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  • Beginning the shard.

  • Hoodwinked by false pretences.

  • What of a physical object?

  • Conurbations of the virtual

  • The reality principle and the illusion of the synthetic world.

  • Instagram and its affiliates.

  • Ending the shard.


Beginning the shard.

It is an inevitable aspect that the digital is now advancing us into a new form of interpretation giving artists the ability to challenge new endeavours in a none physical world. Again and again we challenge convention by technology in the same light the artists of the past had done. It is hard to pinpoint the paradox but I have always steeped myself in the video game drama, the intense colours and the none physical immersion with perspiration. Its decline via pay per view models and fast coded, penniless apps has opened the door to slap dash coded programs. Of course, how one filters what is good and what is not is also vague in the digital cohesion of a webpage where you are constantly being watched on your sole preferences and its seduction of leading you into buying more. But the proverb rings a monotonous bell.

“If it’s free it’s too good to be true.”

The internet over the last decade has been a great source of visual media, a new form of curation and accessibility, and a new form of distribution, with thriving aids into new interpretations, from performance, video, to the pictorial form and how its relayed in digital form; in fact, everything you could think of.

Objects nigh impossible, are now obtained by the click of a button, like the descriptive novel, the impossible purchase is at our finger tips; the world has become smaller. Vast amounts of information propelling the journey to post post modernism, Leaving the niche of Futurism and its cohorts not to be taken too seriously. And that is the paradox as I sit and try to unweave the web that is that has placed me here as an artist. Although determined not to Moult and be decreed to sit on the bench till an opportunity arises.

The journey is now fraught with an abundance of artwork and so the task is for the artist to seek out those who are willing to guide us, and feed us to the world. The humble artist still has still to stretch his/her legs first before the guide(curator) can place us in a more satisfactory position. Although communication to a wider audience for the humble artist is more open with the advent of the internet, his specialised audience becomes so fewer as our focus dwindles due to plurality and the intensity of knowledge questioning ones attention span.


Hoodwinked by false pretences.

It holds itself for being a visual media, one would accept that the internet would embrace the 2-dimensional form, Archaic in structure the curatorial audience is looking beyond this and creating a multitude of excessive media, opening the scope for creativity away from the basic forms of the past and the none physical. From video art to live performance and political stages. On and off websites are wholly indicative of its practice. In the active world, its negatives outweigh its positives from jingoism of capitalist product to the manubrial deconstruction of the form.

Many catchwords like these can be abstracted to other art forms. And so, with this we are deemed a progressive tantamount to post modernism and its curatorial promoters. (ref)

It is conclusive that artists mould into a collective idea. A theme resulting in work that marries an exhibition to the audience. Its conclusion could be to create new ideas within the artists themselves. To open their minds to new interpretations into their own practice. Of course, the art could then be rushed, lacklustre and losing that total dedication to his own practice. A title for a work opens ideas but can also close development of present ones. It is here that conceptual artists can re-adapt and re-invent themselves something I am seeing more of even in conventional painters.

Social cohesion makes the artist conform to a particular angle. An exhibition free fold and pretentious beyond the desires of the artist. A work for a title so to speak. Lured by the surreptitiously social concept. This questions elements of what an artist is assigned to do beyond his passions, and how much can we keep our passions up before we bow to commercial or social gains? The ever-present ability to re-invent ourselves much like David Bowie did is the paradox of adapting to a fast growing world, with side effects?


What of a physical object?

I cannot find an object expressive unless it 'reminds' me of something. But the precise

character of this reminiscence is difficult to determine. Expressiveness may be loosely defined as the power to remind us, call up for us, evoke, or 'symbolize'

Time and again the argument on why an object is needed, is the same as the argument of representation and abstraction. With responses relating to our relation to it, the pick up and throw away philosophy. The how’s and why art has become a seclusion of ideas. Particularly the notion of an idea itself beyond the object. And how it materialises and if it does not how does one entangle it from a reciprocal point of view? Does the artist seek to transpire his idea through the collective conscience or does he begin his notions as a whole as one complete or half-baked form? The object and the perfunctory burden with the denotations of the object we consistently clash with effervescent forms. Like priory judgements the objects position does not need to exist in plaintive terms.

And then the relevance to the ‘third term?’

We then enter the succulence of the virtual object no longer open to the touch. A fragmentation of ideas unformulated for the humour of the artist. But of course, we use objects to use a computer or play an instrument, and the origins of language and object is not far rooted. But let’s not be too pedantic about what one means about the object. Is music a synthetical judgement opening regardless of object. A fusion of ideas only in the mind of an individual, like our own recycle bin in our minds. This must surely be the individual par excellence as we the collective have no idea until idea collates into form. What point is a work or an idea if no one sees it? Why do we as artists make work for ourselves? Of course, we don’t we are foolish to think we do, and so the object is ever present in the formulation of ideas, Moulded and rehashed.


