200910: Künstlerhaus Wien paraflows .10 - mind and matter

Künstlerhaus Wien paraflows .10 - mind and matter 10.09.10 – until 10.10.10 The ideals of digital culture MIND AND MATTER – where is the dualism between mind and matter in digital art and culture to be found? What relevance lies ahead of the virtual and it’s apparent opposite, the object-like character, in today’s digital culture and society? What purpose does digital art fulfill in this context? This theme of paraflows.10 will be discursively embraced in the symposium from 10-12 September at the Fifth Festival for Digital Art and Culture, and illustrated by artistic works at the exhibition in the Künstlerhaus. The traditional theme of the clear definition and positioning of the non-material and the physical is no longer tenable in the digital context. Even if the one principle is conditional upon the other and the other’s needs, where does the spiritual end (up to now in the higher fields of the intellectually positioned) and, respectively, where does the territory of material matter begin (allegedly subordinate, earthly) when it comes down to hardware, software, program, process or simulation on the computer? Which of these presents an apparently real character? Especially, the capacity of artificial intelligence and „the net“ which, as it were, enlivens and literally merges into our everyday life, while at the same time creating a virtual society within a virtual reality, eliminates, in principal, every traditional hierarchy. The former antitheses of mind and matter have, in this context, imbued themselves; new dimensions have superseded components such as time and expansion. In the paraflows.10 catalogue, high claim is laid upon digital art: as the “bearer of a utopian as well as a practical, enlightening potential” it shall be effective in helping to fashion “the concrete practice as well as this consolidated theory”. The “artificial consciousness” which will become the collective consciousness of the digital society, shall, with the help of art, be emancipated, influenced and formed by capitalistic interests. Digital art is therefore politically relevant. The exhibition in the Künstlerhaus displays the history as well as the diversity of the forms of digital art. As early as the 70’s, Zelko Wiener deals with the figural presence of digital characters and codes. Peter Kogler presents the idea and its elusiveness in the pulsating projection of a brain and, at the same time, confronts this as software with its hardware, i.e. with its material organic existence, staged as a computer-shaped form protected by a showcase. Lia visualizes imaginary spaces in an interactive generative work of variably adjustable parameters. Following the insolvency of her business, Celine Berger processes the different voices of employees in an audio installation in whose overall composition various levels of meaning are instantaneously and simultaneously realized. Niki Passath presents expanding and contracting architectonic modules in a communicative and reactive robotic system; Julian Palacz has captured the movements of the computer mouse. The exhibits are truly diverse, interesting, aesthetic, innovative and inspiring; the virtual finds its polymorphic manifestation in a concrete, sensuous form. However, the above-cited deliberation / meditation / musing on art appears cathartic, all too ideal – or also, perhaps, excessive or romantic: in this respect, the materialization of the theory is, assuredly, still utopian. By Margareta Sandhofer Künstlerhaus Wien, 1010 Vienna, Karlsplatz 5 Tel: 01/587 96 63 http://www.k-haus.at Opening hours: daily from 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.

Künstlerhaus Wien
1010 Wien, Karlsplatz 5
Tel: +43 1 587 96 63
Email: office@k-haus.at
Öffnungszeiten: täglich 10-18 h, Mi + Fr 10-22 h

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