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Interactive Art

In the art world, many artworks are changing through the way we paint, draw or present our work. Now some artists propose there work as interactive art. But is interactive art a form of art even when changed by the viewers? Is it a type of art because of the tools used and what is the meaning behind the piece of work? Interactive art gives a rich environment that can explore the connections between digital imagery and design with human nature.

Daniel Rozin’s work is between a game and art names the “Wooden Mirrors, Trash Mirrors, Shiny Balls Mirrors, Circles Mirrors, Peg Mirror,” and more. He creates mirrors out of eccentric materials such as garbage and wood. When an individual steps into the piece, the artwork changes reflecting the image of the individual. When the person steps out of space of the image it is lost, leaving a piece of blankness. The piece had video cameras, motors and computers behind the image to make the effects along with sound as the viewer interacts with it. Daniel Rozin “creates installations and sculptures that have the unique ability to change and respond to the presence and point of view of the viewer (”

Camille Utterback is another famous interactive artist and programmer.

“My work is an attempt to bridge the conceptual and the corporeal. How we use our bodies to create abstract symbolic systems, and how these systems (language for example) have reverberations on our physical self is a matter of great concern to me. The dialog between these two realms is the subject of both my traditional and interactive work, and it is particularly relevant to our contemporary culture as we aim to grapple with the ramifications of virtuality and our increasing relationship with the interfaces and representational systems of our machines (”

I find her work amazing and different, she’s a great artist. She lets the viewers not only view with her eyes and fingers and emotions but she lets them interact and be drawn to the piece. One of her artworks “Text Rain” hinges the behavior of falling text that actually is a poem she has written about bodies and language. When the viewer is placed on the screen, texts move around the body or fall where movement is. Some people would try to catch as many words as possible to realize that a word is formed but what exactly does the whole scramble of letters say? Camille has very different interactive pieces that are amazing and would definitely consider looking closely at what she does.

Interactive art in many of the cases like Daniel Rozin and Camille Utterback the viewer becomes part of the piece and the viewer takes an active role in the creation of the piece. Here I believe that this is art and because it constantly changes its pretty unique that apiece can be change in the way the viewer would like to see it. I also think that it makes the individual enjoy the piece because they are curious of how it’s made or even its astonishment.

Work Cited:


Modernism vs. Post Modernism

Ashley Dethlefsen

November 30, 2009

Art 85: Assignment Four

Modernism vs. Post Modernism and “High” “Low” Art

For years had art movements been controversial on the way designers think or create a piece of artwork. Both modernism and post modernism artists works have “high” or “low” pieces of artwork.

Modernism was the art period of minimalism and conceptualism through the movement in visual arts, music, literature, and drama. Modernism was an emphasis on fragmented forms, and random placed collages of different images or materials. It was a movement of rejections between the “high” and “low” art in the way the materials were used and how it was displayed and distributed.

Modernism was also an emphasis on impressionism and subjectivity in writing and how the font was used and seen.  In Helvetica, the movie was based on the typography, graphic design, and global visual culture. It concentrates on one typeface, Helvetica, showing the way type affects our lives. Helvetica is used in world of design, advertising, and communication created by Max Miendinger and Eduard Hoffman in 1957. Helvetica was about to be written without a distraction in type and easy to read, as well as gain the attention to the viewers.

Paul Rand is an American Modernist in graphic design who was well known for corporate logos like IBM, ABC, Cummins Engin, Westing House, UPS, and more. As he designed the cover for The December in 1940, he used “barbed wire to present the magazine as both a war-torn gift and a crucifix is indicated of the artistic freedom…Rand was experimenting with the introduction of themes normally found in the “high arts (” His logos were very simply that his ideas didn’t have to be “esoteric to be original or exciting (”

Post Modernism like modernism, follows most of the same ideas, rejecting boundaries between “high” and “low” art forms. Post modernism means anti-modern or the revision of modernist premises; way to break free from the design of modernism. Post modernism will also reject the way an art is distinguished and distributed.

In 1917, Marcel Duschamp’s “Fountain,” an ordinary white porcelain urinal signed by him, was a piece of deconstructive postmodernism. He wanted people to view the object as a piece of artwork. Being a “readymade” object, he manufactured it, signed it and displayed it which became “high” art.

Post modernism challenged the conceptions of fine art in design and photography promoting drastic change through consciousness of society.  Diane Arbus was well known for street photography and was an influential American photographer. All her portraits were black and white of strange, carnival performers and freaks. Her work was “low” art of people. One photograph “identical twins,” was of two young twin sisters standing side by side, one smiling and one frowning.

