Computer art is often associated with computer-generated expressions (digital audio/images in music, video, stage design, etc.). In recent computer art, however, the code-text itself – not the generated output – has become the artwork (Perl Poetry, ASCII Art, obfuscated code, etc.). This paper will analyze and discuss code as the artist's material. In particular, it will focus one particular artistic code-praxis: the Live Coding performances of Slub (programming computer music live, visually showing the coding) The artists Alex McLean and Adrian Ward (aka Slub) along with Geoff Cox declare: "art-oriented programming needs to acknowledge the conditions of its own making – its poesis." (Cox et. al. 2004) The paper will argue that this statement formulates a media critique. As Florian Cramer has proposed, the GUI represents a media separation (of text/code and image) causing alienation to the computer's materiality/text. (Cramer 2003) The paper will then propose that object of art oriented programming – in an avant-garde perspective – must be to recuperate an interchangeability of data and processing. How? The particularity of Live Coding does not rely on the magical expression – but nor does it rely on the code/material/text itself (as one might say is the case in some code-art). It relies on the nature of code to do something – as if it was magic: in the performative aspect of the code. Relying on performance theory (Austin, Carlson) the paper will demonstrate how the computer in the Live Coding sessions is much more than mere mechanic performance. The paper will explain how code itself is staged as performative language (interchanging data and process) and further focus on the performance of code before an audience. Arguing that the performance excludes the audience (esoteric code), the paper will raise the question of whether listening to the code (at a non-textual level) may provide an embodied experience of data-processing. The performance can be regarded as a collective appreciation of the code artist as a musician using code as his/her instrument, interchanging data and process live.
Slsa 07 Materials Repository, 2007
Kode; Digital æstetik; Computermusik; Digital kultur; Code; Digital Aesthetics; Computer music; Digital culture
Main Research Area:
Society for Literature, Science and the Arts (SLSA).SLSA'07: CODE, 2007