Research Space

What I'm reading, looking at, and thinking about

carroboscis asked: i've been thinking about the use of porn in glitch art, and about how glitch art and porn share the same male producers and consumers. i read your earlier post on your use of porn and it seems like you've done a lot of thinking on it, and i'm wondering if you have more insight or could point me somewhere i could learn more about this


i’ve made work in the past that could be categorized as “glitch porn” and i still believe it’s possible to create good work combining glitchy/dirty processes with porn and erotic media. but because pornography is such a politically complicated issue, that makes it particularly difficult to work with successfully. 

as you say, most artists who make glitch porn or similar work seem to be male. furthermore, most of their work appears to be created from appropriated porn — i have seen few examples of erotic glitch selfies, let alone hardcore glitch porn from scratch.

so the obvious questions that arise are: why are these men making glitch porn? what are they trying to say with their work? why do they choose to appropriate the specific images/media they’re appropriating? where did that porn come from, who were the performers, and were they treated well?

artists who don’t consider these questions run the risk of inadvertently creating work that is cheap, offensive, exploitative, or all of the above, and they may not even realize that other people are reading their work in this way.

personally, the work that i find most interesting is the work that takes something sexual and warps it into something alien and decidedly nonsexual. i’m less interested in work that is intended to be sexy or erotic — not because i don’t think it’s possible to create good work that is both “sexy” and “glitchy”, but because a lot of of it seems to be coming from dudes who haven’t given any more thought to their work other than “that makes me horny, so i’ll glitch it.”

i don’t have any such hangups about artists incorporating their own sexuality into their glitch work (or, for that matter, porn producers incorporating glitchiness into their porn!), but like i said, at this time, that seems fairly rare. maybe in a few years there will be an actual professional glitch porn company, and if there is, i’ll be happy to support them as long as they treat their performers well. i would definitely not support a terry richardson-style glitchpornographer who exploited his models.

PS i was in a panel discussion about this at GLI.TC/H 2112 but i don’t know if it was documented, and offhand i can’t think of any writings on the subject i could link to.

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