But is Gif Art?


I’ve come across a couple of interesting projects this week involving animated gifs.
1840s GIF party: call for submissions | Tate and
The GIF the Portrait Project.

So far I’ve giffed a few images from the the Take 1840 exhibition. I then to find animating gifs as an end in itself, it is interesting that the both these projects seem to be thinking them as art.(there are some amazing examples at Tate Collectives tumblr).

I’ve also been reading The Academic GIF where Jim Groom is talking about how to:

integrate animated GIFs into a curriculum centred around film analysis.

The Tate challenge has become a ds106 Assignment, which already has some submissions, Tom Woodward producing beautifully subtle and a much more dramatic version of the same painting. Alan Levine puts both subtlety and humour in the same gif.

GIF FIGHT!! has a Special 1840 Edition which is filling up.

For the tate gifs I’ve changed tactics a little. I’ve been using photoshop to split the images into layers before switching to Fireworks for animation. Photoshop has superior selection tools.

I an unsure if anything I’ve done is Art but it is interesting in lots of different ways, from visual puns and jokes through problem solving. I wonder if gifs could become part of an arts curriculum in schools?

5 thoughts on “But is Gif Art?”

  1. I have been reflecting on this same question today as my brother keeps asking why. Why do I ‘waste’ my time with this animated gifs? In his view they are definitely not art and yet I see the moment of movement captured in them as something really special that requires the eye of an artist as well as the craft of the tool to make it come alive. I might just have to write a blog to add to yours…you are a gif artist!

  2. I think, like most things, that creating gifs adds a channel to the way you perceive the world. I look at lots of things slightly differently in the same way that photography has changed my analysis of the world and poetry has changed how I look at writing. At the basic level, I make gifs because I enjoy making gifs. It brings me happiness and makes others happy.

  3. Yes. I make them for the same reason. There is something wonderful about the ‘captured’ moment that makes me smile and makes me happy. Finding those moments does make me attend to the world differently…

  4. @Mariana, thanks. Certainly a gif lover.
    @Tom attention and a different view, as well as happiness, who can resist!
    Thanks both, appreciate the articulation.

  5. Pingback: DS106 on the couch

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