Read_me, Run_me, Execute_me: Software and Its Discontents
In the past two or so years the term generative art has become fashionable. It can be found in very different contexts, such as academic discourses, media art festivals, industrial design and architecture. Very often, the term is used —if not 100% synonymously for software art —as an equivalent for software art. Somehow generative art and software art are related to each other —but what exactly this relation is, is left mostly in the dark.
To shed some light on this connection between generative art and software art is thus one aim of this article. The other is to propose the notion of performativity of the code as one of the reasons for contemporary artists’ interest in using software as an artistic material. Performativity of the code in this case refers to its ability to act and perform in the sense of speech act theory.