What is my Gift to a Curator?

Screens are watching us

Julian Stallabrass’s Perplexing Question

Within the pages of his book “A Very Short Introduction to Contemporary Art,” Julian Stallabrass poses a thought-provoking inquiry: “What is the market to make of a work that is reproducible with perfect accuracy, that can simultaneously exist on thousands of servers and millions of computers, and that can be cannibalized or modified by users? How can one buy, sell, or own such a portion of data?” [129].

Embracing the Net.Art Movement

Personally entwined with the net.art movement, I found myself at the helm of an event that has garnered frequent citation—a moment that witnessed the sale of internet art to a gallery. My contemplation of art, often seen as an asset within our paradigm, continues to captivate me to this day. Particularly intriguing is the world of painting, which stands as a quintessential asset within the Western art framework. But amidst this contemplation arises a novel conundrum: How does one craft a painting that defies the conventional expectation of being sold and displayed?

A Paradigm Shift: Art as Experience

At its core, art is an experiential endeavor. I’m led to ponder how an art professional would encounter a sheet of paper painted on both sides—a canvas wherein two images hold an undeniable connection. In a world where the art professional is bombarded daily by artists vying for her attention, this object stands apart—a nameless, faceless entity that is not a pitch, promotion, or solicitation. How might she grapple with the question of its origin and intent?

The Enigma of Anonymous Expression

As this ambivalent object rests before her, the art professional faces a tapestry of questions: Who fashioned this enigma? What drives its creation? What message, if any, is it meant to convey? The anonymity of its sender magnifies the intrigue. In a realm where commercial interests and personal agendas intertwine, this nameless offering exists as a singular anomaly—an act of creation seemingly untouched by the usual undercurrents of the art world.

In essence, the dual-sided painting not only challenges conventional artistic norms but also invites us to reconsider the essence of creation, ownership, and the very experience of art. It beckons us to transcend the confines of the traditional market and embrace the transformative potential that lies within the uncharted territories of artistic expression.
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