Ever since the earliest astronomer tried to make sense of the endless night sky, human beings have sought order in systems of chaos. We’re driven to control disarray by understanding it, either scientifically or poetically. Both of those widely divergent approaches to the unknown have been boosted by the last century’s giant strides forward in technology.
Not only can we now map the human genome and access centuries of human thought at the click of a mouse, but technology has also introduced vast new quarries of chaotic, random material for artists and poets to obsess over. And that’s just what Glitch: Designing Imperfection is about– it’s a book celebrating the anarchy of distortion, the creativity intrinsic to grisly computer crashes.
This illuminating volume meditates on the meaning and meaninglessness of glitch– the beauty and the terror of pixelated, involuntary abstraction– through enlightening interviews and work from dozens of rad digital media wizards like Johnny Rogers and Cory Arcangel. Sifting through 900 submissions, the curators of Glitch: Designing Imperfection have spent four years compiling the definitive resource on the visual art of synthetic chaos.