Towards a Networked Modernism


The Data Browser series, published by Autonomedia under a Creative Commons license, has so far emerged as two text compilations. The first volume, Economising Culture: On The (Digital) Culture Industry, came out in late 2004 and Engineering Culture: On the Author as (Digital) Producer has just hit a distribution system near you. Edited by Geoff Cox, Joasia Krysa and (only vol. 1) Anya Lewin, the series intends to situate recent changes in art and activism in historical contexts as well as relate them to contemporary trends and agendas. Reflections from agents in the field like the Yes Men, Cummings & Lewandowska, Armin Medosch and Matthew Fuller have been marshaled to constitute the first 'browser,' conceived as a tool of engaged wandering rather than bored consumption. Data Browser 02 addresses Walter Benjamin's trope of author as producer to see if and how its premise of cultural activism through teaching and participation holds up in an age of networked systems, and the upcoming 03 will address the de-materialisation of the curator within her landscape of shifting new media curatorial roles and styles. - Marina Vishmidt