Myron Turner
Since the beginning
Works in Winnipeg United States of America

My work for the web has been included in Rhizome's Artbase,,, Machinista 2003/Artificial Intelligence and Art,,, It has been shown at the Fredericton Independent Film & Video Alliance Conference, and supported by the Banff Centre's New Media program. In 2005 one of my pieces was nominated for a Viper International award. My project "Bstat Zero" will be featured in February 2006 as an Artport project of the Whitney Museum Of Art. I have been a guest panelist at Banff and founded Manitoba Visual Arts Network in 1994. I've been a member of Rhizome from its first year. My personal web site is

I started my career as a printmaker, moved into photo-based art, and in 1990 began using computers in my work. My work has appeared throughout Canada both in public galleries and artist-run centers. I have also exhibited in the U.S., Great Britain and South America. My woodcut prints interpreting zoomed digital images have twice won awards at the Boston Printmakers' "North American Print" biennial and have been shown in various print competitions and venues, including The Print Center (Philadelphia) and International Print Center New York.
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New Web Proejct: Timeline


There are many reasons why the metaphor of the timeline appealed to
me for this project. First, there are the obvious associations with time and aging, and this work began as a poem about getting old. But the timeline also embodies a particular kind of time--that is, it lets you replay, much as we replay for ourselves the images and words that
make up our lives. On the one hand there is the sense that there's a
continuous flow, a whole video that makes up our lives, but on the
other there's the sense of the fragmentary and the random. "Timeline" is a metaphor for this contradiction. The user creates a poem out of random acts, i.e. by selecting images from a database of images each of which is associated with a few lines from the original poem. The associations are not known in advance. But more importantly, one doesn't know the shape of the original poem which, like our ideologies and abstractions, may turn out, in the long run, not to be relevant to the poem that one creates out of the particulars of one's own experience. So, the poem is in effect many poems, which you can play and replay in their various combinations of image and text, which through their interplay have the potential to create new meanings.

Myron Turner


Gupta's Blessedbandwidth, Guardian Angel, etc.

The latest Rhizome Digest just came across the screen with recommendations
to look at two sites, Gupta's blessedbandwidth at the Tate and Guardian Angel
by one of Curt Cloninger's students.

Guardian Angel is what it is, a student project, the kind of thing you take
seriously in the classroom. Gupta's piece, by virtue of its Tate cache and her
history of previous work, asks for more: an international audience, thoughtful
consideration, a place in contemporary art practice. But like so much net
art, it is essentially a one-liner in which the labor of production far exceeds its
cultural or intellectual or aesthetic value. It comes supplied with essays which
attempt to place it in contemporary political and aesthetic contexts. But
works of art can't stay afloat on the the life-jackets of the texts that surround
them. Yet this is so often the practice in contemporary net art and often--
though not in this case--the essays have more interest than the works

The question of labor exceeding value is of central importance to the
discussion of net art. Anyone who has ever put together a complex web site
or programmed a complex piece of software art knows how much work goes
into the production. But despite this labor the result for the viewer is often
minimal--some programmed twists of image manipulation or repetitive sets of
images and/or texts in a database, where the viewer soon tires of looking at
yet another of the same, or as here, in Gupta's case, an extended interactive
site built around a one-liner, also repeated various times over.

Where, in fact, is the primary value of such works? The value is in the artist--
in the personal experience of the artist in the process of creating the work, a
that value is not sufficiently reflected back outward to the viewer. This is a
significant alteration of the centers of value that we normally associate with
art. And it's my feeling that until this changes, net art will remain peripheral--
insititutions like the Walker will feel no compunction in shedding free of it and
its audience will remain largely one of "experts".

Myron Turner | | --land safely in cyberspace--


This incredibly beautiful web site was sent to the New Media
Curating list:

Myron Turner | | --land safely in cyberspace--


Re: RHIZOME_RARE: Re: about hypertext

Date sent: Sun, 16 Feb 2003 15:53:18 -0500
From: brandon barr <>
Subject: RHIZOME_RARE: Re: about hypertext
Send reply to: brandon barr <>

Thanks for the great annotated bibliography!

