Artwork / Dreamwork in New Media Documentary

  • Karen O'Rourke


Today new media artists and entrepreneurs alike lay claim to the ideals of 1960s counter-culture. Silicon Valley start-ups have spawned a corporate culture that aims for maximum creativity, greater employee initiative and workplace autonomy. Has this “new spirit of capitalism” (Boltanski and Chiapello) let capitalism recuperate the Left’s “artistic critique” of the division of labor while undermining its traditional “social critique?”

In the highly competitive “winner-take-all” system of contemporary art, has “artistic critique” become obsolete? This article examines contemporary new media artworks that critically activate the ideals of creativity, autonomy and community.