Nov 19, 2011

Nov 19

I was talking to my friend and talented poet Maureen Alsop the other day about the sheer volume of information and images that we now experience. Google CEO Eric Schmidt said recently that we now create as much information every two days as we did from the dawn of civilization up until 2003. Yes, that's every two days. Information is no longer a slowly filling lake but rather a raging river that's only going to get faster. User-generated content is responsible for much of this increase. 

Take Flickr for example. Dutch photographer Erik Kessels printed out every image uploaded to Flickr over the course of 24 hours -- that would be 1 million photographs -- into Foam Magazine's gallery in Amsterdam. The mountain of pictures literally flow and spill into adjoining rooms like a flood. One million uploads are a drop in the bucket compared to the estimated total of 6 billion images on Flickr – the same number added to Facebook every two months.

I'm especially interested in this because my background intersects technology with fine-art photography. It seems that the iconic still image is being replaced by an equally iconic flow of images. How can illustration, photography or painting, all of which rely on presenting one image at a time, keep up? To me it's all becoming a blur. What do you think?

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