David Gryn blog

The artwork is a digital file, yes by Pau Waelder – a new Foreword for Daata Editions

In Art Basel, Art Video, Collecting, Collector, Daata, Daata Editions, daataeditions, David Gryn, NADA, Pau Waelder, Uncategorized, Video, Video Art on 16/11/2018 at 11:26 am

pau-waelder-2016-BN

The artwork is a digital file, yes

by Pau Waelder

A new Foreword for Daata Editions

When considering how to collect digital art, we come across two preconceptions: what an artwork must be and what digital files are worth. First, it is commonly assumed that an artwork is an object with unique attributes, original, and irreplaceable. The object routinely goes from the artist’s studio to the gallery, where it is acquired by a collector. There is no doubt that it is always the same object that trades hands, and it is finally the collector who decides where the artwork is placed and who has access to it. Conceptual and performance art has challenged this notion again and again, but the artwork always finds its way into the market and the collector’s home in the form of a more or less stable object. Thus, if an artwork (a) is not an object, (b) can be copied, (c) can be accessed or experienced beyond the control of its owner(s), and/or (c) requires a computer, software and display to be at all perceivable, some may find it “difficult,” “challenging,” or even not worth collecting. This relates to the second preconception.

Our computers, tablets and smartphones are constantly storing digital files. Most of them we have created ourselves, others we have downloaded for free or for a fee. They fill the device’s storage space and force us to either copy them to other devices, store them in the cloud or delete them. Digital files are therefore constantly moved around, copied and erased, both a necessity and a burden. In most cases, we don’t know what to do with them, they just linger in folders and hidden directories until detected by a cleanup app or simply obliterated when the device that stores them reaches the end of its service life. Digital files, therefore, tend to be considered expendable in the sense that there should always be another copy somewhere. In fact, a growing segment of the entertainment industry relies on selling access to content on digital files that we temporarily store in our devices and swiftly remove when we are done watching the film, tv series, or documentary; listening to the song or podcast; reading the book, graphic novel or magazine. Many times, the file is not even downloaded, it is streamed and thus disappears the moment it is not used anymore, without leaving a trace. When we pay for the content, we either rely on it being safely stored by the provider and always conveniently accessible or we just want to experience it and never care what happens to it afterwards, because there will always be more, newer content ready to be clicked on.

My point is that artworks and digital files seem to be incompatible, due to how we tend to conceive artworks and our daily experience with digital files. Artworks are forever, digital files are ephemeral. Artworks are unique objects, digital files are immaterial worthless copies. However, an artwork does not need to be an object. In fact, a painting is not an object, it is an image that becomes a physical object because the pigment needs to be placed on a surface and canvases make it easier than walls to create, move around and sell the images. An artwork created in a digital format (a video, sound, jpeg, gif, 3D animation, browser-based piece or what have you) is not only always a copy but also the result of a software interpreting a file on a certain display, so every time it is experienced it turns out to be, in a way, a unique performance. Of course, one has to make sure that the software works with the file and that the display shows the piece as intended, but that’s all part of the artwork being something other than a static, physical object –which would nevertheless require certain conditions of placement, lighting, humidity and so forth. Finally, the artwork may be available to others even if it is safely at home and a certificate of authenticity, kept in the safe, states that no one else owns it. Artworks have a life of their own as they are viewed in exhibitions, reproduced in photographs and videos, distributed in magazines, books and blogs. Most of the art we know and love, we have never owned and will never own – even big collectors know and love much more art than they have bought. A large part of that art we have seen through reproductions, mostly on screens. It is still part of us, and for those who were lucky, smart or powerful enough to buy it, the more people who feel that the artwork is part of them, the better. For what good is it to own something that no one else knows about, that none can appreciate, that cannot be shared?

Digital art allows us to own and at the same time share an artwork – not only its reproduction. This can raise some eyebrows and insecurities. It may be argued that if the artwork is available elsewhere or that it can be copied, it loses its value. However, in addition to what I have already stated about the nature of a digital file, let us consider what Nelson Goodman found to be the difference between an original artwork and a forgery: its history of production. A digital artwork that has been purchased from a reputable source with a valid registry of authenticity has a history of production that can be established from the artist to the collector. No matter how many copies of the artwork may circulate, only the collector – or collectors if the artwork is editioned– can claim ownership and, more importantly, become part of the history of the artwork. This is not just provenance, which will matter to the next owner, but an active involvement in the existence of the artwork, its relevance and also in supporting the work of the artist. This is where Daata Editions comes in. Daata commissions art that is sold through its online platform in limited editions. The artists are paid to produce artworks that anyone can buy with a few clicks. The buyer can download the artwork and store it in her computer, on the cloud, wherever, make copies and display them on any device she owns. The rest of us can see the same artwork – watermarked – on the platform, appreciate it, maybe feel the urge to own it too. But we won’t be part of the artwork’s history, only those who bought it do. And those who are lucky or smart enough get the first edition.

