I finished writing my book, Surfing con Satoshi. Arte. blockchain e NFT (Postmedia Books, Milano 2021) on May 4, 2021. Here you can find its full bibliography. Since then, I kept reading things on related topics, and saving links and references on a text file, sometimes with short captions that I found relevant. I will keep doing it here, in shared form. Feel free to send me useful readings and enjoy!
I’m proud and happy to announce the opening of For Your Eyes Only, a group exhibition I’ve been working on for the online platform Feral File. Featuring 13 international artists, the exhibition investigates the future of human visual culture amid the ubiquity of machine vision, and is scheduled to open on December 15, 2021 at 6 pm Los Angeles (11pm São Paulo, 3am Berlin Dec 16, 10am Shanghai Dec 16).
“For Your Eyes Only is a curatorial concept that aims to stimulate a conversation with contemporary artists about the future of human visual culture, and to investigate how they are working, in different ways, on the development of a visual language capable to resist the machine gaze and its implications, and to improve human visual communication—a post-AI, posthuman human vision. The exhibition includes images of diverse nature and origin, submitted as answers to the questions [of machine vision and the human gaze]. And yet, images can be used like words, but they are not words. They can be paraphrased, explained, and described, but no description will ever exhaust them. They can be used like answers, but they are rather proofs. They have been sent by a human to another human, each of them carrying much more than what I asked for. They are not delivering an answer, they are the answer. Try to read them, and you’ll soon find out that they have as many readings as readers. Enjoy, they’re for your eyes only.”
Participating artists: Morehshin Allahyari (U.S.), Sara Bezovšek (Slovenia), Émilie Brout & Maxime Marion (France), Anna Carreras (Spain), Petra Cortright (U.S.), Francoise Gamma (Spain), Theodoros Giannakis (Greece), Kamilia Kard (Italy), Jonas Lund (The Netherlands/Germany), Lev Manovich (U.S.), Petros Moris (Greece), Katja Novitskova (The Netherlands), Jon Rafman (U.S.)
Feral File is a one-of-a-kind online community and platform with an embedded marketplace – “a space for the new media community to co-create the future of art making, exhibiting, and collecting”. It has been conceived by artist Casey Reas and it’s built over the Bitmark blockchain. All works are presented in large editions at accessible prices, in order to be able to involve a larger audience of collectors.
Each of the 13 artworks will be released as an edition of 115, with each edition priced at $180 USD. There will be 50 sets made available at a price of $2,340 USD. Collectors can purchase the artworks via a group auction.
The exhibition is accompanied by a conversation between Domenico Quaranta and Antonio Somaini, professor in film, media, and visual culture theory at the Université Sorbonne Nouvelle – Paris 3.
The Italian magazine Civiltà delle macchine, published by Fondazione Leonardo, asked me to write an essay about NFT aesthetics. I accepted the challenge. The piece is now available in Italian and English on the paper version of the magazine, which is also available as a free download pdf (pdf download). With some minor changes, the English version of the article has been also minted on my Mirror blog.
Domenico Quaranta, ”L’estetica dei Non-Fungible Token”, in Civiltà delle macchine, n. 4, Dicembre 2021, pp. 66 – 71. Versione inglese “The Aesthetics of Non-Fungible Tokens”, pp. 89 – 91.
Nato dall’omonimo bando internazionale ispirato al ripensamento del rapporto tra uomo e ambiente, individuo e comunità, natura e cultura, il libro SUPERBLAST è il risultato editoriale di un processo sperimentale che vede la commissione del pensiero critico e lavoro artistico all’interno di un unico progetto. Ogni artista, infatti, è stato accompagnato da un autore che ha sviluppato un testo partendo da un particolare elemento dell’opera. Abbandonando la forma del tradizionale catalogo della mostra, il libro – curato e pubblicato da NERO – è il risultato del dialogo e dello scambio tra Bianca Felicori, Xenia Chiaramonte, Tommaso Guariento, Riccardo Papacci, Antonio Perazzi e Domenico Quaranta e Edoardo Aruta, Antonio Bermúdez Obregón, Federica Di Pietrantonio, IPERCOLLETTIVO, Oliviero Fiorenzi e Violette Maillard. La pubblicazione, che unisce materiale di ricerca, documentazione fotografica, narrazione ed esplorazione teorica, riflette l’inafferrabilità del tema indagato da SUPERBLAST, restituendo un’istantanea fluida dello stato della situazione attuale attraverso il pensiero di intellettuali, critici e artisti.
