Sculpture in the Augmented Field (working title)

Projekt: Dissertationsprojekt



Digital technologies now constitute a powerful assemblage and have deeply impacted artistic object-making. My interdisciplinary PhD research at the crossroads of art history and technology examines how digital technologies are configuring the understanding of the sculptural.

The artists Morehshin Allahyari, Alice Channer and Crispin Sterling use digital technologies as means of artistic production, as material resources and as prompts for reflections on technology’s impact on the human and non-human body. In close dialogue with their works, the goal of this study is to showcase how the sculptural categories plasticity, corporeality and monumentality have been altered by the impact of the digital. Each section focuses on one artistic practice. Selected works are systematically positioned in art historical, technological and philosophical contexts.

A number of conceptual vocabularies have been coined to describe the dynamics of digital objects in virtual and screen-based surroundings. Art history, however, pays little attention to sculptural objects that have been conceived using digital and prototyping technology. My study develops plasticity, corporeality and monumentality as categories that allow to modulate the known scales of analysis employed by discourses on ‘digital’ as well as ‘sculptural’ objects differently.

How are the digital and the physical, the material and immaterial, are bound together in the artists’ work? How do these relationships built on and transform existing discourses on plasticity, corporeality and monumentality? How do these altered regimes reflect back at us, at the way our body enters the work and the materiality used to convey form?

By developing new syntaxes for the sculptural, this study contributes to an understanding of our complex ‘technological condition’ (Erich Hörl 2011).
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