Superdutch: New Media, Photography and the Internet-Polder

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Session Title:

  • Photography and New Media

Presentation Title:

  • Superdutch: New Media, Photography and the Internet-Polder

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Abstract:

  • Superdutch: New Media, Photography and the Internet-Polder addresses meta-photographic / meta-digital new media works from the aesthetic perspective of contemporary dutch practices in photography and new media. This is simultaneously a reference to their geographic-aesthetic origins combined with ideas of kitsch, excess, and process-based inquiry. This paper is couched in the framework of understanding the internet and screen based media as a method of production and comprehension as well as a means of image reproduction and dissemination.

    Implications of internet reproduction can be understood through superdutch works within the context of the polder model. The polder phenomenon mirrors the presentation, perception, and function of all new-media and screen based works. Consider the following: all web space is reclaimed, artificially kept online through a series of routers, domain name servers, internet hubs, and server farms, all directing information and traffic to domains much like the dikes and damns route water away from a polder. I submit that the creation and presentation of work on the internet-polder is a cooperative and collaborative act that surrenders all work and information to the interpretation, contextualization, and consensus-based decision-making of the viewing audience.

    The conceptual concerns of superdutch works are fundamentally tied to process as aesthetic, creating self-critical, yet self-effacing works that question the aura of the work while challenging the structure of media where works are an application of and inquisition into the role of technology as medium. In a sense, we are engaging in a modernist critique of technology in a way that was impossible for the doyens of modernism. Echoing the words of the seminal media theorist, Marshall McLuhan, the medium is the message.

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