This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book.
reviews chapter 2
chapter 2
think.21, Brussels
14 decem Ber – 16 feBruary
Think of the categories ‘digital art’ or ‘new media art’ and lazy critics tends German Björn Schülke’s Observer #2 (2003) is a sinister, unpredictable and
to think of art stuck somewhere in the surly, noncommercial, left-field cranky robotic tripod mounted with TV monitor, lights, cameras fitted to
‘alternative’ margins of art-making, or of the geeky art-and-technology extendable arms and little propellers to spin it round. Observer erratically
stuff that fascinates nobody except the nerdy oddballs who are into it. wakes up, sticks its camera-limbs out and whirls around while it displays the
Either way, new media art gets a bad deal – either faddy techie novelty or disorienting feedback. Schülke’s monster seems to suggest a technology
exaggerated threat to the secure categories of mainstream art. oblivious and uninterested, making us subject to its obscure whims.
Think.21, a new Brussels gallery that opened last summer, doesn’t But if surveillance and empathy are appropriate poetics for these
see new media as something outside the mainstream, but as the normal digital and algorithmic feedback mechanisms, so too are time and memory.
development of artistic production in an era when the experience of digital American Lincoln Schatz’s extraordinary plasma screen Cluster (2006)
culture is ubiquitous, rather wondering why art should still be dominated collects video sequences of what happens in the gallery before its camera
by such ‘old media’ as painting and handmade sculpture. Their Chapter over a period of weeks, months and potentially even years, merging, cross-
2 showcase of four international artists elegantly makes the case for a fading and superimposing fragments of recorded time with live feed. Like
normalised approach to the artistic uses of new media, focusing on how Lozano-Hemmer’s Glories, there’s a simple call-and-response attraction to
interactive technologies cast new light on traditional questions of image- this, but the recursive dislocation of linear time, as visitors slip in and out of
making and spectatorship, and opening on contemporary preoccupations view, as moments from the opening night merge with the empty gallery at
over participation, surveillance and community. closing time, produces a powerful consideration of experience, recording
Take Mexican Rafael Lozano-Hemmer’s Glories of Accounting and forgetting. Israeli Daniel Rozin’s Snow Mirror (2006) similarly plays out
(2005), three flatscreens that remain dark until people approach, at which disappearance for all it’s worth, as fuzzy white pixels vaguely feed back the
point images of raised hands blink into view, palms facing out, and rotate as spectator’s image, projected onto a loose gauze screen, yet dissolving like
they track the position of each nearby spectator. If their stilted movement windblown powder into blackness. High-tech and gadgety these works
and mute watchfulness have a touch of comedy, there’s also an engaging may be, yet the subject under the scrutiny of their cameras is all the more
ambiguity – the upraised palm is that most contradictory of gestures, a sign human for it. J.J. Charlesworth
that says ‘go no further’, yet also the universal sign of acknowledgement and
recognition of another. Either way, it’s enough to provoke a reflection on
how we respond to indicators of human presence, and how our technology
lincoln schatz, Cluster, 2006, generative video installation.
might adopt our forms, the better to communicate with us. By contrast, courtesy think.21, Brussels
167 artreview
march_REVIEWS.indd 167 5/2/08 14:01:32
Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44  |  Page 45  |  Page 46  |  Page 47  |  Page 48  |  Page 49  |  Page 50  |  Page 51  |  Page 52  |  Page 53  |  Page 54  |  Page 55  |  Page 56  |  Page 57  |  Page 58  |  Page 59  |  Page 60  |  Page 61  |  Page 62  |  Page 63  |  Page 64  |  Page 65  |  Page 66  |  Page 67  |  Page 68  |  Page 69  |  Page 70  |  Page 71  |  Page 72  |  Page 73  |  Page 74  |  Page 75  |  Page 76  |  Page 77  |  Page 78  |  Page 79  |  Page 80  |  Page 81  |  Page 82  |  Page 83  |  Page 84  |  Page 85  |  Page 86  |  Page 87  |  Page 88  |  Page 89  |  Page 90  |  Page 91  |  Page 92  |  Page 93  |  Page 94  |  Page 95  |  Page 96  |  Page 97  |  Page 98  |  Page 99  |  Page 100  |  Page 101  |  Page 102  |  Page 103  |  Page 104  |  Page 105  |  Page 106  |  Page 107  |  Page 108  |  Page 109  |  Page 110  |  Page 111  |  Page 112  |  Page 113  |  Page 114  |  Page 115  |  Page 116  |  Page 117  |  Page 118  |  Page 119  |  Page 120  |  Page 121  |  Page 122  |  Page 123  |  Page 124  |  Page 125  |  Page 126  |  Page 127  |  Page 128  |  Page 129  |  Page 130  |  Page 131  |  Page 132  |  Page 133  |  Page 134  |  Page 135  |  Page 136  |  Page 137  |  Page 138  |  Page 139  |  Page 140  |  Page 141  |  Page 142  |  Page 143  |  Page 144  |  Page 145  |  Page 146  |  Page 147  |  Page 148  |  Page 149  |  Page 150  |  Page 151  |  Page 152  |  Page 153  |  Page 154  |  Page 155  |  Page 156  |  Page 157  |  Page 158  |  Page 159  |  Page 160  |  Page 161  |  Page 162  |  Page 163  |  Page 164  |  Page 165  |  Page 166  |  Page 167  |  Page 168  |  Page 169  |  Page 170  |  Page 171  |  Page 172  |  Page 173  |  Page 174  |  Page 175  |  Page 176  |  Page 177  |  Page 178  |  Page 179  |  Page 180  |  Page 181  |  Page 182
Produced with Yudu - www.yudu.com