Date: Sun, 28 Mar 2004 01:50:56 -0800
From: "Jim Andrews" <jim AT>
Subject: [Canpoet] Andy Deck


Andy Deck from New York is a programmer and poly-artist known for his synthesis of programming and art. Also, the 'political' dimensions of his work are usually central, prominent. His web site is at and there is a recently published "retrospective" of his work at (a British site) and, perhaps more relevantly, at where there is quite a good selection among his substantial online oeuvre.

He is a very able writer about the issues that surround his work and the net more generally, as we see at, for instance, which is the 'statement' (yes, a visual arts approach) of a project called "All Plugins Required". The 'statement' is titled "Language Unplugged, History Not Found" and has some interesting things to say about language in the net environment and, more generally, the digital environment. You can see more of his writing at, which is an essay called "Treadmill Culture" which looks at the role of independent artists within a largely corporate mediascape.

You realize very quickly from the above that the net is not exactly 'paradise found' concerning 'art context' or 'poetry context' or 'language context'. The sorts of problems that have been discussed about print concerning poetry and commodification/corporatism do of course exist also on the net, only in quite different forms. You can publish your work on the net as you see fit, and to an international audience, but whether the work will even be widely viewable in thirty years is a moot point. The art and culture of the net is rather strongly involved in "data trash", as the Canadian Arthur Kroker calls it, and this poses problems for any long-term 'art context', ie, for the net to continue to be a place of significant art, it must eventually evolve to the point where its own art can exist in history or, paradoxically, it will be a medium which is best suited for documentation of art from other media, and art of the moment that must consign itself to being "data trash".

In Joseph Kosuth's book 'Art After Philosophy and After' (named after his essay "Art After Philosophy"), he supposes that few or possibly none of his actual art objects will survive very long. And that, if anything survives of his conceptual art, it will be somewhat invisibly in the paths that have followed after, the approaches, the methodologies. I would suppose, additionally, that his writing will survive a good long time, for he is an excellent writer. Books and texts are reproducible, over time, in ways that installations and possibly digital work of certain types sometimes aren't. Unless there are people willing to do the work to keep the projects functioning despite the rapid obsolesence of executables.