The Construction of Artistic Truths in Digital Images


Session Title:

  • Digital Aesthetics

Presentation Title:

  • The Construction of Artistic Truths in Digital Images



  • Images that present a constructed truth, like digital images. remind us to question the reality factor of any image. With its roots in photography. the digital image has forced artists to reconsider the photograph as a representation of physical reality. Although the photograph never was physical reality. digital images clarify this assertion. Because many artists and viewers assume that photographic representation of physical reality is in essence truth, the ability to construct that truth begs for a new definition of truth.
    Embracing this question, some digital artists like Nancy Burson, Ken Gonzales-Day, and Pedro Meyer constructed visual narratives that appeared photographic, yet lacked the physical world referent that their images implied. Since the late 1980’s and early 1990’s when this kind of construction became popular, many digital artists have grappled with how to define truth in their art, after all this truth is no longer physical reality. This paper will present the art of a few digital artists and advanced art students who have resolved this conflict by defining their own artistic truths.