Digital art can often be associated with large, multimedia productions, or jarring, combinatory mashups. The place of techné, patient and intentional craft that realises all a form can be politically, but also aesthetically, is being effaced by desires to keep pace with the exponential rate at which media technologies evolve, or turn such technologies back on themselves through hacktivist ideologies and intentionally perverse aesthetics. Is there room for art which is inherently digital and radical, but remains commited to achieving broader public appeal? If digital art is to subvert surveillance in this age of platform capitalism, it seems essential that it should speak to as many people as possible. Data|Art invites audiences to engage with data as expression that is visually appealing, even simple, but algorithmically complex. Featuring works of digital art by Clíona Harmey and Filip Berte, Mícheál Ó Catháin, and Andrew McSweeney, Data|Art explores the tension between digital aesthetics and public consumption, algorithmic production and visual appeal. Data|Art shows how, in a world drowning in data, simple acts of complex expression, using that very same data in which we are drowning, remain possible and powerful.
Generative artwork by Mícheál Ó Catháin. Photograph by Tom Flanagan, courtesy Galway Arts Centre