Re: Forward from Christiane Paul RE: [-empyre-] modern/conceptu[a!]l dialectic -> N state?
Here is the Paper by Warren Sack that Christiane refers too...
Christina McPhee wrote:
Date: March 8, 2006 8:02:11 AM PST
Subject: RE: [-empyre-] modern/conceptul dialectic -> N state?
Unfortunately, I don't have the time to get deeply into this but here
are at least some sketchy thoughts...
I have assumed that the modern and the postmodern (and previous epochs
back to the archaic) interoperate in layers in our cultural system, but
are in our contemporary state now stimulated by information
I would agree, that's what I tried ton suggest in a previous post...
In your view, what role does IT and database play, if any, in catalyzing
the contemporary situation? Could we say that it is in some sense that a
new epoch or zeitgeist, an N-state, is emerging to supersede the pomo
that is based on material differences that IT and database have
While I do believe that networked technologies / IT / database are very
important catalysts in shaping an n-state, their underlying principles
have multiple reference points to past discussions.
Warren Sack has written a very interesting article on the aesthetics of
information visualization in which he references Benjamin Buchloh who
described this teleology of conceptual art as an "aesthetic of
administration." Sack suggests that we can understand contemporary
database-based (databased?) work in a similar way because
metaphorically and literally, computers are an outgrowth of bureaucracy:
The "files," "directories," "folders," and "volumes" of contemporary
operating systems; the "tables" and "entries" of database systems; the
"rows" and "columns" and accounting procedures of spreadsheets; the
common algorithms of "sorting," "queuing," and "categorization" all are
reminders of the bureaucratic lineage of the computer and computer
science, in general.
So one could argue that database and related issues (bureaucracy /
administration) were already very much part of the discussion
surrounding conceptual art. But Sack pushes this into a different
realm: the aesthetics of governance, where the “body” is a “body
politic,” a collective, or groups of people articulated together
through diverse sets of social and technical means.
I think this particular concept of governance and body politic is
essential to the age of IT and networked database. It goes beyond the
aesthetics of administration in the databases of conceptual art and has
taken new form in the n-state.
Brett Stalbaum, Lecturer, PSOE
Coordinator, Interdisciplinary Computing and the Arts Major (ICAM)
UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, SAN DIEGO
Department of Visual Arts
9500 GILMAN DR. # 0084
La Jolla CA 92093-0084
Info for students, winter quarter 2K6:
-ICAM and Media (computing emphasis) faculty advising:
Tuesday 1-2PM, VAF 206, Contact via email firstname.lastname@example.org
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