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October 20, 2006

Alive and clicking


"Your Gallery: A Unique Reader-Curated Exhibition"

Alive and clicking :: Last month we asked you to choose 10 artists from the web for a unique reader-curated exhibition. As it opens, Jonathan Jones introduces the finalists :: Slideshow: Preview the exhibition.

"Heath Bunting, the first internet artist, showed me his piece A Visitors Guide to London at an underground arts event in the early 1990s. By clicking on a dustbin or a bit of waste ground, you could take a magical mystery tour of the metropolis. It was primitive, innocent, and infused with a radical optimism. Bunting was one of a generation of young activist-artists for whom the digital revolution was a superhighway to world anarchy.

They are still at it, only now it's the commercial structure of the internet they are trying to subvert - one project recently commissioned by the new media art site rhizome.com is called Google Will Eat Itself; the creators propose to buy bits of Google until they own the entire business. Such artists now seem a bit old-fashioned. The internet is no longer a utopian possibility but an ever-mutating reality; the hacker has been replaced by conventional artists who simply want to show their work online. And the man who has been first to tap into this desire and produce the art equivalent of YouTube is Charles Saatchi, whose reputation as a businessman and collector could scarcely be more different from Heath Bunting's lo-fi activism." From Alive and Clicking by Jonathan Jones, The Guardian, October 19, 2006.

Posted by jo at October 20, 2006 03:49 PM