Conceptually they are very different. De Stijl (exemplified by Mondrian) is generally concerned with simplicity, the use of straight, bold black horizontal lines (or orthogonal angles), and primary colors; quite literally its a Style before anything else, though the concern was more or less from the onset to express utopian ideals of spiritual harmony and order (potentially a reaction to the war which broke out as the movement was forming). The formal restrictions on color, straight lines, asymmetry, speak to a plastic art that is more concerned with visual aesthetics than materialism. These visual aesthetics and formal restrictions served to advance the ideas of balance and order.
Glitch art is concerned primarily with the disruption of what today could be interpreted as order, and simplicity is generally not a concern. Though many examples of Glitch art contain patterns organized on orthogonal grids, this is more of an artifact of the systems used to generate the art. Glitch art’s visual vocabulary is diverse, sometimes subtle, and although it may at times share superficial characteristics with other art movements, is generally guided by other concerns, and because of the distribution networks involved, have more to do with information technologies, the networks they form, and the cultures they create or propagate. The fragmented and distorted images (both abstract and concrete) are generally taken up by artists working with Glitch as a reaction against order imposed through the technosphere.
I suppose the another important difference between the two is that De Stijl was a defined movement with a core group of individuals consciously taking part and working from an established set of ideas as established through Theo van Doesburg’s “De Stijl” Journal, which published writings and manifestos by members of the movement. Glitch art, though it has already some fairly well established figures (Rosa Menkman, Iman Moradi, Ant Scot, JODI, Antonio Robertson, etc.) doesn’t have a central publication through which the scattered band of artists can channel their ideas. It’s less of a movement and more or a general phenomenon. Similar to circuit bending, Glitch art is an idea based on process (the specific processes depend on the materials: software, hardware, etc.), artists adopting the idea processes become aligned, though not in a traditionally coherent way typically associated with a movement, they are a loosely organized trend with many distributed and more localized groups of practitioners. I tend to view the development of artists and their work as trajectories, glitch art is currently a meeting point for these trajectories, beyond which the influence of the ideas will develop into new meeting points. I should add in closing that the Gli.T/CH conference has been an important physical meeting point for these ideas and artists to converge and I very much look forward to the next one coming up later this year!
Sources and References:
“Modern Art 19th and 29th Centuries” Meyer Schapiro
“Glitch Studies Manifesto” by Rosa Menkman
“Glitch Moment(um)” by Rosa Menkman
“Glitch: Designing Imperfection” by Iman Moradi
- opening the files as raw image data (if using an uncompressed source image)
- changing fewer characters at a time
- changing characters in different parts of the file (generally avoid the beginning and end, work in the middle)
- use a different image viewer
- use a different file format/compression algorithm
- make notes of what worked and what didn’t
- look for ISO standards describing the hex code flags and base your experiments around these
That’s right. All of the posts are genuine artifacts produced by misusing effects, abusing compression algorithms/codecs, scrambling signals, altering raw data, opening files as raw data with complete disregard for format conventions or file types, preparing (short circuiting / circuit bending) hardware, etc. The post that’s been picked up by tumblr radar features actual macroblock artifacts generated by altering the raw data of an image file, “corrupting” it, and opening it up in an image editor to select, or crop out choice 16x16 pixel artifacts.
As for whether they are “true” glitches, that all depends on perspective. I’m painting through the code, information, and the transformations that usually take place without our noticing rather than composing with the tools as they were intended.
What kind of glitch are you looking to do? For basic glitches to images, sound files, video, etc., you can work with stock tools in windows. For more detailed editing, I use HxD hex editor. If your problem is always creating a trashed file, then try simply opening and closing the file in whatever you’re using to change the raw data; if that breaks the file, then you’re kinda stuck (search for databending how-tos); if not, try changing things one character at a time in the middle of the file , saving as you go, until the magic happens.
Don’t think there’s a replacement for IrfanView on Mac, so keep the PC around for dealing with those files! I work across both systems, as they each have their own strengths and weaknesses. Sometimes where GIMP won’t open a file, Preview does a good job.
For some of the macroblock studies, I’ll take one file, alter the raw data (usually via character/word replacement with a hex editor) and crop out the artifacts. Basic block dimensions I’m working with are powers of 2 from 8x8 and larger. For the GIF images, I’m actually working with an 8x8 pixel file, changing the code to create frames and then animating the result.