Document Type

Journal Article


David Publishing Company


Faculty of Education and Arts


School of Communication and Arts/Centre for Research in Entertainment, Arts, Technology, Education and Communications




This article was originally published as: Ryan, J. C. (2014). Analogue Angels and Digital Diamonds: Tracing the Origins of New Media Art. Philosophy Study, 4(6), 430-448. Original article available here


This paper explores the key vocabularies, themes, ideas, artistic movements, and technological innovations contributing to the development of the digital arts over time. As new media theorists have argued, one of the defining features of the digital arts is the break-down of divisions between art forms, and between art and society (for example, Manovich 2001, 2005). This paper outlines how digital processes intersect with aesthetic and conceptual forms. Relevant frameworks, such as materiality, embodiment, hybridity, interactivity, and narrativity, form the origins of the genre. Digital artworks, like digital media, are interactive, participatory, dynamic, and customizable, incorporating shifting data flows and real-time user inputs (Paul 2003, 67). The customization of content and technology, as well as the recontextualization of information, characterize projects of digital art.

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Open access

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License