Domenico Quaranta qrndnc at yahoo.it
Wed Feb 10 12:30:44 CET 2010



Madrid, Feria de Madrid / IFEMA, Pavillion 8
February 17 - 21, 2010
Curated by: Domenico Quaranta
Galleries and artists: [DAM]Berlin, Berlin / BOREDOMRESEARCH; Alma  
Gallery, Riga / GINTS GABRANS;  Art Claims Impulse, Berlin / JULIUS  
Galerie, Berlin / MARIANA VASSILEVA; Fabio Paris Art Gallery,  
Brescia / EVA AND FRANCO MATTES AKA 0100101110101101.ORG; Gentili  
Apri, Berlin / JODI; Haunch of Venison, London / RAPHAEL LOZANO-HEMMER.

Press Images (zip folder, 72 MB): http://domenicoquaranta.com/public/PRESS/ARCO_EB_2010_press_images.zip

More infos on the fair: http://www.ifema.es/web/ferias/arco/default_i.html

Official press release:

Once again, ARCOmadrid is opening up its own particular “black box”  
to provide room for renowned international artists using new media in  
their works. The use of new technologies and digital tools in art  
creation is no longer viewed as anything strange or exceptional, and  
in fact a large number of artists have already added it to their  
everyday practise without further ado. This new addition of  
electronics to art is reflected in the eight spaces at EXPANDED BOX,  
in a programme coordinated by the Italian critic and curator Domenico  
Quaranta, a specialist in digital and net art.

“The idea that new technologies, new media, new ways of addressing  
vital questions, as well as how cultures have contextualised these  
technological changes, is constantly modifying not only the way in  
which we live, but also the way in which we make art and even the very  
notion of art itself”, the curator explains. The evolution has been  
so fast and digital media have irrupted into our lives with such force  
that they are transforming absolutely all fields of culture.

This means a true revolution in terms of cultural production, with a  
rise of techniques such as photography, film and animation. “Some  
artists have embraced new media enthusiastically, while others are  
being forced to reconsider the way in which they work with  
conventional media like painting and sculpture; and yet others have  
done both things” and, as Quaranta says, “art has changed beyond  
all recognition”.

With over a decade under its belt already, the EXPANDED BOX programme  
has been instrumental in this process and, in this upcoming edition,  
it will take another step further in order to showcase an art that is  
looking beyond the creative world, “an art that is growing on  
Internet, that is made in research centres and laboratories and that  
has the potential to change our current accepted idea of art”, the  
curator tells us. The public will find a programme that “will try to  
make collectors and art lovers lose their fear of these changes”,  
while at once demonstrating that “in the information society, works  
of art have as much to say as always”.

The reconstruction of art

To give us a rounded perspective, Domenico Quaranta has selected eight  
projects “capable of clearing showing the diverse facets of this  
strange diamond we currently know as ‘New Media Art’” or, in any  
case, those that the curator considered the most interesting “in  
terms of cultural urgency”, within a field “whose leadership and  
reputation has seen an exponential growth over recent years”.

This is the case of the Italian collective comprising Eva & Franco  
Mattes aka 0100101110101101.ORG. In the space of the FABIO PARIS ART  
GALLERY, they are presenting a complete cycle of their “Synthetic  
Performances”, in which they reconstruct legendary performances from  
the history of art through avatars from virtual worlds like Second Life.

Particularly representative of latest trends in this genre is JODI, a  
duo of artists and one of the hottest names in Net Art since its  
inception. They will be showing their work in the space of the Berlin  
gallery GENTILI APRI. At ARCOmadrid this collective from Holland are  
presenting one of their latest and most subversive works, which  
revolves around amateur technology and participative media, rewriting  
folklore in a particular anthropology through the net.

Also from Berlin, the ART CLAIMS IMPULSE gallery is representing the  
German collective comprising Julius Von Bismarck & Benjamin Maus. The  
public will have a chance to catch their latest creation, “Perpetual  
Storytelling Apparatus”, a machine that translates the words from a  
text into drawings on continuous paper. Like a 21st century  
“exquisite corpse”, the result reveals a re-contextualization of  
ideas and fragments, opening the way to a new narrative, creating  
fascinating stories and intriguing visual metaphors.

