May 30, 2008 Free Online Arts and Technology Textbook

Art & Education

This dynamic website explores the aesthetic and historical conditions of digital media’s exciting multifaceted dialog. Profuse and imaginative illustrations, wikis, chronologies, and multimedia examples are an engaging aid to designers, artists and humanists. While textbooks become more and more expensive, the lesson of the web is that information wants to be free.’s text is licensed under a Creative Commons Share Alike license, and each page is available as a fully
editable wiki.

The digital realm gives us a new set of tools that has led to an explosion of creativity from blogs to flickr to youtube. Few in this web-savvy generation have the cultural un-derstanding to match. The inter-disciplinary nature of allows students, designers and artists to actively engage the digital realm. It provides the why of creativ-ity.

Charles H. Traub and Jonathan Lipkin, distinguished artists and educators, have re-leased their influential textbook In the Realm of the Circuit as a free online re-source which explores the rich variety of the interactions between technology, art, and culture. An age of inter- and cross-disciplinary thinking demands new imaginative thinking. Today’s communities are brought together as they are shaped by the intercon-nectedness between culture, technology, and science.

Lipkin explains the use the Parthenon of ancient Greece as symbol for their site; “It is a symbol for the electronic realm. There a variety of media were brought together – painting, sculpture, architecture, music, performance and song. These expressive acts were not rarified and set apart, but integrated into everyday life. Today, the web is a modern Parthenon.” Sites like allow for a multi-vocal dialog that constitutes a new digital realm.

Charles Traub is Chair of the School of Visual Art’s MFA Photography, Video and Re-lated Media Department. He is a renowned photographer and author of numerous books, including recently, In the Still Life and The Education of a Photogra-pher. Jonathan Lipkin is a professor of Digital Media at Ramapo College, author of Photography Reborn: Image- Making in the Digital Era, and currently working on a new book, Unseen Hamptons. He has lectured internationally on issues of digital media.

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