Virtual lecturer

When the late Michael Jackson referred to ’ABC’ being as easy as ’123’, and as simple as ’do-re-mi’, we’re fairly sure he wasn’t referring to ’atoms, bits and the neue craft’.

For many of us, anything vaguely scientific sends the brain into a quivering, jelly like mess (particularly on press day), so the new online exhibition launching tomorrow, John Maeda: Atoms + Bits = the neue Craft (ABC), may be met with some trepidation. However, in the words of the other pop luminary, Barry Manilow, please don’t be scared.

John Maeda
John Maeda giving the virtual lecture

Helping bridge the gap between craft and technology, the online exhibition will present a digital representation of artist, graphic designer, computer scientist and president of the Rhode Island School of Design John Maeda, who will be leading an interactive online lecture at the web-only Adobe Museum of Digital Media.

This lecture will be illustrated with video, infographics and audio, featuring scenes from Maeda’s art studio at RISD.

The talk will focus on how artists are connecting the worlds of digital creativity and handcrafted creativity. Maeda’s take on the subject is that the tools used to make more traditional, physical artwork, such as pens and brushes, have been appropriated by the digital art world to manipulate images.

Our virtual lecturer will examine the links between handcrafted, or analogue, creativity, and digital creativity, featuring examples from his own work and that of other artists.

John Maeda
John Maeda

Maeda says, ‘Computers let us imagine digitally what we once could only validate by handcraft in physical form – the infinite malleability and reusability of bits have forever changed the creative process.

‘But just as it took Icarus to first imagine human flight by carefully observing how birds can fly, digital tools have relied on many of the original tools and media used by artists in the pre-digital world.’

John Maeda: Atoms + Bits = the neue Craft (ABC) runs from March 23-December 31 at the Adobe Museum of Digital Media, www.adobe.com/uk.

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