Media Art

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Post by Garry on Sun 18 Mar 2012, 12:20

Media Art is the current term for electronic based art forms. 20 years ago when the shuffle started it was called New Media, digital was new, most of the equipment we used for the TVU broadcasts were analog based electronics,

When I started playing music, amplifiers were new. Rock was originally an acoustic sound, but in the 1960's legendary guitar makers Leo Fender and the Gibson company made instruments based on electricity and amplification.

The Moog synthesiser and EMI Synthi range (Pink Floyd) in the 1960's did the same for keyboard based musical instruments. Bob Dylan was called a Judas (Traitor) for plugging in his 'electric' guitar.

These were sounds nobody had ever heard before. Even when it went 'wrong' it could be good, as Jimi Hendrix showed us with controled amplified feedback

Finally in the late 1980's computers caught up with the advancements of audio arts, and got enough grunt to do the same with grafix on computers, 8bit computers that is.

Today we are able to combine all the images and sounds with text and interactives then network it globally, making the whole thing an extraordinary art medium.

Shufflers have taken it one step further again, by making the human element - a dancer, a central factor in the art medium.

Shuffle vids are self portraits in painting language. Painters regularly do self portraits for both the exercise and a record of their own personal development.

Or we make more complex works like Global Shuffle 1 combining and creating the movie online and in the real world on a global scale. Human and electronic based arts melding and blending into a new form.

We are at a time when the centuries old conventions of paint on canvas, in particular, have been the sole master medium of western art. In fact paint on canvas is the icon of western art for the past 500 years or so.

It's a wonderful medium, I still paint in oils today for the simple pleasure of the medium, don't have to turn anythig on at a switch to do it or see it.

It is a commodity that can be bought and sold easily, It's lightweight, transportable, and reflects the sailing ship trading culture which gave it birth, compared to the conventions of painting on walls and ceilings of buildings or marble sculptured fountains, that stayed where they were.

But paintings can't move, can't make sound. It's 2D, a flat surface ... it's physical medium, a tangible touchable artifact.

Electricity is etherial. Dance is transitory, our new mediums both capture and modify our 'paint' .

Global Shuffle 1 premiered at the FILE festival in Sao Paulo Brazil 2011. It's a leading example of Media Arts and more, including AI, Robotics, Architecture, Games.


What do you think of Media Arts ? Do make media art yourself ?

Garry Shepherd
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