(edited by Katharina Dohm, Heinz Stahlhut, Max Hollein and Guido Magnaguagno) – Kunstmaschinen Maschinenkunst, Art Machines Machines Art

Art Machines Machine Art

book – Kehrer Verlag – ISBN 9783939583400

Art Machines Machine Art photo set

The autonomous physical production made by a machine has often been perceived as “magic”. The perception that a non-organic entity would produce something “new”, when not “original” has already been vastly debated, but the fascination of the results is still a matter of fact, underlying some inscrutable “intelligence”. Basically this kind of machines are moving (=giving a sign of life), receiving some input (=processing data) and producing an output (=assembling live something new). This is a potentially endless loop, further explored by artists, often focusing on how to make the output unpredictable. Jean Tinguely is in this sense the ancestor of the modern “automatique” involving everyday objects in a new functional/useless structure. The (surprising) mechanisms all of a sudden generate sense. How much this sense can be “original” it’s an open question, starting a controversial debate about the “uniqueness” of the work of art. The curators of “Art Machines Machines Art” (that took place at the Schirn Kunsthalle in Frankfurt) elegantly escaped this unimportant question, claiming that their choices were done taking care of the artworks “processual” character. The latter can be found in every exhibited artwork from automatic drawing machines to the beautiful alien polyethylene sculptures produced by Roxy Paine “Scumak no.2 (Auto Sculture Maker)”. Virtually this sense has been produced by almost every piece of software art, that can be easily considered as a virtual machine. Software based artworks, indeed, implement a different level, where the conceptual approach to the machine construction is abstracted in code. This is evident in the included Miltos Manetas “Jacksonpollock.org”, or Lia’s “I said if“, till Cornelia Sollfrank’s “Net Art Generator” abstract art machine, one of the few (generative) software that was able to shake the concept of authorship up.