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Is Digital Art, Art?

Lagomorph

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#1
Seems we've lost a few threads and posts. I suppose I'll make up for that a little with some poorly-arranged sophistic masturbatory argumentation:

Digital art is meaningless. AI will shit it out at the press of a button. It seems "assisted," like having a prosthesis; the special olympics of art. Traditional mediums coupled with a creator's intrinsic flaws and personal nuances spawned, well, creativity, in overcoming those limitations, resulting in a product high in genuine authenticity, which is why it is more meaningful. "Real" art demonstrates the developmental process of an individual.

Older mediums... pencils and brushes, techniques and methods... also had a diversifying effect; a closer bond between maker, medium, and expression, but the effect of digital tools is negatively equalizing, homogenizing, and bland.

Though digitech is effectively a tool that synthesizes multitudes of other tools, everything filtered through the creation of a relatively minute group of programmers, who may possess a false belief that they've incorporated sufficient flexibility so as to replicate some aspect of reality, is reductionist, like feeding a rainbow through a prism to produce white light.
 

Animekitty

(ISFP)-(E)(N)(T)(P)
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#2
You have selected one medium and imposed it on another to show that the other medium is fake. Digital Art is its own medium not a substitute for others. Replication is not duplication. Games are the obvious example. It is another way to tell a story. Or on its own learn how to do something new. It is a form of interactivity. All medium is interactive to an extent. The digital medium is highly fluid. You can make it do almost anything, create almost anything. It has it's own physics to it.
 

Cognisant

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#3
As I see it art is defined by four schools of thought:

Art as a Concept
The art depicts the artist's thoughts, this could be a joke, a political statement or a meme, the quality or aesthetic appeal of the art itself is irrelevant rather the merit of this kind of art is judged by the relevance and cleverness of the concept.
a0p453B_700b.jpg

Art as Expression
This is one of the more prestigious kinds of art but the actual reason for its value is commonly misunderstood, the Mona Lisa is a nice picture but there's nothing truly exceptional about what it depicts. We're bombarded with pictures of pretty girls with nice smiles every day but the Mona Lisa is valuable because it was painted by a famous artist who died a long time ago. It's a relic, a collector's item, it's famous and valuable because it's famous and valuable, it's the Kim Kardashian of the art world.

Art as an Observation
Realistic still-life paintings, photography, even impressionist paintings capture the mood of a scene if not a faithful depiction of the scene itself, there's a lot of artists who specialize in painting landscapes.

Art as Decoration
This could be any of the above, it's just aesthetics for its own sake.

Personally I don't care how art is made, if someone makes an AI that churns out hundreds of impressionist landscapes that serve as decoration in restaurants and hotel lobbies I don't see anything wrong with that. I do take offense to art being considered good because the artist is some semi-famous weirdo because the art itself has no merit, distressingly this is all too common, hence why most people in a modern art gallery tend to be thinking "wtf is this shit?".
 

The Grey Man

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#4
All four of those schools exist and all four are perverse. Art as concept is its politicization, art as "expression" its commodification and academicization, art as observation its reduction to a pedestrian record of external conditions, art as decoration its demotion to congenial piece of scenery. None of these possible instrumentalizations of art tells us what art qua art actually is. A Gothic cathedral, a portrait by Rembrandt, a tragedy by Shakespeare, and a symphony by Beethoven have something in common that a speech by Barack Obama, an antique chamber pot, a military reconnaissance report, and a potted plant do not: expression. Not the expression of external, but always internal conditions. Art speaks not of space, but always of time, not of facts, but of the truth, not of the frigid world of appearances, but of the irruption into that world of one's molten quintessence, of passion, of yearning and suffering in their innumerable gradations and shades, keys and melodies. Art begins and ends always with the subject as expresser and as experiencer, not any object. Hell, music doesn't even have an object! I say "wtf is this shit?" at art galleries too, and it's not because those objects of modern art are repugnant to me (though many of them are), but because whatever emotion the artists sought to capture in those objects (if they are to be credited with any artistic intent at all- frankly I think most of them are inutterably dishonest charlatans so trivial are the works with which they think to occupy our time) proved incommunicable to me through that object under those circumstances.

