It is wrong to say that in philosophy we consider an ideal language as opposed to our ordinary one. For this makes it appear as though we thought we could improve on ordinary language. But ordinary language is all right. Whenever we make up ‘ideal languages’ it is not in order to replace our ordinary language by them; but just to remove some trouble cause in someone’s mind by thinking that he has got hold of the exact use of a common word. That is also why our method is not merely to enumerate actual usages of words, but rather deliberately to invent new ones, some of them because of their absurd appearance.

~Ludwig Wittgenstein, Philosopher

Revisiting the questions in The Body Organic – Part I, does the new media artist have the ability to divorce language from their work?

The complex, universal, and abstract ideas simplified in Snibbe’s work capture the beauty of nature through beautiful calculation and minimalist design. Physical presence and engagement are integral to the overall experience of the art. Each experience is new. Yet, new media arts seems tethered to language. As Snibbe mentioned the limitations of language during an UpgradeSF artist talk, language is far too intertwined in new media, which presents an unprecedented challenge in redefining highly technological work as fine art. Although the body is a primary part in many new media art works and interactive pieces, the invention of new languages is imperative in the evolution of art and culture. Even with language having played a huge role in Dadaism and the Fluxus movement, the use of language in current new media arts creates an organic experience involving the senses and uses language to create image and interaction. As programmers, developers, and creative coders, the creation of platforms such as Processing enable artists to take language and create visual works but what happens when the limitation of language riddles the next wave of artists? The inescapable reliance on language (i.e., programming and coding) persists.

Originally published to zero1 blog. Please view post here

It was a real treat to see Tim Roseborough’s work on exhibit in Harlem during my vacation. His latest work, Pan-African, looks at the Pan-Africanism movement through new media. With his rendition and video of controversial song, “Ever Race Has a Flag but The Coon”, and re-contextualization of the song lyrics in Englyph, this intelligent work forces provokes one to ponder the meaning of identity and solidarity.

Please click on the image above to learn more about Pan-African.

Click on the image above to learn more about Occupy Design ~ Image Source: Occupy Design

Regionlism is defined by the Merriam-Webster online dictionary as, “consciousness of and loyalty to a distinct region with a homogeneous population“. Well, I highly doubt the ‘homogeneous’ part. San Francisco is home to such a diverse population. In any case, I had the pleasure of attending the fourth official Upgrade SF meeting and the discussion entailed regionalism within the New Media Arts specific to the Bay Area.

This past meeting included the following speakers:

Each presenter explained their role in the Bay Area Arts and its relationship to regionalism. Yet, each showed how their role and organization defies the notion of regionalism. Siembieda shared an interesting thought – the actual physical place of Silicon Valley serves more as a concept versus an actual location. In order to understand, and connect with a broader audience, ZER01’s approach relies heavily on building these networks across disciplines and inclusion of the entire Bay Area (not just Silicon Valley). Events such as the ZER01 bienniel showcase and present a festival of new media artists as well as activities that involve participation from the community and offer participants access to the artists and the technology behind the art.   

Worel discussed OFFSpace’s objective to have the art relate to its space and that regions will have a specific voice. Yes, this is OKAY and it’s what makes the Bay Area fertile ground for innovation. The combination of art work, both static and participatory, within unorthodox spaces (i.e., 2010 Proliferations exhibition in two distinct locations: 1) a wealth management company and 2) a Public Storage unit) speaks volumes of how changing the exhibition model to challenge and excite viewers is crucial in building and forging prominence in the art world, not only nationally but globally.

Finally, van Zwoll ended the talks with her thoughts and experiences as an art dealer. One of the points she mentioned involved defining and re-defining new media art. Seriously, when the ancient Greeks were theorizing about the human soul and creating formal logic, they proably thought they were modern. People and environments change. Like anything in this world, disciplines and practices evolve. As van Zwoll noted, when photography first came onto the scene, THAT was new media. Overall, each presenter represented and contributed greatly to the discussion of regionalism by sharing how changes to the art world models and notions of the art institution/organization, curatorial practice, and the gallery can affect positive change and how New Media artists and community can contribute to that change.


Adobe Museum of Digital Media

Click on the image above, have a look around, and please tell me what you think…

Portrait of Jason II: Rebirth of the B*tch - Film by Tim Roseborough, Courtesy of the Artist

This past year has been filled with pleasant surprises in the arts, in particular, New Media Art. One of the co-founders, Tim Roseborough, of the UpgradeSF node is a New Media artist I’ve been paying a lot of attention to lately. Not only am I intrigued by digital and multi-media art, I’m enthralled by the ways in which new media artists must engage their viewer on a level of thought that looks at technology as a means to convey something deeper about the human condition and existence in this post modern age. In the next few days, I will be dedicating some much needed blog posting real estate to Mr. Roseborough’s work.

Please visit his site by clicking here.

You know what would be even more wonderful? YOUR questions about his work. At the moment, I have two postings in the works (for publication by the end of this week) yet I would like to invite you to reply to this posting with a question and/or thoughts about his work.

Something fun…