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Movement and Interactivity as Ruptures in Art History

Jacob Wamberg Aarhus University Institute for Aesthetics and Communication


Three survival strategies for art vis-à-vis modern cultural development

1) Art becoming art by distancing itself to craft (1400s1700s) 2) Art keeping its position as art by remaining craft (though non-utilitarian) and distancing itself to technology (’modernism’: 1800s-1900s) 3) Art keeping its position as art by embracing technology but alienating it from its normal function through critique, irony, rupture, playfulness, etc. (’avant-gardes’: 1900s-2000s)


Main dilemmas in art history’s reception of technology Automatically produced static works (1820s- ) Autonomous movement (1890s- ) Interaction (1960s- )


Main crises in art history’s reception of technology

Automatically produced static works (1820s- ) • • •

Precursers (1400s- ): Handmade graphic art (engravings, woodcuts, etc.): Accepted as ’full’ but second rate art Machinic graphic art (prints): Never accepted as ’full’ art, unless conceptually framed Photography: long considered non-art or less important art, since 1980s accepted as ’full’ art Industrially produced objects (eg. Ready-mades, Fluxus, minimalism, Pop): All accepted as ’full’ art, many with the help of conceptual frames

Autonomous movement (1890s- ) Interaction (1960s- )

3D

2D


Donald Judd, 15 untitled works in concrete (1980-84), detail

Chinati Foundation, Marfa, Texas


Marcel Duchamp Fountain (1917) Readymade porcelĂŚnspissoir, original forsvundet

Marcel Duchamp Cykelhjul (1913) Ready-made, original tabt

Replik 1964 (fra udgave med 8 eksemplarer)

Marcel Duchamp In Advance of the Broken Arm (1915) Readymade New Haven, Yale Center for British Art


Main crises in art history’s reception of technology Automatically produced static works (1820s- ) • • •

Precursers (1400s- ): Handmade graphic art (engravings, woodcuts, etc.): Accepted as ’full’ but second rate art Machinic graphic art (prints): Never accepted as ’full’ art, unless conceptually framed Photography: long considered non-art or less important art, since 1980s accepted as ’full’ art Industrially produced objects (eg. Ready-mades, Fluxus, minimalism, Pop): All accepted as ’full’ art, many with the help of conceptual frames

2D

3D

Autonomous movement (1890s- ) • • •

Film: Never included in the discipline of art history Television and video: Slowly integrated as installation art since the 1960s Computer images: Rarely accepted as ’full’ art

• •

Kinetic art: Some accepted as ’full’ art, most categorized as ’technical art’ Bio art: Still categorized as ’technical art’

Interaction (1960s- )

2D

3D


Candice Breitz
Becoming (2003)
14 channel video installation
Installation view

In her installation Candice Breitz slips awkwardly into the roles of seven popular Hollywood actresses (Cameron Diaz, Julia Roberts, Jennifer Lopez, Meg Ryan, Neve Campbell, Reese Witherspoon and Drew Barrymore). Having cut-and-pasted short sequences of these actresses out of various films (in the process isolating the actresses by eliminating the actors who appeared opposite them), Breitz re-enacts their performances as precisely as possible.


Alexander Calder, Red Lily Pads (1956), painted sheet metal, metal rods and wire. New York, Guggenheim Museum of Art


From Kinetica Art Fair (2009), arranged by Kinetica Museum. London, P3 (35, Marylebone Rd)


Main crises in art history’s reception of technology Automatically produced static works (1820s- ) • • •

Precursers (1400s- ): Handmade graphic art (engravings, woodcuts, etc.): Accepted as ’full’ but second rate art Machinic graphic art (prints): Never accepted as ’full’ art, unless conceptually framed Photography: long considered non-art or less important art, since 1980s accepted as ’full’ art Industrially produced objects (eg. Ready-mades, Fluxus, minimalism, Pop): All accepted as ’full’ art, many with the help of conceptual frames

2D

3D

Autonomous movement (1890s- ) • • •

Film: Never included in the discipline of art history Television and video: Slowly integrated as installation art since the 1960s Computer images: Rarely accepted as ’full’ art

• •

Kinetic art: Some accepted as ’full’ art, most categorized as ’technical art’ Bio art: Still categorized as ’technical art’

2D

3D

Interaction (1960s- ) • • •

Activism: All accepted as ’full’ art but poorly integrated in art institution Digital art: Some accepted as ’full’ art, most categorized as ’technical art’ Bio art: Still categorized as ’technical art’

2D + 3D


Publicity (1970/2008), reinvented by CalArts on Sunday May 4th, 2008 at Vasquez Rocks Natural Area Park.

Image of Allan Kaprow’s Publicity being performed in 1970. Publicity was originally produced with and for the California Institute of the Arts student body. In this Happening, students built improvised wooden structures in the desert area of Vasquez Rocks near CalArts, while others videotaped them and immediately replayed it for the participants.


Eduardo Kac Genesis (1999)


Movement and Interactivity as ruptures in Art History