> If that person revels in post-sturucturalist theory and always has a
> copy of Barthes or Derrida under their folded arm, George Landow's
> Hypertext 2.0 is a good one to send them.
> If the person is into gaming and spends time bouncing from MUD to MOO,
> Espen Arseth's Cybertext:Oerspectives on Ergodic Literature should be
> the pick.
> If they are a graphic designer or are visually literate, send them
> Mark S Meadows's book Pause & Effect: The Art of Interactive
> Narrative.
> If they are a film studies guru, and their black turtleneck is
> imblazoned with the phrase "Vertov this!", then Lev Manovich's The
> Language of New Media would be right up their alley.
> If they like tossing McLuhanisms like "the medium is the message!"
> into casual conversation, then they'll find themselves taken by Jay
> David Bolter and Richard Grusin's Remediation: Understanding New
> Media.
> If they like comics, then Scott McCloud's Understanding Comics will
> get them thinking in ways that suggest new forms and McCloud's
> Reinventing Comics particularly points to digital media.
> If they like experimental poetry and are always trying to start up a
> new lit mag, then Loss Pequeno Glazier's Digital Poetics will be
> perfect.
> And if they are a computer scientist, Noah Wardrip-Fruin and Nick
> Montfort's The New Media Reader collects a historically based series
> of essays that discuss the computer as an artistic medium.
> Best,
> Brandon Barr

Myron Turner | | --land safely in cyberspace--


Brett Stalbaum: Database Logic(s) and Landscape Art

I was interested to read Brett Stalbaum's piece "Database
Logic(s) and Landscape Art" in the most recent Digest.

He makes the point that database systems are independent of
interface and and remarks that "the technical organization
of data is" not "necessarily a strong predicate of user
interface", citing the "dogged reemergence of the command
line interface" in Linux and MacOSX. But Unix/IRIS operating
systems have long set sophisticated GUI's side by side with
CLI's, and what these parallel presentations of underlying
data have recognized is the fundamental fact of all binary
information--its fluidity, its inherent potential to be
poured into any appropriate mold. HTML data, for instance,
can be shaped not only to any browser/OS implementation but
to any software which can read the data, as we've seen in
various interventions created by media artists.

Of the questions Stalbaum promises to treat in a later
installment, the one which I find most intriguing is "how
the nature and conceptions of place are altered by
database". If, on the one hand, the data-stream is fluid and
open to any workable intervention or interpretation, these
very interpretations alter the way we see not just the data
but the reality from which the data has emerged and which it
represents. Think of operating systems. The metaphor of
"windows" permeates our thinking and our feeling about the
computer, suggesting that our experience is one of looking
into, through, deeper (window beyond window), working off
against the physical experience of the monitor, which is now
itself a window. In the command line interface the monitor
is instead the extension of a the typewriter's sheet of
paper, and its experience an experience of sequentiality, of
ongoing process, the mute speech of a teletype responding to
our mute inquisitions. With windows, which conceals its
complexities, we give ourselves over, like Alice, to the
phosphorescent illusion of the looking glass and its
pleasures. So different from the command line, which never
lets us forget that is serious business, this is work.

In the early days of Rhizome, I argued that media art should
get beyond the technological introversion of taking the
medium for its subject, that it should use the medium for
purposes beyond itself, as a painter uses a brush, etc.
Now, of course, there is all kinds of media art. But
I would no longer argue against the technologically
self-reflexive. It became clear that as the web developed,
a greater danger was that self-expression would be
subsumed to corporate models because the tools that we would
have at our disposal would increasingly be the tools of the
marketplace. This left a still important role for artists
whose interest was in interventions, in creating works which
stand between what is offered and what is possible, between
the interface and the data-stream.