I am a net performer, scam artist and media arts educator currently working in Baltimore, Maryland. I am interested in the potential for virtual spaces and objects, however mundane, to become performative. For example, how can a browser window become activated to stage a performance? My work considers the hierarchical relationships within digital environments; such as that of user and programmer, screensaver and video, or ‘fine art’ and non-art, and how the blurring of these relationships can grant points of entry into new media and net art works. Following an open source ethic is important to me, as I rely on strictly non-intimidating, nonproprietary, or even “dumb” softwares as a foundation upon which to structure a performance. For example, I am drawn to the accessibility of the desktop environment and the collaboration involved within an email exchange, as I believe they are familiar and non-intimidating to many people, yet remain overlooked as tools to create art works. I investigate the ways in which opening a folder, moving a cursor, clicking on a link, air-dropping, and sending an email can become performative, and how, because anyone with a computer is really capable of doing these actions, (no prior experience or knowledge of computation necessary), anyone can be a performer.
In my cursor-based works, I am attempting to reverse roles (cursor is the performer instead of the tool, while the user remains idle), while also communicating that the only real skill involved is knowing how to move a cursor. In my desktop games, I repurpose the built-in software that comes with macs, like AirDrop, to be an element of performance and collaboration, and by using simple PNGs to act as virtual ‘pieces’, I attempt to create a ‘packaged’ game that anyone is capable of downloading, recreating and replaying themselves. In my screensaver work, I stage subtle interventions by redirecting our understanding of screensavers as idle, and existing in the background to instead be dynamic videos that require interaction and participation. As a net artist, or someone who relies heavily on a computer to make artwork, I hope to dissociate privilege and computation, and reveal the ways in which a computer can be a tool for collaboration and art making, accessible to all.