Friday, November 30, 2007

Web Gallery: Jim Andrews and


I have just spent another perfectly good hour wandering around Jim Andrew's Jim takes visuals, poetry, music, writing, gaming, criticism, coding and much more very seriously. No, on the contrary, he is very playful with all of the above.

Jim builds Web Art Instruments such as the splendid Nio and Jig Sound. These look good, sound good and are fun to play with.

I have been to Jim's site a number of times. There's a lot to read and interact with. For the moment I don't have any great insight into Jim and his work - other than it's great and very much a part of where I think the Art of the Net is heading towards and very much worth exploring. I hope to come back to the site and talk about individual works.

Sunday, November 18, 2007



Progressing from 8-bit/pixel art projects, we are moving onto re-hash work from the dot-come era. Triptych is data overload. Triptych is too much of a bad thing is a good thing. Triptych is de-construction with neither instruction nor construction. Triptych is your Triple-A journey to nowhere.

Tryptych just fits in to my definition of web art. There are links and they do take you to different pages. Three of the pages are empty profile pages for the authors and two other pages bring you to archived pages that re-hash the hash that the other pages had already re-hashed. Therefore the site is not just a digital video piece. It is interactive. It is built upon a Blogger account bludgeoned into submission to be outrageous.

Do I like it? Not really. Does it make a statement about this time period? Only time will tell. Will it cause furor/consternation and intellectual discourse. Probably not.

But it is Web Art. And any and all such experiments are to be applauded. One day there will be artists that will find the wormholes into new dimensions of art through the Internet. is one of those first halting steps. [via rhizome]

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Web Blog: Gerard Ferrandez


Gerard Ferrandez continues to turn out some of the most amazing JavaScript demos on the Internet. His latest work, Autumn II, combines superb fluidity of motion, subtle transparency and great mouse-over responsiveness. As always, this technology is set against an evocative selection of images and a very pleasant musical riff.

A new feature on the site is a very extensive selection of links. To get to the links, move your mouse over the orange arrow at the bottom of the page until the workd "Links" appears then click. Any link recommended by Gerrard is certainly going to somewhere worth investigating. An on-going feature - very rare with most artist's sites - is a forum where you can ask Gerard questions or (as most people do) sing his praise.

I visit Gerrard's site frequently. He is one of the most talented artists working on Web Art. He is also one of the most open. All the source code, images and music he writes or uses are available with a click of a button under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 License.

Learning to navigate through the site has a tiny learning curve. But all your efforts will be extremely rewarding.


Web Artist: Jason Nelson


I found Jason Nelson because was the 2006 Web Art award winner of the Drunken Boat Panliterary Competition. His prize-winning entry, This is how you Will Die is quite a fun little Flash applet available from his bio page. Note: It takes quite a while to load. Click on "Death Spin" to get things started.

Also on the bio page were links to his own web sites. I have wandered around and found quite a few web art files. I didn't really like his main 2007 work, Between Treacherous Objects. The ten or so pages seemed repetitive - the same algorithms with just differences in the bitmaps and music. And I could not really see a thematic link other than the usual diatribe against a retro modern life. But Evil Flying Mascots and several other works I played with were quite amusing.

His own web pages are offer a limited background, but you you can find out a bit more on his profile at Griffith University in Brisbane Australia.

Jason's skills cover a lot of areas from coding to interface design, from music to literature. In other words he has all the skills and interests that being a Web Artist requires. I do think though that his greatest work is still in front of him. I say that only having seen a small portion of his rather large body of work, but do feel that he could really double-click into the themes and symbology that he is trying to express. Right now he is good at making tools for art and at making comments about art. Maybe one day Jason will simply make art. [via Drunken Boat]

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Web Art: Fark Photoshop Exquisite Corpse: The Fire Escape


The Fire Escape is a a crowd-sourced example of web art. A number of artists have been asked to doctor a given image of a fire escape. As you scroll down, you see each artist's interpretation of the fire escape. One is two men descending an image of Marcel Duchamp's Nude Descending a Staircase. And there are Simpsons, Spiderman, Pixel Art, PhotoShop effects and much more, more. One could do a whole study on the symbology of this project.

The whole effect is similar to a project I've written about before: zoomquilt. You will spend a happy few minutes smiling at the visual puns and another period of time wondering just what on earth does THAT mean.

An unfortunate aspect is that image are being sourced from a number of sites and some of those images are no longer available. Thus the site does not complete loading and there are occasional blank images as you scroll down.

This work and other works like it would really benefit from a bit more technology. For example, it would be nice to walk down passageways and be able to branch in alternate directions while seeing such images.

The Fire Escape

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Web Art Discussion: Are you ready for Web Art 2.0?


The Web Art of the Dot Com era is a Flash widget that you click on and lots of insanely great artistic things happen. People are happy with this. It works and it's fun. What more could you ask for?

Art marches on. Comments like "She's wearing Balenciaga. Last year's..." are just as appropriate about web sites as they are about the rag trade.

We have real-time googling and mash-up Web Art sites now. Are they the Web Art 2.0 sites or is there something more that will happen? Is Web Art 2.0 officially under way or is it yet too happen?

A good test case might be the existence of Web Art Widgets for FaceBook or the Google OpenSocial Widget program. Once there are several such widgets, It will be say to say that Web Art has been upped to 2.0. Are there other such tests we can think of? Probably.

Web Art Instrument: Visual Acoustics

ample interactive design appears to be a "business card" web site for Alex Lampe. Perhaps "Lampe" is an anagram of "ample". In any case this sites links top a number of clever and well-designed commercial web sites constructed in Adobe Flash. One link, however, (pointing to a folder on the the ample site itself) is a link to an on-line Web Art Instrument that, with your input, can create visual music.

First you load one or more instruments from the list at the top or bottom of the screen. Or click one of the presets on the right to load several instruments all at once. Then move your mouse around the screen. On screen symbols appear and musical instruments play.

The whole effect is more like an orchestra warming up more than a symphony in progress. There is obvious sophistication, care for detail and full technical sophistication here. Nevertheless, we await Rev 2.0.

Visual Acoustics

Friday, November 2, 2007

Web Art Gallery: Haifa Museum of Art - "NETworking"

NETworking is an excellent introduction to early 21st century Web Art. Each work is well-designed, interactive and original.

Originality is the key element. Think of walking through a gallery of recent paintings. If you know art history, as you look at each painting, a little voice in your brain is saying - "Derivative of Warhol." "Follows Picasso in the 50's." "Really bad Rauchenberg." "Fontana did it better." And so on.

The Haifa Museum exhibits of fourteen works of Web Art. Although all the works are presented on-screen via your monitor and are thus 2D (though they may represent 3D), you feel the freshness of a contemporary sculpture garden.

Each piece takes you into a unique environment - it's own little world. Ultimately the viewing experience is more complex, more nuanced and more rewarding than any equivalent show of static canvasses.

Link [Through]