Re: WiredNews:Webmasters, Not Old Masters
Wed, 29 Apr 98 10:34:34 -0800

Jonathan Prince wrote:

Something I have always worried about in regards to cyberart is the long
term existance of it. How long do electrons last anyway?

Great input Jonmathan. Thanks!

As a relative newcomer to digital art I have already bashed against this
particular wall. All of my first work was archived on MO and DAT. One of the MO
cartridges became corrupted. All data lost. I could probably still pull the
images off the DAT tape but we (my employer) no longer use DAT.

As mentioned elsewhere in this tread, the impermanence of the media is
complicated by the rapid evolution of technology. That a particular piece or
volume might survive will be rendered mute by future generations inability to
access the technology.

Preservation and longevity are not a new problems. Nor are they limited to
digital media. Last November a leaky roof took out all my college life drawing
work and the originals to my first published cartoons.

All art has age limits. Oils darken, watercolors fade. Sculptures are
crumbled by weight, water and heat. Only the most cherished, and perhaps,
randomly, the luckiest survive through great expense and care. Perhaps that is a
certain filter. A way in which history purifies and edits itself.

It seems fitting then, that our era, with such a massive increase in access
to and participation in the arts wold have a much finer filter.

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