The Image That Lasts

Over the past twenty years the artworld has been transformed by technology. New trends have emerged to steal the spotlight from the traditional landscapes and portraits. Not only is much of it recorded digitally, presentation is changing. Some experts believe this is the art for the masses, especially this texting, tweeting gadget loving generation. The new phenomenon is art that many can relate to, if not produce. Creating art is no longer only for the truly talented and artistic, but concept and presentation are now just as important. Not only are more people attempting to create and show art but the avenues have widened, giving more opportunity. Galleries and Museums are really involved at this point but it took a while to get there. The answer as to whether these works will last is not known. Appreciation of new art is not always established this quickly and it suggests a lasting legacy. With the growing interest, there must be solutions to its unique issues of preservation.

The image of acceptable fine art has changed dramatically. In a late 1990s’ article titled “But is it art?”, an LA gallery owner John Mattheisen said, “I think people buy work based on two things: what art critics say and personal taste.” He hinted that the art was not praised yet therefore prices very low. This in turn would effect where it was shown or sold and whether it would be collectable. Traditional artists are proven sellers and new art has to prove itself. As strange as it seems, “one stumbling block keeping critics, curators and artists embracing this artform is that many have a hard time defining exactly what digital art is.”(Sullivan, Terry)

The social aspects of the accessability and possible personal involvement is so meaningful. It is conceivable to create using work from history and an original, then digitally record something that lasts forever. Actually the possibilities are endless because sharing is possible with these tools. And in ten minutes a piece of art can be seen all over the world. The concepts and surfaces are changing. This is new and very interesting.

Throughout history traditional fine art defined many cultures. Preservation and restoration has been key in keeping these images alive. When many of these treasures were created, they were not sought after or even seen. Many of the so-called masters were not recognized till after they died. Fixing and repairing art is an art that took many years to develop. It takes time to realize the success of making sure something lasts. Knowing how to keep this new art whole is going to take time. Fortunately, the experimentation has exposed people to many new ideas. Collaborative art and work that you interact with is very popular. By creating these installations, permanence is clearly not so important. It seems as if the concept and experience as displayed may be it. Perhaps endurance is in its strength as far as vision not permanence. There seems to be evidence that this is the case.

As recent as 2011, the Museum of Modern Art in New York City had a show that allowed the people attending to interact with the art. Many of the pieces showcased were design driven concepts to be accessed digitally, as well as viewed on site. As quoted in a New York Times article; MOMAs’ senior curator Paola Antonelli described the event as an answer to a current phenomenon, “pancommunication–everything and everybody conveying content and meaning in all possible combinations.”(Rosenberg, Karen) There were special galleries created for exhibitions of work including robots, charts and information systems, video games and chattering objects. People visiting could interact on their cellphones by scanning in a special code that in turn called up a website. If a viewers phone wasn’t compatible, MOMA arranged for viewing on their own website. “Talk to Me: Design and the Communication Between People and Objects” was considered an exceptionally smart show. It was truly innovative and well received, “one of the smartest design shows in years–by which I mean it’s intelligent but also that it is made for the texting, tweeting, social-networking, down-app loading, smartphone-weilding museumgoer.” (Rosenberg, Karen)

Since the days when artists just incorporated digital visuals into their work, the universal use of technology has changed communication. Perhaps shows like this have become standard in the museum world. When people can physically touch a piece of art or speak to it, there is a bond made. Chuck Close is a well known artist who create portraits that look like giant digital paintings. Way before we incorporated computers as tools for artists, he painted these awesome images. He is actually experimenting with computers and pushing his images to be seen in a different light. “It’s wonderfully complicated because you’re building an image,” he says about his new found technique. Not only do these experiments invite raw untested talent but the established artist. “There’s been an explosion of creativity during the last decade as many artists are exploring the technologies and what boundaries they can push,” said Ronald Lobaco, curator of “Out of Hand: Materializing the Postdigital” shown at The Museum of Arts and Design in New York. This recent exhibition included many internationally known artists including frank Stella, Daniel Libeskind and Hiroshi Sugimoto. This may be what digital art is, the ability to express as never before.


Rosenberg, Karen. Art That Interacts If You Interface. New York Times 29 July. 2011. Opposing Viewpoints in Context. Web. 16 Apr. 2014.

Using this article to help me show the success these new artforms are having. Because the writer reviewed the show, I was able to gather information and opinions of others as well. I did not want this paper to really have my opinion because I am a trained artist and have very strong feelings. Although I appreciate the growth of any idea, it may not be my thing. As we can see this is no longer just some new fad but an established movement so to speak in terms of art and business. When the big money museums are involved that indicates stability. In this article, she was very thorough and established a couple of view points.
In this article, specifics about the works were included and I may highlight a couple in my paper. Since this show was one of the biggest and most successful of this time, it introduced many people to the not so specific genre. Getting the general public and young people involved has surely had an affect on creation. It really enabled me to understand the possibilities for exhibiting an interactive show. Also, several reactions from people helped me to understand the viewers opinion.

Sullivan, Terry. But is it art? Photo District News. June. 99, Vol 19.6.

This was an extremely interesting article that included a review of a Christies Auction Event. This auction house has been known for the expensive art and treasures. This was one of the first events that showed digital anything. The response was mixed but the people seem to see a possible future in the popularity of this type of art. Indicated in the article are the questions of longevity both physically and in terms of popularity. because it was written some time ago, the relevance of this article is obvious for me to establish some sense of time….in terms of growth.
Having information that was put out over a decade ago is vital to this research topic. The atmosphere at that time, I can almost remember and having documentation means so much. It seems like this was almost the beginning of the phase we are in. What was called digital has evolved to include so many different techniques. The question that they ask in the title has been answered somewhat, in the way things have changed. Very important to show in writing an effective paper.

Sheets, Hilarie M. Artists take up digital tools. New York Times 27 Oct. 2013.
Opposing Viewpoints in Context. Web. 16 April. 2014.

I used this article for information regarding an art show involving established artists using technology, perhaps for the first time. Some of the artists mentioned are very famous for their work before the digital boom. They discuss with excitement the addition of digital techniques they are now working with. Although very established on an international level, they are changing the pictures and images they have worked so hard to get. It is important to understand the artists view and acceptance of these tools. It is a risk that does not have to be taken but artists by nature seem to be experimental. This group validates the new art and techniques that were questioned not so long ago. Although a short article, the interview of Chuck Close was fascinating. I have always admired him for several reasons. He is severely handicapped and his painting style has always involved so much detail. In fact, the technology today lends to his style and technique visually. But the best thing for him is the physical access he now has.

3 thoughts on “The Image That Lasts

    • I’m not sure what the italics issue is, but you can change that setting (and other font things, like bold/underline, when you are writing/editing your post).

  1. Julie, this is a good revision, and I love your topic! However, I still don’t have a sense of exactly the focus of your project. It seems like it is very broad and could go in so many directions. What actually is this “new art” that you mention (and that is changing because of technology)? This is a key term in your project, but you never define what you mean by that. Also, you mention interaction, dissemination, etc. How will connect all of these things together?

    I like your sources, but your annotations (and your proposal) do not follow the requirements/guidelines for the assignment. For the next draft, which we will peer review in class on Tuesday, please revise according to the assignment.

    (Please also edit this post to also categorize it as “Annotated Bibliographies,” since you included yours here.)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *