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For me several apposite comments on this theme come from the second episode of Robert Hughes classic "The Shock of the New - The Powers That Be" from 1980 which coincidentally screened recently on BBC reruns and, for those of us lucky (?) to be behind the Great UK Firewall, can be downloaded from here:

  http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b0074qfm/The_Shock_of_the_New_The_Powers_That_Be/

-- A lovely quote from it by Moholy Nagy:  "Constructivism is the socialism of vision".  Love it, love it, love it…

Hughes is discussing art in relationship to political power in the first half of the 20th century.  Dada (the left), Futurism (the right) and beyond…  Some great insights though those with a pomo bent may disagree!

All best
Paul

On 04/09/2012, at 5:27 PM, Simon Biggs wrote:

> Derrida to the rescue. Very helpful. Petards and hoisting come to mind.
> 
> Derrida's postcard has strong echoes of the first generation of "network" artists. Here I'm thinking of "mail art", a form popular with artists who wished to circumvent both mainstream art and politics during the 1960's and 70's. The artist's involved in this activity, like media artists today, were dispersed across continents and often between cultures. Derrida could have been thinking about such practices when he considered the postcard as an early exemplar of the telecommunications revolution and he succinctly unpacks the relationship between technology and cultural change. Hole in the Wall, one of the first electronically networked "events", also evidences this. The public reaction to it was an early example of viral media and it went far far beyond the art world.
> 
> The implicit argument in Charlie's armour piercing message is that mainstream contemporary art is in denial of its own condition as a sub-genre of media art.
> 
> best
> 
> Simon
> 
> 
> On 4 Sep 2012, at 16:55, Gere, Charlie wrote:
> 
>> My tuppence ha'penny worth on the Bishop.
>> 
>> 'Art' (with-a-capital-A) is arguably the product of a particular technological regime, that of print, and the printed book, which is also that of the framed painting, the proscenium arch in the theatre, the rise of the modern autonomous subject, the nation state, the separation of the arts, and the emergence of distinct institutions, galleries, concert halls etc... in which the arts take place. The 'white cube' is the exemplary space of contemporary art, and also paradigmatic of this separation. The new media are in effect a new technological regime, in which Art, as it understood, no longer fits. The debate that Bishop's essay has started seems to revisit some of the questions opened by Derrida in The Postcard back in 1980 concerning literature. 
>> 
>> 
>> ". . . an entire epoch of so-called literature, if not all of it, cannot survive a certain technological regime of telecommunications (in this respect the political regime is secondary). Neither can philosophy, or psychoanalysis. Or love letters. . . . Refound here the American student with whom we had coffee last Saturday, the one who was looking for a thesis subject (comparative literature). I suggested to her something on the telephone in the literature of the 20th century (and beyond), starting with, for example, the telephone lady in Proust or the figure of the American operator, and then asking the question of the effects of the most advanced telematics on whatever would still remain of literature. I spoke to her about microprocessors and computer terminals, she seemed somewhat disgusted. She told me that she still loved literature (me too, I answered her, mais si, mais si). Curious to know what she understood by this." (Derrida, 1987: 197, 204)
>> 
>> Bishop is a bit like the American student here I think...
>> 
>> J. Hillis Miller suggests that ‘one of Derrida’s main points in The Post Card is that it is a feature of the new regime of telecommunications to break down the inside/outside dichotomies that presided over the old print culture’. He goes on to propose that the ‘postcard stands as a proleptic anticipation of the publicity and openness of the new communications regimes’.  This new regime involves ‘the breakdown of traditional boundaries between inside and outside brought about by new communication technologies... the new electronic space, the space of television, cinema, telephone, videos, fax, e-mail, hypertext, and the Internet, has profoundly altered the economies of the self, the home, the workplace, the university, and the nation-state’s politics.’ Hillis Miller claims that these ‘were traditionally ordered around the firm boundaries of an inside-outside dichotomy, whether those boundaries were the walls between the home’s privacy and all the world outside or the borders between the nation-state and its neighbours. The new technologies invade the home and the nation. They confound all these inside/outside divisions’.
>> 
>> By coincidence 1980 was also the year In 1980  Sherrie Rabinowitz and Kit Galloway linked two large live projections of streets in New York and Los Angeles in their ‘public communication sculpture’ HOLE-IN-SPACE, which might stand for art's movement out of the white cube and into the great outdoors.
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> Charlie Gere
>> 
>> Professor of Media Theory and History
>> Lancaster Institute for Contemporary Arts
>> Lancaster University
>> 
> 
> 
> 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/
> MSc by Research in Interdisciplinary Creative Practices
> http://www.ed.ac.uk/studying/postgraduate/degrees?id=656&cw_xml=details.php

====
Paul Brown - based in the UK May to November 2012
http://www.paul-brown.com == http://www.brown-and-son.com
UK Mobile +44 (0)794 104 8228 == USA fax +1 309 216 9900
Skype paul-g-brown
====
Synapse Artist-in-Residence - Deakin University
http://www.deakin.edu.au/itri/cisr/projects/hear.php
Honorary Visiting Professor - Sussex University
http://www.cogs.susx.ac.uk/ccnr/research/creativity.html
====








====
Paul Brown - based in the UK May to November 2012
http://www.paul-brown.com == http://www.brown-and-son.com
UK Mobile +44 (0)794 104 8228 == USA fax +1 309 216 9900
Skype paul-g-brown
====
Synapse Artist-in-Residence - Deakin University
http://www.deakin.edu.au/itri/cisr/projects/hear.php
Honorary Visiting Professor - Sussex University
http://www.cogs.susx.ac.uk/ccnr/research/creativity.html
====