But is it art? This is a question that I find myself constantly asking to my artist friends.

Is it art? or just a projector on a building?

Art is no doubt about the aesthetics. But it also is a feeling, a thought, something that an artist tries to express. The artist transversals his/her own mind into an artwork. It is up to the viewer to interpret the meaning behind an artwork base on their culture and personal experiences. In the past, art are restricted to drawings, sculptures base on the circumstance. That is the best they can do. But for now, the way technologies structure our lives has undergone a massive change, and so does art. Artists are able to express their thoughts with the help of new technologies. Thus, a new term has been employed to classify such new phenomenon of art, NEW MEDIA ART. According to Wikipedia, new media art is a genre that encompasses artworks created with new media technologies, including digital art, computer graphics, computer animation, etc (Wikipedia 2011). I am confused with this new genre of art as it blurs the lines between science and art, or I may say it combines science and art and create a new definition of art?

The Bodyshelf project by Armstrong (2005) is new media art that certainly blur the boundaries between science and art. The Bodyshelf project is an ‘immersive, interactive installation’. It connects two participants by a touch sensitive physical interface called a Bodyshelf, in which they can sense and interact with each other by this device. It took more than one people to this idea on creating this technology. The nature of creating art has changed become a collaboration of ideas.

In addition, new media art often involves the collaboration of the artists and other elements. For instance, the devices itself is not art; it involves participants to complete this artwork. Another interesting example is the wooden mirror:

The wooden mirror becomes a piece new media art when it reflects the image.

Another issue that raised by new media art is the ownership in art (Shalom 2011). For the classic art, there is a clear idea of the ownership of the artwork. The artists create an artwork and the viewers do not have any power to make any changes on that. While for new media art, it challenges the power of the artists as for most case, the viewer is part of the art.

The viewer of the artists own the art? For me, both of them own it. There is no clear definition for the ownership.

Technology has reshaped the nature of art in so many ways. It expands the genre of art and it also brings a lot of novelty to it.  But is it art? My answer for sure yes as it is still the key concepts of art, to express the thoughts of artists.


Armstrong, Keith (2005) ‘Intimate Transactions: The Evolution of an Ecosophical Networked Practice’, the Fibreculture Journal 7, <http://seven.fibreculturejournal.org/fcj-047-intimate-transactions-the-evolution-of-an-ecosophical-networked-practice/> (accessed on 23 May 2011)

Shalom, Gabriel (2011) The Future of Art Transmediale <http://www.emergence.cc/2011/02/the-future-of-art/> (accessed on 23 May 2011)

Wikipedia (2011), ‘New Media Art’ <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_media&gt; (accessed on 23 May 2011)