Pau Waelder is a curator, writer and researcher whose work focuses on contemporary art and new media.

https://daata-editions.com/

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Notes for Bytes for Sale – Talk in Helsinki

In Bytes for Sale, Daata, Daata Editions, daataeditions, David Gryn, Digital, digital art, Helsinki, Kiasma, Uncategorized on 09/11/2018 at 5:24 pm
Screenshot 2018-11-06 at 10.58.04.png

Ollie Dook, Animal Stories, Daata Editions

 

Bytes for Sale

A talk by

David Gryn, Daata Editions

At Kiasma, Helsinki

Organised by AV-arkki http://www.av-arkki.fi/

Daata – what is it:

Daata is a commissioning platform ostensibly for artists who work with digital mediums, primarily video and sound. It exhibits and distributes online and shows the work world wide in collaboration with art fairs, galleries and museums. We have over 70 artists online and over 400 artworks.

Daata emerged from my many years focussing on showing artists moving image in the context of the cinema and leading art fairs worldwide – and realising that more needed to be done to support artists and to galvanise a somewhat reticent market place. It is designed as ‘a’ model, hopefully one of many and its aims are to be empowering (to artists, the medium, audiences etc).

https://daata-editions.com/

This talk can be summed up in two words:

PAY ARTISTS

But I was asked to speak for 40 minutes so here goes:

Is there a digital art market – in a nutshell ‘no’, but below – I will elaborate.

Community, Collaboration, Chemistries

It is a people business

I have seen many people come and go – since setting up Daata.

But the people who really care about empowerment, mutual support and collaboration survive.

Many people approach Daata to collaborate. They want to rub shoulders with the ‘cool’, with digital. They also often want Free content.

They have a unique business plan to raise millions and make billions from a dot com or major retail enterprise.

The collaborators often want us to promote their wares – but not much or nothing in return.

These are not community builders.

It is time for comprehensive unity.

This isn’t really a new thought. As I have been doing something like this for almost 20 years. Starting off with mostly analogue materials, and over time transmogrifying into digital process.

I have always dwelled on how to increase the audience/market position and the profile of digital media and this is definitely not new to me.

I have observed that the use and display of analogue or digital media at international art fairs has declined – where now you will see almost none. This is due to the fact that the the art market does not know what to do with digital media, how to sell or display digital media.

The irony is that most artists touch on digital media. Most galleries sell via digital platforms. Most museums and galleries and artists communicate via digital marketing and information.

They update their systems every so often and redesign and so on. But when you talk to Museums about collecting digital media – they are fearful, controlling, and nervous about how to protect, display, archive, sustain digital media over the next 100 years.

My simple logic is always – if I gave a Museum a Picasso or indeed a shredded Banksy – they will find a way to do all the above. Because they value it and believe in its extrinsic and intrinsic worth. 10 years ago I would not have been having the same regular conversations about VR/AR/Blockchain – but somehow the museum wants the understanding of longevity with digital mediums that absolutely no one else can know or control. 

There are those who are artists, gallerist, curators, collectors and they often purport to being really interested in collaborating – but when it gets down to it – they are mostly interested (either buy necessity or by design) in rubbing shoulders with the wealthy, the big art brands, the big sponsors, the famous artists, the big dinners etc

In working with Art Fairs over many years – I have seen a trait. They want to work with me/us to empower the medium, galleries and artists and always start off on a really great moral crusade/position. Then when it gets nearer to the actual fair – there is a lot of forgetting and not bothering that goes on. Reason: it isn’t the main feature, it doesn’t bring revenue, and audience may not connect. Art fairs missions are get galleries to pay and wealthy audiences in to buy and general public to buy tickets.

A market thrives on competition and mutual interdependence of the many. And we need to face a different joined-up approach to create audience interest and market power.

Artist relationships and support

It is a very human business and my role is to find best outcomes for the artist and those that support them too. This works best when we all collaborate best. The artists who are a delight to work with are those that you continue to work with and that works both ways. Bad reputations stick.