I see nothing clever, profitable, observational, or decorative in this work of art. It's a gospel, simple and true.

r18.jpg
 

Kuu

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#5
Oh, not the 1930s again. This has been well covered before. And then re-covered again by postmodernists. This whole argument on authenticity is so tired.

As I have noted numerous time, the word Art in its modern mis-understanding is utter shit and should be abandoned. Without a proper delineation of things, they cannot be properly talked about. There is the act of creation, and there is the product of creation, and each can be judged on multiple objective and subjective parameters (technical excellence, expressiveness, uniqueness, novelty, complexity, personal interpretation, effectiveness in achieving its intended goal, cost, popularity, et cetera). A failure to spell them out and instead use such a constraining and confounding train wreck of a word such as Art reveals an enormous laziness of thought and is a persistent bane on our civilization; perhaps exemplified in the most destructive and ubiquitous manner in the vast mediocrity of our time's architecture, which not only affects us transiently but constantly and often for centuries.

I agree mostly with Cog's categorizations but agree too with Greyman's critique, in particular that Cog' "Expression" is indeed nothing but a misnomer for commodification, and that there is amiss a proper category of expression: as an exorcism of individualist emotions. It is not meant for the other, as "Conceptual" which goal is clearly to communicate to another (effectively or otherwise), but rather meant only for the creator, and perhaps its value to the creator is exclusively as the process of creation, an entirely selfish experience. In such case, when talking of an "art work" the art is the *work*, not the work's product. Sometimes I prefer to call this "masturbatory", and like such, the end product is merely a side effect, even if some can also appreciate it in its own right.

If Lagomorph fails to find any appreciation in mass produced digital imagery because of some lack of the ineffable quality of "authenticity" or the "development of the individual", that's fine and all. Still, some of us can find a due appraisal of the great intellectual and physical work that was required in order to imagine, manufacture, and code such computer systems to be able to produce it at all.

Besides, as I witness the emergence of the entire new medium of fully immersive digital creation, I find these statements on digital tools extremely shortsighted.

Having said that, most of what is produced and attempts to label itself art is quite unremarkable, but that statement extends also into the "traditional" media and is not limited to the digital.
 

QuickTwist

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#6

Meh.
 

Lagomorph

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#7
I advocate Art as Being, from concept to fruition, integrative of artist and audience; fluid and interactive by nature. (I don't actually hold the belief I stated in the OP, hence "sophistic masturbatory argumentation.")

In other words, you've been great participants in this project. :D
Kuu said:
There is the act of creation, and there is the product of creation, and each can be judged on multiple objective and subjective parameters (technical excellence, expressiveness, uniqueness, novelty, complexity, personal interpretation, effectiveness in achieving its intended goal, cost, popularity, et cetera). A failure to spell them out and instead use such a constraining and confounding train wreck of a word such as Art reveals an enormous laziness of thought and is a persistent bane on our civilization; perhaps exemplified in the most destructive and ubiquitous manner in the vast mediocrity of our time's architecture, which not only affects us transiently but constantly and often for centuries.
I'd actually argue that the spelling out of arbitrary subjective criteria is exactly what created the problem you complain about.

Ubiquitous access to the same technological toolbox skews the process and product much in the same way as arbitrary assessment criteria creates "hotspots" around said criteria. Moreover, the fact that someone put work into creating a program doesn't prevent the process and results from coalescing around those same arbitrary constructs.
Kuu said:
fully immersive digital creation
^Is actually a masturbatory self-defeating prophecy. Fight me, bro!
That's code for "I don't know enough about this, so I challenge you to demonstrate."
 
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