Situating Post Internet


As Jacob said, “There is no way around it, any serious art person needs to have an opinion on Post-Internet Art.” Mine has been evolving a bit along the years, from this early take written in Italian for Flash Art, to my answers to the Art Post-Internet questionnaire, to the essay I wrote for the Megarave – Metarave exhibition at Kunsthaus Langenthal. The Media Art festival in Rome gave me the chance to expand and update it a little bit.

I just uploaded my contribution on for you guys. However, you are kindly invited to buy the book, which provides you access to essays by Sean Cubitt, Oliver Grau, Alfonso Molina, Valentino Catricalà, Alessandro Amaducci among others for just 15 €. Despite the description on the website, it’s proofread English. Enjoy!

Domenico Quaranta, “Situating Post Internet”, in Valentino Catricalà (Ed), Media Art. Towards a New Definition of Arts in the Age of Technology, Gli Ori, Pistoia 2015. English, 184 pp, ISBN 978- 88-7336-564-8

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My “Art for Tomorrow” Talk

From Primary to Mediated Experience – and Back

Domenico Quaranta

Your Excellency, Your Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen, thank you.

Today I’d like to briefly present you my point of view on the issue “Primary vs Mediated experience” as a contemporary art curator with a focus on the internet as a place for art. But before starting my talk, I’d like to ask you to do something for me. You all may have a networked device hidden somewhere. If you do, please take it off, open your browser, and Google “Rafael Rozendaal”, and select Then click on “websites” in the menu and click on the most fancy image. What you are now experiencing is an example of internet art. Not a reproduction of an artwork – that’s the real thing. There, on your screen.

Although it is mostly perceived today as a place of mediated experience of art, the internet has been an amazing context of primary art experiences since its early years. I should better say an “unprecedented place” of primary art experiences, because of its unique overlap between a public and a private dimension: what happens online takes place simultaneously out there, in a public, shared environment; and in the very private space of your screen.

This is the first homepage of, a web project launched in 1994 by a Belgian / Dutch couple (Joan Heemskerk and Dirk Paesmans), and one of the absolute masterpieces of web based art. In a 1997 interview, they declared:

“When a viewer looks at our work, we are inside his computer. There is this hacker slogan: “We love your computer.” We also get inside people’s computers. And we are honored to be in somebody’s computer. You are very close to a person when you are on his desktop. I think the computer is a device to get into someone’s mind.”

This form of primary online experience is still possible today, and this is one of the ways in which the internet is not replacing, but working alongside the museum (and one of the places where the museum has to put its foundations). So, if I can give my two cents to the Qatari authorities, here we go. You found an amazing architect to build your museum. Now, please find an amazing architect to build your museum website. And when you got it, ask artists to do artworks for it. It would be a great way to involve a different kind of audience, on a different level.

With the development of Web 2.0, however, the web evolved more into a mirror of reality than a world onto itself. Since the early 2000s, a new generation of artists realized it, and started collecting web content and provocatively valuing mediated experience more than first hand experience. Seth Price famously asked in Dispersion (2002 – ):

“Does one have an obligation to view the work first-hand? What happens when a more intimate, thoughtful, and enduring understanding comes from mediated discussions of an exhibition, rather than from a direct experience of the work?”

Interestingly, the question mark disappears in the following statements:

I enjoy interpretations and mediated experiences: books about books, exhibition catalogs, interpretations of films. Some of my favorite artworks and movies have only been described to me.Oliver Laric 2010

mediated experience is by far the most accessible version of a work, and this in itself is important. Art has long been dominated by individuals and institutions who want to control the distribution of imagesArtie Vierkant 2013

I like the direct experience of documentation, because I love the Internet. This is where I primarily experience art.Parker Ito 2013

What today is called Post-Internet art is based on these premises. Expanding on the same concepts the Link Art Center, the organization I co-funded in 2011, is about to launch 6PM Your Local Time, a platform project where artists, institutions and galleries from different cities and countries open together and document their events on social networks under the same hashtag, as if it was a single event. Check it out at

We ran a test event in London in November 2014, and I realized something that now looks pretty obvious to me: that the more we experience mediation, the more we realize the importance of primary experiences. If you don’t believe me, try virtual sex.

Museums will still be important in the future, after all; and the internet will become the best way to get there.

Thank you very much for your attention.