The reality principle and the illusion of the synthetic world.

“Separation and passivity are the proper anti-social features of the performance stage.”

The dawning in my own work to combat this fantasy concept, and adapting it to a third term principle making the audience although not physical but mental is how I see it.

How can one achieve this in a none passive context? This has opened ideas on how the artist participates on a sole basis. This holds itself to a more problematic endeavour as the audience either will pass it by or engage with reminiscences of objects or environments that connects them with their own physical world and experiences. This has played out much in the same way as the citrus-squeezer of Philippe Starck.

Objects without function but purely designed to engage us with humour and intrigue reminiscent of the fantasy world discussed by Chris Bateman. This adds intellectual freedom in the same way a fashion designer would design clothes we couldn’t possibly wear in everyday life. The more eccentric the better (Deleuze reference). Who could possibly absorb the catwalk or the costume designs found in Fifth element?

Gombrich, “The blob in the painting by Manet which stands for a horse is no more an imitation of its external form than is our hobby horse… but he has so cleverly contrived it that it evokes the image in us – provided, of course, we collaborate.”


Conurbations of the virtual

'There are tumults of the mind, when, like the great convulsions of Nature, all seems anarchy and returning chaos; yet often, in those moments of vast disturbance, as in the strife of Nature itself, some new principle of order, or some new impulse of conduct, develops itself, and controls, and regulates, and brings to an harmonious consequence, passions and elements which seem only to threaten despair and subversion.'

Extending on Ranciere’s ‘third term,’ lending the artist and its audience to relate to the participatory reaching beyond the performance.

In 1983 Max Headroom was an actor built into a vertex model basing itself on the future that was to become, creating an artificial character with blips, slips, humour and style. Cyberpunk was grasping fast with films like Bladerunner and William Gibson’s Neuromancer. For me it is what lies at the core of the internet for the artist. What opportunities? Our paradox is that we have created everything with little scope to move.

At the present are we not still detached from the internet, passively and not wholly converted? The Virtual reality and its endless stream of hardware to manipulate the senses opens us up to a more immersive experience. But is this helpful? Would it make us a better audience? A better communicator or leave us languishing in the corner of our bedrooms immersing ourselves on the latest construct designed to seduce us? And the latest art programs or video game experience where we are now the participants? Video games get serious! Finally? It is hard to play out what humans will create in the future. And how we adapt. Will there be new cultural endeavours in the world of the virtual, or will we sit back and distract ourselves from the physical? A fad many may say. And will we just plug in and create a work that then surrounds our audience? It would be erroneous to be seduced by the world of a sandbox like mine craft or even think we are being seduced. The seducing forces of the virtual is new but how will the 2D measure up?

How does a curator tackle the self-conceited individual in a world of the digital? As seen by an artist who uses print outs from digital forms to playful enumerations of conventional forms and rules. And although pictorially we can express so much where the virtual goes one better by giving the audience the ability to create in infinite space. How is this ported to a curatorial aspect. One can only assume the world of the Neuromancer or Tron and we will plug groups of people into one network. Who knows maybe at a price we install the open areas as our credit card unlocks new ventures under a huge conglomerate who holds all the cards. And the artwork. Or would it be even more saturated with work deemed not so serious? But another plus is the aspect of putting information on such a vast scale removing boundaries and who knows create new ones, as its vast openings could be close to an MOMA worldwide but for a virtual gallery exhibition. But heaven forbid is it what the artist wants to see? Art slowly become commercial via its vast number of people inputting into our own artistic integrity. Of course, we can already see these affects if we look at the pluralisation of the 2d format today as each website crops up with a multitude of options to be given to any would be artist who feels the need to sell and make a living out of it. It is now also the case to pay that extra bit to get a curator and art expert to make a valuation or even improvement of your profile or artwork itself. The Pay as you play model is now mainstream with few options of a way out without emptying your pocket. One can surmise about the future, but in reality, it has already started.

The way out is back to the physical, the 1 on 1 communication and the harsh tyranny of the curator. The stickleback with the red bus sees armies of would be artists attracted to 1 main manipulator. Escapism is the central point but it also finds communication on the internet so much easier than going up to the curator. The virtual would not alter the elitist construct but will finally elude ourselves to cultural and physical attributes which denotes out place in the entertainment world.

