Artist and composer Benjamin Grosser focuses on the cultural, social, and political effects of software. What does it mean for human creativity when a computational system can paint its own artworks? How is an interface that foregrounds our friend count changing our conceptions of friendship? Why do we become emotionally attached to software systems and what does this attachment enable for those who made them? To examine questions like these, he constructs interactive experiences, machines, and systems that make the familiar unfamiliar, revealing the ways that software prescribes our behavior and thus, how it changes who we are.
Grosser’s works have been exhibited at major international venues and festivals, including Eyebeam in New York, The White Building in London, SIGGRAPH in Los Angeles, Wired NextFest in Chicago, the Holon Mediatheque in Tel Aviv, Boston Cyberarts Gallery in Boston, the Telecom Italia Future Centre in Venice, the FILE Festival in São Paulo, and the Northwest Film Forum in Seattle. Later this year his work will be part of the Kurzfilmfestival at Museum Ludwig in Cologne, Espacioenter in the Canary Islands, Spain, and Check Reality in Udine, Italy.
His artworks have been featured in Wired, The Atlantic, The Guardian, the Los Angeles Times, Creative Applications Network, Neural, Rhizome, Hyperallergic, FastCoDesign, Gizmodo, Engadget, Al Jazeera, Corriere della Sera, El País, Der Spiegel, and The New Aesthetic. The Huffington Post said of his Interactive Robotic Painting Machine that “Grosser may have unknowingly birthed the apocalypse.” The Chicago Tribune called him the “unrivaled king of ominous gibberish.” Slate referred to his work as “creative civil disobedience in the digital age.”
Grosser has published articles in several journals, including Hz, Media-N (forthcoming), and Computational Culture (forthcoming). He has presented at major conferences, such as Unlike Us at the Institute of Network Cultures (invited), the Electronic Literature Organization, and Theorizing the Web. He has upcoming invited artist presentations at the University of Southern California, the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Beloit College, and New Mexico State University.
Grosser’s recognitions include a Net Art Grant and Commission from Rhizome, an award and commission from Terminal, and an award from Creative Divergents. He holds an MFA in new media and an MM in music composition from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he teaches in the School of Art & Design.