Olia Lialina & Dragan Espenschied: Online Newspapers: New York Edition
Olia Lialina & Dragan Espenschied’s Online Newspapers: New York Edition is an internet-based work on four video screens created from the front pages of four local daily New York City newspapers: The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, New York Post, and New York Daily News. The artists revive the amateur aesthetic of the early World Wide Web in the 1990s when hobbyists and amateur journalists harnessed the new technology. A range of quirky styles defined the homegrown aesthetic of the internet’s beginnings. As major media outlets and corporations moved online, the dominant web aesthetic became standardized and professionalized to match the design of print newspapers. In Online Newspapers, Lialina and Espenschied pair the early computer aesthetic with mainstream press content, imagining how news sites might look were they developed by the citizen journalists whose visual choices defined early Web culture. The results are incongruous: print pages are illuminated with low-res, glittery and jittery graphics. With a range of New York City newspapers, the artists respond to assumptions regarding information and the significant role that design plays in these impressions. Creating a false precedent for how news is often precariously conveyed on today’s Web, Online Newspapers also alludes to the perpetual obsolescence of technology and style.