Thursday, September 12, 2013

On the legacy of Art in human history.

I was up late last night. I had this idea rolling around in my head since then and I've recently discovered that it's best to just let the brain-twisters out so you can free up the core(texes) for other things that are less... esoteric. Anyway. It all started with the idea of how communication and art forms are related. Imagine that you're an early homo-erectus kind of creature. Somewhere in the vein of 1.5 to 2 million years ago. The main form of communication is body language and perhaps grunts. Soon enough these gestures become a language that you may call acting. Hundreds of thousands of years later this language becomes more refined. Along with language comes visual art, you tell everyone to get together in the cave and tell tales via shadow puppets. Audio images are culturally established at this point and so a new art form takes place. A quick note about these methods; they seem to have a relationship to each other in the same way that you could say a child class inherits from a parent class in OOP structure. Where... a picture or a word can be a gesture but a gesture is not by definition a picture. This tradition of imagery evolves. Finer arts emerge and at some point writing is invented. Writings are words but language is not explicitly writing. Eventually as we skip through generations hybrid forms of Art emerge ( sculpture, architecture, poetry, theater and so on ). Another interesting aspect of this tale in human art history is how quickly these forms synthesize and take shape. Let's start with the photograph. Compared to cave paintings the siblings of the photograph combined much faster than any previous forms ( save technology, we'll be there in a flash ). So.. remember. Film or motion pictures are pictures. But a photograph is not a film. The art of audio/visual/text imagery matures in the 1960s ( see 2 million years, no sweat ) and at that point the videogame hits the scene. A hybrid of most previous art forms ( including games ) but using technology as an interface. That pretty much brings us to present. In the last 40 years of this industry there have been many in-corporations of older art that draw from the entire spectrum of human art history. But now we get to the frontier and 20/20 hindsight is useless. A video game is in some way a film or a book or a toy. But neither of the latter are by definition the former. So what could possibly lie ahead after this medium matures? Some say virtual/augmented reality ... I remember in particular the PS2 ad where they illustrated the PS9 ( or Play Station for all you non-gamer folk ). Aside from naming this future art, how can we imagine it's content? What will the videogame breed with? My wildest guess is interdenominational. That's correct. Essentially, contrived quantum points of view where reality itself is the clay. It's very dangerous and there are many steps between here and there. There is no way to tell how or when this kind of thing will happen. But my guess is that we may be able to communicate with each other on an almost psychic level and tell tales that way. Would it include technology? Probably at first. But. Imagine if that standard of expression were to survive ( along with humanity itself for that matter ) another 2 million years. What then?