[NetBehaviour] On Paintr

Rob Myers rob at robmyers.org
Fri Jun 19 13:54:21 CEST 2009

2009/6/14 Pall Thayer <pallthay at gmail.com>

> First of all, I just want to say that I'm honored and proud that my
> own work played a part in influencing this very intriguing work. I was
> just talking with another Icelandic artist yesterday (Gudrun
> Kristjansdottir, painter) and we were discussing artistic motives.
> I.e. what do we want from our art and I told her that what I wanted
> most was for my art to have some sort of an influence on art being
> produced 50 years from now. So this is what it's all about for me. If
> someone says that my work influenced theirs, I'm reaching my primary
> goals.

That's great. I always try to highlight the work I am building on.

> Another thing I wanted to mention is an article that I think you
> should look into. I took the same approach as I believe you're
> expressing which is that the subjectivity of the resulting work
> becomes very complex (perhaps even non-existent) as the program
> guiding the production is incapable itself of subjectivity. However,
> as H. Gene Blocker points out in his essay "Pictures and Photographs"
> (1977, The Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism, 36(2), pp.
> 155-162), the mere act of avoiding subjectivity is in itself
> subjective.

Yes the denial of emotion is a very emotional thing, so perhaps the
avoidance or denial of subjectivity is somehow very subjective.

The follow up to my paintr post (which should be finished in the next few
days) begins -

"The perceived lack of psychological content, subjectivity, interiority, or
affect is not a problem that concerns me in art computing. It is a
deficiency of criticism, not the art under consideration. Software is
ultimately made by human beings and its output is experienced by them.
Visions of order are psychologically and ideologically interesting if you
choose to look into them. Fractals, alife and evolutionary art all have this
cognitive and social aesthetic value. Their un-Frankfurt-school-illustrating
nature is a feature, not a bug, of their artistic worth."

This is one of the things that reinforced my idea that
> code should be displayed along with this sort of work (and later that
> only the code need be displayed).

Is showing the code like showing the model or the preparatory sketch, or is
it like presenting the concept? Or is it Like Sol Lewitt's drawing work?

SoDA exhibited some of my code at a show when it was too difficult to get it
running on the Mac IIvx we had for the purpose. Before that they exhibited
the work as a URL. I'd love to claim that these were radical artistic acts
on my part, but they weren't.

That's where the artist's
> subjectivity lies. Avoiding subjectivity is an interesting approach
> that can produce interesting results at a conceptual level but when it
> comes down to it, the work is still a product of you and that's what
> makes it significant.

I had an interesting conversation with a lawyer at a conference once about
who owned the copyright on an artwork made by a computer program, then on an
artwork made by a program made by a program, then on an artwork made by a
program made by a program made by a program and so on. It's always the
person who wrote the first program, it has to be a human being. Copyright is
interesting to me in part because it's a kind of degenerate ontology of art.
I think code can also illustrate the ontology of art, what art is and isn't
and how, but I tend to do this satirically just to be on the safe side. ;-)

And finally, thanks for pointing out colr.org. Very interesting website.

It's like colourlovers without the claim of an NC licence on the palettes.

The guy who runs the site got in contact with me when they saw Paintr in
their server logs, and they were very helpful.

- Rob.
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <https://lists.netbehaviour.org/pipermail/netbehaviour/attachments/20090619/6b0f8670/attachment.htm>

More information about the NetBehaviour mailing list