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Art for Tomorrow


I’ve been invited to speak at the Art for Tomorrow conference, organized by the International New York Times in Doha, Qatar, from March 14 to 16, 2015. I will be part of “The Art of the Digital 2: The Gallery and the Audience” panel, moderated by Jean-Paul Engelen, Director of Public Art Programs at Qatar Museums, and taking place on Sunday 15 in the afternoon; and I will share the stage with people I always regarded as superheroes, including Olafur Eliasson, Rem Koolhaas, Jeff Koons, Jean Nouvel, Hans Ulrich Obrist. More info on the conference website:

I will schedule a post for Sunday afternoon, sharing with you my two cents on the topic of the relationship between primary and mediated experience. Stay tuned (and wish me good luck :-)

Image above is: Joshua Citarella, Compression Artifacts, 2013

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Someone Next Door’s Fucking to One of My Songs


… well, the article I published on the December 2014 issue of Artpulse Magazine is actually (and dumbly) titled “Response”, but I guess the title above (stolen from a lyric by Regina Spector) is better to get your attention and make you download it. Featuring Jon Rafman, Matthias Fritsch, Nick Briz, David Horvitz, Eva and Franco Mattes and the Jogging.

The same issue of the magazine also features a comprehensive survey on “High Art vs. Pop Culture”, that you can read online here. Yours truly contributed with a couple of quotes, but if you are really having a boring Saturday we can read the full interview after the break. Questions by Paco Barragán

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Possible Futures – art, museums and digital archives


Back in 2011 I was invited, together with an amazing selection of speakers, to take part in an international symposium on art and digital archives at the FAU / USP University in São Paulo, Brazil. Video documentation of all the talks is still avalable on Vimeo. I delivered a talk on how copying and downloading can effectively help in preserving digital works of art, presenting Share Your Sorrow as a case study. After three years of hard work on the papers, wonder women Giselle Beiguelman and Ana Gonçalves Magalhães just released a luxurious, 648 pages bilingual book (English-Portuguese) also available in ebook form. Full press release and a list of bookstores where you can find it after the jump. Continue reading

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Nadja at Hypersalon, Miami


I’ve been invited, together with other curators, to submit a selection of moving images for Hypersalon, a curatorial project set up by TRANSFER and XPO GALLERY in partnership with HYPERALLERGIC (South Beach, Miami, December 1 – 7, 2014). By appointment, viewers may select a curatorial from the exhibition playlist to view the works.

My selection is called Nadja, and features works by Alterazioni Video, Cécile B. Evans, Francoise Gamma, Faith Holland, Kamilia Kard, Claudia Maté, Eva and Franco Mattes, Rosa Menkman and Lorna Mills. Curatorial statement and full list of artworks after the break. Continue reading

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Aksioma is finally making its beautiful brochure series – called Postscriptum – available online in free download on Issuu and in print-on-demand on Lulu. It features a few texts of mine, including this one about Jill Magid’s work, that is still one of my favs. Enjoy!

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6 PM YOUR LOCAL TIME – the UK beta test

Schermata 2014-11-21 alle 21.37.25

“Imagine an art event, made of many independent events all around the world, kept together by a single corporate image and by documentation”. It took us almost two years to fine tune this first, somehow confused but already ambitious idea formulated by Fabio with a flash in his eyes, and turn it into a project. Two years, the enthusiasm of our partners in the “Masters & Servers” adventure, and the productive support of Abandon Normal Devices and Gummy Industries. Tomorrow we will test it in London, with the help of a wonderful shortlist of participants. And then we will start working on the first event without borders, that will take place in July 2015. And then…
Ok, you got it: feel free to join us tomorrow, at Furtherfield Commons in Finsbury Park, London, or at At 6.00 PM, of course.

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Maurizio Cattelan: The Art of Theft


I’m happy to announce that a revised version of my 2012 article “When an Image Becomes a Work: Prolegomena to Cattelan’s Iconology” will be available soon on the pages of the German photography magazine STREULICHT. ISSUE N°5  PHOTOGRAPHY-TABOO of  STREULICHT MAGAZINE is going to be released @ OstLicht. Galerie für Fotografie in Vienna on Thursday 6th of November from 7pm – 10pm. A preview will be soon available on the magazine’s Issuu account.

Domenico Quaranta, “Latte Balia: Maurizio Cattelan – The Art of Theft”, in Streulicht Magazine, Issue 5 (Photography-Taboo), November 2014.

