Digital Aesthetic v.1- Giordan on Graphics- Webreference.com | 2 | WebReference

Digital Aesthetic v.1- Giordan on Graphics- Webreference.com | 2

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The Digital Aesthetic v.1 -Art vs. Computer Art

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Art's response to change was not only restricted to technology. In the 1920s & 30s Sigmund Freud turned the world upside down with his innovative ideas regarding psychotherapy. Freud's work radically changed the way man looked at man, reframing his actions and attitudes in the light of unconscious desires and symbolic meaning. This initiated a paradigm shift in how we viewed the origins of human behavior.

It is not surprising that the surrealist movement developed and gained momentum during this period of psychological innovation. Surrealism was interested in the unconscious, in what was beyond the reach of man's outward intentions and stated motives. It attempted to approach the unconscious through automatic drawing, emphasis on dream imagery, and exploration of the disjointed and irrational. Like Freud, the surrealists wanted to reach beneath the surface, and get at the core motives and desires that ultimately determine our behavior. In associating themselves with Freud's work, the surrealists demonstrated that technology is not the only impetus for artistic change, but in fact that any sociological revisions could have an impact on the artistic process.

Additional parallels can be drawn, such as the relationship between Abstract Expressionism's focus on the individual in the 1940s, and the socialist and communist movements of the 1930s. In the thirties we saw ideas of socialism, communism, and other proposed solutions to our socials ills gaining in popularity. Images supporting these ideals were plastered on posters and billboards everywhere, and the artist was being called upon as the bearer of a better way of life. Harold Rosenberg commented that " In the thirties, American art had become active, having greatfully accepted from politics an assignment in changing the world."

Following the war and the discrediting of the leftist stance, there was a wide-spread rejection of art as a political vehicle. This period of painting was called action painting. Action painting was so named because it emphasized the assertion of the individual in the creative endeavor. It was unique in that the artists presence was asserted and affirmed through the physicality of paint and the accompanying gesture. In the process, the image which had been so central to the political message was completely obliterated. The end result was twenty years of art making which was impacted by political ideas and change.

There are many more examples of how art has been impacted by the world around it, as in the early 60s which saw Pop Art and its appropriated, mass produced image coinciding with the heyday of Madison Avenue advertising and mass marketing.

I realize that I am compressing 100 years of art history into a few paragraphs, but my point is that art is a product of the social and technological times in which it is created, and will react to what is happening in the world around it. Having said all of this, I will ask my question again: How will the art world of the late 20th century respond to the way that computers have entrenched themselves in our society? The computer's ability to integrate diverse media, such as sound, video and animation, and photographic images is the first thing that is thought of when most people consider this question. It is important to go beyond the surface capabilities of the computer, considering other implications of how the computer generated product can and will be used. It is in considering these factors that we will gain a glimpse of how technological advancement could truly impact the world of art.

Ill pick this thread up in the next installment....

 
     

URL: http://www.webreference.com/graphics/
Created: Sep. 17, 1998
Revised: Sep. 17, 1998