Few corners of the art system remain untouched by the utopian solutionism of tech entrepreneurs and Silicon Valley logic. Rhetoric about “liberation,” “transparency,” and new “disruptive” digital models have begun to dominate debates that have raged in the arts for centuries, from the museum’s relationship to the public, the artist’s position in the art market, and the role of pedagogy and criticism in an ever-expanding, ever-commercialized art world. Recently several well-known examples have sparked passionate arguments from all sides. But is the art system broken? And who, exactly, is rushing in to fix it? And what are their interests?
This class is designed to be a forum for discussion of digital technologies and their relationship to arts institutions, with a particular focus on both their theoretical underpinnings and the practical applications of various new models now in existence. We aim to gather a diverse set of perspectives to work through their roles, motivations, and ideologies to better understand implications for artists, writers, and arts professionals.
Provisional syllabus includes selections from Evgeny Morozov, Astra Taylor, Jaron Lanier, Dardot & Laval, Jill Lepore in addition to various artists' texts, critical essays, and relevant press coverage.