Reclaiming the Image: The Cross Breeding Project

By Jennifer Eiserman and Gerald Hushlak.

Published by The International Journal of Visual Design

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic Free Download

One billion users a month exchange pictures through social networking. The ubiquity of digital cameras on cell phones, distributed on the social networks, is a phenomenon with which we are all familiar. However, we propose that these same networks can be used to remediate the image, to bring it back into the realm of the “special”—of “art.” The Cross Breeding Project is connecting traditional artists with a contemporary digital artist (one of the co-authors) to create contemporary art. Using social networking technologies, creators are able to collaborate across the globe, assisting each other to make works of art. Their activities are being documented and posted in the public domain to provide broader dissemination and access to the work. In this paper, we describe how the Cross Breeding Project augments the growing blight of digital Internet accumulation with considered works of art. By appropriating the very technologies that created the visual flood as a tool for art making, we reclaim the Internet and social networking as a useful creative partner.

Keywords: Digital Art, Internet Art, Collaborative Art

The International Journal of Visual Design, Volume 7, Issue 3, November 2014, pp.11-29. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 3.567MB).

Dr. Jennifer Eiserman

Associate Professor, Department of Art, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada

I am an associate professor in the department of art at the University of Calgary. She has been exploring the nature of learning in young children for over 10 years. Her work is inspired by the pedagogy of the early childhood educators in Reggio Emilia. This practice understands young children to be competent learners, with problem solving and inquiry skills appropriate to their stage of human development. Learning what this means and how best to support their growth has been the work of her students and herself in the university classroom and within early childhood and elementary settings in Calgary, Alberta. She has learned from the children and now uses this constructivist, learner centred, negotiated, generative approach with post-secondary and post-graduate students. Her interest in the relationship between art and technology emerged in graduate study and has evolved as a result of what she perceives to be the necessity for those involved in the training of artists to provide a foundation in contemporary media to their students. Prior to entering academe, she worked in museums across Canada at a time when museum practice was just beginning to embrace the then emerging internet as a form of dissemination. This has led her to examine dissemination practices that are authentic to contemporary digital artforms, including online exhibitions and databases, Facebook, etc. A third area of interest is multiculturalism in art and art education. This definition includes issues with ethnicity and identity in art/art education as well dialogue between different academic disciplines.

Prof. Gerald Hushlak

Professor, Department of Art, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada