[artinfo] 'Wikipedia Art' Wikipedia entry deleted 15 February 2009

Edward Shanken eshanken at artexetra.com
Sun Feb 15 23:58:30 CET 2009

Following an extensive debate, the 'Wikipedia Art' entry was deleted
at 6:32am UTC 15 February, 2009.  The Wikipedia gatekeepers referred
to it as a "non-notable, self-referential mess" ...  that "does not
exist in any way that merits an article."  As the work's creators
note, "The work still resides at its own domain, and has passed into
its second (historical/evidentiary) phase." (link below)

My subsequent art historical intervention - adding 'Wikipedia Art' to
the Conceptual Art entry in Wikipedia - was also deleted. This entry,
the last in a long line of examples of conceptual art (written in the
present tense), noted that the "'Wikipedia Art' entry (deleted)
generates over seven thousand words of debate on whether or not the
article should be kept or deleted, ineluctibly instantiating the
existence of Wikipedia Art as a viable artwork, the identity of which
consists of its evolving Wikipedia definition, including the debate
surrounding it."

The deletion of my addition to Wikipedia is mysterious but not
unjustified in the world of Wikipedia, for despite my academic
credentials, my assertion of the authenticity of Wikipedia Art as art
cannot be verified by what the editors recognize as a "reliable"
source (namely peer-review publications).  I would like to see
Wikipedia Art instantiated in the context for which is conceived;
indeed, by the very nature of its conception Wikipedia Art can exist
and evolve only in the context of Wikipedia.  At the same time, I
recognize that the very nature of its conception is antithetical to
the nature of Wikipedia.  I embrace this dynamic, theatrical struggle
of opposing forces and look forward to the ongoing debate and process
of historicization...

>From the Wikipedia Art website:

A collaborative project initiated by Scott Kildall and Nathaniel
Stern, Wikipedia Art is art composed on Wikipedia, and thus art that
anyone can edit. Since the work itself manifests as a conventional
Wikipedia page, would-be art editors are required to follow
Wikipedia's enforced standards of quality and verifiability; any
changes to the art must be published on, and cited from, 'credible'
external sources: interviews, blogs, or articles in 'trustworthy'
media institutions, which birth and then slowly transform what the
work is and does and means simply through their writing and talking
about it. Wikipedia Art may start as an intervention, turn into an
object, die and be resurrected, etc, through a creative pattern /
feedback loop of publish-cite-transform that we call "performative
citations." Wikipedia Art MUST BE written about extensively both on-
and off-line. This serves the dual purpose of verifying the work -
which is considered controversial by those in the Wikipedia community,
and occasionally removed from the site - as well as transforming it
over time. WE INVITE YOU TO DO SO!


Edward Shanken
Department of New Media
University of Amsterdam
personal webpage: http://artexetra/wordpress.com

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