Sunday, March 22, 2009

"Digital Fine Art" is an OXYMORON!

Part of what makes fine art fine art lies in its creation process

First allow me to define oxymoron and fine art:

An oxymoron is basically a set of expressions with stark contradictions in the, usually two, terms. Commonly these oxymoron (paradoxes) serve a kind of rhetorical effect. Typical examples are:

  • act naturally
  • deafening silence
  • jumbo shrimp

Further definition of the word oxymoron:

Fine art's function (another oxymoron?) is mostly for aesthetics and concept, not utility.

Further definition on the words fine art:

The main problem with "digital fine art" (or "DFA"), for me, is in its creation process. Its artistic process is not real. You see, in the creation of fine art there are naturally accidents, albeit happy accidents, nonetheless things that happen that are not planned. These "not plannings" become part of the fine art itself! They are actually part of the process of what makes the art fine art. Now, within the digital realm you have tools like Ctrl-Z (or Command-Z on a Macintosh - for which most graphic designers use). This digital erase-erase kills the authenticity of the creation process, as it leaves NO trace.

So I'd suggest a new term for digital fine art. And that term would be...

...wait for it...

...graphic design!

Really, as soon as a photo or image hits the fully controlled realm of the computer it loses its fineness; it may even be a stretch to call it art, but I won't go out on that limb. Once images or objects can be moved around the page without a trace of their original existence, cloned, cut, pasted and Gaussian blurred, they become a process of design. This type of design, as in moving objects around to create an aesthetically pleasing environment, is more for utility.