Artist 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, exhibitions, and festivals, including Eyebeam in New York, The White Building in London, 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 Museum Ludwig in Cologne. Upcoming exhibitions include Inside the www.WHIT3CU.be (online), the Media Art Futures Festival in Murcia, Spain, the WRO 2015 Media Art Biennale in Wroclaw, Poland, Terms of Service at the Urban Institute for Contemporary Art in Grand Rapids, Jacket Video Art at the Crisp-Ellert Art Museum in St. Augustine, Florida, and ISEA 2015 in Vancouver.
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 his artistic research in the journals Computational Culture, Hz, and Media-N, and presents at conferences such as Unlike Us at the Institute of Network Cultures (invited), the Electronic Literature Organization, and Theorizing the Web. His scholarly writing has been featured in major publications, including The Washington Post and The Atlantic.
Grosser’s recognitions include First Prize in VIDA 16, an international award that recognizes works investigating art and artificial life, a Net Art Grant and Commission from Rhizome, the Expanded Media Award for Network Culture from the Stuttgarter Filmwinter, 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.