • mark cooley | Mon Jul 18th 2005 12:05 p.m.
    Sean Capone wrote:

    > Plasma Studii writes:
    >
    > >> we are now in silverism, which will be followed by shiny
    > silverism.
    >
    > Sorry mate, silverism peaked in the 80s already. New media is
    > 'post-Silver Age':
    >
    > http://www.moma.org/education/openends/guide/overview/12koons.html
    >
    >

    maybe we are in the "skins" age, but even that is quickly passing. we should be in the bronze age.
  • ryan griffis | Mon Jul 18th 2005 12:35 p.m.
    we may be headed back to the bronze age, if we're lucky.
    http://dieoff.com/synopsis.htm

    On Jul 18, 2005, at 11:05 AM, mark cooley wrote:

    > Sean Capone wrote:
    >
    >> Plasma Studii writes:
    >>
    >>>> we are now in silverism, which will be followed by shiny
    >> silverism.
    >>
    >> Sorry mate, silverism peaked in the 80s already. New media is
    >> 'post-Silver Age':
    >>
    >> http://www.moma.org/education/openends/guide/overview/12koons.html
    >>
    >>
    >
    > maybe we are in the "skins" age, but even that is quickly passing. we
    > should be in the bronze age.
  • mark cooley | Mon Jul 18th 2005 8:38 p.m.
    http://www.bronzeagemin.com/

    ryan griffis wrote:

    > we may be headed back to the bronze age, if we're lucky.
    > http://dieoff.com/synopsis.htm
    >
    > On Jul 18, 2005, at 11:05 AM, mark cooley wrote:
    >
    > > Sean Capone wrote:
    > >
    > >> Plasma Studii writes:
    > >>
    > >>>> we are now in silverism, which will be followed by shiny
    > >> silverism.
    > >>
    > >> Sorry mate, silverism peaked in the 80s already. New media is
    > >> 'post-Silver Age':
    > >>
    > >> http://www.moma.org/education/openends/guide/overview/12koons.html
    > >>
    > >>
    > >
    > > maybe we are in the "skins" age, but even that is quickly passing.
    > we
    > > should be in the bronze age.
    >
  • mark cooley | Mon Jul 18th 2005 8:42 p.m.
    it's already here - albeit underrepresented
    http://www.bronzeagemin.com/

    ryan griffis wrote:

    > we may be headed back to the bronze age, if we're lucky.
    > http://dieoff.com/synopsis.htm
    >
    > On Jul 18, 2005, at 11:05 AM, mark cooley wrote:
    >
    > > Sean Capone wrote:
    > >
    > >> Plasma Studii writes:
    > >>
    > >>>> we are now in silverism, which will be followed by shiny
    > >> silverism.
    > >>
    > >> Sorry mate, silverism peaked in the 80s already. New media is
    > >> 'post-Silver Age':
    > >>
    > >> http://www.moma.org/education/openends/guide/overview/12koons.html
    > >>
    > >>
    > >
    > > maybe we are in the "skins" age, but even that is quickly passing.
    > we
    > > should be in the bronze age.
    >
  • Eric Dymond | Tue Jul 19th 2005 9:23 p.m.
    but what of the texture of a rabbit?
    not in a funny way, but in a way that extends outside the screen/window interface device to the machaine?
    there are new media works that have nothing to do wih texture.
    some are textual textures.., some are rabbits.
  • Eric Dymond | Tue Jul 19th 2005 9:38 p.m.
    Since the phrase "New Media" has been empowered by society in general, it is now a point of desire,a language device. It has a silverness (rare and shiny). It can be a precious commodity.
    So in that way the metaphor works.
  • kristina maskarin | Sun Jul 24th 2005 10:39 a.m.
    there are rabbits and 'rabbits'.
    art definitely gave up to design.
    Total merge of the industrial design, marketing and media as main reality moulders augments the virtual obesity in content and form. And I agree: The phrase "new media" essentially indicates potential retail mark-up value.
    Environment today and in the future is about designing versus chaotic / natural growth. But design should be conscious of the humanity and environment and integrated in the whole ( production & trade & product after-life).

    no design is also design.

