Redundant Technology: Disrupting Lineal Narratives


Session Title:

  • DIY Processes

Presentation Title:

  • Redundant Technology: Disrupting Lineal Narratives



  • (Long paper)

    Keywords: Cathode Ray Tube, Materiality, Recycle, Remediated Technology, Waste Cycles, Disrupted Technological Development, Redundant Technology.

    The cathode ray tube (CRT) found in television sets, radar, oscilloscopes and legacy computer monitors, like many redundant technologies have been integral to Installation and Video Art since their first documented use in galleries in the early 1960s. Despite a steady decline in their production since 2005, the recent use of CRTʼs by video and installation artists continues in the work of artists such as Justene Williams (Crutch Dance, 2011), Pia Van Gelder (Apparition Apparatus, 2012) and Tivon Rice (Burn-In Portrait # 1, 2007-2010). Most of the literature in the field of CRT’s in contemporary art, such as Miller (2013), Ratti (2013), Stumm (2004) and Laurenson (2005) focuses either on the material logistics of the use of CRT’s and future curatorial implications, or their utilization as ‘electronic canvases’ – conduits for pre-recorded/transmitted images. This paper explores the use of the CRT in video installation art in an attempt to distinguish, categorize and define modes of disruption to the mainstream lineal narrative of media consumption caused by artists using what are commonly deemed obsolete or redundant technologies.

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