In ‘The Aesthetics of Net.Art,’ Julian Stallabrass described, “The ‘objects’ of Internet art are far from being conventional art objects. They are not only reproducible without degradation but are almost free to transmit.” This point is concerned with the immateriality of art. The internet art can show artworks as almost perfect copies anywhere because of its immaterial nature. However, contemporary art is getting the immaterial nature and stepping on the Internet now. The immaterial nature of the Internet throws the art world into confusion. I want to show this disorder situation of the art form the viewpoint of the relationship between the Internet and the physical. I will examine 3 cases: Send me the JPEG by Winkleman Gallery, DISown by DIS, Internet Yami‑ichi by IDPW.
- Send me the JPEG by Winkleman Gallery
Now, the physical place is equal to or subordinate to the Internet for the art world. “Send me the JPEG” is the exhibition which a contemporary art gallery tries to show the JPEG image of the artwork on the physical space while the JPEG image as the artwork has distributed on the Internet like net.art. This experiment is subversive of the relationship between the real artwork and the JPEG image. The art galleries have not addressed this situation.
- DISown by DIS
DIS examines the “Internet‑ish” on the Internet and uses the Internet to revolt against art. The dichotomy between the physical space and the Internet is shifting to one between the art world, which is based on material culture, and the Internet, which represents immaterial culture. DISown is a “retail platform and laboratory to test the current status of the art object.” It opened as an exhibition using the format of a retail shop in the physical space; now, it has become an online store. DISown imported the “Internet‑ish” into the physical place, and, now, it has gone back to the Internet. The DISown online store suggests that DIS is trying to create an oppositional value against the art world on the Internet.
- Internet Yami‑ichi by IDPW
IDPW downloads and installs the “Internet‑ish” into the physical place; the Internet Yami‑ichi is a flea market that deals with “Internet‑ish” things, face‑to‑face, in the actual space. IDPW evaluates the value of the real place via the Internet and makes use of it as a landing place for the “Internet‑ish.” Therefore, the relationship between the Internet and the physical space is twisted on the Internet Yami‑ichi. There is no big art market and art world in Japan like there is in America and in the EU; therefore, IDPW does not need to dis the art world as DIS does. Consequently, IDPW can focus on examining the relationship between the Internet and the physical space and hacking both the Internet and the physical space. The Internet Yami‑ichi shows the unique twisted connection between the Internet and the physical space. It becomes the location for bringing out many people from the Internet and linking them positively in the physical world.
- Masanori Mizuno is a Lecturer at Konan Women’s University. Member of Internet Reality Study Group Japan.
Full text (PDF) p. 239-243