[-empyre-] RES: networked art & the Netopticon

denise bandeira denise at malisoft.com.br
Thu Jan 20 23:51:54 EST 2011

Oi Flavio
Seu Airton disse que quer sair da casa!
E também que só não pagou um mês, então teremos que resolver mais este

-----Mensagem original-----
De: empyre-bounces at lists.cofa.unsw.edu.au
[mailto:empyre-bounces at lists.cofa.unsw.edu.au] Em nome de Jon Thomson
Enviada em: quinta-feira, 20 de janeiro de 2011 10:11
Para: soft_skinned_space
Assunto: Re: [-empyre-] networked art & the Netopticon


>  Many have discussed that copys or reproduction of images, sound, videos
etc... on the Internet, challeneges the concept of what has been perceived
as 'original'. Yet, I am not sure if this is completely true. Because, out
of each creative action occurs a new context and meaning, which comes from
the decisions and concepts explored behind an artwork itself. Changing the
context of anything gives new light upon any subject, medium or concept.

Of course, we would agree with you here and the unprecedented extensiveness
and (current) openness of our databases gives us access to a truly dizzying
amount of digital things, which in turn lets us think of almost anything and
then find some corresponding piece of existing information 'out there'.  If
we think of yet another essay by Foucault, What is an Author
(http://www.scribd.com/doc/10268982/Foucault-What-is-an-Author) and his
ideas of an author being more like a conduit than originator then, perhaps
manipulation and origination become less distinguishable?

> Mark Cooley wrote what I thought was an insightful article about this
work, saying "...given that the user/subject is provided with an impressive
enough spectacle to call his or her own. Who is freer (in individualist
terms) than one who can virtually see / possess everything? I am a god in
front of my screen, but one who's both omnipotent and impotent. With a click
I become master of my destiny, but my destiny is not my own."

Yes Cooley, in many respects asks the question we are trying to ask with the
work itself and we try and make that evident through promoting a kind of
artificial self-consciousness in the work through the double screen, where
the same information is simultaneously displayed as a text log and a
cinematic assemblage.

> Keeping this theme of the netopicon in place; I would be interested to
know what you both think regarding the circumstance of  making your art with
similar tools as corporations and surveillance groups do, especially in the
context of film or video and use of networks?

As we said in our initial post, we think of our artistic agency as being
like that of a participant-observer and so our artworks tend to make
statements that are questions more often than not.  We tend to mis-use the
tools of surveillance by the standards surveillance groups go by and in
doing so we attempt to be the kind of irritant you mention art as being
earlier.  Our hopes are two-fold here; firstly that we keep re-materialising
the netopticon reminding us all that we act in public there and secondly
when needed, our small gestures as artworks might in their own modest way
help to illuminate some of the absurdities of surveillance and
self-surveillance in society and culture and the conceits upon which they
rely.  A tiny related example here would be a series of lie detector reports
we generated by testing a series of telephone speaking clocks with voice lie
detection software used commercially, where the british speaking clock is
judged prone to exaggeration by the soft
 ware and NYC weather and time check is unsure of what it's saying etc...
We also have interests and concerns more generally about whether live
information has artistic materiality and how the language of cinema and the
language of data-visualisation might illuminate each other in interesting
ways when combined or pitted against each other.

sorry, a bit brief, but hope that partly answers your question
best wishes,
jon & alison

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