Roger F. Malina



Affiliation(s):


Leonardo/ISAST and Leonardo Education Forum

Role(s):


Author and Speaker/Presenter


Writings and Presentations:


Title: Digital Image-Digital Cinema: The Work of Art in the Age of Post-Mechanical Reproduction
Writing Type: Paper
Author(s):
Exhibition: SIGGRAPH 1990: Digital Image-Digital Cinema
Abstract Summary:

Computers are transforming existing art forms and allowing new kinds of art forms to be developed. Because the computer is primarily a machine for processing information, not a machine for making objects, it provides a malleable medium that provides the artist with a large variety of tools for manipulating sense data. The work that contains the result of the artist’s creativity is the software and the data, not any particular image or output produced using that software. The ultimate goal of artmaking using computers, in this light, is not to create art objects but to create dynamic art subjects, to produce families of aesthetically interesting outputs, or art performances, which are as different from each other as possible within the constraints of the software. This situates computer art within a larger context of the study and development of artificial life. To create significant artworks of this type, it will be necessary to improve the computer’s capacity to be an autonomous artmaking subject; this will require the extension of the computer’s senses, the expansion of its capabilities, and means for the computer to provide sensory inputs to the human nervous system and to other computers.

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Title: Computer Art in the Context of the Journal Leonardo
Writing Type: Paper
Author(s):
Exhibition: SIGGRAPH 1989: Art Show
Abstract Summary:

Since 1968, the journal Leonardo has published over 150 articles dealing with the uses of computers in the fine arts. Discussing the work of artists published in Leonardo, the author responds to a recent assertion by art theorist David Carrier that”. . it is genuinely unclear to me whether any art using computers is truly significant”. It is argued that the significance of computer art must be viewed in a number of contexts. Within the context of the development of the computer itself, advances in computer graphics and animation have provided the artist with a powerful plastic medium under the artist’s control. Most artworks produced, except in animation, either realise artistic ideas developed before the advent of the computer or are artistically equivalent to work produced in other media. The impact is significant in the context of the commercial and applied arts. Contemporary artists, as the colonisers of technology, are producing significant artworks as collaborators in Renaissance teams of artists, scientists and technologists. In the larger context of the history of art, however, the significance of contemporary computer art work is not yet clear. It is argued that artistic significance should be sought in works that could not have been made without the use of a computer. Such works must involve the particular attributes of computers, such as their application in interactive situations, their capability for artificial intelligence, their function in networks with telecommunications media, and their ability to allow the synthesis of sound and vision in timebased art forms. The lack of adequate theoretical, historical and critical frameworks is currently the largest impediment in assessing the significance of computer art.

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