Master of Arts
Dr. Christine Sprengler
The affirmation of identity as a leitmotif throughout art history has become increasingly concerned with the conflation of the real and constructed, the material and immaterial, as technological developments engineer the fabric of reality with heightened sophistication. In the age of lifelike, digital avatar influencers such as Lil Miquela, Ai-Da, billed as “the world’s first ultra-realistic robot artist,” algorithms developed to create The Next Rembrandt, and the rise of crypto art and non-fungible tokens (NFT’s), the ambiguity or removal of the hand of the artist prompts questions surrounding identity as a visualization of the data that follows us and is symptomatic of what curator Shuman Basar refers to as “change vertigo”—realized when our sense of individuality is unsteady and constantly shifting to adapt to an increasingly complex existence where physical and digital borders are no longer distinct. The analysis and dismantling of anterior art historical formulas of representation and dissemination—harbingers for art in the digital realm—reveal a compelling entry point to the immaterial and distributive logic of contemporary aesthetic movements as mediated by truth.
Summary for Lay Audience
The question of aesthetics as a mode of inquiry for understanding contemporary existence has become increasingly concerned with the conflation of the real and constructed, the material and immaterial, as technological developments engineer the fabric of reality with heightened sophistication. Shifting conceptions of the contemporary work of art, along with its production and dissemination, have tremendous new capabilities to alter audience consciousness and perceptions of agency in this process. in our crucial intercession to the longstanding, emphatic claim of art as a transmitter of truth. The analysis and dismantling of art historical modes of production—harbingers for art in the digital realm—reveal a compelling entry point to understanding contemporary aesthetic movements mediated by the dialectics of truth.
McKee, Moira, "“Literally, a Game-Changer”: Renegotiating the Aesthetics of the Real" (2022). Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository. 9301.