For some of us, 3.5” floppy disks, low-res stock photos of sunset beaches, and animated GIFs that let you know the website is ‘Under Construction’ send out beacons of pixellated nostalgia. For his show DATA CONNECTION, artist Mark Adams used the era of early computer graphic design as the inspiration. The show has been re-imagined using the online audio distribution platform Soundcloud and the sharing app Chirp.
“I started DATA CONNECTION as a physical show back in early 2011 and have had pieces exhibited around town in small gallery spaces and some restaurants,” says Adams. “For this exhibition, I decided to represent the work in a new way virtually, something that is different from simply posting JPEGs of the work online.”
Adams achieved this using Chirp, an application for iOS and PC, which enables users to share using sound. Chirp can ‘sing’ information from an iPhone to another or to anyone running the app nearby, using a two-second series of tones. “I immediately thought of making long-form sound files of them, to send batches of pictures. Then came the idea to make an exhibition out of it.”
For the content of the exhibition, Adams says, “I was in the mindset of creating work with limited design options, much the same when making early websites or doing early Paintshop/PhotoShop stuff. I grew up on this stuff, back when you’d only get 16-bit or 32-bit color to design with. It only makes sense that this work not only be shown in traditional art spaces, but in virtual ones, too.”
Check out DATA CONNECTION for yourself: