Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Computer "guts" as art and other art news




I like when things get re-purposed.

Especially when it becomes art.  That's what Mark Crummett thinks too.  Or so it seems.  He has taken the innards of computers along with transistors and motherboards from other devices and turned them into artistic landscapes.  In a photographic series Crummett calls Ghosts in the Machine, tiny figures are overwhelmed in an environment of pure technology. For example, in the above image entitled "Blessed Are the Air Cooled," the vent for a computer fan becomes postmodern architecture for the figure it dwarfs.  Personally, I think it looks more like a music video from the very early 90s (remember when lights through fans were all the rage?)

In the Wired article, Crummett says he likes to use railroad figurines for his dioramas.  Partly because the scale is right and also because the vintage dress of the figures creates an interesting juxtaposition with the computer parts.

“These people are surrounded by technology, technology has become their environment,” he says. “And that’s where we are too. Technology has become so integrated that it’s second nature to us.”

Shades of transhumanism.  Though it's difficult to discern what Crummett's thoughts are on the Singularity from just his art, he does concede that several of the figures were chosen for the positioning of their arms.  The railroad people were originally positioned as such to be working on locomotives, but in the new context of the art, the characters derive a more spiritual quality.

I was wondering how Crummett got the painting-like quality of the images down.  Fortunately, the article went on to tell me.  Turns out it's a simple blur technique.  This is so as to help the viewer "fall into the narrative of the story."

“If we can take a step or two away I think it lets our imagination connect with it more fully,” he says.

In other art news, the Frieze New York Art Fair is underway.  There's even an entry from Sir Paul McCartney himself.  Check out his giant balloon animal:




A somewhat more controversial art exhibit is that of Michael Murphy.  It is meant, as he says, to engage wider discussion of the gun debate and the view of guns in our society. Part of his exhibition features a giant AR-15 made of black ping pong balls in order to render the gun as a "fetish object."

Agree with it all.  Chuck it all.  No matter what, I love art.


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