Re: history of art online

Lile Elam ((no email))
Tue, 9 Dec 1997 17:29:44 -0800 (PST)

Hi Sakinah,

Art has been on the Internet in some form since it was started.
Before the web, art was shared via newsgroups and ftp sites.
Ascii art was a favorite and was shared via email as well before
email could support attached image files.

One of the major art collectives that existed on the Internet
before the web started was Artists would collaberate
creating works by taking each other's art and adding to it or
manipulating the art to creat a new work. You might go check
them out. See:

When the web came into being, artists started showing their
works using html so that people could see their art by using
a web browser. There weren't very many works of art available
via the web at first but as time passed, this changed.

Our site, Art on the Net (, was started in June of 1994,
about 8 months after Mosaic (one of the first browsers) was introduced.
We worked on helping artists learn about the Internet and web and
computers and then helped them to show their work via the web. Artists
here curate and maintain their own spaces. Other artists learned from
our site and started their own sites which brought more art to the
Internet. See:

Today there is alot of art on the web. Artists show their own works
and galleries and museums show works of many artists via the web.
There are now also alot of artist collectives like on the web
where artists go to show their works. It's pretty exciting to see and
the exposure to so much art helps artists to create new and exciting works.
You might want to go see our archive to see artists talking
about such things. See:

It would be interesting to see a slice of time when the web was
just getting started so that you could get a feel for what the web
was like then. Like going to a musium to see a documentary of the
the early industrial age... It was so new and exciting and empowering
for the individual artist. Artists could obtain world wide exposure to
their work for very little cost. And artist could see other artists
works, and communicate.

Hopefully the above will help you in your quest. You might also want to
check out Web History sites via at:

where you will find more info about the history of the Web.


and fellow artist

> Date: Sun, 7 Dec 1997 17:42:00 -0800 (PST)
> From: Sakinah Muhammad <>
> Subject: history of art online
> To:
> Dear Artnet,
> I am a student of art who is curious about the start of art online.
> Considering you all were at the beginning of art online, I was
> wondering if you knew where it really began as far as art coming to
> the internet.
> Thank you.
> Sakinah