Search terms: “digital” AND “folk” AND “art”

Internet surfing journal entry: “Saw waves of abundant, impermanent information.”

How impermanent? When does “all this stuff” begin to form clusters, and grow into something worth experiencing, archiving….perhaps even forming its own mythology?

I missed a talk at the New Museum earlier this month. It was a conversation between Olia Lialina and Dragan Espenschied about the intersection between “digital,” “folk,” and “art.”

It took me on a jaunt to a place off the map. Kind of like the feeling you get when you click on the crater in the middle of Olia’s website, Teleportacia:

Is this just a pothole – or worse, a pothole from 1998 that still hasn’t been fixed, left to be covered by weeds? The examples of art look outdated, with an emphasis on those animated .gifs that were never that compelling; there’s a number of manifestos/rants in a distant idiom that are barely readable. Get me out of here!

At the same time, the values that this “digital folk art” have are valuable: primitive, idiosyncratic, raw. It’s of the people. Clicking through, you’ll see that Olia and Dragan have published a reader that was reviewed by Rhizome, which is part of the New Museum.

Even if this surf was like going up on land, off the beach, off the road, and ending up in a different county’s junkyard, it was worth it. Reminder: the internet is still a lab, made by people, experimenting.


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