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Warp Records Elsewhere Interesting Online Work

Interesting Online Work


Web addict Nick Kilroy points us towards some things that have recently caught his eye.

LFOUNDATION - posted 21/10/02

Given the glut of eye-candy and flashy tat on the interweb, indiscrimate grazing can deaden your palate, so these semi-automatic clips of net.art, kindly collected and restored to cross browser compliance by the Lfoundation, are a digi-tonic. Gathered from the late 90s, this 24 piece showcase is a re-affirming blast of quality digital minimalism, demonstrating a range from broken loops, primal design to unapologetic sonic assault and hijacked webcam feeds.

Whether you agree that ‘Less is More’, or favour the snappy riposte ‘Less is a Bore’, these raw chunks of data have an immediacy and energy lacking elsewhere on the net, showing an ingenious use of frugal means. A sharp corrective for mouse-potatoes.

JODI.ORG - posted 22/07/02

What can you say about JODI? Producing sites since the mid 90s, this net.art duo are renown for turning computer malfunctions into art with subversive appropriation and ASCII abstraction. Yet in spite of their critical success they remain resolutely non-conformist and lo-fi; on winning the top prize at the 1999 Webbies in LA, the net equivalent of the Oscars, their succinct acceptance speech consisted of five words "Ugly Commercial Sons of Bitches".

"......we disrupt the slick surface of the information systems. We get a lot of ideas from making errors ourselves at our computer, when the system locks, gets frozen, shaking and flipping while crashing.. .. we want to share these rare moments......"

Frustrating, inaccessible and often miss-understood, their work is an accurate translation of our relationship with computers.


IDEALINE - posted 10/04/02

The main drawback in having the greatest resource EVER at your fingertips is an overabundance of choice, (a problem it shares with most modern media.) Faced with a 'kajillion' options and variables it's easy to get lost and give up.
The Whitney Museum of Art provide a remedy, IDEALINE. An on-line gallery of projects charting the development of net.art since the mid 90s. No small feat (the question of how to categorise, display and access data should be apparent to anyone with an extensive music collection) but the solution is elegant and apt. Although the selection is comprehensive, it's important not to see this as THE definitive history, there are some questionable omissions, one being IDEALINE itself.
And in spite of the net's exponential growth, lots of digital work is being lost forever to 'link-rot' and incompatibility. Projects such as this which keep us in touch with our er....recent, if inaccessible, past are encouraging.

GLYPHITI - posted 28/02/02

Lo-fi, lo-rez, this is 100% pure pixel-crack. This is not recommended for those with better things to do with their time. ANDY DECK's Glyphiti delivers the kind of interactivity the net has always promised. A collaborative drawing space, made of 256 small 'glyphs' the user can individually alter, in real-time. Simple.... yes but it's multi-user.

"It's not clear who owns the collaborative image. For my part, I encourage you to use it any way you see fit. I look forward to seeing what images develop, [and] if you don't like the options given to you, please revise the source code. Copy it. Steal it. Share it. Print it. Pretend it's yours. I don't care."

A space that could only exist on the net, whether you're there to express yourself or deface the work of others, there are no rules to doodling. It's micro-anarchy.

FEED.PROJECTS.SFMOMA.ORG - posted 11/02/02

FEED consumes the WEB.
Having shifted his canvas onto the net, ex-painter Mark Napier, now uses other people's work as his materials. FEED, his most recent 'shredder' program "unravels the digital thread" of whatever site it is fed.
Sending out a spider program to sift and extract, stripping away any context, FEED separates out the constituent code and pixels into meaningless patterns and colours, just as statisticians translate data into meaningless charts and diagrams. Offering an inverted perspective on the net and revealing inadvertent beauty, this program is instant abstract art.
His on-line studio - http://www.potatoland.org - hosts many earlier projects and experiments into extraction and reconfiguration of data on the web, each with his own brand of polite subversion.


Jared Tarbell’s archive of smooth ‘computational organisms’ is like peering into a tray of petri dishes. And despite being another bin of Flash sketches these are distinguished by the programmer’s open-source stance -

"Please feel free to distribute, modify, hack, tweak, phreak, obfuscate, reverse engineer, stare at, decompile, consume, delete, irradiate, integrate, indoctrinate, categorize, memorize, or obliterate within good taste and with reasonable respect to the original author."

Enjoying ‘the free flow of ideas and code’ he details the process behind each piece and offers them for download, yet without audio we can only wonder what he was listening to when he grew them.

Nick Kilroy -> [email protected]


10th October 02

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