Monday, July 07, 2014

When New Meets Old: Lithographs and New Media Technology

This summer, the Georgia Museum of Art is featuring the exhibition "The Lithographs of Caroll Cloar" but is providing new media to juxtapose with Cloar's age-old method of printing. Two iPads are placed in the exhibition and give viewers a chance to interact with the images in a new way.

One iPad contains information about the process of lithography, including a video produced by the Museum of Modern Art in New York City. The second device includes an application that allows visitors to type in their own titles for the exhibition and read the titles others have suggested. This feedback opens up the lines of communication with visitors and lets their thoughts and ideas become an active part of the display.

Responses to the iPads have been extremely positive. Exhibition viewers have been forthcoming with their thoughts about their own names for Cloar's works, with responses ranging from poetic captions such as "The Haunted Pencil" and "Dreamscapes of Memory" to simpler, straight-to-the-point titles like "Old Days" and "Innocence." The spectrum of answers demonstrates how Cloar's hauntingly beautiful works evoke powerful reactions in each individual. In the past, the museum has offered a more traditional way to respond via pen and paper, but the use of the iPads is a compact and nondisruptive way to promote dialogue, not only between the museum and its guests, but among viewers.

Mixing new media technology with art is becoming a more common trend in galleries. The quick and easy access to information, combined with the ability to tailor it to the individual observer, allows for a new way to experience the art. This year, the museum has also featured other new media exhibitions such as "Machine Wall Drawing" by computer programmer and artist Tristan Perich and the work of University of Georgia master of fine arts candidate Lyndey Clayborn, who manipulated iPhones to create technology-inspired art.

"The Lithographs of Carroll Cloar" is on display through Aug. 10. For more information on the exhibition or other new media programs at the museum, visit,

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