By now, the digital art world is well aware of the acronym DiMoDA. It stands for Digital Museum of Digital Art, and it’s exactly what it sounds like. It’s first edition was hosted by TRANSFER in New York and Import Projects in Berlin; those who made it to the brick-and-mortar galleries will know that DiMoDA is viewable using Oculus Rift headsets, which immerse viewers into a surreal museum lobby, where they can walk, using an Xbox controller, into four different galleries, each hosting the work of a different digital artist. Alternatively, viewers can download the museum onto their own computers and view from home. About a year after DiMoDA’s debut, the creators of the project, William Robertson and Alfredo Salazar-Caro, are back with DiMoDA 2.0: Morphé Presence.
This time around, Robertson and Salazar-Caro have handed over the reins to outside curators, Helena Acosta and Eileen Isagon Skyers, who commissioned work by artists Miyö Van Stenis, Theoklitos Triantafyllidis (Theo Trian), Brenna Murphy, and Rosa Menkman.
“We decided that it was important to step back from the curatorial aspect of DiMoDA and hand that over to other people. This way, the works on display don't only reflect our taste, but a broader scope of contemporary thought on VR/New Media works. Acosta is a Venezuelan curator who has focused on Latin-American New Media and =Isagon Skyers is an artist/curator experimenting with post-internet practices,” Salazar-Caro tells The Creators Project.
DiMoDA’s first round was built from the ground up, and now the founders have a ground on top of which they can work. They’re less interested in promoting the museum itself as they are on pushing this fresh batch of artists, who will present works playing with the idea of reality and simulation, and the strengths and weaknesses of rendering reality in the virtual world.
“In terms of depth or interactivity, each artist designs the viewer's experience, so pieces can range from the contemplative to the explosive. You can expect a conceptually cohesive, yet visually diverse show,” says Salazar-Caro.
Each artist has their own individual aesthetic. Van Stenis is a Venezuelan new media artist and curator, currently based in Paris. A founding member of the Venezuelan activist group Dismantling the Simulation (along with Acosta), her practice explores digital objects using a mostly pastel color palette, but that doesn’t mean she shies away from the critical and political. Her contribution to Morphé Presence is called Miyö’s War Room.
The Greek, LA-based artist Trian is trained as an architect, and his new work is an architectural self-portrait. The artist’s giant head lays sideways on a landscape, and viewers can walk into his mouth, where they find an architectural setting inside a fleshy pink cave. A third room will feature one of Murphy’s signature psychedelic, latticework labyrinths, a piece called Vectoral~Sentience_Stack. Finally, artist and theorist Menkman, who is interested in glitch and embracing digital accidents, contributes DCT Syphoning the 64th Interval. DCT stands for Discrete Cosine Transform, a process used in audio and image compression.
The museum, not bound to the limitations of a physical gallery, will tour around the country at the end of the year, starting at Superchief Gallery in New York on September 9th. Then it will be featured at the VIA Festival in Pittsburgh on October 6-9, SATELLITE Art Show in Miami from December 1-4, and finally, in mid-December, DiMoDA will get its own featured exhibition at the RISD Museum in Rhode Island.
Find out more about DiMoDA on the museum’s website.