Isn’t it ironic that everything we do these days revolve around digital media, or more technically, algorithms? Over the past decade there has been more and more intense debate as to what direction the world is headed. Is it headed to artificial intelligence at our beckon and call like in I-Robot, or simply outright destruction because we can’t seem to stop going down the slippery slope of technological advancement? In my illustration, I raise these questions, because as a millennial, I find that not only is everything easier to obtain and create, but I also realize that some aesthetics are being lost, and at a very rapid rate.
The Irony of our time.
As an artist, and one who enjoys the fine arts, especially the traditional painting styles where the artist has a connection with his materials – paint, brush and solvent, I often wonder if those aesthetics will become something of the past one day. The beauty one can create based on his natural born talent, without the use of a mathematical calculation behind a screen is something that is tremendously special. Nowadays, that beauty in creativity is somewhat lost, for the challenge of finding and developing that innate talent is substituted by the help of technology. Yes, the graphic arts are engaging, exciting and colorful, but there is a sense of being out of touch, especially in comparison to the traditional fine arts. That is the greatest disparity I identify between the digital age, and the age we are being ushered out of since the invention of print media.
Certain things that we have grown up with and experienced as children – story books, comics, magazines and the like, will they become obsolete in a decade or two? Will we be looking at issues of National Geographic and The New York Times as antiques that should be preserved? Many in the print media industry have faced this very issue, where there is a consensus that print media is dying, in so much that some companies have left the business entirely to become solely digital. The essence of a collector’s item will be lost, for everything is on a screen and can just be wiped away with a click. I think about this when it comes to my art. Will the emergence of digital art mean the death of fine art? Where will the real beauty lie?
I often wonder what changes will affect the arts, and artists in another twenty, thirty, or forty years. When I consider that many artists do not get the deserved recognition for their talent until they are considerably older in their careers, say thirty years after they have begun; what then will it be like for artists in the future considering that technology is dominating every aspect of artistic creativity? What of the traditional aesthetics we learn of from the masters of the Renaissance and Baroque period?
The relevance of these points cannot be understated, for we see the changes around us every day if we are aware. Following some of the assertions of the avant-garde artists, a big part of my job as an artist is to keep you socially aware, whether it be through my two dimensional compositions and the messages contained in them, or through my thoughts put forth in writing. Your engagement is priceless, because art is never just about the artist, but more about the message we convey – and for me, the traditional aesthetic beauty that aids the message.