Art and technology: the challenge of which ‘motivation space’

For those working with art and technology, I see two working methods.

The first *begins* within the technology research space. The artist plays with the technology, until he/she finds an angle that can be appropriated culturally.

The second *begins* within the cultural space. The artist develops an idea which is culturally meaningful, then works out how to deliver it technologically.

I think the first is much easier to start with … but if the artist doesn’t stop and consider how one particular technology can be appropriated to give meaning then the process will *never end*.

The second is harder, I believe, because one cant just sit down and develop ideas. Ideas will come from observations of life, generally, and may hit at any moment. … *but* when one does have an idea, the appropriation of the technology has a clear target and so the final delivery is more likely.

Take the following two videos. In both, the author has played with technology and discovered that you can drive a curtain with a computer and an Arduino. But the second one has then appropriated that technology for cultural meaning/comment. I’d love to ask him if came up with the idea first … then put the technology together. Or whether he came up with the technology first, then worked out that it could carry meaning by using it in the context he presents.


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