In this Internet and Digital age, we increasingly witness many “purely digital” works and creations. Music has been composed & recorded using computers, with simulated instruments that sound “indistinguishable from the real thing”. Similarly with visual arts, the term ‘digital art’ and ‘digital artist’ has appeared where artists create visual works (of art) using (“purely digital”) tools. Some have even gone as far as to ask, “Do we really need ‘analog’ art anymore?”
There is no doubt that the digital world has evolved and expanded to affect many aspects of our daily lives, including art — visually and musically. But can we say that an artwork without first-hand experience and skill is a “piece of art”?
What are the consequences of using computers & digital tools to create Art? What are we losing when we depend so much on computer-based methods? What are we gaining (in exchange)? What about mass-replication of digitalized works of Art? Are we at risk of losing “analog” Art?
Have your say below.
Thanks everyone, for giving your opinions in this Your Thoughts discussion. It’s customary for us to do a periodic wrap-up on this topic, but it doesn’t mean that you can’t continue to share your thoughts after this. So please continue to key in any piece of mind whenever you have one.
Of various responses given, one response is that the term “digital art” can be questioned, meaning that art is art no matter what kind of tools are used to create art—be the tool “digital” or “analog”. “Art is an expression of someone’s mind”, one participant states, “as long as that someone is honest to him/herself, then there is no problem.” Digital tools, from this perspective, are just one type of tool from among many.
But there is a difference still between digital and analog. There is the feel of non-digital tools in the hand of the artist, and that there is a ‘coldness’ when using digital tools. Feeling the texture of paper on your pencil, or the vibration of guitar strings as you strum a chord.
And so what would happen if all art have become ‘purely’ digital? When all art becomes so easily reproduced so as, hypothetically for example, all museums have the exact same contents? Also, what will happen when we all become so dependent—and so used to—digital tools, that the knowledge to use non-digital tools becomes lost? What are the consequences of us no longer being able to remember the basic skills and instincts that come from practicing with pre-digital tools?
In our own opinion, the way humans use technology must be proportional and with full consciousness of its advantages and drawbacks. We must remember that current technologies are always founded on top of previously established thoughts and experiences, sometimes even as a criticism of past practices. As we move forward we must not forget the past wisdom. We cannot become passive ‘consumers’ of ‘technology’, we need to know precisely their uses and use them proportionally.
That’s it for this wrap-up; as usual the comments are still open so feel free to respond if you feel you have more to add. Cheers!