    "Letting go" of design is at once one of the hardest and most unnatural things to do, yet can often elicit rewards far greater than had we put our mind to something. Any ideas on how to encourage this "liberation"
    from art/design?
  • Christina McPhee | Sun Jul 24th 2005 11:27 a.m.
    >
    > no design is also design.
    >
    > "Letting go" of design is at once one of the hardest and most
    > unnatural things to do, yet can often elicit rewards far greater than
    > had we put our mind to something. Any ideas on how to encourage this
    > "liberation"
    > from art/design?
    > +

    The 'liberation' from art/design ... comes when you dwell and work in
    what Louis Kahn called 'volume zero'......
    everything flows from this

    thanks for posing such a great question...

    more from Kahn:

    'I have learned that a good question is greater than the most brilliant
    answer. This is a question of the measurable and the unmeasurable.
    Nature, physical Nature, is measurable. Feeling and dream have no
    measure, have no language, and everyone's dream is singular. A man is
    always greater than his works because he can never express his
    aspirations. To express oneself in music or architecture, one must
    employ the measurable means of composition or design. The first line on
    paper is already a measure of what cannot be expressed fully. The first
    line on paper is less. Turn to feeling and away from thought. In
    feeling is the psyche. Thought is feeling and the presence of order.
    And order, the molder of all existence, has of itself no will to exist,
    no Existence Will. I choose the word "order" instead of "knowledge"
    because personal knowledge is too little with which to express thought
    abstractly. This Existence Will is in the psyche. All that we desire
    to create has its beginnings in feeling alone. This is true for the
    scientist; it is true for the artist. But to rely entirely on feeling
    and to ignore thought would mean to make nothing. When personal
    feeling transforms itself into religion (not a religion but the essence
    of religion) and thought becomes philosophy, the mind then opens to
    realizations- realization, let us say, of what the Existence Will of
    any particular architectural vision of spaces may be. Realization of
    this nature is the merging of feeling and thought when the mind is in
    closest rapport with the psyche, the source of what a thing wants to
    be. It is the beginning of form. Form encompasses a harmony of
    systems, a sense of order, and that which characterizes one existence
    from another. Form has no shape or dimensions. For example "spoon"
    stands for a form having two inseparable parts, the handle and the
    bowl, whereas "a spoon" implies specific design made of silver or wood,
    big or little, shallow or deep. Form is what. Design is how. Form is
    impersonal, but design belongs to the designer. Design is prescribed
    by circumstances
  • Plasma Studii | Sun Jul 24th 2005 1:31 p.m.
    ok, but you're playing pretty fast and loose with your definition of "design". where would you
    put warhol? for that matter things like the last supper, design=study in composition.
    actually, where does that leave mozart, snoop dog, etc? even pollock's are design, albeit by
    different stratagem. ready-mades are just design questions applied to the art world in
    general. what isn't designed? (i really would love an example just to understand what you
    mean).

    or do you mean design as in art sans skill, like a donald judd (as opposed to a rembrandt)?
    or is that the ultimate indesign purity, isolating the artist ideas, from any craft. where a
    blueprint/sketch is still "design" but not the focus of the piece.

    maybe you mean "design" as a sort of opposite to interactivity. this is quite usual, but i'll
    argue it until i die. in linear work, the designed element is sensory (and often rigidly specific
    to a certain time or time line). in interactivity, the designed element is experience/
    communication between the work and the audience (having nothing at all to do with time).

    many people assume there is ONLY sensory design and aren't really all that open to
    interactivity (as much as they insist they are friendly to try it, will never be satisfied keeping
    their old criteria). possibly these same people only mumble when everyone sings happy
    birthday, or sit in the corner at parties and go on how they won't dance, take subways and
    cabs to get "there" faster on sunny sundays.

    though our brains do work differently (far more effectively) when we're engaged in some
    physical task, not by just observing, that just opens the door to your audiences' heads,
    "design" may also be defined as the stuff you shove in.

    On Jul 24, 2005, at 12:39 PM, kristina maskarin wrote:

    there are rabbits and 'rabbits'.
    art definitely gave up to design.
    Total merge of the industrial design, marketing and media as main reality moulders
    augments the virtual obesity in content and form. And I agree: The phrase "new media"
    essentially indicates potential retail mark-up value.
    Environment today and in the future is about designing versus chaotic / natural growth. But
    design should be conscious of the humanity and environment and integrated in the whole (
    production & trade & product after-life).

    no design is also design.

    "Letting go" of design is at once one of the hardest and most unnatural things to do, yet can
    often elicit rewards far greater than had we put our mind to something. Any ideas on how to
    encourage this "liberation"
    from art/design?
    +
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    ___________________
    PLASMA STUDII
    501(c)(3) non-profit
    stage * galleries * web
    POI Box 1086
    Cathedral Station
    New York, NY 10025
    http://plasmastudii.org
  • Eric Dymond | Mon Jul 25th 2005 11:56 p.m.
    kristina maskarin wrote:

    > there are rabbits and 'rabbits'.
    > art definitely gave up to design.
    And there are Designer Jeans
    http://www.parasuco.com/
    and
    Designer Genes
    http://www.ekac.org/umich.book.info.html
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