This Thursday I have invited Pauline J. Yao to Oxford, where she has generously agreed to deliver a lecture on art and collecting at M+ to students and staff at The Ruskin School of Art (although the lecture is open to all). Pauline is currently in the UK as a Leverhulme Visiting Professor at the University of Leeds and during her time here she will be delivering a number of important lectures and public talks, including this event at Tate Modern on the 26th April. I’m therefore delighted that she will be joining us in Oxford for what promises to be an exciting opportunity to learn more about Hong Kong’s largest museum of 20th and 21st century art and design, architecture and moving image. Details of the lecture are below, all welcome.
In the Mood for a Museum: Art and Collecting at M+, Hong Kong
Old Masters’ Studio, Ruskin School of Art
Thursday, 27th April, 2pm
Pauline J. Yao is Leverhulme Visiting Professor at the University of Leeds and Lead Curator, Visual Art at M+, the new museum for twentieth and twenty-first century visual culture being built in Hong Kong. She has held curatorial positions at the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco and worked as an independent curator and writer in Beijing for six years, during which time she helped co-found the storefront art space Arrow Factory. A co-curator of the 2009 Shenzhen Hong Kong Bi-City Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism, Yao is a regular contributor to Artforum, e-flux Journal, and Yishu Journal of Contemporary Chinese Art and her writings on contemporary Asian art have appeared in numerous catalogues, online publications and edited volumes. She is the author of In Production Mode: Contemporary Art in China (Timezone 8 Books, 2008) and co-editor of 3 Years: Arrow Factory (Sternberg Press, 2011).
You may not have heard it in over a decade, but it’s a sound you’ll never forget: the high-pitched, screeching tone of a dial-up modem that was an internet user’s punishment before the reward of connectivity. And you may listen to it again, emitted by an early modem from 1982, as part of 64 bits, an interactive exhibition at Here East in London that showcases 64 artifacts of the internet’s early history, from the first website to early ASCII art to one of the first visuals to go viral. Remember that “Dancing Baby” GIF of a 3D-rendered, animated infant from the 1990s? That’s the one.
Much of this digital flotsam is no longer accessible in its original form, and if if is, it is not easily viewed, preserved in museums and research centers around the world. 64 bits showcases them all on computers that each date to its content’s respective era, allowing visitors to experience and learn about stories from the web’s formative years that we may have forgotten. It’s curated by Jim Boulton as part of his ongoing project, Digital Archaeology, which seeks to preserve key moments of internet culture and raise awareness of the need to do so, through various exhibitions.
“The first website appeared on the internet in 1991,” Boulton told Hyperallergic. “Archive.org started archiving websites in late 1996. The first five years of the web — its formative years — have not been archived. The exhibition seeks to raise the profile of preserving the early web while there’s still a chance. Time’s running out!”
On thick, clunky monitors, viewers may browse PizzaNet — the first transactional website, launched in 1994 by Pizza Hut with a software company to enable pizza delivery (the very first: pepperoni and mushroom, with extra cheese); The Blue Dot — one of the first online art galleries that showcased work by artists including Ryan McGinness, Spencer Tunick, and Jill Greenberg; and Archie — the first search engine, launched by the Barbadian coder Alan Emtage in 1989 and whose name is short for “archive.” Archie indexed FTP sites across the internet, and users had to send in search requests via email. The version of the search engine on display is now maintained by the University of Warsaw’s Interdisciplinary Centre for Mathematical and Computational Modeling.
Emtage is among the creatives not widely known but who take responsibility for tools we still use today. 64 Bits also highlights the work of graphic designer Susan Kare, who conceived of visuals such as the original Mac icons, the MacPaint interface, and the artwork for the playing cards of Windows Solitaire. As for our webcams, credit is due to caffeine-starved students at Cambridge University’s Computer Laboratory. In 1993, Daniel Gordan and Martyn Johnson set up a web browser where they live-streamed the feed from a camera centered on a coffee pot to avoid wasting time on disappointing journeys to an empty pot.
Unlike dirt-filled dig sites, excavating the archaeology of the internet unearths things many people have actually experienced firsthand. 64 Bits reminds us of the relationship between the fast-developing web and memory — how, increasingly, the internet breeds short attention spans, even when it comes to phenomena that captivate us. (Remember the craze over Subservient Chicken?) Notably, the exhibition invites visitors to mine their own pasts for digital objects that hold personal meaning. Any visitor can bring in obsolete media and receive assistance from experts at the British Library who will migrate the inaccessible historical works to modern formats. Some of these will also be added to 64 Bits. The exhibition thus presents not only an opportunity to look back at the web’s greatest hits, but also one to consider some of our own forgotten stories.
