Rhizome presents an exhibition reflecting on the process of narrating archives and histories of online artistic practice.
Eduardo Kac, Reabracadabra, 1985 (reconstruction). Animated poem for Videotexto. Courtesy the artist
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“The Art Happens Here: Net Art’s Archival Poetics” will feature sixteen works from throughout net art history, showcasing a wide range of forms—websites, software, sculpture, graphics, books, and merchandise—while offering a space for considering the internet as social process, material infrastructure, and lived experience. The works on view have been selected from “Net Art Anthology,” Rhizome’s major online exhibition featuring one hundred works that sketch a possible canon for net art. Presented online at anthology.rhizome.org, “Net Art Anthology” represents a major archival effort, leveraging Rhizome’s unique expertise in the history of network culture and the display and preservation of born-digital artworks. Open-ended, performative, and ephemeral, artworks that circulate on and respond to the internet often survive only as fragments and traces, offering glimpses of a larger networked context that can never be fully grasped.
Rhizome champions born-digital art and culture through commissions, exhibitions, digital preservation, and software development. Founded by artist Mark Tribe as a listserv that included some of the first artists to work online, Rhizome has played an integral role in the history of contemporary art engaged with digital technologies and the internet. Since 2003, Rhizome has been an affiliate in residence at the New Museum.
This exhibition is curated by Michael Connor, Artistic Director, Rhizome, with Aria Dean, Assistant Curator. The exhibition will be accompanied by a major catalogue featuring critical and historical essays by artists, curators, and theorists alongside hundreds of archival images from the history of net art.