Week 11: Response to Rachel Greene (Leon & Nimrah) – Kennedy

Reading Rachel Greene’s article, I hoped to gain a more clear understanding of what exactly “net.art” is; however, upon completing the article, I feel that I have an more vague understanding of “net.art” than before (Greene). Greene defines “net.art” as “communications and graphics, email, text and images, referring to and merging into one another” (Green). This definition deviates from everything I understand to be art. While art can hold social significance through its “‘optical’ aesthetic”, the idea or message it attempts to convey is its primary purpose. I suppose that the general notion of “net.art” seems to be a visual or auditory piece utilizing the internet with a purpose.

“Net.art” seems to actively subvert the traditional art scene while also playing into similar aesthetic tropes. As artists strive to present an innovative and original piece, they often create work that mirrors the tones set by abstract art. Shapes, construct, and design act as embodiments of ideas and feelings. The messages encased touch on everything from serious social issues to the skillfully executed, simplistic ideas of Rafael Rozendaal.

I feel that the ideas of internet art explored in Rachel Greene’s article can coincide with Paul Graham’s “Hackers and Painters” interpretation of software code. Greene’s inclusion of the collective I/O/D’s web browser touches upon Graham’s central idea of code being viewed as aesthetically pleasing. Best stated by Simon Pope, “We tried to expand on the idea of ‘software as culture’”(Greene). When good code is produced, programmers recognize the various layers to its “beauty” (Graham). The execution of clear logic, clean syntax, and finally desired output are the general benchmarks for “beautiful code” (Graham). Net art pieces that bring code to the forefront exhibit a new, modern art form. Pieces such as I/O/D’s web browser attempts to accomplish the same idea with an ambitious take on an established tool of the internet community and execute it in an original way.

Week 10: Response to Paul Graham and Paul Rand (Leon & Nimrah) – Kennedy

Paul Graham’s “Hackers and Painters” and Paul Rand’s “Computers, Pencils and Brushes” both frame “design” as the paramount concern for creators. Rand uses the word “design” nineteen times within his article and Graham tallies up a total twenty-five. This emphasis on the word “design” outlines both author’s desire to convince their audiences of the importance of design over static creation.

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Week 8: Response to Walter Benjamin (Leon & Nimrah) – Kennedy

Walter Benjamin’s article, “The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction”, details the impact mechanized reproduction has on the evolution of art. He brings up many valid arguments supporting his concerns regarding the “mechanical reproduction” of art; however, I don’t particularly agree with the idea that all his arguments translate well in the modern world.

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