From my understanding, the writer of this article defines first word art to be novel, groundbreaking, and the beginning of a conversation. For example, Jackson Pollock could be considered a first-word artist for pioneering the abstract expressionist movement. Last word art, on the other hand, provides a new perspective on a conversation that has already been in existence; It challenges, explores, and builds off of conventions already set in place. Duchamp and participants in the dAdA art movement could be considered first-word artists, as they challenged the idea of just what could be considered artwork and the current state of the art sphere.
I believe almost all technological novel inventions play off of old ideas– in a way both first and last word art. For example, it is often brought up why Apple is such renowned company. First, they took an invention already in existence (a desktop computer) and decided to incorporate the idea of play/fun into it. They took a functional item and adjusted the design, the interface, made it more user-friendly, and created a more fluid system for use. Rather than attempting to come up with an entirely new tool (which they later did, basically pioneering the invention smartphone and the tablet) they took an already existing item and challenged the rules and conventions that had already been in place for it. Remaining on the topic of the Macintosh, Macbook and iPhone, these technologies shaped culture socially, economically, and politically. It created a new common experience amongst an entire generation, an experience that is occasionally lost to older generations. It coined a new commodity which through its functionality reels the buyer into continually purchasing the “newer model”. It created new forms of activism and news reception among the public. At the same time, the iPhone and its features very much cater to its users needs, so as cultural staples shift and society evolves, the technology keeps up with what is “new and upcoming”. I would consider myself to be most interested in technology that reworks and revisits rules and conventions that have already been set in place– “last word art”. That in itself keeps it “in with the times” and keeps the conversation surrounding it relevant.

Comments are closed.