patrick lichty
Since 2010
Works in Oak Park, Wisconsin United States of America

Patrick Lichty (b.1962) is a technologically-based conceptual artist, writer, independent curator, animator for the activist group, The Yes Men, and Executive Editor of Intelligent Agent Magazine. He began showing technological media art in 1989, and deals with works and writing that explore the social relations between us and media. Venues in which Lichty has been involved with solo and collaborative works include the Whitney & Turin Biennials, Maribor Triennial, Performa Performance Biennial, Ars Electronica, and the International Symposium on the Electronic Arts (ISEA).

He also works extensively with virtual worlds, including Second Life, and his work, both solo and with his performance art group, Second Front, has been featured in Flash Art, Eikon Milan, and ArtNews.

Discussions (21) Opportunities (1) Events (5) Jobs (0)

Breaking the Ice

I love the fact that people have locked onto Curt's quote, "too much to lose/ not enough at stake" as if today's artists cower before the curators and critics while simultaneously sniff at the message board because there might not be enough ROI from their time placed into the board. This reminds me of an argument I had with a student who was indignant about having to take classes that he felt he might not get a good ROI from and might not be relevant to his aspirations. This also reminds me of the idea that the young artist has their "eyes on the prize" to the point where there is a gesture of shallow narcissism, and little else. it also shows that Western culture is so risk-averse that no one wants to engage where there is risk, however miniscule of losing their time.

IMO, participating in culture is not about strategically placing yourself to maximize your brand's return on investment so you can sell something at Miami Basel. Don't get me wrong, but when I think like that, I go read Gregory Sholette's "Dark Matter" again and again. I know I'm part of the 2-5% of all contemporary artists who stick it out to 50, and that's my argument of enjoying the process rather than obsessing about the returns, because you're probably going to remain a web designer if you don't become a professor.

The privilege to being part of something like Rhizome is that if you catch traction, you help drive culture. that's amazing. I'm not particularly interested if you wear a tweed jacket and round glasses and obsess about how you're going to get into Pace, because if that's the way you think, you probably won't. At the risk of sounding trite fortune favors the bold who just go out into the wilds of Chernobyl and bring back hunks of radioactive metal.

Be fearless, and who cares if you waste an hour once in a while on a bulletin board. Better time spent than Halo...


Breaking the Ice

Michael, I'll take you up on that. And for lack of more time, glad to have you on.


Breaking the Ice

I echo everyone else's appreciation for your post, and as a mid-90's Rhizomer and rabid poster, I remember hanging out at the Spring offices in SoHo with Mark and Alex. I remember that after RTMark was in the WiBi in 2000, with Max Anderson going crazy with what we were doing, Cory Arcangel was on Houston and Spring, asking me how to make it as a New Media Artist.

As an aside, he certainly seems to have done a better job of it than I did, even as a tangential Yes Man.

A lot of it changed here. It became institutional, striated, compartmentalized, very much like the infrastructure of a museum. I remember having coffee with Lauren Cornell once briefly after her coming on board that was very collegial and warm. But at the 15th Anniversary party, I felt like I received a boilerplate "Oh, hello, yes, Patrick, we want to thank you for all the support and (free) content that you have contributed over the years." No, Lauren, I'm not being entitled and feeling like I deserve anything but perhaps a little friendship for the thousands of hours that I put into this thing. This isn't a social media site, this was my motherfucking HOME while I was talking about this obscure emerging form of art that no one in North Canton, Ohio had the faintest inkling about. I became a virtual New Yorker through Rhizome and The Thing, and when i came to town, Blackhawk, Jen Crowe, and the McCoys, along with Napier, Klima, etc would throw 50+ person parties with me as an excuse to get everyone together. This wasn't a business, it was a community of artists who knew and cared about each other.

