Social media has brought the art community huge benefits, chief among them the ability to easily share artistic creations, whether it’s through Twitter, Facebook or a group Tumblr. But is the possibility of easy creation and publishing diminishing our drive for making more ambitious works?
If you didn’t catch the project’s announcement Tuesday on ArtFagCity, Ryan Trecartin (video artist extraordinaire, Youtube star) and David Karp (founder of Tumblr) have launched riverofthe.net, a crowd-sourced video project that strikes a balance between social media site, contemporary art piece, and documentary archive. The website collects videos ten seconds or less in length, uploaded by users, and crowd sourced. Videos are tagged and aggregated by a maximum of three terms, terms that are collected at the bottom of the site’s homepage in an ever-expanding, lo-fi html list that visually recalls sites like Craigslist.
So far, the list is a kind of Ryan Trecartin-inflected stream of consciousness, complete with everything from “sexy feet” (a video of someone pulling off a sock in a sultry manner), the omnipresent “Lady Gaga,” and “bitches be @ the club,” which links to a video of giraffes fighting, violently. Your guess is as good as mine, but that’s Trecartin’s style for you.
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You may have seen it on your friend’s Facebook pages or the screen of a mobile phone, on a Twitter image service or a Tumblr blog. An aesthetic rash has been plaguing popular photography as of late, but it’s not a new one. A slew of iPhone ‘Polaroid’ applications are turning people’s visual diaries into retro, oversaturated documents of social lives, friends and lovers. But what makes these applications so popular