“Despite our natural tendency to treat fiction as if its contents were essentially certain, it is the nature of art of all kinds that sometimes what we admire about an artwork is precisely its ambiguity.

Lots of conjecture and guesswork. Can we predict that the painting will still be alive in 100 years’ time? Of course, I would be very surprised for issues stated that this would not be the case. The biggest gripe to this virtual and its biggest enemy is the real, the physical. Maybe it will be a niche market, as painting, opera, and the theatre is and even large social events like football matches. With the discerning truth that more people goto watch the theatre in London than they do watching football, is evidence of the traditional format.


Instagram and the affiliates:

The photographer and the painter are in this cohesive construction where the illusions are far and wide. Of course, the focus on Instagram is down to its visual medium. Its endless fora into endless images. As the internet matures, new opportunities evolve. The mass information opens new paths for the would-be artist. The chance today to upload your work in a second and see it bombarded with likes, reciprocated in a furore of popularity. Although so it seemed as the internet throws out a dozen a second it then owes itself to be filtered by the curatorial internet maestro. It breaks out into a popularity contest as likes are sprinkles with confetti and as long as you keep on the website your popularity will increase. And that’s time for a helping hand. Is this any different from the making of the physical audience and the perspicacity of the curator?

But the plusses of the experience are that you make the work you want to show. Initially self-promoting with your passion. Facebook and now more so Instagram gives us the artist an ability to test the water without drowning.

A weekly display on a sales promoting website. A theme. An artist who paints like Peter Doig, or Van Eyck. Portentous kneeling to a dis-reported member of our specialism. And who wouldn’t dive into it and decide to create work against our practice for a few bucks in the bank? Below is deemed my own experience of finally tagging websites that do this for a living. Of course the reality is now different, no promotion, no opportunities, just more likes. How naïve of me.


Ending the shard

We would all be run out as court jesters if we believed that the case of the internet would grant an upper degree of success, if anything it has saturated and even pushed post post modernism. Like living in a big city, everyone is vying for the same seats.

But the positive notions are also a collective one with the ability to transpire your works to be seen around the world, even if at a glance. Our rejection of this may grip us to see the digital as a passive world adding to ascension into looking at images for split seconds.

For myself the world is only a partial when it comes to using the internet. It is still a product for the external world, the collective manufacturing of artistic brands and products, again losing out to the experience and the collective aspects of being social and communicative beyond the screen. What we can adhere to is the internet’s vast amount of information and the ability to find what the physical and social can only dream of. One must not worry about the homogeny of ideas from cultural dysfunction and the idea of formalism. As Roger Scruton quotes, the cultural and religious neurosis is maybe a part of what we are against the logic of our faculties. Of course, creatively we are not quite in that situation and for fear of creating recycled concepts, so far so good.

It is useless to think we are not in control. Technology is a warhorse that we should adapt to, just unlike the luddites disgruntled, its manual construction is a nostalgic wonder to fabricate and weave. Art has always opened to technology from the mechanical to the digital. Right back to the printing press, the camera obscura and the digital revolution. Much like opera or the plays of Shakespeare or Marlow as it feels a need to give it the contemporary glitz with a moral framework built in. But the money and the audience is still reaching for the traditional. (Statistical references).

Painting sees itself this way, when the light is expired it is felt there is more mileage in it. Mileage to understand form and colour. In the same way one could understand design and interpretation in a Shakespeare play…



Bateman, Chris. Imaginary games (john hunt publishing, zero books) 2011

Ranciere Jacques’s. Aisthesis. (editions galilee) 2011 (trans zakir paul 2013)

Gibson, William. Sterling Bruce. The Difference engine. (Viktor gollancz, 1990)

Gombrich, sir Ernst H. (1951) Aspects of form, a symposium of form in nature and art, London 1951.

Dawkins, Richard. Climbing Mount Improbable. (Norton, 1996)

Scruton, Roger. Art and imagination a study in the philosophy of mind. (Methuen young books 1974)

Bethier, Meditations on the real and virtual

Sergey Datsyuk Theory of virtual.

Scruton, R, Art and imagination, 1974, P218

Immanuel Kant and his synthetical judgment to which mathematical and even physics belong. Almost in unison that even without our existence these would be deemed true, like the precursor to determinism and how we are just a cog.

Hal fosters return of the real comparing the works of Alexander Rodchenko and Robert Rauschenberg and how cultures and art recycles.

Ranciere J, Aisthesis 2011 (trans Zakir, P 2013) P16

Bateman, C . Imaginary games 2011, P139

Gibson, W and Sterling B. The Difference Engine. 1990. P140

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