Hendrik Niefeld and Conor Backman, page from ‘Meeting’ (2014), photo courtesy of the artists
With the development of web culture and technologies, art moves onto the internet and artworks have to anticipate their inevitable online presence. This development brings both problems and possibilities, since the web makes art easily distributed, economical, and instantaneously accessible. With online art galleries and online journals, art launches can be attended from any location, like on Dec. 6, 2014: we attended the launch of ‘Meeting’ a publication by Info Punkt, a Leipzig-based art collective that concentrates on online publications.
‘Meeting’ begins with a memory of a dream: Hendrik Niefeld recalls that he might have become a painter, a thought that inspires a systematic investigation of five artists. A powerful sense of character comes out in between the lines of the work. The interview is a collection of uncontextualized fragments – forms, photographs of artworks, forensic photographs of studios, notes, works in progress and samples of handwriting. The process of inquisition reveals the interviewer himself as a creative new media detective, searching for the nature of inspiration and originality in the age of the internet.
Hendrik Niefeld, Israel Lund, and Liz Hopkins, page from ‘Meeting’ (2014), photo courtesy of the artists
Each artist discusses a different topic: Travess Smalley reflects on the importance of the book to his working process, Clemens Reinecke and Jochen Plogsties muse on envy and temptation, while Israel Lund’s responses remain empty in an elusive gesture. However, the artists are more than just the content of the text. Their awareness of being interviewed shows in their responses, with their individual personalities and working habits being expressed through the way that each responds to or disregards interview prompts.
Meeting is a fascinating experiment, using the internet as a medium for contact with art and people while exploring the substance and significance of that contact. The accompanying text by Alison Hugill provides a thoughtful reflection on the publication.
Blog entry by Alena Sokhan in Berlin; Tuesday, Dec. 16, 2014.