The term digital art is more than ever present in our daily lives. It imposes itself in the festivals, in the centers of art, in the galleries, in the press, in the media, and settles in all the spirits. Something is at work in digital art that is happening nowhere else. We are witnessing the birth of an art. As for cinema a century ago, a new medium, a new form of artistic expression is emerging.
How does a digital work differ from a traditional work? What is the vitality of this artistic field? What makes the heart?
Nothing more and nothing less than an invisible reality: a program.
A digital work is entirely driven by something invisible and yet very real. In the background of each work, a computer program is in progress. Thanks to this program, the work has a behavior of its own, a behavior that surprises us because it remains largely unpredictable. When the behavioral variations are internal, we speak of a generative work. When the behavior of the work varies with what is present in its immediate environment, it is an interactive work. In both cases, the work is a constituted otherness, an autonomous, sensitive and active reality. How to qualify it still if not by the term of being or that of Entity?
Thus, in the digital age, artists create works that have all the characteristics of the living. Not only moving works as in the era of cinema but works with movement and internal life.
The creativity of a digital artist is similar to that of a demiurge. The artist is a creator of the world who, once the work is finished, discovers his creation on the move. The metaphor is not trivial. As an artist, the work often escapes us. Images emerge, unknown landscapes emerge, and reactions between the work and the public are improvised.
The presence of a program in the work has a considerable impact upstream and downstream of the creation.
This concerns production first. Driven by necessity, the forerunners of digital art, like Nicolas Schöffer, had to master the basics of programming. With the appearance of structures that contribute to the development of this art, a new association has emerged: that of artists and developers. Today, digital works are meditating, experimenting and taking shape in a close partnership with the developers, the master craftsmen of these technologies.
This then concerns the diffusion. Digital works are alive and naturally invest in places of life. The hanging in the public space is done in a way that is unique to it: the artists identify situations specific to the spaces chosen to think about the relationship between the work and its environment. The adaptability and the plasticity of digital works offer us this latitude. From a screen the size of a mobile phone to the entire surface of a building, everything is possible. The aesthetic issues are thus directly confronted with issues of urbanism and society. “This work yes, but for which place? The artist wonders. When the politician or the planner will say: “This place yes, but for what work? », this is what encounters to write between these different actors.
The heart of the digital work is the invisible. The heart of the experience for the public is the relationship with this invisible. The aesthetic adventure to which digital invites us is just beginning, but artists, producers and broadcasters are already coming together to celebrate the birth of new work. We live in a militant era, a time of great enthusiasm, and the dawn of a golden age for artistic creation!