Control, dominance and power:

Those with hyper success and market dominance do well and survive – but that is the very extreme – the names we all know – not all artists, curators, gallerists are cut out to run multi national corporations.

Entities entering the digital space want this, the archaic market place wants this, it is a barrier to greater influence.

This is the way: so many entities want to be the market leader or power broker or in fact – there is only one solution and it is there’s. This occurs time and again with individuals saying they have the ultimate technology, the ultimate contract, the ultimate methods … it is strange that when it get to technology so many people want to have the dominant solution that we should all use.

Bizarrely the entities that say they have the ultimate contract (as an example) don’t share their contract templates, same with technologies that we should all use. In tech circles open-source is common – in art circles the sharing gene diminishes radically.

The niche collector. Sometime the video art collector is a quirk – it delineates an art form, but gives them niche power as the ‘video art collector’. Just Be an art collector, with something like a leading interest in tech mediums.

The issue with internet and digital media – is that it has its own history of market dominance, hyper valuations, ambitions to become one of the multi billion dollar elite businesses (google, facebook, amazon etc etc). However the art world does not work according to norms of business. I have watched some companies shoot for the stars and go out of business – whilst others can survive – based on their aspirations being artworld realistic.

Dedication, longevity, passion and commitment:

I believe my 30+ year duration in working in an area of limited financial reward is based on my integrity to deliver the best projects for limited resources. I have reaped recognition from years of experience and focus. This is based on my unswerving passion and commitment to make a difference in much the same way an artists has to make artworks regardless of the final sale/exhibition. My reputation is always my last project.

technology, delivery, simplicity

Making projects happen is what I have been doing. However, the value in complex set ups is hard to achieve a return. So my work uses ready made/existing materials/equipment/online/Internet/cinema and deliver usually in single screen/single file formats.

Promotion, marketing of projects:

Fence sitting doesn’t work. If you agree to work with an artist, or be in a fair, or organise anything. Give it your all. There is no value to engaging with what you are doing. There is no one else will promote your project or work as well as you. Or usually no one else promotes that which they opt to collaborate with. Which is very strange.

Solutions:

-More competition.

-Clusters of digital entities teaming up along lines of art fair models.

-marketing investment

-create ideal situations (whatever that means

-Pay artists. It provides trusted integrity to the people we purport to support.

-true collaborations

-create ‘a’ model not ‘the’ model. Semantics are key.

-Find your confidence

-Help nurture confidence

-Social-ist

-Not Capital-ist

-Don’t aim to dominate – but to collaborate

-Contracts are only any value if all parties benefit from the agreement.

We revert back to the human experience. Thru this we aim to build support systems for artists, ways to enhance the audience experience and look for best outcomes for all and conversely we strive to avoid avarice and corruption, which is an inevitable consequence of aims at huge profit and market dominance.

My model is to pay artists and/or look out for best outcomes for them. To keep a company light and limit its overheads.

My discussions with all future partners is – team up by paying artists and you have a deal.

The big collectors, collections understand the eco system and treat artists and galleries with reverence

How does he see the international art world developing and the role of galleries for digital media art in the future?

Fantasy world idea:

Museums and galleries shall usurp the art fairs and auction houses in terms of perceived dominance. The market can be led by the integrity of those who’s mission is to best serve art. To have the dominance the other way around – means that art is driven by its market powers and not its true intrinsic value of the quality of the aesthetics. To think that a Banksy artwork is of great value because of how it is sold at an auction – is indicative of the current demise we are in – but this also means that we can learn from this an react positively by shifting the focus from auction house shenanigans to museum/gallery.

I have worked with art fairs and auction houses – because they have become the dominant focus and attention for art events and exhibition – the one stop shops for audience to see much at the same time. Easy, sometimes lazy, economic rationale, it hitherto works (for some – usually the big players).

The art fair does not mean that art shown is the best – it means it is the work that is most likely to sell.

This logic – means that digital art mediums have incrementally reduced their visibility at art fairs over the years – till now there is almost none. Art fair costs are higher and the cost/income ratio has reduced – therefore the risk factor of tricky art mediums to sell are too high.

Galleries have to reclaim control of the art market from the auction house and art fair or those entities have to give back the power – by admitting that they (the galleries) have the most interest in supporting the role of the artist. The gallery business model is from selecting, exhibiting, selling and distributing the best artists. The art fair interest is to invite Galleries and audiences who pay money to be there. The auction house has no integral interest in supporting the gallery system as it predominantly benefits from the secondary market.

