Can we please play the internet?

Can we please play the internet? 11 April – 11 May 2014 at Melbourne based gallery West Space is an exhibition of new work by artists from Italy, Australia, the US and the UK who engage with the internet as a ubiquitous presence in projects unfolding both online and in the gallery.

Andrea Buran and Eleonora Sovrani explore different strategies of organisation and representation in Fortune Cookie, an ongoing research project to expose the idiosyncrasies of search algorithms. As we become increasingly comfortable with information at our fingertips, Buran and Sovrani’s online experiments remind us that we are using a tool, albeit a very impressive one, in the first place.

Based in New York and Bristol respectively, Janine DeFeo and Paul Zaba collaborate remotely to produce the work, If you are looking for information
about historical events or other things that happened in the real world, you are on the wrong page! Through Wikipedia itself, DeFeo and Zaba test the notion of fact and fiction, all the while navigating the possibilities, dilemmas and ethics of “the free encyclopaedia that anyone can edit”.

Nathan Liow and Angus Tarnawsky expose sonic phenomena associated with the vast physical network that enables the internet. Artifacts is a slowly evolving feedback conversation created by a live acoustic piano performance in the gallery, broadcast immediately to NYC then returned and amplified through speakers and mixed with the existing performance. Within this process, inaudible sounds become apparent and distortion begins to erode and decay what is heard. The internet itself leaves a unique signature and becomes an organic third party working alongside the artists.

Ilya Milstein will be presenting excerpts from a narrative in three parts, staggered over the course of the exhibition. Staged within an Argentinian apartment in the late 1980’s, the narrative centres upon a failed attempt to create an alternate to the World Wide Web and poses the question – have we been thwarted of a better internet?

With more questions than answers, Can we please play the internet? is about broadening the user experience and the physical context of what we have come to understand as Internet Art. It is also about having fun.