Age of Mechanical Reproduction

Ashley Dethlefsen

November 16, 2009

Age of Mechanical Reproduction – assignment 3

Throughout history printmaking, photography, film, and lithography has been mechanically reproduced, making it easier for people to get their hands on a piece of work when it’s not the original. But does the art still have value? The value of a piece of artwork is important but when replicated the artwork didn’t loose any value, it gains the value of people accepting and wanting that piece of artwork for display. The original piece of artwork is worth hundreds, thousands, or even millions of dollars, which most can’t afford so making an image replicated makes people appreciate the artwork even more.

“Even the most perfect reproduction of a work of art is lacking in one element: its presence in time and space, its unique existence at the place where it happens to be (Benjamin).” Benjamin mentions how a piece of artwork may have been made once, many years ago and still stands in the one place where produced. Here this image does not get reproduced because of the sculpture and creativity put into it. This forces one to leave their country or home to go visit and experience it. Pictures may be taken of the piece and distributed among others but will not take the value of the sculpture away. These sculptures are valuable in ways how they age over time that it will be impossible to reproduce because of the aging, the breakage, the lines, or even the wear and tear within the piece of artwork.

In today’s society, a simple photograph can be manipulated and turned into someone else’s’ work with the use of programs like Photoshop. A photograph can also make numerous amounts of copies just from the negatives itself. “From a photographic negative, for example, one can make any number of prints; to ask for the authentic print makes no sense.”  (Benjamin) Here Benjamin refers to how you can change your image with the negative when you crop, color correct, and use the features in the programs like I mentioned before, Photoshop. When you change the negative original image it becomes a different type of image. Even if the negative is changed with what you want to make it, it will still be known for the negative it was originally from because it was manipulated into a better looking piece. For example Ansel Adams has changed all her negatives but no matter what it will always remain to be her art because it was her own photos that she has reproduced.

Art has also been believed to been impacted by commodity, “a good which is demand,” and by wealth. Both Duchamp, and Damian Hurish have had an impact. Damian Hurish, a modern artist, sold out his show before the reception. His artwork was so good; he didn’t have a show to present, also known as commodity. Duchamp on the other hand had a different type of impact; his involving every day objects with his signature on display. He had objects like a shovel and urinal on display that would turn into a million dollar display when you can purchase it right in a store. How could a piece like that be worth such high value? Is it because of the name and the creator who thought it would be art? He also makes a lithograph, “an authorized copy of an original work created by the artist himself or other skilled craftsman (” This lithograph was of Mona Lisa with a couple marks on the painting itself.

Photography, film, printmaking, and lithographs are available to everyone without seeing the original copy of the work. The value of art being produced in the age of mechanical reproduction will remain the same as long as nothing is changed to the piece of the original.

Work Cited

Benjamin, Walter.  Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction.  1935.

Printing Press v. Internet

Ashley Dethlefsen

October 30, 2009

Art 85


Throughout history, people have experienced change of technology and how it impacted the world. Between both the printing press and the Internet they were both huge impacts to the work. Being that they were both brought up in two different time periods one had a greater impact then the other but also changed the way we read, learn, write, educate oneself, and look up information. The printing press was more for the written word and how things are placed and how books are made for learning and education purposes. The Internet became the means of communication, and getting information as quick as a couple seconds with just a click of a button. The printing press and the Internet are part of the organic growth of our civilizations but which really did have more of an impact in society?

The printing press had great impact and allowed material to be shown to many people and for information to be more ready available. Prior to the printing press, books and information were all handwritten and taken a lot of time and dedication into the work. Because each piece of material had to be handwritten it was not only time consuming but expensive to be completed. During the 13th century, the printing press started by “block printing.” Block printing is “characters or pictures carved into a wooden block, inked, and then transferred to paper.” (History Guide) This type of printing was also time-consuming and expensive.  Because handwritten texts were scarce, it was easy for information to be false without being checked. Johannes Gutenburg was the first man to invent movable type by the 15th century. “Gutenburg devised an alloy of lead, tin and antinomy that would melt at low temperature, cast well in the die, and be durable in the press (History Guide).” His invention made it possible to mass produce books and increase the amount of communication worldwide. His first mass production was God’s Holy word, The Bible, in 1940. His invention made printing cheaper and also language ready, meaning it could be printed in more than one language. Spelling and false information was easier to be seen and found with the printing press since it was one plate making all the plates then when it was handwritten.

Because of the printing press allowed the spread of ideas, the Internet sparked a new way of communication and way of processed information around the world.  The Internet was the invention of fast communication and making ready available information in just seconds. Information can be found right away with just a click of a button. This makes video communication, instant messaging, and emailing to happen at your fingertips at a quick speed.  “The Internet has brought us so much information and not only to the social and business elite, but to the entire world (ISOC).”

