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'Temporary' Site Deletes Part of Itself Every Time Someone Visits


Artist Zach Gage's newest project 'Temporary' questions the infinite life of data on the Internet. As sites are cached and stored and shared between servers, they leave an indelible trace -- revealing a fascinating moment in human history when we've created something that, to all appearances, will never deteriorate. Gage's site deletes part of its own code with each page view, eventually resulting in a completely blank piece of HTML. User interaction destroys the work.

While plenty of analog art is concerned with ephemerality, and most art necessarily deteriorates over time as a condition of its exhibition, 'Temporary' decomposes as a result of the user interaction that is inseparable from its exhibition. It's probably most similar to the work of Félix González Torres, who created huge piles of candies that visitors were supposed to take with them, symbolizing the decay wrought by AIDS.

That being said, don't expect the site to provide some interactive, Esquire-style augmented reality spectacle. 'Temporary' is about high concept, and visiting it only functions to participate in a quietly devolving work. Still, it's fascinating. We haven't seen much other digital evanescent art, but we hope to see more. Check it out before it's gone. [From Temporary.cc, via Urlesque]

Tags: art, ephemeral, top, web art, WebArt

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