history of art

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• In the first week of this course we will look at the
  history and evolution of Electronic Art.
• Some of the questions that we will address are:
• Electronic Art came out of what earlier art
• What have been the common characteristics of these
  earlier art movements?
• Who are some of the key artists who have contributed
  to major changes in art history?
• What are the various genres in Electronic Art today?
         What is Electronic Art
• Before we try to connect this contemporary
  art form with earlier art forms, let’s look at
  some examples of Electronic art to help us
  define some of the common characteristics.
Here are some of the genres of Electronic Art:
  Click on the links and explore the works.
• interactive web art, Digital Imaging, data
  visualization, interactive installations.
              Electronic Art
• Video, animation, computer games, electronic
  music are also within the field of Electronic
• Before we go on, let’s talk about the term Electronic
• Electronic Art is a broad term that encompasses art
  works in the fields of animation, 3D, video, electronic
  music, digital imaging, net art, and interactive
• Electronic Art is now called New Media Art.
• Previously, Electronic Art was called, Digital Art, and
  before that, Computer Art.
• As new technology develops and artists incorporate
  the new technologies into their artworks, the term for
  the field changes as well.
         What is electronic art
 Here are some of the common Characteristics-
• Embrace technology
• The creator often plays a backstage role
• Audience participation
• Rules for the participant to follow
• Art not defined to a set space such as a gallery
• The environment or random factors may be
  part of the piece.
      Where did it come from?
In brief, ( and as discussed in the book)
  Electronic Art has it’s roots in:
• Research Institutes, Scientists, Military
• Dadaists art movement (1916-1924),
• Fluxus art movement (60s & 70s) and
• Conceptual art movement (started in the 60s)

• But I am going to go back even further………
A concept that is deeply established in the development
  of Electronic art is a shift away from the higher
  establishment to the common person. Which means,
  creating art that address everyday concerns. One
  famous historical artist who did just that was Vincent
  Van Gough.
   Van Gough rebelled against the system by painting common objects that even a
 peasant could relate to and also through his style of painting. He painted with thick
strokes of paint that clearly allowed the viewer to see the source of the painting. It is
hard to image it today, but for the time, this was considered quite unfashionable and
    Why talk about Van Gough in an
         Electronic art Class?
• 1. There is a connection. A lot of the art work
  you will see in this class will be challenging
  and different from what is considered the
  normal art standard. Remember that 100
  years ago, Van Gough’s work was also
  considered “not art” but now…… it sells for
 Everything is a reaction to something
• Electronic art wasn’t born in an art historical
  bubble. All art forms come out of an earlier
  movement or a reaction to the current social
• Let’s briefly go through some of the 20thc. Art
  movements starting with the Dadaist art
• Dada or Dadaism is a cultural movement that
  began in Zürich, Switzerland, during World War I.
• The artists who formed this group were against
  the politics and art movement of the time.
  Dadaist included visual artists as well as literary
• They were reacting against their social and
  political environment.
• We will see when we study Hacktavism another
  group of artists who also use their art to rebel
  against their social and political environment.
           Abstract Expressionism.
• After WWII, the European art scene was devastated. Many
  artist had died during the war and many fled to America. Out
  of this new social environment, Abstract Expressionism was
  born in America.
• Abstract expressionism is typically described as rebellious,
  highly idiosyncratic and rather nihilistic. In other words, this
  art form is for the artists ( those who have an art education)
  rather than the average person)

                         Expressionism 1940-60s

                         Jackson Pollack.
Examples of Abstract Expressionism
                         Pop art
• This art movement came out of a reaction against the
  previous art movement, Abstract Expressionism.
• Unlike the Abstract Expressionist images, Pop Art images
  reflect mass media and popular culture.

                                         Pop art 1950’s
                                         Andy Warhol
Pop art
          Cartoons, famous people
          and ordinal household
          items are the images of
          Pop Art.

          The colors are also
          typically bold.
• The international group of musician and
  performers called the flux, in the 1960s also
  were ancestors to interactive work.
• They gave precise instructions to audience
  members for participation and allowed for
  random events to be factored in as part of the
    2 artists coming out of the Fluxus
• John Cage
• http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HypmW4Yd7SY

• Nam June Paik
• http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VuaJAgx0
Your first project in this class deals with Appropriation.
Appropriation is taking something that didn’t belong to you and using it
as your own.
For your first project you will look at the examples of Andy Warhol’s
portraits. Andy Warhol became known for appropriating images as his
own such as the Cambells Soup can image.
Some other artists who used appropriation:
We mostly think if this as something as obvious as taking a picture that
someone else took and using it in your own work but there is also
cultural appropriation ( taking styles of other cultures) and medium
When Pablo Picasso started synthetic cubism he was criticized for
appropriating other mediums ( rope, paper) into his paintings.

          Still Life with Chair Caning (1912)
          by Pablo Picasso.
• Marcel Duchamp is one of the most famous artists from the
  Dadaist movement.
• For many is considered the Father of Appropriation.
• His pieces the “Readymades” took ordinary objects and
  recontextualized them by putting them into a gallery- saying
  that the new context was all they needed to become art.
• He is appropriating and recontextualizing.
   Marcel Duchamp (1887-1968)
• Conceptual art: Readymades
  Appropriation still is used in art.
• Mike Bidlo is a contemporary artists who
  appropriates the styles of other artists.
• Take a look at his work.
• Mike Bidlo
• Richard Prince is another artist working with
  appropriation. He takes commercial and found
  images, makes them larger and recontextualizes
• Take a look at this article on Richard Prince.
• After going through this section I hope you
  can find some connections between
  contemporary art work and the work of the
  last century.
• Art is always about something.
• A good interpretation of art tells more about
  the art than about the interpreter.

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