[NetBehaviour] Art and usage

James Morris james at jwm-art.net
Thu Oct 16 15:24:21 CEST 2014

On Wed, 2014-10-15 at 02:45 -0400, Alan Sondheim wrote:
> Was the user a viewer? Or someone who worked within/activated an 
> interactive program? It's interesting because labor is involved and that 
> relates to the notion of audience labor - a phrase often used in relation 
> to television commercialization.
> Is a painting usable? I'd say yes - let's say a painting perturbs me; the 
> painting then functions as a perturbation catalyst. Is this then a 
> function of the painting? Is the painting being-used to perturb (i.e. the 
> passive mode for example)? Is the painting being used to perturb? Is the 
> function of the painting to perturb? Does a user use the painting to 
> perturb? And so forth -
Same for music or film or games or drugs or books. They're all used to
do something to the person experiencing them. They all have uses for all
those from creator to distributor to end user. Music for example, can be
used both to create a persistent presence in the end user's mind or to
dislodge a persistent musical presence in the end user's mind. The
latter also capable of returning one to a particular frame of mind when
one's frame of mind is influenced too much by the attitudes those around


> Alan
> On Wed, 15 Oct 2014, Pall Thayer wrote:
> > I encountered an interesting discussion today about contemporary digital art
> > that referenced the "user" in a prominent way. I'm wondering whether this
> > has become a "thing". Does our art need to be "used"? If so, is its quality
> > determined by its "usability"? Will gallery guests start saying, "That was
> > so usable. I might buy it." Or "That piece on the left was one of the most
> > useful pieces I've seen in years. It left me with this vague sense of still
> > using it."
> > --
> > *****************************
> > Pall Thayer
> > artist
> > http://pallthayer.dyndns.org
> > *****************************
> > 
> >
> ==
> email archive http://sondheim.rupamsunyata.org/
> web http://www.alansondheim.org / cell 718-813-3285
> music: http://www.espdisk.com/alansondheim/
> current text http://www.alansondheim.org/sw.txt
> ==
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