Links, artists' projects and proposals, criticism, and software are all included on Kingdom of Piracy [KOP] -- an online communal studio. Having just launched in pilot form (yesterday, in fact) and hosted by the Acer Digital Art Center in Taiwan, the project explores piracy as the ultimate form of net art. The participants are an international cadre of creative, innovative folks, ranging from Shu Lea Cheang to Beige Records.
With patriotism high, now might be an interesting time to look at the net art work "American Views: Stories of the Landscape" by Russet Lederman. This non-linear piece (which mimics the writing style of cultural theorist Walter Benjamin) is a digital-age version of a landscape painting. Lederman presents different views of the U.S. as remembered by three people from the heartland, California, and a New York suburb. Images, audio, ephemera, and text make up the collage...which, after all, is a metaphor for the American experience.
Tonight, if you're in McLean, VA, why not attend a reception and panel discussion for "Casting a Net" at the McLean Project for the Arts? Nine artists are involved in this survey of net art, including Agricola de Cologne, Brian Judy, and Patrick Lichty. The four jurors of the show will debate with them. The shindig's free, and it takes place from 7 - 9 pm (the discussion's at 7:30). And for a bit of 1990's nostalgia, your hosts will serve "web-tinis & cyber treats."
Sick of online browsing that follows the traditional page-by-page format? Victor Liu See-le's "The Slow Arrow of Beauty" lets you access the Internet as if it's an ever-changing river of information. "Slow Arrow" is a Java applet which searches for content that's merely related to the user's request via algorithms (which the user can play with). It serves up the goods in several simultaneous waterfalls of data.
The Web is a visual place, no doubt, and "noware," by Pedro Fernandes, is a search engine that allows users to access pictorial compositions as opposed to links. This playful tool assumes that users will relate the words they type and the images they receive. The goal: to make netsurfing a bit more fun and challenging -- and less about marketing, but more about the imagination.
The Irish Museum of Modern Art has announced a new net art initiative that recognizes the paradox of curating institutional shows of online work. The first IMMA exhibition of net art will be an "uncurated show" (isn't that an oxymoron?) -- or, rather, a show that's self-curated by the net art community itself. The organizers state that any artists who disagree with this concept should e-mail their criticisms to the IMMA; all points of view as expressed in correspondence will be represented in the show as well.
...shopping: THE THING's Second Contemporary Art Benefit Auction is now online. Bid now; you can until December 16. Works by renowned contemporary artists, such as Christoph Draeger and Dike Blair, is up for grabs, along with pieces by net artists Miltos Manetas, Vuk Cosic, and many more. All proceeds directly benefit THE THING, a non-profit new media lab and contemporary art think tank celebrating its 10-year anniversary this month.
'Tis the season for giving back to one's community. Members of the net art community show support for one another by contributing to Rhizome.org's Community Campaign, which helps keep the non-profit Rhizome.org alive and kicking (butt). Donors range from Brown University's Visual Arts Department to individual artists such as G.H. Hovagimyan and Young-Hae Chang (as in Young-Hae Change Heavy Industries). And Rhizome.org recognizes all donors for their generosity: $10 = an email address @rhizome.org; $25 = a Yael Kanarek mousepad; $50 = a Rhizome.org T-shirt, and $250 = a Rhizome.org laptop backpack. At any level, you can feel great about continuing to build an international community of new media artists...and those who just love new media art.