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NEW-MEDIA-CURATING  April 2012

NEW-MEDIA-CURATING April 2012

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Subject:

Re: RES: belatedly new

From:

[log in to unmask] <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

[log in to unmask] <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Wed, 18 Apr 2012 12:46:13 +0100

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Hi everyone,

Whilst agreeing with the general thrust of the Furtherfield article, I concur with Armin that "New Media" was a much broader and widely supported concept, and however much we dislike the term it has yet to run its course. It also meant/means something that had a recognisable set of manifestations and a range of theories to explain or critique it. It also has some currency outside our field, which is probably why the "New Aesthetic" wants to jump on the bandwagon of "new = digital".

When Jussi Parrika questioned the New Aesthetic on his FB page, I responded that a lot of us who have been in this field for a while are a bit galled by this attempt to appropriate the term "aesthetics" by the Silicon Roundabout crowd. I thought there was a political element to it to this activity, given the way Shoreditch is being promoted at present. They need a label to hang on their work and for the moment "New Aesthetics" is the best they can do.

I agree with Sarah that there is an art/design dichotomy, at least in terms of the reception given to "New Aesthetics." Those of us who site ourselves more in the fine arts question its validity as a movement, and certainly as an aesthetic category. However it's possible to see it from a more design-oriented perspective as a purely stylistic category where evoking the retro-digital is important. In that case, we can still rightly say "there's nothing new about that either!" 

But there is clearly a memetic aspect to this as the "New Aesthetics" goes viral in the world of Wired and gains some traction there. We should find a way to harness this and use it to raise awareness on all the work that's been done in this area, to expose the fallacy of the "New" tag. 

There's such an extensive history of Information Aesthetics going back to the 1960s (for instance) and more recent manifestations of truly digital aesthetics. We need to harness the interest the New Aesthetics has generated and point these things out.

All best,
Nick

Sent from my HTC

----- Reply message -----
From: "Armin Medosch" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: [NEW-MEDIA-CURATING] RES: belatedly new
Date: Wed, Apr 18, 2012 10:37


hi

foillowing on to Mez's note ...
 
moreover, the analogy that the writer of the article on furtherfield
makes. between the newness in 'new media' of 1990s and the new in new
aesthetics is simply false. I have not studied that phenomenon in detail
but it seems to be about a fairly small group of people trying to hype
up something. on the other hand -- while at the time I had been opposed
to the new in new media (preferring the term media art) --, new media
had a broad social support and was a significant tendency of the 1990s
since it denoted the entrance of digital media into the culture of the
everyday. 

and this is where the more interesting question lies, between art
practices using and critically engaging with all sorts of technologies
and scientific concepts, and practices of a very similar kind which are
either design oriented or an emerging culture of the everyday which
became possible now that those technologies have, for better or worse,
truly become pervasive. 

I would not see art and design as a dichotomy, as Sarah suggested, but
the need to recognise and find a vocabulary for talking about a variety
of different approaches, some of which, in the best tradition of
Constructivism, denied that there was any difference between art and
applied art, while a lot of the stuff  that we have today is just some
form of 'making' based on an ignorance about the necessary reflexivity
of art, whereby the problem with that is not a lacking of high-brow
values but of everything that would make it resist against the
incorporating logic of neoliberal inmformation capitalism

