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nettime: net.art
Jordan Crandall on Wed, 19 Mar 1997 03:02:13 +0100 (MET)


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nettime: net.art


Net.art is interesting if you regard its basis in networking, but not
necessarily the Internet.  Because you can then look at the symbiosis
between networking technologies, artistic practices, and accompanying
discourses, where a particular sense of  embeddedness, connectivity, flow,
discourse form, etc., is present, and signify that as 'net.'  It's
important to look at the Internet as embedded in a net:  its offline
elements uphold and fuel its forms, even as those forms rebound back to
affect its 'outside'.  (As if we could still make those distinctions.)
There is nothing wrong in looking at the formal aspects of this, if you
look at the practices and forces embedded in them, and you don't look at
those in terms of a forced interior (that is, a cyberspace vacuum).
Formalisms can be very valuable, as dense 'packets' which, when unpacked,
reveal a whole of society, a world of practices and knowledge formations.
The form may only be a residue, a screen burn, perhaps lodged temporarily
in the mind.  Packet-switching already has a formal structure, which can
sweep past the surface leaving a trace.  So a formal discourse might engage
this switching, its traces, its surfaces, its temporalities, and reversing
the vector of projection, show at the optical and embodied forms required
to register it, etc.

The work that exists on the web, as part of this 'net.' requires a double
'reveal codes' strategy of analysis, including the ways that, as Andreas
Broeckman says, it is dependent upon "the process initiated by and within
the complex machine of people, the network infrastructure, desires,
technical hardware, design tools, interfaces, behaviors."


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