Critical Issues in Electronic Media by Simon Penny

By Simon Penny

Severe matters in digital Media is an interdisciplinary sourcebook that gives new serious views without delay regarding, or bobbing up from, the perform of digital media paintings. It sketches the altering topology of tradition because it enters digital house and in particular addresses questions of paintings perform in that area. the various contributions specialise in the dynamics of particular rising media corresponding to interactive media, whereas others examine the cultural stipulations shaped by way of, and forming round, new technological complexes. nonetheless others learn modern technocultural manifestations opposed to a historical past of social and technological historical past.
The individuals are professionally and geographically varied, representing specialist fields akin to special effects, video, sound, drama, and visible arts in addition to media, cultural and literary conception, and the social sciences. jointly, those essays supply a wealthy survey of latest technological critique and supply a standpoint on artistic perform in technological media.

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As Morelras points out however, the key question here is whether "Virtual reality can be experienced as a posslbUlty for a thlnldng of the Outside, "6 whether virtuality is so determined by current Cartesianbased technological paradigms that it already forecloses the possibility of an epistemic rupture. Thlnldng of the Outside involves looking past the body that Cartesian metaphysics grafted from a single organ, the eye, onto Its homonymic counterpart, the "I"; the subject. And this means thinking outside of not only bodies and subjects, but also of visions and sights-the stuff of western thought itself.

The price In this case is the body, whose disappearance from sight vla the determinations of vlrtuallty colncldes with the disintegration of "reality" as a humanly Inhabitable topos In the wake of hi-tech culture. As If Initiating the withdrawal inherent in virtuality, flight simulators such as SIMNET were developed by the mllltary as a retreat from the costly real estate of terra firma. 16 The only claim to the here-and-now of embodiment that television could make was via the sound accompanying and overflowing the Impact of the smart bomb.

Thus they are caught in a cycle of unrequited technological consumption. Artists can barely learn the new technology before it is replaced with another. Art practice requires a holistic consideration of the cultural context of the subject matter, but the pace of technological change prevents just such a consideration. There are numerous cases over the last twenty-five years of artists who feel compelled to develop a technology to realize their Ideas, because they feel their aesthetic ideas are Intimately llnked to the technology of realization.

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