To say that the World Wide Web has changed the way Americans go about their daily lives is an understatement. From methods of communication and information exchange to product marketing and avenues of immediate gratification, the Internet has opened doors for entrepreneurs and creative thinkers as well as those with less than noble intentions. Like the universe it purports to mimic, the Internet is ever expanding. The present is combined with the past and the predictions of the future, leaving layers upon layers of words, text and images piling up into a boundless mountain. The following list is a selection of instructional, resource-based, and creative websites found amongst the highways, byways, and mainframes of the World Wide Web, ranging from the sensational to the serious—a mere sampling of the virtual American melting pot. Vanity, money, fear, and an unyielding desire for convenience are dominant themes in this brief glimpse of the seedy underbelly of a Google search.
Through the Bad Moon Rising email exhibition series, NAIL curators have provided insight on artists who utilize the web for publicity, concept, or artistic tool, and this list revisits those websites, often drawing unforeseen parallels between the spaces of the artists’ work and the cacophony of the Web itself.
Parker Ito is a pixel prospector, a miner of the internet. For him, HTML code is the 21st-century’s answer to Duchamp’s readymade and the porn star is the new artistic muse. In this recent work, found video clips of ice cream, candy, splattered paint, and fireworks are overlaid with clips of online pornography to create a layered and textured core sample of the pleasures and vices of the World Wide Web. Beautiful, yet repellent and strange, Ito’s videos, websites, and paintings explore and push at the boundaries of the image-saturated, hyper-technological reality of our age.
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