Re-Composing the Digital Present


  • Timothy Barker University of New South Wales



Digital Aesthetics, Time, Technology and Art


This paper investigates the temporality that is produced in some recent and historical examples of media art. In exploring works by Janet Cardiff, Dennis Del Favero, and Omer Fast, I use the philosophy of Michel Serres and Gilles Deleuze to understand the convergence of temporalities that are composed in the digital present, as one moment in time overlays another moment. Developing Serres' concept of multi-temporality and Deleuze's philosophy of time and memory into a means to understand the non-linear time presented in these works, I argue that the different compositional strategies enacted by these artists provide the aesthetic grounding to experience “temporal thickness.” From here I investigate the interactive digital artworks Frames by Grahame Weinbren and Can You See Me Now? by the artist group Blast Theory. In this investigation, I understand interaction with technology, and the way that it shapes our sensory and processual experience, as a specifically temporal and temporalizing transaction, where human movements in the present are overlayed by technological processes.

Author Biography

Timothy Barker, University of New South Wales

Timothy Barker is a post-doctoral fellow at the iCinema Research Centre, University of New South Wales.




How to Cite

Barker, T. (2011). Re-Composing the Digital Present. Contemporaneity: Historical Presence in Visual Culture, 1, 88–104.