Networked collaborations of artists didn't start on the net. during this multidisciplinary examine the perform of paintings that occurs throughout a distance—geographical, temporal, or emotional—theorists and practitioners learn the ways in which artwork, activism, and media essentially reconfigured one another in experimental networked initiatives of the Nineteen Seventies and Eighties. by way of delivering a context for this work—showing that it used to be formed by way of various mixes of social family, cultural options, and political and aesthetic concerns—At a Distance successfully refutes the commonly authorized concept that networked paintings is technologically decided. Doing so, it presents the ancient grounding wanted for a extra entire knowing of today’s practices of web artwork and activism and indicates the chances inherent in networked practice.
At a Distance lines the background and thought of such experimental paintings initiatives as Mail artwork, sound and radio paintings, telematic paintings, assemblings, and Fluxus. even if the tasks differed, a conceptual wondering of the “art object,” mixed with a political undermining of dominant artwork institutional practices, lively so much distance paintings. After a piece that units this paintings in ancient and demanding point of view, the e-book offers artists and others interested by this artwork “re-viewing” their work—including experiments in “mini-FM,” telerobotics, networked psychoanalysis, and interactive publication building. ultimately, the booklet recasts the historical past of networks from the views of politics, aesthetics, economics, and cross-cultural research.
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Extra info for At a Distance: Precursors to Art and Activism on the Internet
3 Bush’s essay could also be seen, in its own right, as a wellenvisioned, integrative tool for intellectual work, one spawned by the demands of information management at midcentury. 4 But was it art? Was it engineering? Did this matter? The intellectual parameters of the piece escaped disciplinary boundaries, asserting principles as much aesthetic as technical. Conceptually, such a work embodies the crucial elements that come to be core components of even the earliest networked art discussed in this volume: interactivity and algorithmic programmability of information encoded in binary form.
The “same” distance that excites the imagination might also disturb the emotions. Distance, which for some was experienced as geographically extensive, was for others performatively or demographically intensive. This collection of essays also foregrounds the way that, in varying mixes, the projects discussed in it were shaped by social relations, networks, cultural strategies, economic and political concerns, and conceptual and aesthetic considerations. One of the things that makes these projects, and this book, so important, we would argue, is that they refute all singular determinisms, whether they be economic, political, or aesthetic, while still engaging with these forces.
The chapters here stress that it is more fruitful to attend to human/technology cultural relations rather than to imagine technology as simply a self-generated technical preoccupation. In their local contexts and through their own practices, most of the artists/activists in the 1960s and 1970s were engaged in artistic and theoretical discussions about dematerialization and conceptual approaches to art. Drucker elaborates on the way that traditional object-based and formalist aesthetics in the ﬁne arts were being questioned, with a new emphasis on communication, processes of production, and networks of exchange.