The Craft of Tech Art

By Jake Gloth

Have you ever considered combining tech and art? Three art fairs, Frieze London, Cork Street Galleries, and 180 Studios’ LUX exhibition, are showcasing new ways to connect the digital and physical world. These creators are using technology to accentuate traditional forms of art and develop the craft of tech art.

Frieze London took place from Oct. 13 to 17 in London; the art fair dazzled with exciting new displays that used complex tech to create interactive exhibits.

Amongst these electric works, Tokyo/London-based artistic duo A.A. Murakami debuted “Silent Fall, a sensory experience in a futuristic view of nature. Viewers entered an otherworldly environment with a seemingly endless forest of white lamp posts that extended to the mirrored walls. Milky bubbles floated through the air, and if you ventured to pop one, you would have been greeted by a foresty scent (moss, rain, or pine).

The goal of the exhibit was to show that life is short but beautiful. To illuminate this point, the artists have pioneered a larger body of work called “Ephemeral Tech,” which are installations that use complex technology to recreate nature.

Depicting nature through technology is a theme that is shared in 180 Studios’ LUX exhibition. This art show is being held from 13 Oct. to 18 Dec. and has already begun to rally intense feelings.

One such exhilarating work is “Flower Meadow” by iart studio. This piece uses synthetic flowers that are fed by artificial intelligence. Each day these flowers develop new colours and shapes in order to depict nature’s never-ending cycle of life and death.

Change is something that is also presented by London-based artist Es Devlin in “BLUESKYWHITE”. This installation is a vertical monolith where viewers enter via a 24-metre light tunnel that changes from blue to white through speculative future sunset hues.

Essentially, the experience is meant to simulate a hypothetical solution to global warming that involves turning the sky white. In this emotional exhibit, audiences are confronted with the death of their blue sky.

The very idea of emotions is being explored by Korean artist Je Baak in “Universe”. In a video, Baak presents an organism composed of amusement park rides drifting through space. The piece is meant to question A.I.’s capacity to understand human emotions through cause and effect. It is about defining the difference between humans and technology.

The complexity of A.I. is also being investigated and presented by Random International in “Algorithmic Swarm Study”. Their display is made up of three screens that show a synchronized swarm zipping around. The swarm is aware of its digital space and interacts with viewers, which is both amazing and terrifying.

The digital world merges with the real one in “Electronic Hydra Prelude”, a virtual art experience on the streets by Acute Art and Cork Street Galleries. This exhibit uses the Acute Art phone app to display hidden art pieces throughout the city. Through the camera on your smartphone, you are able to see these secret works of art as if they were right in front of you on the pavement.

In Frieze London, Cork Street Galleries, and LUX, the central idea is to rework the customs of art with a technological twist. This creative medley with the mechanical world results in a fresh and interesting take on the craft of art: tech art.

If you are interested in Frieze London or LUX, you can check out Frieze.com or 180thestrand.com.

Did you like this article? If so, you may also enjoy Art for Change.

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