Processor Art - Currents in the Process Oriented Works of Generative and Software Art

by: ixi (2005/07/25)
tags: art, journal, essay, text
journal contents

Thor Magnusson
August, 2002.
Coordinator: Mette Sandbye

Abstract [English]

This thesis is a research into the sub-genre of computer art concerning works that necessarily must run on the computer in order to exist. To limit the research and define it from the uncountable and varied art practises which utilise the computer today ? the concept of processor art is created. Processor art is a generic term that includes software art, generative art, interactive installations and composed hyperinstruments, but in this thesis the emphasis will be laid on works which can be distributed on CD-Roms or through the Internet, thus less concerned with installations and hyperinstruments. The thesis traces currents in the art history of the 20th century, which are important as conceptual predecessors for processor art and serve as ideological foundations for many of the works analysed. In an important chapter on the philosophy of technology, the new digital technology is compared to the modernist technology and the consequences which new technology has for our culture, arts and the human subject are drawn up. This groundwork is necessary to be able to discuss processor art, its aesthetics and ideologies, and analyse different works of art under the categories of software and generative art. The contemporary state of computer technology and its use in art is discussed ? showing its qualities and limits ? and how it might evolve as a better tool for human expression. By the use of the technology we are able to express and extrapolate the future of our society, our dreams and nightmares about it, and create representations of the utopian or dystopian worlds of the future that we might find us in.

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