How has technology changed art?

Technology has changed art in a lot of ways and in others, not at all. The term technology is rather broad, but I’m assuming this question is looking for an answer about digital media and electronics in particular.


Some of the ways it has changed art is in the creation of photography, video art, and new genre, the creation of websites as art pieces or even the use of social media – like in the case of Ai Weiwei who uses Instagram as a platform to spam feeds with pictures of his projects with refugees as an art form. Sharing and accessibility of art have also created more dialogue, 3D printing has made for some interesting new sculptural and design products, and many fine artists are using a composite approach like Farideh Lashai’s video work currently at the Prado which brings Goya’s “Disasters of War” prints to life.

Videography is now a well-established medium of fine arts. Almost all modern and contemporary art museums now have at least one projector and a couch where it can be enjoyed, but content and quality vary widely. For many people, videography doesn’t seem as accessible as a concrete object and it is difficult to really own as the context of where it is placed in the museum and the setup are usually very important.


There are several hugely famous photographers like JR (check out his “Women are Heroes” project) who use both photography and prints for their work, but amateur photography is also on the rise. It can be difficult to distinguish what counts as a good photograph solely by the skill of the photographer – usually it needs some content to be truly appreciated.

Along with all of these changes, however, there is a gap that is being created between graphic and industrial design, illustration, and fine art. In fine art, simple oil paint, marble, and metal will never go out of style no matter the technologies that come. These were popular before the advent of the camera and I think will always be respected media.


The biggest change that technology has offered art is accessibility. Creators now have a wide range of media to explore and express themselves, viewers can find at least something they interest them across the broad spectrum of offerings. Like with any art, though, digital art is best appreciated when background about the artist, movement, and the current situation is offered. It is also always better in person. Videography on Youtube pales in comparison to sitting in the ambiance of a gallery (unless it was specifically created for Youtube that is).

Likewise, viewers can now have accessibility to millions of art pieces via Google and other databases, but again it is always better in person. This is by no means a complete answer to a complex topic, so I hope others have more to offer on it!

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