best regards
Armin


On Wed, 2012-04-18 at 18:20 +1000, mez breeze wrote:
> My thoughts exactly, Simon. I've been wanting to articulate something
> similar since the 1st Bruce Sterling piece came out.
> 
> Regards,
> Mez
> 
> Reality Engineer>
> Synthetic Environment Strategist>
> Game[r + ] Theorist.
> ::http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mez_Breeze::
> 
> 
> On Wed, Apr 18, 2012 at 5:52 PM, Simon Biggs <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> 
> > I'm failing to see how the New Aesthetic represents a novel paradigm. It
> > seems to be an umbrella term for a range of tendencies that have been
> > apparent for some ten or twenty years. Like Relational Aesthetics before
> > it, I fear it is a branding exercise for a dumbed-down consumer-friendly
> > version of some rather more sophisticated earlier work.
> >
> > best
> >
> > Simon
> >
> >
> > On 17 Apr 2012, at 21:55, Helen Sloan wrote:
> >
> > > Finally a decent argument about the 'New Aesthetic'. Hats off to Robert
> > > Jackson for writing this.
> > >
> > > I wonder if it was James Bridle's wish to rise to media stardom through
> > an
> > > article by Bruce Sterling. It ensures Lighthouse in Brighton some good
> > > coverage and audiences over the next months, that's for sure.
> > >
> > > As far as I'm concerned the 'new aesthetic' as championed has been
> > apparent
> > > for about 20 years. It is different from art but there are points of
> > overlap
> > > and they should be allowed to flourish together if needed. In my own
> > career
> > > I supported AntiRom, Arup and Tomato and vice versa in this context in
> > the
> > > relatively early days. I knew the difference between their work and art
> > (but
> > > these overlapped on many occasions). Art however still needs some freedom
> > > beyond the design context and vice versa. Many art programmes do not
> > fulfil
> > > my expectations any more, not least the current cultural olympiad one in
> > UK.
> > > Art is instrumentalised, and I felt this pressure from the 'new
> > aesthetic'
> > > not because of a context like olympics or social mobility but because it
> > > needed an instant impact. Art is often a slow burner that needs thought
> > and
> > > depth as Robert Jackson pointed out in his article.
> > >
> > >
> > > I suppose it depends on what your belief is about art - for me, it's an
> > > opportunity to put a different spin on the status quo. It could be
> > > politically, visually, experientially etc.
> > >
> > > The New Aesthetic Tumblr project is interesting in that context, but
> > there
> > > are other blogs, artworks and streams that make this debate much more
> > > diverse than the one that's been presented as the New Aesthetic.
> > >
> > > Best wishes
> > > Helen Sloan
> > > SCAN
> > >
> > > On 17/4/12 21:00, "Guilherme Kujawski Ramos"
> > > <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> > >
> > >> a reasoned contribution to the debate
> > >> http://www.furtherfield.org/features/banality-new-aesthetic
> > >>
> > >> -----Mensagem original-----
> > >> De: Curating digital art - www.crumbweb.org
> > >> [mailto:[log in to unmask]] Em nome de Sarah Cook
> > >> Enviada em: terça-feira, 17 de abril de 2012 06:44
> > >> Para: [log in to unmask]
> > >> Assunto: Re: [NEW-MEDIA-CURATING] belatedly new
> > >>
> > >> Hi all
> > >> thanks for your thoughts, and links, on the new aesthetic. i think the
> > points
> > >> raised are really interesting and something which has been circulating
> > around
> > >> my research for some time:
> > >> aggregating and 'liking' as new forms of curatorial practice
> > >> how audiences consume content differently in online spaces
> > >> object-beingness (old fashioned Heideggerian dasein, or the
> > networked-object's
> > >> present-at-handedness and how that is accommodated curatorially)
> > >>
> > >> I particularly am interested in Dan's comment that
> > >> "A lot of my New Media Art friends seem to want to avoid this
> > conversation, or
> > >> have adopted a "tell me why this matters" stance. I guess that's
> > >> understandable, it's easy to look at the Tumblr blog and not see much
> > >> substance. Plus it's a broader cultural thing, it doesn't exclude
> > fashion and
> > >> advertising, it is probably generationally divisive."
> > >>
> > >> I'd like to unpick this further... Is it an art and design division or a
> > >> generational one? cultural one? in what way did Eyebeam's Re:group show
> > (which
> > >> Beryl and I were nominally involved in as Eyebeam's research partners
> > at the
> > >> time) address this and is it the only show to have done so? We've
> > talked about
> > >> exhibitions on this list where media art on view was at the service of
> > other
> > >> than aesthetic experience -- changing the world, addressing issues such
> > as
> > >> financial regulation or climate change -- but not in terms of how
> > information
> > >> about these works circulates, how the history of art and design is being
> > >> written through them. What are the criteria for evaluating these works
> > beyond
> > >> those we've used so far (how the work behaves, how the audience
> > participates,
> > >> how the work questions or exhibits its own production and
> > distribution)? As
> > >> Curt said,
> > >> To fail to ask these questions leads to a kind of reversion toward
> > evaluating
> > >> these new image as discrete, hermetic, "aesthetic" objects rather than
> > as the
> > >> residue/result of a series of cultural processes, networks, and
> > relationships
> > >> (which is what images have always been, and what these new images
> > particularly
> > >> are).
> > >>
> > >> Apologies for rambling,
> > >> Sarah
> > >>
> > >> P.S. I would love to hear of other writing about surf clubs -- is there
> > (or
> > >> should there be) a reader on it?
> > >>
> > >>
> > >>
> > >> "Esta mensagem e reservada e sua divulgacao, distribuicao, reproducao ou
> > >> qualquer forma de uso e proibida e depende de previa autorizacao desta
> > >> instituicao. O remetente utiliza o correio eletronico no exercicio do
> > seu
> > >> trabalho ou em razao dele, eximindo esta instituicao de qualquer
> > >> responsabilidade por utilizacao indevida. Se voce recebeu esta mensagem
> > por
> > >> engano, favor elimina-la imediatamente."
> > >>
> > >> "This message is reserved and its disclosure, distribution,
> > reproduction or
> > >> any other form of use is prohibited and shall depend upon previous
> > proper
> > >> authorization. The sender uses the electronic mail in the exercise of
> > his/her
> > >> work or by virtue thereof, and the institution accepts no liability for
> > its
> > >> undue use. If you have received this e-mail by mistake, please delete it
> > >> immediately."
> > >
> >
> >
> > Simon Biggs
> > [log in to unmask] http://www.littlepig.org.uk/ @SimonBiggsUK skype:
> > simonbiggsuk
> >
> > [log in to unmask] Edinburgh College of Art, University of Edinburgh
> > http://www.eca.ac.uk/circle/ http://www.elmcip.net/
> > http://www.movingtargets.co.uk/
> >
> 

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