New Aestheticism in Contemporary Art

Soaring to new personal heights?

It’s 2013. Will art soar to new heights?

I took the photo above at the Albuquerque Balloon Museum last September. It was at this event where I met one of the curators for Sundance. This was also around the time when I covered an exhibition that was driving postmodern aesthetics discourse in New York City. The New Aesthetic refers to the developing visual language of digital technology and the Internet in the physical world, and the blending of virtual and physical. This term gained wider attention at the SXSW conference in 2012.

New Aesthetic is a collaborative attempt to draw a circle around several species of aesthetic activity—including but not limited to drone photography, ubiquitous surveillance, glitch imagery, Streetview photography, 8-bit net nostalgia. Central to the New Aesthetic is a sense that we’re learning to “wave at machines”—and that perhaps in their glitchy, buzzy, algorithmic ways, they’re beginning to wave back in earnest. [Matthew Battles]

What was really cool was getting an invitation to check out New Frontier at Sundance 2013. This is creating opportunities for discourse and getting the attention of a diverse group of people. This week I was interviewed by Digital Media MS student Laura Schluckebier in a lead-up to my trip to Park City, UT next week.

Due to her background and interest in new and evolving ideas and aesthetics in contemporary art such as immersion and augmented spaces, PhD student Nettrice Gaskins has been invited to cover the Sundance Film Festival by Art21, a nonprofit organization dedicated to engaging audiences with contemporary visual art. In her work in the doctoral program at Georgia Tech, she focuses on the merging of culture, arts, and technology.

The plan is to go there and absorb everything I can see and then look for trends, edges and emerging ideas that can inspire new projects.

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