What is New Media Art?

Let’s start with a cheesy question:

This second part is crucial. New media artists use the same technologies used by engineers, military, advertisers etc. But they do it in a different way.

Art made in Photoshop or with a digital production tool is not automatically new media art.

Oron Catts and Ionat Zurr at the Tissue Culture & Art Project.
The artists based the jacket on a biodegradable polymer, coated it with 3T3 mouse cells to form connective tissue and topped it up with human bone cells in order to create a stronger skin layer.
Although the technologies can be new, the artistic concerns are not.
The conceptual and aesthetic roots of New Media extend to the Dada movement in the ’20. There are many common strategies: use of multiple physical media, appropriation and subversion, irony and absurdity, everything can be used for art (Fluxus will further elaborate on this).
Net.flag is an interactive work hosted on a museum’s website. It contains images of all the national flags in the world. Each flag is broken into its respective components, which are then categorized according to several broadly descriptive terms; users may pick and choose from a menu of these components to form a new flag, which they may then save to the site. In addition, the project features a browsable history, through which users may look over past creations which have been saved and titled.
Internet as a new post national space.
Pop art is another important influence. Many works of New Media art refer to and are engaged with commercial visual culture.

Like concept art New media art is often more focused more on ideas rather than on objects.

And now an embarrassing question:

(if you are a painter, sculptor etc…)

The new media field tends to include a lot of things that don’t belong to the traditional gallery formats. Biennale.py by 0100101110101101.org
One year of GPS self-surveillance. The artists even put their own telephone under control for the entire month. All Internet users had real-time access to any phone conversation trough the website.
And their hard drives and email correspondence as well. Data-nudism. Anticipating the post-privacy era.

(In)Security Camera from ben chang on Vimeo.

Contestational Robotics – Institute for Applied Autonomy from Rich Pell on Vimeo.

Sometimes certain ideas are too visionary to have a place in the market.


Myron Krueger – Videoplace, Responsive Environment, 1972-1990s

Hand from Above from Chris O'Shea on Vimeo.

Traditional visual artist may find materials and concepts that can inform their practice.

Emily Gobeille & Theo Watson aka Design I/O
“Jungle” and “City” are the first two in a series of experimental posters for children that combine science, nature, algorithm and design, to feed children’s imagination and curiosity.

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