“Each age finds its own technique”.
– Jackson Pollock
An artistic approach in which technology is utilized as a means to express emotional experience. (Wiktionary)
ROOT WORDS (source: Oxford Dictionaries):
expressionism: A style of painting, music, or drama in which the artist or writer seeks to express emotional experience rather than impressions of the external world.
technology :The application of scientific knowledge for practical purposes, especially in industry.
In 1928, ruminating on the rapid pace and profound nature of change in the twentieth century, the French poet and philosopher Paul Valéry wrote: “We must expect great innovations to transform the entire technique of the arts, thereby affecting artistic invention itself and perhaps even bringing about an amazing change in our very notion of art.” This prediction so impressed the cultural critic Walter Benjamin that he used it as the epigraph of his famous 1935 essay, “The Work of Art in the Age of its Technological Reproducibility” (as it was originally titled). These writers and others were pondering the same issues that face the artists who now, nearly a century later, self-identify as Techspressionists.
Thanks to digital technologies and the Internet, works of art have become, in Valéry’s formulation, ubiquitous; as he foresaw, “We shall only have to summon them and there they will be.” This level of accessibility requires us to adopt and accept new attitudes toward creative expression. As Benjamin observed, the debate regarding the artistic validity of new media, begun with photography and cinema in the late nineteenth century, centers on the so-called aura of the singular work of art. And the aura of uniqueness remains powerful. Yet a digitally-generated artwork is not a reproduction in the conventional sense—that is, a copy of something else—though it can be, and often is, reproduced in multiples that are indistinguishable one from another.
Hand-made versus mechanical. One-off versus duplication. Such binaries ultimately resolve in light of the works of art themselves. By whatever technique it’s created, Techspressionist imagery generates its own aura, deriving its authenticity from the artist’s intention. Expression is paramount; technology is merely the delivery system. Jackson Pollock faced a similar concern. Frustrated by the focus on his materials and methods rather than the content of his paintings, he insisted, “It doesn’t make much difference how the paint is put on as long as something is being said. Technique is just a means of arriving at a statement.”
Techspressionist Salons are online artists meetups conceived as a modern counterpart to the Surrealist salons of the 1920’s, in which artists could meet informally to socialize and discuss ideas. Techspressionist Salons are a time and place in cyberspace where artists gather every other week to hang out, share their work and discuss matters relating to art, philosophy, and technology. These meetups are self-supporting and are organized by the Techspressionist artist community.
The First Techspressionist Salon was held on September 1, 2020, and included artists Colin Goldberg, Patrick Lichty, Steve Miller and Oz Van Rosen, as well as group advisor Helen Harrison. During this session, the working definition of Techspressionism was decided upon by the participants as: “An artistic approach in which technology is utilized as a means to express emotional experience.”
TECHSPRESSIONISM – Digital & Beyond presented innovative work in a broad range of styles, reflecting the expressive potential of electronic media. The exhibition included the works of more than 90 artists working with technology from more than 20 countries around the world including Afghanistan, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Canary Islands, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Iran, Italy, Netherlands, Peru, Puerto Rico, Russia, Taiwan, Turkey, Uganda, Ukraine and the United States.