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NEW-MEDIA-CURATING  2004

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Subject:

reverse engineering?

From:

Steve Dietz <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Steve Dietz <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Wed, 8 Sep 2004 11:44:46 -0500

Content-Type:

text/plain

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Parts/Attachments

text/plain (62 lines)

This may be skewing the conversation even further from looking at actual
taxonomies, but Myron's comment about the "unfortunate influence of funding"
makes me want to comment on Gloria's excellent post, specifically the issue
of reverse engineering.

I guess I just don't get it. What I think has been interesting - and
important - about net art in particular and "new media" in general has been
how much it has been self-defined and self-propelled. With the history of
ISEA and Ars Electronica and numerous other festivals, I don't know what
"new media as a category for collecting, exhibition, archiving has been for
the most part institutionally created" even means. Perhaps it is my U.S. set
of blinkers, but I think it is the lack of acceptance that defines the
institutional response to net art and new media art, not its reverse
engineering.

That said, I wouldn't argue that Walker and other institutions haven't tried
to present this work (the actual collecting still can be counted on my
digits, though) - and often botched it - but if it was truly embraced, I
think we would be talking about a different problem than we are.

I would also quibble with the video example. Chrissy Illes' brilliant "Into
the Light" show at the Whitney clearly showed institutional support of video
installation art well within the first generation of creators.

As for funding, I think the initial problem was that so many important new
media artists were being thrown into the "visual arts" and "media arts"
pools for review and hardly ever getting funding. Creating new media
categories - at least in the United States but arguably elsewhere - was an
attempt to _respond_ to work not create it or force it in a direction.

Now that this has been established for some years, I would agree that  it is
ripe for re-evaluation.

s


On 9/7/04 10:35 AM, "Gloria Sutton" <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> Secondly, new media art as a category for collection, exhibition,
> archiving has been for the most part institutionally created. Unlike
> other "avant gardes" or emerging media (photography, video, film), "new
> media art" has been institutionally embraced within the same generation
> of its introduction, by embrace, I mean included in major biennials,
> have become a funding category for foundations like the Rockefellers,
> even generated its own funding orgs., and now with the fact that you
> can earn an MFA in net.art, created its own dept within the academy. So
> unlike earlier moments when definitions were usually connected to
> individual artists' practices, new media art has sort of, in my
> estimation, been reversed engineered so to speak.


On 9/8/04 8:46 AM, "Myron Turner" <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> But I agree with both writers on the unfortunate influence of funding on
> the discussion of new media.

--
Steve Dietz
Director, ISEA2006 Symposium | ZeroOne San Jose International Festival
Curatorial Fellow Walter Phillips Gallery, The Banff Centre
stevedietz[at]yproductions[dot]com

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