Lecture Review: Cory Arcangel

Cory Arcangel’s lecture was interesting because his personality stood out, both in his posture, speech, and the content of his work. He is very laid back,  but also very frenetic and it comes across in the different projects he presents.

His first project was with a group of computer programs he was a part of called, Beige. Together they made a two sided LP pressing, with Techno House music, looping tracks, and information stored on an old Macintosh computer. The flip side stored information from an Atari computer.

Much of Arcangel’s work is surrounded by his different influences and experience working with computers and video games. The artful approach actually comes when Arcangel steals code and alters and re-appropriates it to have a different purpose than intended. He showed an example of this with his piece entitled, ‘Data Diaries.’

In his art piece, Arcangel takes the coding of a .mov, which is used to play videos on mac computers, and creates a new code to display random video. He deconstructed the method of doing so to the audience, explaining that .mov files have headers, which compile code data. Arcangel deletes the code data, which causes the header to read the ram instead. The resulting video is glitched out. The success of this and many of Arcangel’s other projects come through his simple execution of technologically complex artwork.


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