Herbert W. Franke & Casey Reas
An intergenerational conversation between two significant figures in computer art.
In this conversation, Ian Cheng and Beeple exchange perspectives on the metaverse, gaming, and other directions for the future of art. They also share some appreciation for each other’s work. Cheng is fascinated by Beeple’s appropriation of figures from politics and pop culture, which he sees as a continuation of modding, fan fiction, and other practices in the robust landscape of grassroots creativity that the internet has enabled. Because of his interest in making dynamic art—such as his sculpture Human One (2022), a column of screens displaying visuals that can be reprogrammed and changed—Beeple is intrigued by Cheng’s Outland commission 3FACE, a PFP that can represent changes in the holder’s personality over time. Curator Hans Ulrich Obrist moderates the conversation, offering insights of his own into the current state of art and culture.