[artinfo] Share Your Sorrow

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Fri Oct 12 13:50:32 CEST 2012

Share Your Sorrow
An Online Curatorial Project

Share Your Sorrow is an online curatorial project launched by 
Domenico Quaranta in September 2012, and focused on strategies of 
social preservation of net based, digital art. The project deals with 
the work of Kevin Bewersdorf, an artist that, after being very active 
online between 2007 and 2009, retired and deleted from the internet 
any content he published in previous years. Everybody who got in 
touch with his work and collected it is invited to dig into his / her 
personal archives and contribute. Because the museum of the future 
may be your hard drive.
Art preservation is normally associated with museums, archives and 
collections, that is with authority and power - be it institutional, 
cultural or economic. It has not always been like this. Museums and 
archives emerged in modern times, and art collecting as an elitist 
practice started in the Renaissance. Along history, art has been 
saved by graveyards, natural catastrophes, copies, reuse and abuse, 
chance, monks, and ordinary people.
In the digital age, artists started making art with digital means and 
circulating it online, and computer users started saving and 
archiving it, as they do with any other kind of cultural content. Of 
course, the art world started applying its rules and conventions to 
digital art as well, pretending that some files are poor copies and 
others are original, and talking about editions, resolution, 
certificates of authenticity and so on. The file you downloaded is 
not the same file Mr. Saatchi bought. That's fine. But what if your 
file survives, and Mr Saatchi's one gets lost? What if the artist 
pretends that the original artwork is the one he put on the net?
Kevin Bewersdorf wrote in 2007: "I would drop [my laptop] off a cliff 
without hesitation... The seeds of my data are already safely spread 
across the web, and this data is what concerns me." Then, at some 
point, he removed everything from the Web, but the seeds of his data 
survived. They survived in the work of other artists that responded 
to them. They survived on other websites that reblogged them. And 
they survive in the disk space of many anonymous users who saved 
them, and that keep them jealously or just forgot about them. These 
are the true collectors of Kevin Bewersdorf's work: a work that was 
available to anybody, and that's now subject to the condition of 
scarcity that is the premise to any act of collecting.
Share Your Sorrow invites them to share the seeds of Kevin's data 
again; to allow them to circulate online again, to be downloaded, 
manipulated and remixed by other users, to keep being part of the 
cultural dialogue, that is the best way for art to survive.

To contribute:

- go to http://shareyoursorrow.tumblr.com/submit and submit your content, or
- upload it on Tumblr and tag it "share your sorrow", or
- just send an email to domenico.quaranta at linkartcenter.eu. And,
- please try to provide as many contextual elements as possible 
(name, date, original location, etc.)

More info: http://shareyoursorrow.linkartcenter.eu/.

Domenico Quaranta (1978, Brescia, Italy) is an art critic and 
curator. He is a regular contributor to Flash Art and Artpulse. He is 
the editor (with M. Bittanti) of the book GameScenes: Art in the Age 
of Videogames (2006) and the author of Media, New Media, Postmedia 
(2010) and In Your Computer (2011). He has curated various 
exhibitions, including Holy Fire: Art of the Digital Age (Bruxelles 
2008, with Y. Bernard), Playlist (Gijon 2009 and Bruxelles 2010) and 
Collect the WWWorld (Brescia 2011 and Basel 2012). He is a co-founder 
and Artistic Director of the Link Center for the Arts of the 
Information Age. http://domenicoquaranta.com


Domenico Quaranta

email: quaranta.domenico at gmail.com
skype: dom_40


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