View Source – Myfanwy Ashmore
“Jobs” represent a relatively recent pattern of work. From the fifteenth century to the twentieth century, there is a steady progress of fragmentation of the stages of work that constitute “mechanization” and “specialism.” These procedures cannot serve for survival or sanity in this new time.
The labour involved in this work would not perhaps be legitimized as a job in western culture because it does not create an ongoing profit or saleable product. It creates no ongoing currency through advertising, nor does it generate a commercialized end. It is strictly creative response process within a constrained space. The mindfulness of file size is an obscure and obsolesced skill – at one time relevant – no longer really needed. Fitting a small work into a small space – why would you want to do that? I’m not sure that’s it’s a desire but more a necessity. I was recently asked with disdain why I would want to use 8-bit graphics when there are so many image making programs out there that can make such big, impressive and realistic images. By aligning myself with 8bit imagery or working with small file sizes – I am working within a framework that allows for the consideration of the impact of new technologies and the bloated excess of throw away technologies in our culture. Through disciplined daily floppy mining not dissimilar to the day job, the uploading of data and web pages as well the creative response each floppy becomes transformed, reinvented. I am creating for myself a conscientious disciplined model of working that acknowledges that my cultures excess is leading to exploitation. I am trying to work in a way that tries to reduce my involvement in that exploitation. Through the frugal nature of the 1.44 megabyte floppy – I am attempting to align myself with a framework that allows for a crafting of images and mediated experiences right down to every pixel.
“all media are extensions of some human faculty – psychic or physical”
These floppies all belonged to someone at some point, they can understood to be markers of specific moments in time for those who used them. Some of those humans who used Dos – who relates to DOS, connecting people who can understand a batch file written for dos will related to these files as extensions of themselves in the past – a historical memory of DOS. Remember when we had to write batch files to automate a software install? These are extensions of humans whom have an understanding of a specific aspect of our technological history. Just as Michelle’s Curriculum Vitae, or Peter Flemmings CV– are markers of what they had done up until the day they saved their resumes onto the floppy – the future was still unknown.
Myfanwy Ashmore is an artist and educator whose fine art practice extends into new media, game theory and modification, interactive installation, new user interfaces, experience & interaction design, design, mechanical and electronic sculpture. She has been the recipient of significant grants and awards. Myfanwy has presented her work in numerous local, national and international exhibitions as well as been invited to speak about her work at various institutions across Canada and Europe.