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29 OCTOBER 2017

Artists appropriate when they adopt imagery, concepts and ways of making art other artists have used at other times

"Appropriation, first of all, is a common technique. People appropriate when they make things their own and integrate them into their way of life, by buying or stealing commodities, acquiring knowledge, claiming places as theirs and so on. Artists appropriate when they adopt imagery, concepts and ways of making art other artists have used at other times to adapt these artistic means to their own interests, or when they take objects, images or practices from popular (or foreign) cultures and restage them within the context of their work to either enrich or erode conventional definitions of what an artwork can be. As such, this technique could be described as comparatively timeless, or at least, as being practiced as long as modern society exists. For, ever since labour was divided and the abstract organization of social life alienated people from the way in which they would want to live, appropriation has been a practice of getting back from society what it takes from its members. At the same time, appropriation can be understood as one of the most basic procedures of modern art production and education. To cite, copy and modify exemplary works from art history is the model for developing art practice (neo)classicist tendencies have always championed. During the last two centuries this model was repeatedly challenged by advocates of the belief that modern individuals should produce radically new art by virture of their spontaneous creativity. The postmodern critics of this cult of individual genius in turn claimed that it is a gross ideological distortion to portray the making of art as a heroic act of original creation. Instead they advanced the paradigm of appropriation as a materialist model that describes art production as the gradual re-shuffling of a basic set of cultural terms through their strategical re-use and eventual transformation."

(Jan Verwoert, 2007)

ART&RESEARCH: A Journal of Ideas, Contexts and Methods, Volume 1. No. 2. Summer 2007, ISSN 1752-6388

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2007 • acquiring knowledge • adopting concepts • adopting imagery • adopting ways of making art • appropriation practicesArt and Research (journal)art historyart practice • artistic appropriation • artistic meansartworkauthor as geniusauthorshipcitationcite • common creative technique • copy and modify • copy-and-paste culturecopying of artistic works • Craig Owens • creative genius • creative technique • cult of individual genius • cult of the author • Douglas Crimp • exemplary works • expropriation • Frederic Jameson • genial creatorgenius myth • heroic act • ideological distortion • Jan Verwoert • making of art • materialist model • modern art • modern art education • modern art production • neoclassicist tendencies • nothing is original • original creation • pastiche • postmodern critics • radically new art • Robert Longoromantic notion of the artist • spontaneous creativity

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
10 JUNE 2015

PomPom Mirror: a camera-based interaction artwork

"Rozin's anthropomorphic PomPom Mirror features a synchronized array of 928 spherical faux fur puffs. Organized into a three-dimensional grid of beige and black, the sculpture is controlled by hundreds of motors that build silhouettes of viewers using computer-vision. Along its surface, figures appear as fluffy animal-like representations within the picture plane, which is made permeable by a 'push-pull' forward and backward motion of meshed 'pixels'. Ghostly traces fade and emerge, as the motorized composition hums in unified movement, seemingly alive and breathing as a body of its own."

Daniel Rozin, "PomPom Mirror", 2015, 928 faux fur pom poms, 464 motors, control electronics, video camera, custom software, microcontroller, wooden armature, 48 x 48 x 18 in / 121.9 x 121.9 x 45.7 cm

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2015aesthetic experienceaesthetic spectacleanalogue correspondenceanthropomorphismartwork • beige and black • Bitforms Gallery • black and whitecamera-based interactioncomputer based interactive artcomputer visionDaniel Rozindynamic visual representationdynamically changing • fade and emerge • faux fur • fur • ghostly traces • image processing • implied tactile experience • implied texture • interactive artinteractive artworkinteractive visualisationkinetic art • mechanical mirror • microcontrollermicrosoft kinect cameramirror • moving tiles • NYCperceptual organisation • physical pixels • pom pom • PomPom Mirror (2015) • puff • push-pull • real-time motion • surface quality • synchronised array • tessellationtexturetransposing materials • unified movement • Victoria Sendra • visual appearance • visual feedback

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
11 FEBRUARY 2015

Squidsoup's Submergence light installation at Mexico Visual Art Week

"'Submergence', work by the Squidsoup collective, will be the only indoor piece in all of the [Mexico City] 2015 VAW festival, envisioned for a closed space. Like the name of the piece suggests, 'Submergence' proposes the audience to be immersed, inviting to stroll through it, which in an interactive process produces changes in the intensity of the lights, colors and sound expressions. With a narrative path composed of 4 parts of approximately 5 minutes each, an abstract story slowly takes shape with great poetic weight and added to the mutations that the audience contributes with their movements. The transition through subtle atmospheres introduces us to a magical and unreal world. Beyond the multiple meanings the spectator can perceive in free interaction with 'Submergence', the experience is key in itself, the possibilities this piece offers to perceive and enjoy all the senses at once."

