[EN] ARTeXT. I Ascii Art

[Click para leer este post en Castellano]

Does Ascii Art really exist? Yeah, It exists. It is on google and by the moment, this is the one and only existence proof on the net. (By the way, google logo found when you search ‘ascii art’ is a not-so-ambitious ascii artwork)

Búsqueda de ascii art

What is ascii art? From those ‘typrewiter-made drawings’[1] very easy to find[2], with real ascii chars[3] or ATRIBUCION www.flickr.com/photos/amit/agarwal/1096144644extended[4], coloured[5], with reverse backgrounds or with the unforgettable green phosphor look, according to wikipedia ascii art consists on build images by using ascii chars, that is, letters and symbols intead of brush strokes.

Characters using in order to create visual artworks started as a merely technical concept, as a mean to transfer images –or something similar- in those environments not allowing to represent other than characters (VT100, fax or even the typewriter). Experimental application of this technique let us, in parallel, very interesting proposals as those from Arambilet in the 70’s or, more recently, Vuk Cosic, surprising ones as the shown here -building images from handwrited characters- or even metaphysical as the quotation ‘writing IS a painting’.

“Typography and issues of general graphic design are inseparable from the ambition to convey meaning with text. At the level of a single sign, writing IS a painting, a very well thought-of graphic leaning on millenia of work. This has to be respected.” http://www.ljudmila.org/~vuk/ascii/vuk_eng.htm

Anyway I’m quite reticent to admit that the vast majority of so-called Ascii Art is really Art. In fact the 99% of

ATRIBUCION flickr.com/photos/vuk-cosic/296445599

self denominated Ascii Art simply uses gif 2 text converters and –in the best case- colour the result. Ok. And then, why do I speak about Ascii Art if I do not strictly consider it Art? Firstly because Ascii Art is using IT proposals and constraints and even not being interactive, genuine or conceptually new they could be. Second because at least, the first trials –those from Arambilet- and several newer and more sophisticated[6][7] are eminently new and explore IT means. Last but not least, meritorious and worthy suggestions are thrown. I mean, beautiful artworks are made. And this, even without being necessary to be Art, sometimes is unnecessarily forgotten.

Raúl Antón Cuadrado

[More English posts]


[1] Typewriter ascii art collection http://www.afn.org/%7Eafn39695/collect.htm

[2] Webart rings: http://artcontext.org/ascii/list.php , http://artcontext.org/ascii/list.phphttp://www.angelfire.com/me2/jro/aawring.html#top

[3] http://www.chris.com/ascii/index.html

[4] Jap Ascii Art http://256arts.blogspot.com/

[5] Typewritter coloured Ascii art http://www.arkworld.com/ascii/

[6] Vuk Cosic and his Ascii picture machine. http://www.ljudmila.org/~vuk/ascii/camera.htm

[7] Not exactly ascii art but related and very interesting… http://www.vinylvideo.com/


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