The Internet has many different information that can help you in many different ways. Such as online shopping which allows yourself to shop for anything and get shipped to you in a couple of days in just minutes without leaving your house, driving to the destination, waiting on line and purchasing the item. It has allowed you to search for the best products that are out on the market at the lowest price. The Internet has also let you look up cooking instructions, medical questions, research, trips, and much more. Because of online communication it’s easy to chat to someone across the country with a simple connection from the Internet.

When it comes to which one has a great impact I am going to have to say Internet. The information is ready available at high speed and can obtain any kind of material within seconds. The printing press has had a great impact giving information out for readers to read but at the same time everything from the printing press is located online over the Internet.  Because of how fast technology move the Internet is still coming out with more to help change the world.

Work Cited:

Kreis, Steven. “The Printing Press” ( October 2009

“History of the Internet” ( October 2009

Book of Kells-Art or Design?

Ashley Dethlefsen

October 1, 2009

From cave paintings of early man to today’s designers, art & design has outstandingly formed the world around us, each in its own different ways. During the eighth century a masterpiece called The Book of Kells of medieval Celtic art was designed. In today’s society do we, as viewers, look at the Book of Kells as art or design? Art is anything that evokes an emotional response while design is something that deserves a purpose. Therefore if an artist creates a piece of artwork and that art has a meaning behind it then is considered to be design, which has a purpose behind it. “Fine craftsmanship is all about you, but you might not notice it, Look more keenly at it and you will penetrate to the very shrine of art. You will make out intricacies, so delicate and subtly, so exact and compact, so full of knots and links, with colors so fresh and vivid that you might say that all this was the work of an angel and not of a man” (Long Island University). The Book of Kells is a form of art that was made with a purpose behind it, therefore it should be known as a design.

The Book of Kells is a famous manuscript written on vellum, also known as calfskin. The manuscript contained stories of the four gospels written in Latin with extravagantly illustrations and designs. This book was known for its “pictures, interlaced shapes and ornamental details” ( In the Book of Kells “Many of the letters are strongly reminiscent of modern Irish script; some are curiously distorted and elongated in order to fill out a line or to make a distinctive tailpiece” (The Book of Kells, G.O. Simms). Even though the illustrations may have been a form of art, they are still a part of design that someone came up with to put the imagery on vellum. The ink in the Book of Kells was a pen made out of a reed or a feather of some type of bird. “Ink was made out of the juices of plants, leaves, and roots” (Exploring the Book of Kells) that were placed into the feather pen.

In philosophy, “Hume and Kant agree on a number of doctrines concerning art. Both oppose moral didacticism or the use of art to promote sectarian moral and religious doctrines. Both emphasize that fine art displays genius. Neither believes that the value of an artwork can be inferred from general principles or from intellectual knowledge of what beauty is” (Gracyk).  Kant’s theory is more based on the art and where beauty lies when Hume believes that art is design because it has a purpose. Both men believed that some works of art really are better than others, and that some people have better taste.

Immanuel Kant thinks beauty comes within “art” but is also followed by form of design, which is the purpose. “Kant holds that we can hardly avoid recognizing when something is art, and that it therefore demands evaluation as a thing of a certain kind (as a poem rather than a statue). Reducing art to a mere display of beautiful form would suggest that a work’s content is a superfluous addition” (Gracyk). He focused on the natural beauty of something in this case he says, “this rose is beautiful.” According to the Book of Kells the book can be well thought-out a form of art based on Kant’s theory.

David Hume, who is an eighteenth century philosopher, dealt with morality, art and taste. According to David Hume’s theory on the taste and the arts you can’t be wrong about a response about art. “Art is only the under-workman, and is employed to give a few strokes of embellishment to those pieces, which come from the hand of the master. Art may make a suit of clothes; but nature must produce a man” (David Hume). Here he talks about how a piece of artwork can be created but the only way it can be created is if design comes along. Here the nature is the design, which will then form the suit of clothes, which is the beauty of art. “Beauty is no quality in things themselves: It exists merely in the mind which contemplates them; and each mind perceives a different beauty” (David Hume). Here David mentions about Beauty and as a piece of design. According to Kant’s “this rose is beautiful,” he talks about the art but in Hume’s case the rose comes from a plant which then makes it grow to become a piece of beauty.

Most people would mistaken the Book of Kells as a work of art, but when you think about the purpose behind the book it makes it become a piece of design. If design is something that has a purpose, then art, which evokes an emotional response, is known as design.

Works Cited:

Simms, George Otto. Exploring the Book of Kells. Dublin: The O’Brien Press, 1988 Special Collections Department. B.Davis Schwartz Memorial Library. C.W. Post Campus.

Gracyk, Thomas. “Philosophy of Art: Hume and Kant: Summary and Comparison.” 2002. Web. Sept 2009.

Simms, George Otto. The Book of Kells. Dublin: The Dolmen Press, 1968

Hume, David. The Philosophical Works of David Hume. Boston: Little, Brown and Company