The Importance of Artifact

Posted by Scott

While digging around for more info on the “found” work of Vivian Meier, I stumbled onto Todd Bieber’s video detailing his discovery of a roll of film in Prospect Park. He shows some of the (well shot) photography and wonders if he’ll ever find the people who took them. While this is an interesting story, I didn’t find it all that poignant until I read Peter Kirn’s take on Create Digital Motion.

Indeed, we are losing touch more and more with physical media. Perhaps this is a good thing for many reasons, but as a musician I struggle with the most meaningful way to release my work. I grew up focusing on the media as a sort of physical manifestation of the art that it contained. Perhaps it was just my childhood fascination with all things printed and ephemeral, but I do feel a definite disconnect now between myself and my –all digital– music collection. I personally like the idea of a physical object to represents an otherwise unsee-able art form.

I realize that we are marching inexorably towards a physical media-free future (and for most of us, we’re already there), but I’d love to see more ideas like IDEO’s C60 Redux concept; an RFID music system that plays on the strengths of physical and digital media. A system like this might not always be as practical as purely digital music, but I for one would love to experience music at home this way.

More at Create Digital Motion, NPR, TechGear

9 Comments Leave A Comment


Lauren says:

February 21, 2011 at 8:31 am

That’s so unique and creative… I would love to try it out. I love that each card can be designed to represent its music…

I definitely prefer to feel my music – the digital music collection, track shopping, etc.. just doesn’t do the same thing for me as picking up a vinyl from the record store.


Christopher says:

February 21, 2011 at 9:31 am

The c60 Redux doesn’t seem practical. Why wouldn’t you just play the music off your computer and not add the extra step? It seems like it would be more effective if it got you away from the comp all together.

If it had speakers and you could take it to the park; I’d spend money on that. I’ll just be using my crank radio until that happens though :)


Fredrik says:

February 21, 2011 at 11:21 am

I talked to a friend about this topic a couple of months back and you really put the finger on what we felt as well. Great find!


Scott says:

February 21, 2011 at 9:54 pm

For me, the appeal of the C60 is that is adds a tactile layer, that everyone can interact with at once. It brings back the fun of a listening party where everyone can sit around the music machine.

Of course, the vinyl experience is ideal, but not everyone has the money for that and there isn’t a whole lot of music produced on vinyl anymore.


Steve says:

February 23, 2011 at 2:05 pm

Sorry to be a claimer but… That first sound bite is Fracula! Are you kidding me! I went to college with one of them, great tunes too!