Which brings me to my ChiBuddy Nick O'Brien's comments about the new artists trying to work out working into the galleries. That isn't what it was about at all. We hadn't become part of the art world proper yet (and according to Claire Bishop, we still shouldn't). In the 90's most of us weren't about being part of the art world because until things like net.Condition, the WiBi 2000, Data Dynamics, the SFMoMA show, we just weren't on the radar. We hung out, traded chops, hung at Postmasters (yes, before Bitforms was founded), created other networks like The Upgrade (which is still around but flagging a little).

It wasn't about the business of the art world, Nick. it was about being an artist with a passion for art and technology, and if you got a break, great. There weren't any MFAs in New Media or many galleries that would take us.

I used to feel that Rhizome was a home for me, for art, for discourse; but once I felt it turn into an art system institution tailoring itself to young NYC artists just like everything else, I lost interest in it and started my blog at Furtherfield.

I started doing digital art as a Contemporary at 27 (in 1990). And as Guillermo Gomez-Pena once said, I'm not as young, hip, or pretty, but there's still a swing in that hip.

I guess my point for Michael is that I feel like somewhere along the way, Rhizome has taken various turns; guerrilla, community, institutional, take your pick.

I'd love to be at home at Rhizome again. I've said so much to Heather. However, I don't expect Rhizome to be a scrappy little RAW listserv again. What I think did happen to Rhizome is that it got caught in its own snare of success and Dyske and Curt have outlined many of the issues here very well. I think that what the new management would do well to consider is that where Rhizome had its humanity was not in positioning technological media in the art world or giving credibility to certain members (which I think is a reason why R's affiliation with the New is a little problematic, but something we have to live with), but the maintenance of a haven for discussion and activity and community to flourish. There is a difference between being a strategic, "eyes on the prize" art worlder and being an artist, and that difference lies in your intent, your belief, and your passion.

Fuck the art world. Home is where your homies are.
Rhizome was that for me. It just happened to be in the art world, and I just happened to be a contemporary artist. However, these were incidental. Rhizome was a place where my passions could live and flourish. I hope it can be again.

For those of you who know me for having a more scholarly tone, please excuse my language, but I think passion needs its voice, and it's something that Rhizome has been lacking for a long time.


Book Release: Patrick Lichty: Variant Analyses

Wed Apr 10, 2013 00:00 - Tue Apr 30, 2013

Lichty’s range of commentary and analysis dissects nearly two decades of what has now become new media society. Before Facebook’s IPO and Wikileaks’ media storm, artist-as-activists experimented with data gloves, virtual world performance, and anonymous, anarchic disruptions determined to bewilder traditional enclaves of art and political society. In this collection Lichty presents several such experiments in distributed creativity: collaborations across a range of technologies and platforms, where authorship becomes a vague placeholder and sometimes acts as a performance in of itself, and the artwork is equally in flux, always in process, and often disappearing into bits.

These essays provide an extensive and timely overview of critical thought on new media culture, written by an observer-participant who has made major contributions to the sociopolitical movements he archives. Spanning art and new media theory, activism and literary criticism, this assembly seeks to understand the networked society in flux: what it means when the virtual integrates with the physical, and when newer, uncategorized media works prompt major shifts in cultural production and change the very definition of art and protest. As a veteran observer of the technological society, Lichty has produced the ideal guidebook for exploring the wilderness of our digital mediascapes, both past and present.

colophon Author: Patrick Lichty. Editorial support: Morgan Currie. Design: Katja van Stiphout. DTP: Margreet Riphagen & Katja van Stiphout. Printer: ‘Print on Demand’. Publisher: Institute of Network Cultures, Amsterdam 2013. ISBN: 978-90-818575-4-3


2013 - Fourth Annual - UNCG Sustainability Shorts Film Competition

Mon Mar 18, 2013 06:30 - Mon Mar 18, 2013

Greensboro, North Carolina
United States of America

For the fourth year, the UNCG Sustainability Committee presents its annual Sustainability Shorts Festival. Time-based work of up to roughly 10 minutes is eligible dealing with sustainability. Deadline is extended to April 5.
For more info, write: