Art is a conversation with the world

When you talk with your artist friends about ideas and creative struggles, and you have wonderful conversations, and they show you what they are working on, you can momentarily forget that anybody else is listening.

But art is always engaged in a larger conversation. And part of that conversation involves the world publicly recognizing the work of artists.

A case in point is my old friend, the brilliant Toni Dove. In addition to being a really delightful person, Toni is a groundbreaking and pioneering artist in the ever evolving world of interactive multi-media art installations.

Just recently Toni invited me to her loft. We spent some time talking about our various projects and ideas, and had a wide ranging conversation about what might come next in interactive computer-mediated art. I also got the chance to experience her fantastic and complex latest work, The Dress that Eats Souls.

So today I was thrilled to see a review of this very same work in The New York Times. It is being shown as part of a larger retrospective of Toni’s work at the Ringling Museum in Sarasota.

Fortunately the NY Times reviewer seemed to really understand and appreciate the piece, which — like everything Toni creates — challenges its viewer to be open to the many ways that sculpture, AI, genre narrative, robotics, political commentary and philosophical inquiry can come together in a single work. It’s good to be reminded, in such a pleasant way, that art is a conversation with the world.

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