Saturday, January 02, 2010

Is it art?

Years ago, when I was sixteen, I was taking a computer graphics class in college. This was in 1980, well before everyone could do computer graphics. If I recall correctly we were actually programming some of the stuff in machine code. But I digress.

We had a neighbor who ran an art gallery and when she found out I was drawing things with the computer she got upset and said that I could never make art with the computer because you can't make art with a machine. When I pointed out that she was running a photography exhibit she said that when you take a photo your hands shake and that's what makes it art. Since you can't shake the computer the computer can't make art. Which is a definition, I suppose, but not one that worked for me.

In the ensuing thirty years I've seen some beautiful art that exists only in pixels. I hope she did too. It would be kind of sad to miss out on an entire new medium because of some preconceived notions.

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