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Women at Work

The Digital-Analog World Redux

March 12th 2018

Have you ever caught yourself using a physical pen and wishing you could CMD+Z and undo the line you just drew? What about while reading a paper, have your fingers ever subconsciously pinched outward as if to zoom into the text on a page?

If it hasn't happened yet- it will.


This fascinating phenomenon known as the digital-analog redux, is becoming increasingly more prevalent in millenials and those raised in this technology forward world- involving the 'digitally native' concepts and experiences we're used to and applying them back into the analog world rather than the other way around.

Cindy Bishop dives into this phenomenon even further in her article "Minecraft and Mosaics, puzzling the digital-analog redux".

"To give you an example, this past holiday season, we undertook tile mosaics. After first prototyping with paper, my nephew decides he wants to make a Santa. Unaware of the ancient origins of mosaic-making, his description of the result of that Santa gave me pause — he referred to it as a "Minecraft-Santa-slash-Lego-Santa." I said "Yes! That's right! Mosaics are like the 2D version of legos!" and then winced. Reflecting further, as an artist also immersed in the digital world of programming and algorithms, I think about the myriad ways I am re-interpreting what was once the origin of media as a secondary medium. Reality redux."

While many of us live (and thrive) in this highly digital world, Cindy makes a point to mention that it's the "mud" that we can touch, form, adjust and quite simply- play with that pushes the boundaries between our material and digital lives.

"In the digital realm, does mud become just like any other material — a icon selection in the Minecraft menu? When we build something in the digital world, are we making decisions regarding representation, construction and creation that are fundamentally different than how we would go about it in the analog world?"

What do you think? Is your material experience a reflection of your digital life? Or your digital experience of your material life? We'd love to hear your thoughts on our Facebook group!

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