[ISEA2011] Paper: Murat Seyda Germen – Digital Ethos: Transformations in Contemporary Photography Aesthetics subsequent to Computational Art


Photography is one of the creative fields at which technological advances influence artistic expression the most. The ease of manipulation brought by software and extra features available in cameras made artists (using photography as an articulation tool) reconsider their visions, themes, narration, syntax and ways of sharing their artwork. Sharing sites like Flickr, which expedite encounters of various individuals from different cultures, help in changing the perception of the much vital notion of time and enable artists to get faster feedback, revelation, exposure and layering of information to be conveyed.

While some photographers, who are deeply obsessed with analog processes, deny digital technology; it is quite obvious that artists, who are aware of the complexity and particular advantages that this technology brings, indeed end up with a novel aesthetics of photography. In addition to the regular montage and collage methods remaining from the old analog days, digital imaging techniques allow artists to work with notions like augmented perception, chronophotography, subreal encounters, pictorialism, palimpsest-like superimposition, interlacing, simplification / minimization, creation of new worlds, delusion, synthetic realism / artificiality, appropriation…

Digital tools available for photography allow the artists in the field to think in a more daring and free way. This freedom influences the content and also the visual aesthetics of the recently created artworks in the universal practice of contemporary photography. Photography is probably one of the visual art platforms that is influenced most extensively by digital construction and creativity. Fortunately, it seems it will continue to be so in the future and digital means will strengthen photography’s position in the art world as one of the most progressive expression platforms. This paper will focus on the significance of digital technologies in changing aesthetics, planning, vision, fiction and realization of photography and various avant-garde photography forms nourished by digital culture.

  • Murat Seyda Germen  is an artist / ar­chi­tect using pho­tog­ra­phy as an ex­pres­sion / re­search tool. He holds the BS de­gree in city plan­ning from Tech­ni­cal Uni­ver­sity of Is­tan­bul (T) and the MArch de­gree from Mass­a­chu­setts In­sti­tute of Tech­nol­ogy (US), where he was a Ful­bright scholar and re­cip­i­ent of the  AIA Henry Adams Gold Medal for aca­d­e­mic ex­cel­lence.  Cur­rently a pro­fes­sor of pho­tog­ra­phy and mul­ti­me­dia de­sign at Sa­banci Uni­ver­sity in Is­tan­bul, he pre­vi­ously worked for var­i­ous state and pri­vate uni­ver­si­ties in­clud­ing Bilkent, Yeditepe, Is­tan­bul Tech­ni­cal, Yildiz and Bilgi Uni­ver­sity. He has pub­lished ar­ti­cles and photo se­ries on ar­chi­tec­ture / pho­tog­ra­phy / art / dig­i­tal de­sign at var­i­ous mag­a­zines and books, and has pre­sented at sev­eral sem­i­nars, sym­posia and con­fer­ences in­clud­ing SIG­GRAPH, ISEA2009, Mu­ta­mor­pho­sis, To­wards a Sci­ence of Con­scious­ness, CAe 2008-9, CAC2, EVA-Lon­don’08-‘10, eCAADe, AS­CAAD, and ex­hib­ited at over forty inter/na­tional (Turkey, USA, Italy, Ger­many, UK, Mex­ico, Por­tu­gal, Uzbek­istan, Greece, Japan, Rus­sia, Iran, India, France, Canada, Bahrain) ex­hi­bi­tions. Ger­men’s works are in the col­lec­tions Is­tan­bul Mod­ern’s and  Pro­je4L Elgiz Mu­seum of Con­tem­po­rary Art (Is­tan­bul), in ad­di­tion to nu­mer­ous pri­vate col­lec­tions.

Full text (PDF) p. 938-944