(Museo Jumex)

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2015 • 3D pixel matrix • abstract story • abstract virtual environment • art exhibitionartist collectiveartworkatmospheric • atmospheric effects • closed space • floating in spaceimmersive experienceimmersive worksinteractive artworkinteractive light fieldLED lightingLiam Birtleslight art • light art festival • light fieldlight installationlight sculptureMexico City • Museo Jumex • Ocean of Light (artwork) • otherworldlinesspixel matrixpoints of lightpresenceresponsive light installationresponsive sound installation • spatialised pixels • Squidsoup (collective) • Submergence (2015) • VAW festival • Visual Art Week 2015 • Visual Art Week MX • visual spectacle

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
19 JUNE 2014

How do we create things together in a shared environment?

"When critical thinking is at its strongest, it often comes from exactly the sort of fluidity of practice that does run through Digital Revolution. The London–based architect and artist Usman Haque has been creating innovative software products alongside interactive artworks for more than 15 years. In 2007, he founded Pachube, a global data–sharing network that anticipated by years the current buzz around big data and the internet of things. In 2011, Pachube enabled hundreds of Japanese civilians to quickly and easily share weather and radiation data in the aftermath of the Fukushima disaster, boosting monitoring and relief efforts. Haque's Umbrellium team has produced a new artwork for Digital Revolution, which takes up the entirety of The Pit, the Barbican's subterranean theatre space. Called Assemblance, the piece allows about 25 people at a time to physically shape beams of light with their hands, pushing and pulling them around the space–while also bumping into and potentially messing up the shapes created by other people.

Haque calls it 'a virtual reality', but not in the sense of a purely digital realm: 'It's there, it's responding to you, you can see it, but as you try and approach it you can't actually feel it. For me, the idea is to question this distinction between the physical and the virtual.' The process is akin to building a sandcastle on the beach, where you are building a structure that anyone else, or the elements, can destroy in a moment.

Assemblance attempts to answer the question: 'How do we create things together in a shared environment, where we can't always trust each other, but we need to act together regardless?' This, indeed, is the situation we find ourselves in now. In the modern digital world, the question of participation is crucial as our various networks–social, media, national–require us to constantly mediate between acting as individuals and acting as a group. For Haque, the digital has given us 'the capacity to have an effect on the other side of the world almost instantaneously', from news events and economic flows to disaster response and warfare. 'We can do things to other people in distant lands, and so the question of our responsibility, and our culpability, is thrown up in ways that it hasn't been before. On the other hand, we now have the capacity to connect with each other, and develop new ways to work together, rather than against each other.'

Assemblance asks the audience to see itself as part of a networked whole, where actions have consequences. It also points towards the fact that 'the digital' is not a medium, but a context, in which new social, political and artistic forms arise. After 50 years, at least, of digital practice, institutions are still trying to work out its relevance, and how to display and communicate it–a marker, perhaps, that it is indeed a form of art."

(James Bridle, 18 June 2014, The Guardian)

Fig.1 Assemblance, a 3D interactive light field by Usman Haque and Dot Samsen from Umbrellium. Photograph: Umbrellium.

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2014 • act together • acting as a group • actions have consequencesartwork • Assemblance (artwork) • Barbican Centre • beam of light • big data • capacity to connect • collaborative action • collective culpability • collective responsibility • creating things together • data sharing • data-sharing network • digital artdigital art exhibitiondigital art form • digital context • digital practicedigital revolutionDigital Revolution (2014) • Dot Samsen • economic flowsflowsFukushimaGoogle DevArtimmersive experienceimmersive worksindividual and collective activities • innovative software • interactive artworks • interactive light fieldinternet of thingslightlight artlight installationlight sculpturemediated interactionmediated reality • modern digital world • new ways of working together • Pachube • part of a networked whole • participationphysical and digital interactionPongresponsive light installation • sandcastle • shared environment • trustUmbrellium • Usman Haque

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
07 MARCH 2014

Artist's spoof Ladybird book provokes wrath of Penguin

"An artist and comedian [Miriam Elia] has been told by the publisher Penguin that her new satirical art book breaches its copyright, and if she continues to sell copies it could use the courts to seize the books and have them pulped. ...

Elia's version sees them visiting an exhibition at a modern art gallery and grappling with existential questions about the nature of Tracey Emin–style conceptualist work, much of it peppered with distinctly adult imagery."

(Gareth Rubin, 2 March 2014, The Guardian)

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1950s2014adult imageryart and designart galleryart gallery experienceartistartworkballoonballoon dog • Balloon Dog (Orange) • book illustrationBritish artcanvaschildrens bookchildrens book illustrationconceptual artcontemporary artcontemporary art exhibitionscopyright • crucifix • empty room • feminist parodygod • God is dead • guiltinflatable • Jane • Jeff Koons • Ladybird Book • minimalist art • Miriam Elia • modern artmother • Mummy • NietzschenihilismparodyPenguin Random Housepenis • personal sacrifice • Peter • prettyreductionism • sacrifice • satiresexTate ModernThe GuardianTracey EminUKvagina • We Go To The Gallery (book)

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
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