Visual Poems – Abstract video works on the net
a Video Vortex channel composed by Simon Ruschmeyer
Video maker Simon Ruschmeyer (DE, 1980) explores, in theory as well as practice, the borderline areas between classical audiovisual narration and the new possibilities proferred by interactivity and networked communication. Ruschmeyer has realised countless video projects and has recently completed his paper The Moving Web – Forms and Functions of Moving Images on the Internet. His research into new types of artistic production and distribution on the net can be visited on movingweb.org.
“Abstraction has been an important theme in the arts for over a century. Concerning the moving image there has been a strong tradition of abstraction from early experimental films to video art. The exploration of form has always been the exploration of the rules and functionalities of the particular medium.
20 years after the invention of the Internet moving images invade the medium. YouTube is already causing about 10% of the internet traffic worldwide, videos are seen by millions of users. But what is a typical web video? Are there already existing rules and thematical focal points in the YouTube world? Critics complain that you only need someone hurting himself in your video to get the big click on YouTube. Serious content or artistic expressions don’t arrouse enough attention and get lost in the digital nirvana.
So what about abstract or poetic web videos? Aren’t they objecting the rules of the medium by not impressing the viewer with fast food entertainment? Or are they by contrast indeed exploring the rules of the new medium by addressing issues like fragmentation or postmodernity?”
1.)In which way would you describe the Internet as a reference point or habitat for your work? Does it have any effects on your production or distribution process?
2.)What is your interest in abstract/poetic forms? Do you see a specific difference of abstract web videos to experimental film or video art?
Project Name: “Abstract Beauty”
Artist: Mate Steinforth
1.) The internet has a huge impact on both production and distribution of my works. First of all, the internet has a huge impact of pretty much everyone’s life in 1st world countries, at least people working in
media. That means that a lot of inspiration is found on the net. This means as a consequence, that it is one of the most important distribution mediums as well.
2.) For my personal work the central theme is the non-narrative, atmospheric story. Almost hyperreal, associative. The pieces shift from abstract graphics to describing an otherworldly situation in everyday’s life to
more classical storytelling.
I don’t see a big difference between web videos and experimental film or video art. It’s just the medium in which you see it, not the content.
Project Name: “March 9, 1886”
Artist: We work for them (Michael Young & Michael Cina)
1.) Its a giant library for my research. I have become lazy in looking into books, and do 90% of my research online these days, which is good and bad. It has 100% effect on my distribution process, as people have always seen or learned about my work video my websites.
2.) When it comes to executing my own work its the only approach I enjoy to work in. I find direct and straight forward work is too limiting and doesn’t leave enough imagination for the user. No, in the end its still moving pictures, doesn’t matter what the platform, location or space. Of course, one might find it much more prestigious to have video in a gallery, versus on youtube, due to the fact you feel someone in a power position choose your work above others.
Project Name: “Mauenheim”
Artist: Alec Crichton
1.) Whether the networked homeland of our culture, the digital place for exchange and memory, will help us bridge the gaps – resulting from the flow of money, advantages in information and human vanities – remains to be seen. In the digital realms parasitic relations seem to be expanding even further; we have to take this into account and influence the ongoing changes in a reasonable manner.
As the openness of the internet provokes new ways of participation, the resulting mixture of existing forms, in which we record and describe our common reality, represents an ever increasing challenge. Where technological progress and spare time breed a mass of data, the classification and organisation of this quantity is the next step.
As energies are progressively set free, the fact that we are all part of a large stream is entering our collective consciousness. As describing a present situation, through an act of creativity, is mostly based on reprocessing and constantly re-sorting former ideas, the need for access to these views becomes evident, in order to provoke new perspectives, arising from an individual lifetime.
So in all ranges of human interaction, the internet multiplies the ways of perceiving and describing our world, undermining former educational barriers. Within the scope of artistic forms of communication for instance, the internet is currently erasing the division of the entertainment industry and the art world.
2.) An artistic practice tends to serve a more unifying than differentiating function, where established symbols and traditional ways of perceiving may be confused, in order to allow us to enjoy this form of speechlessness. Poetic abstraction is a suitable means to this end, where abstraction does not mean less; it rather strengthens an internal unity in which all elements of a work refer to one another. This enables us to experience an aesthetic form of sense, without requiring another significant meaning or an external source for understanding.
In my abstract approaches to the center of an artistic form of expression, different levels of perception are interweaved in a surrealist manner. It is this kind of aesthetic engagement, which seems to make an artist or a work of art distinguishable from other actors and their products. This distinction can be difficult to make, whenever other models of communicating personal views, like scientific, journalistic or political strategies, blend in with this artistic routine.
Project Name: “Things fall apart”
Artist: Devoid of Yesterday (Rob Chui, Chris James Hewitt, Ben Lukas Boysen)
Artist Sebastian CURT Gebert
Project Name: “Transrec”
1.) I would be lying if I said that the web has had no effect on my production and distribution process. Because it has, from the beginning, been an inherent part of my artistic drive, and has proven to be a reliable and inexhaustible source of knowledge, and inspiration throughout my career as an artist. When I say that, I think I am speaking for many people in this digital information age. Our society has become saturated with information. I am a product of the Internet, in other words. In using the internet, I have managed to create a so-called“defasten filter”that allows me to channel my work online and establish a relevant presence.2.) I think every medium has its restraints and limitations. Experimental film, video art, abstract web videos.. they all have their own set of defined challenges and potential based on constellations of governing goals, concepts, philosophies, and aesthetics. I believe those “boundaries” are what visually and aesthetically differentiate those art
forms, by creating recognizable patterns of, say, visual vocabulary. Conceptually, I find all three art forms have underlying similarities, in that each medium attempts to break from traditional narratives, some more ardently than others. Though lately, I feel that what has occurred – or what can potentially occur – in all three “separate mediums”, is a sort of coalescing, or convergence of form and/or aesthetic direction, at least, in my field of practice (digital video/compositing/3d
animation) in relation to the other two more “established” genres you mentioned. In my case, my interest in creating abstract, poetic forms of video work is an amalgamation of my interests in conveying textural, non-linear qualities of raw ambience, whether it be a straight up narrative, or not. I am interested in producing situations, or “moods”, self-reflexive, meta-narrative works of moving image that asks you to take a step back, and think (optional), or simply indulge in a sculpted temporal moment.