The Centre for Modern Thought at the University of Aberdeen hosted the conference, "Recoded: Landscapes and Politics of New Media" from 24th to the 26th of April 2008. Over three days, mediumistic questions and fantasies ran through the discussion, over the days and around them, talk of interfaces, transmitters, points between, avatars, nodes and graphs, spirits and phantoms and their interlocutors. From the first paper to the last was a meta-conversation: What do we mean by medium, media, new and old? This meta-inflection, as strange as taping yourself listening, became pervasive; even the hotel had a ghost.
Nicholas Weist and Lumi Tan are co-founders and -directors (along with their partner Summer Guthery) of the online curatorial project "Why + Wherefore". Tan was also a guest curator on a previous online curatorial project founded by Weist called pHytonics-- which is now director-less but lives on as a fixture of powerHouse Books' online program.
"Why + Wherefore" was begun in December of 2007 with an invitational featuring over 50 artists. For the current show, entitled "TBD," each of the three curators select works to be loaded individually, reacting to each piece in succession with the following. The work is loaded in real time. The next show, which will include only video-based work loosely related to pop and media culture, will debut in early May. A screening of select work from the show will be held at Monkeytown, Brooklyn, NY, in early June.
The formulas and algorithms of mathematics may serve as sources of artistic inspiration, but are notoriously challenging to translate visually. Early computer-generated experiments often had a "gee whiz" quality (think psychedelic fractals) -- but now there's a growing cadre of artists using math as a muse in ever-more-sophisticated ways, according to curator George Fifield. He and co-curator Heidi Kayser assembled the work of five such artists in the exhibition "Math and Art," on view at Boston's AXIOM Gallery through April 27.
Two years ago Caitlin Jones observed in NYFA Current that net artists working in multiple formats were increasingly finding venues to show. Today, the art world is still figuring out how to manage the practicalities of dealer and artist relationships. I spoke with Aron Namenwirth, of artMovingProjects, in an effort to better understand the challenges, and solutions, digital media presents to contemporary galleries with a focus on New Media.
"My whole art practice and art world grew out of intense Internet surfing, collecting and trading links on del.icio.us… Part of it is the feeling that there's so much stuff out there already that it seems pointless to make something new, from scratch-- which is perhaps a bit of a cliché response, but not untrue. The ephemeral nature of the Internet inspires a kind of disrespect for objects-- for for whole, perfect, "created" things. I'm really happy that, when someone comes to my website, my "portfolio" or whatever, they're basically just confronted with a list of lists-- and I like that they might leave thinking, "what did that guy really even do?" Even the word "collecting" implies too much physicality or weight; it's more like pointing or listing. In this way it's different than pre-Internet appropriation, because there's absolutely nothing precious or special to me about my specific source materials."
"I have always held the political angle of the avant-garde as a necessary and important history. The political drive behind those ambitious enough to make their dreams a reality does not come out of an interest in art per se, but the interest in producing meaning on a large level.A basic Marxist idea (that I think is quite apparent) is that the way we think is produced in the way we live. So, those interested in producing a more robust form of living must take seriously the economic and social forms that produce our world. These are hardly separate projects."
The mystery genre is one of the most robust in literature, theater and film as it has a superior ability to involve the reader in the unfolding of drama. The group show "In the Private Eye," currently on view at the ISE Cultural Foundation in New York City, reflects this same level of engagement by inviting the viewer to join with six artists in the investigation of a series of crimes, cover-ups, and historical narratives.
transmediale.08 invited attendees to "conspire" and, over the course of the festival, the possibilities inherent in this invitation were thoroughly explored. From semi-secret off-site events to the constantly idling black cars at the entrance to invoking the name of the mysterious Bilderberg Salon to key works in the exhibition and topics in the conference, the many nuances of the theme presented themselves with clarity and consistency.