[NetBehaviour] Distant

marc garrett marc.garrett at furtherfield.org
Sat Mar 8 18:34:10 CET 2008


Hi Edward,

Sorry for taking time in getting back to you, it has been a bit busy at 
this end...

Firstly, I am glad that you have found time to explore and experience 
the work, as well as appreciate the art within it...

This means a lot to me because I wish to reach people in a way like art 
used to, or at least see if it is still possible via this form of making 
art.

 >To me the most poignant screen is the one where someone's lounging on 
a river-bank, and we get the sound of the running water - it should be 
an idyllic scene - but both the figure on the bank and the river itself 
have been removed and replaced by the fizzy background. It's as if 
technology is like an acid eating away parts of life.

"It's as if technology is like an acid eating away parts of life."E_Picot.

Your statement is very interesting to me personally because, I feel as 
though this is issue concerns all of us. I am someone who has loved the 
advancement of what technology has given us, yet at the same time my 
'luddite' sentiments do seem to be re-emerging in respect of not wanting 
to be caught up in the perpetually grinding force of capitalism's, 
non-contextual and mechanistic colonisation of our cultures. Which is 
driven mainly by product using the illusion of freedom as a consumer led 
selling point.

 >But why is it called "Distant"? Most of the photographs look rather 
old - they're black and white, of course. Does the title indicate that 
they refer to an earlier era, a simpler way of life which has now become 
distant from us because of technology?

The images are found images, from various sources on the Internet.

The photographs communicated to me, a kind of sadness. Many of the 
images that I seemed to be moved by, were black and white and from early 
1900's. They reflected something poignant to me, about my own inevitable 
death and some friends that I have lost through the years. When I cut 
out the identities so that they could be used In 'Distant', I began to 
imagine myself and past friends in them. Some who I have no contact with 
any more, some who have passed away.

One of the reasons that I chose black and white was because, I wanted 
the piece to be quiet and not too loud and brash, like most other things 
in life - away from the sectacle.

 >And, to repeat my opening question, why is it Net Art rather than any 
other type of new media?

To be honest, I do think that this question has been easy for anyone who 
has termed part of their practice, as net art. Yet I personally think 
that my piece has a spirit of net art, not necessarily in close relation 
to the medium itself, but more to do with the fact that I have a history 
of making net art and that all the material within the artwork, comes 
from the Internet 'totally', rather than from any other primary source, 
in respect of its making and craft.

The problem with saying that you do net art now, is that technology has 
moved on so much that the case for net art an accepted from of practice 
is 'of course', not so accepted. Yet, I still willing to explore what 
this is for myself, on my own terms - and feel it for a bit and see if 
my net art is more than just theorised labels by those who are merely 
'distant' from its actual practice themselves...

I'm still learning :-)

marc



Marc -
 
I've come to this after a gap of several days, but I'd be interested to 
know why you would characterise it as a piece of Net Art rather than any 
other type of new media.
 
I mean, I like it. It's nice and simple to navigate, it's got unity of 
style (all the photos in black and white, all about the same size, and 
all with that zizzy cross-hatching shimmering away in the background), 
and I like the idea of cutting away all the human figures, and various 
bits of the landscape or cityscape, so that the background always seems 
to be bursting through. What I particularly like is the way that the 
sound is used. Given that the fizzy cross-hatched background seems 
suggestive of the net, interference/electricity, technology in general, 
the obvious thing to do would have been to have some kind of crackling 
static soundtrack, instead of which you've used recordings of actual 
things and places, often suggestive of events or objects which we can't 
see in the pictures themselves, and therefore seeming to flesh out the 
pictures with an extra dimension, suggesting "real life" in a way which 
the pictures themselves, cut away as they are, wouldn't. To me the most 
poignant screen is the one where someone's lounging on a river-bank, and 
we get the sound of the running water - it should be an idyllic scene - 
but both the figure on the bank and the river itself have been removed 
and replaced by the fizzy background. It's as if technology is like an 
acid eating away parts of life.
 
But why is it called "Distant"? Most of the photographs look rather old 
- they're black and white, of course. Does the title indicate that they 
refer to an earlier era, a simpler way of life which has now become 
distant from us because of technology? And, to repeat my opening 
question, why is it Net Art rather than any other type of new media?
 
- Edward



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> Marc -
>  
> I've come to this after a gap of several days, but I'd be interested 
> to know why you would characterise it as a piece of Net Art rather 
> than any other type of new media.
>  
> I mean, I like it. It's nice and simple to navigate, it's got unity of 
> style (all the photos in black and white, all about the same size, and 
> all with that zizzy cross-hatching shimmering away in the background), 
> and I like the idea of cutting away all the human figures, and various 
> bits of the landscape or cityscape, so that the background always 
> seems to be bursting through. What I particularly like is the way that 
> the sound is used. Given that the fizzy cross-hatched background seems 
> suggestive of the net, interference/electricity, technology in 
> general, the obvious thing to do would have been to have some kind of 
> crackling static soundtrack, instead of which you've used recordings 
> of actual things and places, often suggestive of events or objects 
> which we can't see in the pictures themselves, and therefore seeming 
> to flesh out the pictures with an extra dimension, suggesting "real 
> life" in a way which the pictures themselves, cut away as they are, 
> wouldn't. To me the most poignant screen is the one where someone's 
> lounging on a river-bank, and we get the sound of the running water - 
> it should be an idyllic scene - but both the figure on the bank and 
> the river itself have been removed and replaced by the fizzy 
> background. It's as if technology is like an acid eating away parts of 
> life.
>  
> But why is it called "Distant"? Most of the photographs look rather 
> old - they're black and white, of course. Does the title indicate that 
> they refer to an earlier era, a simpler way of life which has now 
> become distant from us because of technology? And, to repeat my 
> opening question, why is it Net Art rather than any other type of new 
> media?
>  
> - Edward
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> _______________________________________________
> NetBehaviour mailing list
> NetBehaviour at netbehaviour.org
> http://www.netbehaviour.org/mailman/listinfo/netbehaviour




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