Tradition and innovation

Domenico Quaranta’s selection also includes various projects  
combining new technology with more conventional media or which use  
these technologies towards classical ends. The latter is the case of  
the wonderful installation by the Bulgarian artist Mariana Vassileva,  
presented by the German DNA GALLERY. The artist, concerned with issues  
cutting across violence, gender, family and social hierarchies, uses  
the human being in her work as a source of energy and light, exploring  
themes of human desires like communication, interpersonal relations,  
personal introspection and solitude.

The Latvian gallery ALMA GALLERY is exhibiting photonic paintings  
created by the multimedia artist Gints Gabrāns using a laser ray and  
then registering them on photographic paper. From a profound concern  
for aesthetics, this artist’s works are a clear instance of how  
conventional media can be reinterpreted and adapted to new  
technologies and languages.

On a similar tack, we find the work by the young artist Jakub Nepraš  
presented by the Portuguese gallery ARTHOBLER. This Czech artist  
brings three of his video projects together in one single  
installation. Through the use of assemblage and the layering of  
individual sequences, the artist creates movement along various axes,  
generating dynamic and pictorial rhythms in a temporal loop.

The public can also see an evocative work by the UK collective  
Boredomresearch, comprising Vicky Isley and Paul Smith, who use new  
media to portray and recreate artificial life. The new series of  
informatic objects by this duo who work with software art to fuse  
aesthetics and biology is on view at the space of [DAM] BERLIN.

Finally, the Mexican artist Rafael Lozano-Hemmer is also making a  
contribution to this summary overview of e-art and new technologies  
applied to creation. The London gallery HAUNCH OF VENISON is showing  
one of his latest installations, Reaction Diffusion, which consists of  
a series of computer-controlled light boxes showing animated images  
from some of the world’s frontier regions with the greatest migratory  
traffic and the greatest economic inequality. The social dynamics are,  
in this case, the object study and reflection for this artist, who  
uses new media to speak of pressing problems of the moment.

The “black box” at ARCOmadrid_2010 is, as such, “an attempt to  
rethink more traditional media –photography, video, performance and  
even painting and sculpture – through the optic of the digital era  
and to facilitate a mutual dialogue”, and as Domenico Quaranta  
claims, one of the founding mandates of his selection for EXPANDED BOX.


EXPANDING THE FIELD. Or, 8 good reasons to talk about new media (in an  
art fair)

Director: Domenico Quaranta
Lecturers: UBERMORGEN.COM, Marius Watz, Trevor Paglen, Oron Catts,  
Auriea Harvey & Michael Samyn, Paul D. Miller / DJ Spooky
ARCO Art Fair, Forum Auditorium 2, Hall 6.
February 18, 2010, from 12.30 to 2.30 p.m. and from 4 to 8 p.m.

Download the complete program: http://domenicoquaranta.com/public/pdf/ARCO2010_seminar.pdf

Something is happening in the field of art. Postmodernism seems to  
have been replaced, but nobody is really able to say by what. Art  
critics such as Nicolas Bourriaud and Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev  
explained this change looking backwards to Modernism, but Modernism  
itself is many things, and it’s still not clear if this new modern,  
or Altermodern, is rooted in a new utopianism, as argued by Christov- 
Bakargiev, or in creolisation, globalisation and travelling, as  
suggested by Bourriaud.

What is clear to both is that new technologies, in the broader meaning  
of the term, are having a central role in this change. Starting from  
here, and appropriating Ippolito and Blais’ idea that the change will  
come from artists operating “at the edge of art” – Expanding the  
Field will involve artists and researchers that address, with  
different approaches, various new technologies – from the Internet to  
videogames and biotechnology – and issues and practices of the  
digital culture, from media hacking to data mining and surveillance.  
Some of them developed groundbreaking tools now used worldwide by  
artists operating in different fields; others – such as Tale of Tales  
– dropped out from the traditional art world in order to bring their  
idea of art to a different, possibly wider audience. Some feel more  
comfortable in labs than in museums, and most of them are strongly  
connected to online communities. Along the panel, they will be invited  
to introduce their work, addressing their relationship with technology  
and digital culture, and explaining how the fields they explore are  
affecting our culture and our concept of art.


Domenico Quaranta

web. http://domenicoquaranta.com/
email. info at domenicoquaranta.com
mob. +39 340 2392478
skype. dom_40

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