Studio Art in 2025

One can only speculate what the relationship between art and technology will look like in the future, but one cannot deny that technology will have an influence in the studio, both in academia and in private studios. Granted, this relationship and overlap of art and technology is already in present, but the inquiry is one of to what extent.

Looking at notable artists like ceramic artists like John Balistreri who is most known for his large-scale ceramic sculptures one sees an emergence of art in technology and technology in art in process in real time. While his background is the studio arts of ceramics and ceramic sculpture, he also pursues investigations in the areas of art and emerging technology and how modern advancing technology can be used to make art today. One can refer to his site to gather a sense of this integration, but in short, and in respect, his digital ceramic work uses modern technology, essentially a printer that prints objects that have been designed in computer software, and prints three-dimensional objects. Quite profound if you think about it and/or have any experience in the clay arts and the steps involved in making the clay, making an object, firing, glazing, firing again,… If one can use emerging technology to create objects that represent objects made today, imagine what emerging technology can allow one to make in the future.

I mean, is there anything of value in using emerging technology? Does emerging technology open up a new area of artistic exploration? Can emerging technology allow one to make artwork that cannot be done by the human hand, or human mind for that matter?

Time will tell. And I for one cannot wait to see what the studio arts will look like in 2025.

I also imagine should artists like Michelangelo have had technology like we have today they would have made a million more works! Here’s a time lapsed video from Youtube that shows a process of the future.

-Robert Alsobrook


Garage Sale—-Art?

MOMA recently hosted an exhibition (November 17 to 30, 2012) by artist Martha Rosler titled “Meta-Monumental Garage Sale” that filled the exhibition space with things made and donated by the artist and employees of the museum. During the exhibition people could buy and haggle prices and if they so chose, could have their picture taken with their purchases.

While this sort of exhibition might make a statement on our consumerist culture, and/or about the “commonplace,”… “that illuminates social life” (site of the artist) what does it say about the current state of the art world? What is end message art is saying about life in our culture?

People, at least at one time, might have looked to artists to gather insight into life and purpose but since  the shock-art movement, the conceptual-empty-gallery-room-approach, and the like focus is not on understanding meanings of life or shedding light into this great mystery but on creating an experience in a short-lived moment. This is where we have come in our culture, living in the moment without an awareness, and dare I say, a care about the future and I believe contemporary art manifests this idea.

What this says is that there is little interest in the meaning of life any more, at least by art represented by mainstream art venues of which smaller venues mimic in some degree, and has resulted in advocating complacency. For what is there to make art about unless it is work pushing into the unknown mysteries of life and purpose? This is dire to the community of people not just in our culture and small communities but has the ripple effect of influencing the world at large. I know the American influence on the world is vast and reaches the most remote places on earth. Just recently I returned from a trip to Laos where we went deep into the back country of coffee farms where people don’t have plumbing or electricity, but they do have Angry Birds shirts which is an example of how far-reaching our society reaches.

Not all us artists buy into the idea art has to be representative of mere daily routines, make work that ends at an aesthetic experience, or about nothingness, but can and should be used as a vehicle taking us into the great mysteries of life and purpose. This is not to say work by artists such as Martha Rosler is not good in any way, but that the era of art that does not seek the true understanding of life and truth is coming to a close. While art of this intention is merely a silhouette on the horizon the pendulum is swinging back to art with soul.


-Robert Alsobrook