64 Bitscontinues at the Press Center at Here East (Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, London, UK) through April 21.
本次展览代表K11艺术基金会和MoMA PS1之间长期研究合作关系里的第一步尝试。不少作品——从王欣的虚拟现实装置《这个画廊》（2014-）到奥利弗·佩恩（Oliver Payne）经典的视错觉壁画《无题（入口绘画）》（2017）——似乎都在数码和模拟领域的中间点上寻找形式与主题。在亚历山德拉·多曼诺维克（Aleksandra Domanović）的影片《From Yu to Me》（2013-14），域名.yu变成了实实在在的遗迹，它属于一个已经消失的国家，南斯拉夫，也是多曼诺维克出生的地方。艺术家提醒我们在一个民族主义紧缩时代普世化系统的脆弱性。劳拉·欧文斯（Laura Owens）2015年未命名的一件丝网印刷作品以二十世纪早期的一幅卡通画为材料，画中主人公是现代无线电和无线通信技术奠基人尼古拉·特斯拉，内容则是在讽刺这位发明家关于“全球无线系统”（World Wireless System）的预想。在故意碎片化且经过像素分割的图像之上，欧文斯以厚重、有质感的笔触涂上了颜料。最后，在曹斐（《人民城市的诞生》，2009）和桑德拉·派瑞（Sondra Perry）（《Graft and Ash for a Three Monitor Workstation》，2016）的一对超现实录像作品里，两位艺术家分别用自己的数字化身考察了紧迫的现实。整个展览上，这种聪明的配对都质疑了万维网是否真的是一个在领土和其他方面均不受限制的乌托邦世界。
What do we mean when we talk about post-internet art? For curators Klaus Biesenbach and Peter Eleey, it is in part a question of geography. For this exhibition, they have selected eighteen works by Chinese and Western artists that explore how regional diversities and differences are informed by our digital age and consequently affect contemporary art practices. It represents the first sortie of an ongoing research partnership between the K11 Art Foundation and MoMA PS1. Many of the works, which range from Wang Xin’s virtual-reality installation The Gallery, 2014–, to Oliver Payne’s classical trompe l’oeil mural Untitled (Portal Painting), 2017, seem to find form and subject in between the digital and analog realms. In Aleksandra Domanović’s film From Yu to Me, 2013–14, the .yu domain becomes a tangible relic of the vanished country, Yugoslavia, where the artist was born. She reminds us of the fragility of universalizing systems in a period of nationalist retrenchment. An untitled 2015 silk-screen print by Laura Owens was created with an early twentieth-century cartoon of Nikola Tesla that lampooned the inventor’s prophetic World Wireless System. Over the purposely fragmented and pixelated image, Owen applied paint in thick, textural strokes. Finally, in a pair of surreal video pieces by Cao Fei (The Birth of RMB City, 2009) and Sondra Perry (Graft and Ash for a Three Monitor Workstation, 2016), each artist’s virtual avatar navigates urgent realities. Such clever juxtapositions throughout the show challenge the notion of the World Wide Web as a utopian space unencumbered by boundaries, territorial or otherwise.
New York’s MoMA PS1 is collaborating with the K11 Art Foundation for a show on the regional differences in the digital world and their effect on art
By: Gareth Harris Source: The Art Newspaper Date: 23/3/2017
Li Ming’s Straight Line, Landscape (2014) (Image: courtesy of the artist and ShanghART Gallery)
In the past ten years, reams have been written about post-internet art and how artists respond to the World Wide Web. A new show at the K11 Art Foundation Pop-up Space in Sheung Wan, entitled .com/.cn (until 30 April), aims to go further by exploring the regional differences within the “digital ecosystem” and their effect on contemporary art, say the curators, Peter Eleey and Klaus Biesenbach of MoMA PS1 in New York.
“This exhibition is about the fact that the World Wide Web is actually [made up of] World Wide Webs. In this specific case it is the internet in China (.cn) and the internet in the West (.com) as indicated in the title, and already in these two systems there is an inherent difference in their structure and in their use,” Biesenbach says. The show features works by 15 artists, with around half based in China and the remainder in the US and Europe; these include Aleksandra Domanovic, Laura Owens, Liang Wei and Lin Ke.