Beauty or a Beast: Technology, Art, and Luddites

Part of being Graphic Design majors is attempting to bring technology and art together into one form. It’s like the perfect mixed drink. The right colors, with the right ratios makes the perfect flavor, but instead of making a favor you’re making a visual display. Of course there is harmony between technology and art, but there are those who think otherwise.

(For Art and Technology Integration and Galleries check out:

http://www.coolhunting.com/tech/creators-project-coachella.php

http://www.techasart.org/Artists.html )

There is a fear that the concept of art has changed from what it was originally intended. In todays technology filled world the idea of art has been “degraded” as some may say. But rather than looking at the art world as being “degraded” we would rather define the addition of technology to art as the broadening of the artistic definition. However, the minds of determined men and women are hard to change.

The term “Luddite” comes to mind. A term which traces back to the early 1800’s factory workers and skilled artisans in Europe were being pushed out of their employment and replaced with machines. In an act of protest they stormed their factories and workshops destroying the machines that had replaced their master craftsmen work and taken their art from them. These workers were referred to as Luddites, and today the term is used to describe people who are against the use of technology because of what it takes from people rather than gives.

(For more information and artistic galleries of Luddites please read:

http://greenfield.fortunecity.com/crawdad/213/neolud.html

http://www.helenelliswrites.com/luddites-in-the-news-alex-gilles/

http://forum.xcitefun.net/digital-body-humans-against-technology-t47161.html

http://rfmcdpei.livejournal.com/155867.html )

Today’s world seems to be at an impasse. Contemporary art is either brilliant or a joke, Classic Art is either considered masterpiece or ancient history. Generations clash from the older folks who desire a “Simpler life without technology” with the young folks who want to live out their lives on facebook, share their work on Deviant Art, and blog about the next big thing in the world. Music has gone from being personal unedited sound to an array of synths and beats put to lyrics (Most top artists today wouldn’t even make it into Julliard School of Music). Many even argue that technology take people away from the desire to create art because of the fear of not being good enough or being involved too much in their social networks to find the drive or motivation (stats say almost 30 hrs a week is the amount of time the average teenager is spending in front of a screen).

Is art really hurting our artistic world, or is the integration of art and technology beneficial? Is the redefining of “art” a bad thing? Let us know what side you’re on.


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