EXTERNALISING OUR BODY: DEVICE ART AND ITS EXPERIMENTAL NATURE

24 02 2009

By MACHIKO KUSAHARA

WHAT IS DEVICE ART

Device Art is a concept proposed by a group of artists, researchers and engineers in Japan, who currently carry a collaborative project under the same title. Project members have been involved in the field of media art for many years. Device Art is a concept derived from recent digital media art scene in Japan. Using both latest and everyday technologies and material, these media art works enable users/viewers/interactors to enjoy and understand what media technologies mean to us. In Device Art, an artwork is realized in a form of device, the device becoming the content itself. There is a sense of playfulness or sense of wonder in Device Art work – even if it involves a serious theme – which makes it possible to be shown or commercialized outside museums and galleries. The concept reflects Japanese cultural tradition in many ways, including appreciation of refined tools and materials, love for technology, acceptance of playfulness, absence of clear border between art, design and entertainment, among other issues. At the same time it shares an ongoing international interest in bridging between art, design and other related areas. Device Art seeks after a new paradigm in art, by producing artworks based on creative use of hardware technologies and opening a channel to make them more accessible to everyone. Through these activities Device Art questions the validity of traditional boundaries between art, design, entertainment, technology, and commercial products. 1

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