Post-media/Post-medium: Rethinking Ontology in Art and Technology

Responding to Felix Guattari’s claim that ‘the digitalization of the television image will soon reach the point where the television screen is the same as the computer screen’, this paper examines the rhetoric of equivalency and interchangeability fostered in the discourses of post-media. In particular, it considers how this concept has been mapped onto an art historical notion of post-medium, for example through the work of Rosalind Krauss and her reading of Marcel Broodthaers. This essay therefore explores the way in which the indeterminate ontology of technology has both constituted, and been constituted by, an indeterminate ontology of art at several key historical moments, including the mid- to late 1960s and late 2000s, which witnessed key shifts in categories of media. Re-examining post-media as an aesthetic proposition in 2013, this essay argues that ‘the screen’ now serves as a site for challenging the continuing convention for the digital in art practice to be theorized in terms of an all-or-nothing plane of representation, and instead proposes that it is re-thought in terms of a material specificity not attached to the questions of High Modernism.

Title: ‘Post-media/Post-medium: Re-Thinking Ontology in Art and Technology’

Journal or Book: Provocative Alloys: A Post Media Anthology, Berry, J. et al (eds)

Date: 2014

Publisher: Leuphana Universität Lüneburg & Mute



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