2001 [counter-directional arrows] 2006

Jason Kottke: "Nasty Nets used CSS positioning to 'embed' one YouTube video into another. 'Be sure to hit "play" on both YouTubes.' Reminds me of the animated GIF mashups (link)."

Hello, content? Who cares about CSS positioning?

As Theodor Adorno described the work: "An exquisite and in some ways exquisitely awful play of symmetries. The 1968 'state of the art' trip sequence from 2001: A Space Odyssey, its widescreen magnificence reduced to YouTube size, serves as a continuously running background to a smaller YouTube nested within its boundaries. The foreground film consists of a simple but somewhat relentless montage of photos made by teenagers playing with basic iPhoto effects, while Queen chugs along on the soundtrack.

"The split screen, mirror image appears in both foreground and background: one limns a cleavage in space-time, expansive, landscape-embracing, the other barrages the viewer with portrait grotesqueries, cartoonish Francis Bacon-like horrors caused by flipping selected facial features. Yet there are 'crossover points' where the faces widen and flatten into topographic arrays and the Kubrick film jumps to contorted portrait closeups of Keir Dullea's agonized face.

"The background clip has pretentions to high culture with its doom-laden Ligeti score and references to Modernist abstraction yet it is ultimately still a mass market popcorn movie. The teens' use of iPhoto exploits the most readily available computer imaging gimmicks such as 'spherizing' but is actually superior in its quick, intuitive sense of play to the ponderous 'high art' uses of the exact same tools by artists such as Lucas Samaras. As above so below, art mirrors the street and vice versa."

Update: I changed the title of this post because it was fuX0ring my RSS feed. I really, really, really hate the inflexibility of RSS and wish people would just bookmark me like in the old days.

- tom moody 1-30-2007 10:00 am

Aha, so well put Theo! someone else had this equally brilliant thing to say about it (links on nnets comments):

"You can pretty much layer anything on top of anything with a little bit of CSS magic. The 2 videos chosen are pretty lame. I would have chosen a sexy girl video on the background with a sexy girl video on the foreground. Oh well. The world is not perfect."

a little bugged..css magic wasnt quite what i was going for ;[
- guthrie (guest) 1-31-2007 1:15 am

it's interesting how internet-based artwork provides an oversimplified basis for understanding complex work...kottke has linked to NN before but I wonder what interests him

There are some interesting examples of Digg stumbling upon net art, with similar "css magic"-like results (Jodi, 53os, etc.) (Michael Bell-Smith has a bunch of these on his del.icio.us)
- Jeff S (guest) 1-31-2007 5:49 am

They're the apple of my eye(s).
- program 17304bxfl (guest) 1-31-2007 6:50 am

The work itself interests Kottke, but he's basically running a business, so he choses an angle that he thinks will maximize links. I guess it's a double edge sword because you want the work to be viewed by people, and that helps facilitate that. But then what good is it, if the only thing any one gets out of it is that you can use CSS to embed youtube videos into each other?
- Paddy Johnson 2-02-2007 5:53 am

Is this the same Theodor Adorno that died in 1969 or so or are your quotation marks incorrect?
- HAL9000 (guest) 2-03-2007 12:19 am

Adorno now exists as packets of photons recovered from the vacuum by Gai, the Rimstalker or World Maker (a deity mostly indifferent to our existence--long story), and the late cultural theorist comments occasionally on this blog. He regrets being so cranky about technology and popular art forms during his corporeal life, so his critical specialty now is matters combining the two. So far only I have been able to "channel" him--it's kind of a coup.
- tom moody 2-03-2007 12:45 am

Tahnks for the reification & keep up the good werke but don't sprain your antennae.
- HAL (guest) 2-06-2007 1:29 am

Well, there is no real internet art critique. Because artists are supposed to do it themselves. The highest form of internet art critique is an unedited interview with the artist. In the 1990s some artists even liked it because they thought it would give them more artistic freedom and control over their message.

But in fact it is just a very cheap way to write books.

So, Tom, thanks, and keep up writing critique on internet pieces!
- drx (guest) 2-11-2007 12:29 pm

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