Ways Of Something (2014)
Stills: Eva Papamargariti, Tristan Stevens, Erica Lapadat-Janzen
Episode 2, minute #3 by Gaby Cepeda
Curator/artist Lorna Mills:
“I encouraged the artists to update or contradict the material. If we erred, I wanted to err on the side of exuberance, and if it ended up a total clusterfuck, I’d be delighted with that too.”
58 web-based artists participated in this project.
“Ways of Something”, is a contemporary remake of John Berger’s BBC documentary, “Ways of Seeing” (1972). Commissioned by The One Minutes, at the Sandberg institute in Amsterdam and compiled by Lorna Mills, the project consists of one-minute videos by fifty eight web-based artists who commonly work with 3D rendering, gifs, film remix, webcam performances, and websites to describe the cacophonous conditions of artmaking after the internet.
The screening at TRANSFER Gallery is based on the first two episodes of a four-part series of thirty-minute films created by art theorist John Berger and produced by Mike Dibb. In the original episode one, voice-of-God narration over iconic European paintings offer a careful dissection of traditional “fine art” media and the way society has come to understand them as art. The second episode is a contentious and sometimes maddening look at the female nude in the western tradition.
The combined work is, in effect, art about art about television about the internet.
Featuring formal, figural and kitsch practices to videomaking, “Ways of Something” is constituted by aesthetically diverse interpretations of Berger’s ideas on looking at art after the introduction of digital media and the internet. Ultimately, it turns the highbrow nature of the original documentary film into a exuberant and disjointed series on how artists understand art today.