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A History of Installation Art and the Development of New Art Forms

Technology and the Hermeneutics of Time and Space in Modern and Postmodern Art from Cubism to Installation

Faye Ran

Art mirrors life; life returns the favor. How could nineteenth and twentieth century technologies foster both the change in the world view generally called «postmodernism» and the development of new art forms? Scholar and curator Faye Ran shows how interactions of art and technology led to cultural changes and the evolution of Installation art as a genre unto itself – a fascinating hybrid of expanded sculpture in terms of context, site, and environment, and expanded theatre in terms of performer, performance, and public.


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Chapter Six: Conclusion 207


~ C H A P T E R S I X ~ Conclusion e have seen that the production and dissemination of symbolic forms in modern societies is inseparable from the techniques, technologies and activities of media industries and aesthetic practices. They create techniques and processes of reckoning, designating, acting and interacting in and through time and space; therefore, one of the consequences of technology is changes in the conception of time and space. I have argued that as technologies change, conceptions of time and space change and, as a result, art changes. However, as media theorist Dennis McQuail points out, one cannot establish a definitive technology-culture “effect” because “technologies themselves are also cultural artifacts and there is no way of breaking into the circle.” 1 Technologies have a mediated impact on cultural practices; their “effects” can be described only as observ- able patterns of consequence emerge. McQuail offers the following useful flow chart 2 to give his view of the process, although I would add that as new uses develop, individuals as well as situations may create new cultural forms and meanings. W Ideas New Technologies New Uses Develop Communication Institutions Adapt New Cultural Forms Are Created Process of Technical & Cultural Change Continues Old Uses Change Applied to Old Uses Society & Context - 208 - Indeed, symbolic forms do not exist in a vacuum; these forms are produced, transmitted and received in very specific social and historical conditions. The German theologian Frederich Schleiermacher, (b.1768– d.1834), is credited with having articulated the...

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