Digital Art Works Its Magic on the Traditional Art Landscape: Having Gained Acceptance at a Growing Number of Art Schools, Museums and Galleries, Digital Art-Or Art Created or Manipulated on a Computer-Has Become the World's Newest Art Form. (Digital Art)

By La Rocco, Claudia | Art Business News, December 2001 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

Digital Art Works Its Magic on the Traditional Art Landscape: Having Gained Acceptance at a Growing Number of Art Schools, Museums and Galleries, Digital Art-Or Art Created or Manipulated on a Computer-Has Become the World's Newest Art Form. (Digital Art)


La Rocco, Claudia, Art Business News


"Tangled Bank," a suite of 12 digital images by artist Frank Gillette, hangs on the white walls of the New York gallery Universal Concepts Unlimited. The two-year-old gallery, which focuses on artists working with digital technologies, is the perfect setting for Gillette's work, whose slick surfaces and metallic colors resemble lunar landscapes or oil pooling in water.

Universal Concepts is something of a pioneer in the world of digital fine art galleries. "It's exciting, almost like a renaissance--science and technology merging with art" said Marian Ziola, executive director of Universal Concepts, on the rise of digital art. "This is new territory."

Indeed, the newness of digital art is perhaps its only quality not up for debate. Everyone, it seems, has a different take on where it is heading and what impact it will have on the traditional art world. From self-published, self-taught artists like Max Gould, who believe digital art will render traditional methods of creation obsolete, to museum curators who refuse to add it to their collections, no one is without an opinion.

However, one thing is certain: The established art world is becoming increasingly accepting of digital art. Stereotypes--that digital art is cold, commercial looking and illegitimate--are lessening. Digital printing has become commonplace and, while interactive art is still largely dismissed, art created or manipulated on a computer is becoming just another art form, taught at respected art schools and exhibited in major museums. These developments offer proof of the widening recognition of digital art, and though people continue to question aspects of the genre, it is difficult to find anyone who still dismisses it as a passing fad.

Acceptance of Digital Art

Digital artists have been fighting for acceptance since the 1960s when artists such as Gillette and Robert Rauschenberg began experimenting with digital technologies. But now it seems their time has finally arrived. This past year, a handful of prominent museums, including the Whitney Museum of American Art and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, have held major digital art exhibits. Also in New York, plans are in the works for the construction of Eyebeam, the city's first museum of art and technology.

Marilyn Kushner, curator of Prints and Drawings at the Brooklyn Museum of Art and organizer of the museum's recent show, "Digital: Printmaking Now" which examined digital computing within the context of printmaking, believes attitudes about digital art are changing as people see more and more of it.

A Sign of the Future?

Galleries are becoming more accepting of the medium as well. In fact, some believe the traditional art world as we know it is a thing of the past, and the future lies with digital art.

Take Kevin Mutch, for example, the director of POD (Print on Demand) Gallery, an online gallery with thousands of original, digitized images available for sale in a variety of sizes and mediums. His site, which is divided into nine sections, contains one called POD Digital, which showcases original works of art created--partially or wholly--through digital means.

A painter in the early 1990s, Mutch, like many artists, became aware of digital art at a time when computers were becoming both affordable and technologically sophisticated. Around 1991, Mutch bought a computer for $7,000, a machine "incredibly primitive by today's standards but already capable of making photographic images." He hasn't touched a paintbrush since.

From this personal revolution, Mutch is hoping to also transform the traditional art market, which he views as a "dying system" consisting of an extremely small number of extremely wealthy people. He contrasts this with the much larger, yet much less expensive market for new music.

"I'm from a small city in Canada, literally the middle of nowhere," explained Mutch, "But I could get music from anywhere in the world for just $10, could have a direct experience with the work in a way that I couldn't do with art--that's the greatest promise of working digitally .

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

Digital Art Works Its Magic on the Traditional Art Landscape: Having Gained Acceptance at a Growing Number of Art Schools, Museums and Galleries, Digital Art-Or Art Created or Manipulated on a Computer-Has Become the World's Newest Art Form. (Digital Art)
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?