“Each age finds its own technique”.
– Jackson Pollock
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.
“You’re a Techspressionist when you say you are”.
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.”
SALON 77: FEATURED ARTIST STEVE MILLER
MODERATOR: COLIN GOLDBERG
Artists are invited to share their work on the topic of sculpture within the context of art and technology.
Salon: 12 p.m.-1:30 p.m. Eastern Time.
Afterparty: After recording stops (1:30-???)
If you would like to share your work via screen-sharing, please arrive at 11:45.
THIS JAM WILL BE RECORDED.
Techspressionist Salons are bi-weekly artist meetups where artists can present their work and discuss matters relating to art and technology. They are attended by artists listed in our Techspressionist Visual Artists Index and are also open to interested individuals on our mailing list. 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 art historian 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.”
Need a focus in the studio?
Want to connect with Techspressionists in a more personal way?
Interested in a global artistic experience?
Longing for creative inspiration or collaboration?
Yearning to share your work with one or two other artists?
We will sign on, and each briefly (30 -60 seconds) say what we plan to work on. Then we work for 1 hour. After 1 hour we have the option to briefly share what we did. Total session 1.5 hours.
Please take the survey below to help us form our groups. We may make multiple groups, so as to accommodate as many time zones and work/personal schedules as possible.
CURATORS IN CONVERSATION
Techspressionism: Curators in Conversation with Christiane Paul and Helen A. Harrison is the first of a series of Roundtable Discussions created by Techspressionist artists. This conversation is a discussion focusing of Techspressionism as it relates to art-historical movements of the past as well as to digital art at large.
Christiane Paul is Curator of Digital Art at the Whitney Museum of American Art as well as Professor in the School of Media Studies at The New School. She is the recipient of the Thoma Foundation’s 2016 Arts Writing Award in Digital Art, and her books are A Companion to Digital Art (Blackwell-Wiley, May 2016); Digital Art (Thames and Hudson, 2003, 2008, 2015, 2023); Context Providers – Conditions of Meaning in Media Arts (Intellect, 2011; Chinese edition, 2012); and New Media in the White Cube and Beyond (UC Press, 2008). At the Whitney Museum she curated exhibitions including Programmed: Rules, Codes, and Choreographies in Art 1965 – 2018 (2018/19), Cory Arcangel: Pro Tools (2011) and Profiling (2007), and is responsible for artport, the museum’s portal to Internet art.
Helen A. Harrison, a former New York Times art critic and NPR arts commentator, is the director of the Pollock-Krasner House and Study Center in East Hampton, New York. A specialist in modern American art, she has been the curator of the Parrrish Art Museum and Guild Hall Museum and a guest curator at the Queens Museum. Her books include Hamptons Bohemia: Two Centuries of Artists and Writers on the Beach, monographs on Jackson Pollock and Larry Rivers, and three mystery novels set in the New York art world.
Bronx-born artist Colin Goldberg’s work explores the relationship between technology and personal expression. His studio practice bridges multiple disciplines, notably painting and digital media. Goldberg first used the term Techspressionism as the title for a solo exhibition in Southampton NY in 2011, and curated the first large-scale group exhibition of Techspressionist works, Techspressionism: Digital and Beyond at Southampton Arts Center (Southampton NY, 2022).