Software Installation as Art Installation

July 11, 2013 | Andy Cush

Here’s the punniest art piece  you’ve seen in a while: multimedia artist Julian Oliver‘s Remote Install, an installation that’s about… installation. Software installation. Oliver explains:

Distributed as a stripped down, customised GNU/Linux Operating System, the gallery merely needs to copy a single file onto a USB stick, plug it into a computer on site and boot it on the day of the opening. Remote Install then analyses its network context and the amount of space given to it – the free space on the USB stick. It then logs into the artist’s server and creates a file of random binary data to exactly fill this space and proceeds to download it over the course of the entire exhibition. An algorithm ensures the last byte is downloaded on the last second of the exhibition.

It’s art about art that’s also about computers and maybe also a little bit about language. Remote Install is like Kazuo Shiraga’s performance paintings, but instead of the doing of painting getting equal standing with the final product, it’s the “performance” of software installation, and there is no final product. Once the install finishes, the piece is over. But is it meta enough? Here’s a Vine to help you decide, via Creative Applications.

(Photo: node-forum/Flickr)