The Tao of Postmodernism: Computer Art, Scientific Visualization and Other Paradoxes






  • The author suggests that a paradigm shift must occur in art criticism to assimilate the nonlinear branching of aesthetic activities in our era. These activities include computer art and scientific visualization, and they reflect many issues addressed in postmodern dialogue such as our image-synthetic, “simulacrum” society. Postmodernism unexpectedly informs most disciplines, including the natural sciences, and is a cultural systemic norm that relates to our electronic information age. The Taoist concept of oneness is used as a metaphor for the interrelatedness of electronic-mediated societies, and this social connectedness explains the enfolding and complex nature of contemporary aesthetic activity. A cybernetic paradigm might provide a better model for criticism than modernism or postmodernism, since this paradigm presents a holistic view that concentrates on creativity and the organization of interrelated systems. The convergence of art with science is assumed as a logical interdisciplinary outgrowth of this electronic oneness.