Cornelia Sollfrank and Felix Stalder, November 2017
First published in German in: Blickpunkt. Zeitschrift der IG Bildende Kunst, Wien, Herbst 2017, Nr. 44, S.22-25)
The traditional order of culture – with clear positions for artists/authors, works and audiences, mediated by producers, publishers, gallery owners, and so on – has finally come into crisis as a result of digitization. The new order, however, is still unclear and highly controversial. The first round of the dispute focused on the field of copyright law and thus on the control of circulation. In the current round, everything revolves around central platforms and their structures of order, access and value creation. As producers of culture, artists are at the heart of these upheavals. While many are busy supporting the content industries in enforcing stricter laws – supposedly in their own best interests – a few others see themselves as engineers of a new order and experiment with the development of their own forms of social production and circulation.