Io ho partecipato con un testo sulla videoinstallazione Not So Far Away, di Federica Di Pietrantonio. Nel testo rifletto sul potenziale immersivo delle simulazioni, e sullo spazio di gioco come manifestazione della wilderness contemporanea. Qui sotto ne propongo un breve estratto.
Domenico Quaranta, “The Same, But Not Quite the Same”, in VVAA, Superblast, Roma, NERO 2021, 136 pp., ISBN: 978-88-8056-148-4. pp. 46 – 58.
“What Information Wants” is a short piece I wrote for V-SPACE, a regular – curated by Gianluca Gramolazzi for the Italian magazine Made in Mind – with a focus on the relationship between digital and real. While the article is available both online and in the paper magazine, the selected images have been posted only on *Made in Mind’*s Instagram account. You can find them together on my Surfing with Satoshi Mirror blog.
Passierschein in die Zukunft / Ticket to the Future is an exhibition organized by the Kunstmuseum Bonn as part of beuys 2021, the series of events celebrating Joseph Beuys’ heritage, 100 years after his birth. The exhibition features works by Beuys, Katinka Bock, Christian Jankowski and Jon Rafman.
For the catalogue of the exhibition, I was asked to write a short text about Rafman’s contribution to the show, months before it was actually ready. I spoke with Jon, I read the script but, as the commissioned video work was in its very early stages, I focused my text on a story he often told in his artist talks, about a videogame that survived only in his personal memories. Eventually, that story became the subject of the final work, while the script I read remained an unreleased project, existing in the public – at least by now – only through the few lines at the very end of the text below.
Curating Digital Art – From Presenting And Collecting Digital Art To Networked Co-Curation is an extensive publication edited by Annet Dekker and published by Valiz along 2021, featuring a number of interviews with artists and curators. I’ve been included with an old interview discussing medium based definitions, online / offline exhibitions, open source, the future of museums, and my 2011 exhibition Collect the WWWorld. The Artist as Archivist in the Digital Age (catalogue still available here).
Before the summer, I’ve been interviewed by the Italian magazine Inside Art on topics related to my fresh book, Surfing con Satoshi. Arte, blockchain e NFT (Postmediabooks, Milano 2021). The interview is now available in printed form, in Italian and English (pdf scan here). Below, I’m releasing the full original text file for the sake of archiving.
Francesco Angelucci, Fabrizia Carabelli, “In the Crypto Jungle”, in Inside Art, Issue 122, July 2021, pp. 58 – 67.
Qualche settimana fa NOT ha pubblicato un paio di estratti in italiano dal volume Surfing con Satoshi. Arte, blockchain e NFT (Postmedia Books, Milano 2021), con un breve cappello introduttivo. Lo trovate qui:
Domenico Quaranta, “NFT changed my life! La blockchain sta reinventando il futuro?”, in NOT, 6 ottobre 2021.
“Daydream. Segregation from Reality and Stream of Consciousness in Virtual Reality” is an essay I wrote for the catalogue of the exhibition Resonant Realities, curated by Tina Sauerländer. The catalogue is available for free download from this link.
Taking off from an amazing installation by MSHR, I wrote about how virtual reality devices can possible restore a form of immersion and aesthetic experience that is no longer possible, or extremely rare, in reality, where we are flooded by constant flows of information and distracted by the “ever-present assault of simultaneous impulses and commands” (Rushkoff, 2013). In this context, the particular form of immersivity that virtual reality makes possible, especially when mediated by VR headsets, can offer a less distracted aesthetic experience and encourage daydreaming.
If you are interested, you can either read the full text after the break or download the pdf. Enjoy!
Domenico Quaranta, “Daydream. Segregation from Reality and Stream of Consciousness in Virtual Reality”, in Tina Sauerländer (Ed.), Resonant Realities, exhibition catalogue, Deutsche Creditbank AG, Berlin 2021, pp. 28 – 33