Change in the world is accelerating. One of the biggest changes and bringer of changes is the internet. So what happens when this great change meets an important part of our culture, such as art? The internet brings much more speed and immediacy. Instead of going to an art museum, we can just sit at our computer and look at pictures. Thus we often try to consume more art rather than spend time with each piece. Soon art becomes more of a commodity than actual art. As Jeremy Grant, a “found art” creator, says, “internet viewing of art doesn't ask the viewer to really spend time with art - to engage with it.” We can become so obsessed with finding art we like that we forget to look deeper into an art piece. Soon, artists have to fight to get noticed, and can start to create art for others instead of for themselves. Another thing the internet brings is more availability. People are able to access huge collections of art for free. More people are able to create, and types of art have become more varied. Art education has also become widely available, although (as with anything on the internet) some of the information is untrue. New tools and techniques have been developed, and the way we defined art was stretched more than it ever has been. Art is beginning to blur the lines between pop culture and art more than ever before. With more availability, art starts to become a sort of community where people around the world can experience and create art together and improve their craft. This raises question though; how deep and genuine can online relationships be? Shun-Luoi Fong, a photographer who explores the effects of community says, “I think the relationships can be genuine, but limited.” While we can connect with people and share our thoughts, our meeting can never contain the same energy as meeting someone in real life.
The lines between pop culture and art are continually being blurred, and the internet has brought a whole new wave of pieces that do that, but it started before the internet was around (some people say that it started with Andy Warhol, but others argue it goes back even farther than that). One popular form that blurs the lines is fanart. Fanart is when artists take something (especially a character) that is not their own and depict it using their own medium. But recently, there has been some especially good fan art, some even surpassing their original forms. This brings into consideration that beauty and creativity can be expressed by many means. There are many other new forms of art brought about by technology, and again, we must remember, as Fong pu
ts it, “they are tools, and can be used for good or ill.” Before the printing press was invented, books were seldom considered an art, but now that book availability has continually increased, books are often considered as art, whether they contain beautifully crafted pictures, poetry, or a meaningful story. As with all art though, Fong says “you have to be discerning, but that is true whether you are visiting a local museum with a limited collection, viewing a play on the stage, watching a movie in the theater, or consuming large amounts of art on the internet.”
The world of art may be changing, We have more technology and people will continually try and go through their days faster and faster. But the true meaning of art will never completely change, even though many people will forget what art means.
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