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Re: <eyebeam><blast> Art and Media

Alan Myouka Sondheim wrote
>But when is this history, among others, going to be recuperated? And
>what's the point of pronouncement of the imminent if it's forgotten?

Right now it might appear as if reflecting on media participation is a
vaste of time because as far as television goes, the cards are dealt. We
can just skip that one. But it won't be long before stronger links
between television and internet will be forged, today there are channels
on internet emitting non-stop and the dynamics in the media landscape
will spill over.

If we have such a clear experience of how participation of artists and
counter-cultural producers has been squeezed out over the past few
years, why not take it into consideration when theorizing the use and
full capacities of the net? (Art in) cyberspace is not just about using
the computer to its fullest, in my estimation, it's about creating a
different social environment with new services and institutions,
employments, built realities, real estate and territories.

Thanks for your questions, they help me clarify things for myself. By
all means, cultural study scolars may stick to their disciplines and
apply a critical self-reflection providing useful instructions for a
critique of our practice in the net. As cultural (visual) producers
though, we draw on all these theories and I believe that brought
fundamental changes into art production which go somewhat unrecognized.

What I was trying to point out is that while all this was happening with
television, art continued to refer to art history as its main canon and
sought recognition in art defined spaces. Art has a tendency to
assimilate everything that runs through its discourse and to classify it
neatly into mediums. I find it a problem e.g. that practices that relate
to a notion of cultural production which draws on the extended field of
critical inquiry of cultural studies, crop up in art magazines as >new
public art> or as >the information aesthetic> and the like. But there is
little evidence of institutions who attempt to develop a visual programm
that would correspond consistently to the content and methods of
cultural studies. Why are there still art historians filling curatorial
positions in institutions when there could be urban planners,
postcolonial critics, gender theoreticians, media analysts and net
critics? Why didn't museums ever bother to buy satellite time? Art as an
industry has a strong tendency to resist structural changes.

In terms of the internet, an important question would be then: How could
the net influence art as an institution structurally in turn. Does it
make sense that we show computers running digital projects in the art
space (appropriating it as yet another medium) or to continue to do
individual aesthetic productions on the net and develop a proper digital
art discourse (but remaining marginal if not irrelevant to the public
affairs)? I'm aware that this discussion is more about how we can use
the internet but I'm also interested in the question of what IT will or
can do to us.

ursula biemann

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