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Unoriginal Genius at Carroll / Fletcher, London

Kim Asendorf, 100.000.000 Stolen Pixels (Version 1), 14.12.2010
Kim Asendorf, 100.000.000 Stolen Pixels (Version 1), 14.12.2010

On Thursday, I will be in London for the private view of Unoriginal Genius, the group show I curated for the Carroll / Fletcher Project Space (from 31 October to 22 November 2014). The show includes works by Kim AsendorfEnrico BocciolettiEmilie Brout & Maxime MarionCaroline DelieutrazRoberto FassoneEmilie Gervais & Felix Magal, Yung JakeSara LudyJonas LundLorna MillsRyder RippsEvan RothKrystal SouthHarm Van Den Dorpel. Two highlights: on October 30, Roberto Fassone will perform the first episode of JEG ER ENORME JæVLER; and Jonas Lund will re-activate Return of Investment (premiered at Link Cabinet back in April) for the exhibition, allowing web users to place ads that will be seen on the website, at the gallery space and by unaware passers-by, since the piece will be installed on the gallery window. I hope to see you there! Full press release after the break

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Art and the Internet 1994 – 2014

megarave metarave

Earlier this year I was invited to write a text for the catalogue of the exhibition Megarave – Metarave, that took place at Kunsthaus Langenthal (August 28 – November 16, 2014) and WallRiss Fribourg (September 6 – November 1, 2014). The catalogue, designed by Huber / Sterzinger and distributed by les presses du réel, is now out, and can be ordered here.

My text, “Art and the Internet 1994 – 2014. Notes and comments”, is an humble attempt – obviously doomed to failure – to select some recent developments in net-related art practices, and to compare them to what was happening in the mid nineties. You can read a couple of chapters after the break.

Domenico Quaranta, “Art and the Internet 1994 – 2014. Notes and comments”, pp. 37 – 46, in Megarave – Metarave, exhibition catalogue, Kunsthaus Langenthal – WallRiss Fribourg, 2014. 152 pp, 33 €, English / German / French, ISBN 978-3-905817-59-1

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Generazione critica


Domani sarò a Modena per tenere un intervento nell’ambito di “Generazione critica”, il ciclo curato da Luca Panaro per Metronom. Fischieranno le orecchie a Eva & Franco Mattes, Constant Dullaart e James Bridle. A seguire l’abstract del mio intervento, intitolato: Un’opzione del menù. Appunti sulla fotografia post digitale.

“Sarà una banalità, ma vale la pena enunciarla: chiunque si confronti, oggi, con la fotografia deve prendere atto che quest’ultima non è più, ormai da qualche anno, un artefatto con una materialità sua propria, ma è, prima di qualsiasi altra cosa, un file su un computer. Questo apre la strada a innumerevoli conseguenze, una delle quali è che la fotografia non è più un linguaggio autonomo, ma un’opzione fra le tante all’interno del confuso “metamedium” digitale. Preso atto di questo, si può anche accantonare l’argomento e continuare a fotografare, ma in questo intervento vorrei soffermarmi su alcuni artisti che, partendo da questo punto di svolta, provano a interrogarsi su cosa sia la fotografia oggi e su come si relazioni con il reale. I lavori di alcuni artisti offriranno lo spunto per riflettere su questioni chiave della fotografia contemporanea: la postproduzione, la sovrabbondanza del fotografico, la fotografia come dispositivo sociale.”

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Art Post-Internet

Pages from art_post_internet_19

Back in August, I’ve been invited by Karen Archey to reply to a questionnaire for the upcoming Art Post Internet exhibition catalogue, to be released as a free download pdf. The book is out, available on a website that automatically adds notes about the owner (location, ip address, time of the download) to the first page of the book. I own copy #19 and, for the sake of e-book collecting, copy #99 and #100 :-) My replies are also available here in full.

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A testa in giù


Sabato 4 ottobre, nella cornice del festival Supernova, si tiene al cinema Nuovo Eden di Brescia una mostra dei lavori degli studenti del corso di Fotografia digitale che ho tenuto presso l’Accademia Santa Giulia con Alessandro Mancassola. Partecipano Milena Berta, Viviana Bertanza, Lidia Borella, Angelica Consoli, Rita Duchi, Nicola Fornoni, Annalisa Gregorio, Arianna Zannoni, Elisa Rachele Zanotti e Giulia Zappa, e i loro lavori non sono affatto male. Se siete a Brescia, fateci un salto. Qui il comunicato stampa

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The MINI Museum has a new website and accepts submissions!


Remember the MINI Museum? The museum in a box with a digital frame as display and a USB pen drive as storage launched in 2010, when I handed it over to London based artist Paul B. Davis; and since then it traveled from node to node around a network of artists, collecting and displaying 13 artworks. It is still around, traveling sometimes fast, more often slowly, disappearing for months and resurrecting unexpectedly, as happened recently in Mainland China. A behavior inherent in the idea of the traveling physical object, but that doesn’t match with the expectations of an increasing number of artists interested in dealing with it. To respond to these expectations, the Link Art Center launched a new website, inviting artist from all over the world to donate works to the MINI Museum collection. If you want to know more, just follow the link…

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