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Entropy and Digital Installation

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Author(s): Susan Ballard

Journal: Fibreculture Journal
ISSN 1449-1443

Issue: 7;
Date: 2005;
Original page

Keywords: distributed aesthetics | digital installations | entropy and art

ABSTRACT
This paper examines entropy as a process which introduces ideas of distributed materiality to digital installation. Beginning from an analysis of entropy as both force and probability measure within information theory and it’s extension in Ruldof Arnheim’s text ‘Entropy and Art” it develops an argument for the positive rather thannegative forces of entropy. The paper centres on a discussion of two recent works by New Zealand artists Ronnie van Hout (“On the Run”, Wellington City Gallery, NZ, 2004) and Alex Monteith (“Invisible Cities”, Physics Room Contemporary Art Space, Christchurch, NZ, 2004). Ballard suggests that entropy, rather than being a hindrance to understanding or a random chaotic force, discloses a necessary and material politics of noise present in digital installation.

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