Black Box

Network attached to art is a Black Box

often refered to as the ‘context’.  It can also be the content, the subject relates to something other than the instance of art itself.

Sometimes the artist cuts these ties and says that only that what is in front of the viewer should be considered as the instance of art. Needless to say that this negation has the opposite effect. These relationships are also managed by the exhibition platforms. Example: the galleries and museums presenting artwork in a so called ‘white box’ situation.

Art-networks as black boxes, hidden until you open them up. Artwork is wrapped up and presented. Audiences start to look for the ‘tear here’ and ‘open here’, ‘start here’, ‘read me first’ signs.

The unpacking is also managed by statements, guides, talks etc. When artowrks are objects, the unpacking was about the content and object, ideas materiality, artist.
When artworks are immaterial, concepts or distributed collaborations for instance, the unpacking is about that. Audience participation unpacks the making process and the publication process.


One thought on “Black Box


    An artist explaning himself reduces the ambiguity of a work. “It limits the work, and it limits the experience for the viewer, both present-day viewers and viewers in the future. It’s perfectly fair for a curator to give his or her views on an artwork. One can learn from it but, crucially, one can disagree and make up one’s own mind. But how can one disagree with the person who made the work? Once they have spoken, that’s the end of the story.”

    An other way of looking at this is to say that the artist’s comments add to the work. Not to be seen as a definite ‘explanation’ but rather an extra layer of meaning. The work stays the work. We can include the artists’ comments or not.


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