An earlier version of "The Shaman's Space," a web site by Joseph Lef
The Walker Art Center's Gallery 9 has commissioned "Free Radio Linux," a new project by radioqualia. What is it? An online radio station. But no ordinary online radio station. It's also the first net.radio distribution of Linux, the true geek's favorite open source software. Huh? Well, the sounds transmitted aren't music, but a computerized reading of the entire source code used to create the Linux Kernel, the basis of all distributions of Linux. Naturally, the project launched on February 3, the fourth anniversary of the day the Open Source Initiative (http://www.opensource.org/) coined the term "open source" as a label for freely published code.
Maybe it seems too soon for some of us net art old-timers, but already a new generation of net artists are beginning to surface, who claim their work follows "in the tradition of" established artist groups such as Jodi and Superbad. Brazilian-born Rick Silva, a recent graduate of the University of Colorado at Boulder, is one such example. He's released "Swound," an homage and fresh take on earlier works of net art. Blind (black on black) buttons link to other mysterious screens; each screen initiates a soundscape. Currently, the abstract, intentionally elusive piece has about 40 screens and 120 links. Stay tuned for more.
Sure, video streaming online is often choppy and less than fluid...but it has a certain beauty to it, almost like that of modern dance. Choreographer Molissa Fenley has taken the characteristics of movement as captured on the web to heart, and has created "Latitudes," a dance designed to be watched online. Originally commissioned for the Dia Center of the Art's web site, the piece is striking and enjoyable to watch...unlike an out of synch video conference. Foley turns a technical inadequacy (the offbeat timing of web video) and turns it into an effective ballet. Plus, as the audience, you've got the best seat in the theater for this performance...
Descriptive prose can often resemble an intricate fractal in terms of its structure...right? Cory Clarke's experimental application, "l[inguistic] system" attempts to utilize the ever-growing amount of online texts. The site asks users to type in URLs or to cut-and-paste the text of a story; the program then visualizes the branching structure of the prose by interpreting patterns in punctuation and syntax. The result is a pretty image that proves that a picture just may be worth a thousand words.
How often do you visit Turbulence.org? If not too often, now would be a good time. Recently, the New York new media organization launched "The Secret Life of Numbers" by Golan Levin with assistance from Martin Wattenberg, Jonathan Feinberg, David Becker, David Elashoff and Shelley Wynecoop. Fun for math geeks everywhere, "The Secret Life of Numbers" is about the popularity of numerals. Using custom software, popular search engines and statistical tools, the artists surveyed the public to understand what integers were the most favored, as if members of a boy band. Rather than just present cold statistics, though, the artists give site visitors an interactive visualization. Who said numbers weren't cool?
Everyone knows that "Google" is now a verb, thanks to the wide use of the popular search engine with the same name. Net artist Valery Grancher, of "No Memory" (pictured) fame, is currently asking net surfers from around the world to help him create a work of "search art" via Google (and other search engine) tags and codes. If you want to be a net art collaborator, send your URL to Grancher via email at firstname.lastname@example.org The submitted projects will be published on a site called "Les pieces // The pieces." Grancher's work is in the collections of public institutions such as Fond National d'Art Contemporain, Paris, France: Berkeley Art Museum Pacific Film Archive, Berkeley, USA; La Fondation Cartier pour l'Art Contemporain, Paris, France; and others.