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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Methodologies of Reuse in the Media Arts: Exploring Black Boxes, Tactics and Archaeologies

  • Author(s): Hertz, Garnet
  • et al.

This paper discusses three methodological themes that contemporary media artists employ while reusing obsolete information technology hardware as materials in their work. Methodologies include the exploration of the hidden “blackboxed” layer of technology by circuit bending artists like Reed Ghazala, the tactical use of technologies to bring social change by artists like Natalie Jeremijenko, and the archaeological use of outdated technologies to intervene in history by artists like Tom Jennings. These themes are presented as useful tools to construct a language of reuse which serves a valuable function in a culture increasingly confronted by electronic waste, and assists in critiquing assumptions of new media, obsolescence, and technological progress.

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