We need the experts of art/artist organisers, bright curators, facilitators – who’s interest is chiefly the support and promotion of artists.

The future:

Galleries and museums (and art fairs and such like): to treat digital mediums in equal terms to all other mediums.

The value of the ephemeral:

The future will be the age of the ephemeral/near-invisible art object – the digital file. The music, gamer and film industries understand the value of the download, the online link/file. Their value is in the potential volume of audience. Hitherto the artworld has never had this potential audience, as the contemporary audience is niche, and its strength has often been based on the rarity of the object and the value is centred on a very small wealthy elite audience. But our work is to either achieve the audience of those other art forms or utilise elements of it and evolve solutions to earn revenue and reward artists.

I personally don’t believe in (excessive) ownership and have always deeply valued music, dance and performances. I can pay 99c for a track of music that I value equally to any multi million dollar artwork.

I end as I began. There is only one way to work and engage with artists and that is:

PAY ARTISTS

I have to add a proviso – that this is not always possible due to restricted budgets – but if it is an aim – then it comes across and is fairly obvious to the arts community. If you can’t pay – find the best way to enable and empower artists to benefit from you working with them.

https://daata-editions.com/

 

Daata Editions New Artist Releases & NADA Miami – Coming Soon – Press Release Info

In Animal Charms, Art Basel, Art Basel in Miami Beach, Art Basel Miami Beach, Bex Ilsley, Bob Bicknell Knight, Daata, Daata Editions, daataeditions, Jakob Kudsk Steensen, Miami, NADA, Ollie Dook, Puck Verkade, Rustan Söderling, Shamus Clisset, Stine Deja, Thomas Yeomans, Uncategorized on 05/11/2018 at 10:40 am

DAATA EDITIONS NEWS 

Daata Editions is excited to announce the forthcoming release on Dec 5 of new artworks by Ollie Dook (trailer), Jakob Kudsk Steensen & Puck Verkade (trailer), along with new works selected for Daata’s Curated section by Bob Bicknell-Knight with artists featuring in Flow My Tears; Shamus Clisset, Stine Deja, Bex Ilsley, Rustan Söderling and Thomas Yeomans, to coincide with Daata featuring at NADA Miami in December 2018.

Puck 1

Image: Puck Verkade, Lucy Live, Courtesy of the artist and Daata Editions

Daata Editions at NADA Miami, 6-9 December 2018, Ice Palace Studios, 1400 North Miami Avenue, Miami, FL 33136 www.newartdealers.org/

Daata at NADA will feature new artist releases on framed iPads in the Daata Editions booth 3.01. Animal Charms, features the newly commissioned artworks by Ollie Dook (Animal Stories), Jakob Kudsk Steensen (REWILDLING) and Puck Verkade (Lucy Live), each in their own way deal with themes of evolution, extinction, preservation and new alternatively reconstructed realities where the boundaries between animal and human are blurred as part of the contemporary experience.

The works will all be available to view and buy online on December 5.

Jakob Kudsk Steensen’s video work for Daata, REWILDLING, will be on show simultaneously in conjunction with RE-ANIMATED, Kudsk Steensen’s first institutional solo show in Denmark, taking place at Tranen in Copenhagen, and curated by Toke Lykkeberg.

Daata Editions x Vanity Projects are delighted to present Puck Verkade on view at both Vanity Projects Miami and Vanity Projects NYC coinciding with the presentation at NADA. Puck’s new artwork Lucy Live will also be part of Verkade’s solo presentation at Forde in Geneva, opening on Dec 6. Puck Verkade TRAILER

Ollie Dook and his Daata commissioned works Animal Stories will feature in a group show Silly Symphony including artists; Dook, Andy Holden, Bobby, Philippe and Sputnik, Dec 8 –  Jan 5 at Ex-Baldessare in Bedford. Ollie Dook Trailer

At NADA Miami, Daata will also show new composite artwork of Tracey Emin’s six Daata Editions commissioned sound poems and will be playing Jacolby Satterwhite’s suite of eight videos En Plein Air Abstraction.

A new curated online playlist by Bob Bicknell-Knight Flow My Tears featuring artists Shamus Clisset, Stine Deja, Bex Ilsley, Jillian Mayer, Jonathan Monaghan, Rustan Söderling and Thomas Yeomans will also be available to view online. Flow My Tears TRAILER

Full Press Release attached, more information and images HERE

Daata Editions

New Art Dealers (NADA)

Trailer