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Ted Warnell

james hörner

things you might like to know about Ted:

"Born in Canada, 1954."

"Ted Warnell is a visual artist and writer. His art work and writings on art and new media subjects are found in real and online art galleries, and in print, digital, and Web publications."

"Ted is self-employed since 1983 as a systems analyst and programmer specializing in corporate database management, and more recently as a provider of creative content for the new media."

"Ted lives in Medicine Hat, Alberta, with his wife and two daughters."

visit Ted and friends at new media network.

you "do not" do a lot of things, according to your website -- what is something you would like to do?

Ted Warnell
You refer to "Not My Life" at Realization, a Poem by Nari work from 1998. This work was built for a good friend and fellow artist, Bart Habermiller -- part a demonstration of how (not) to build a Web site. Really enjoyed doing that, but what else? Would like to build a shopping mall on the Net with real e-commerce and credit card processing and products for sale and etc. -- as an art installation. Pure creativity with all of the trappings of real e-commerce. Not 'art of commerce' or 'commerce of art', but maybe 'commerce as art', and vice versa.

There is a wonderful potential for artists working in new media to create wholly new forms of communication (and meaning) by creative combination and recombination of disparate elements; new virtual combinations that prior to widespread availability of cyber-digital tools were impossible, or at best, impractical. Now it is easy to source and combine a personal wedding announcement with a public wanted poster (White Wedding in Texas, 1999), and cardiac surgery with sewing tips (Cardiac D-I-Y, 1997) -- realization of ideas that would be difficult to make real in a non-virtual environment.

Relating to my current interest, "Y2Kalendar™", 1999, is a basic but sufficiently complete prototype model for 'commerce as art'. Is this visual poetry or real e-commerce, or both? You decide. It is likely, I think, we will see more hybrid (con)fusion works in years to come, and as artists begin to realize more unique qualities of the new media.

you've some very stunning photographs on your site -- when and why did you begin taking them?

Ted Warnell
Been snapping now for about 30 years, since about 1970. For me, as for many others, photographs are (or become) memories -- they document our lives. When worked as creative imaging, they document more than just objective reality.

Thinking here of respected Canadian artist (painter) Jack Chambers, whose works from the early 1970s realize an idea the artist referred to as 'perceptual realism' -- an objective reality infused with a 'spirit of life', and resulting in highly realistic images of great clarity and power; "Sunday Morning, #2", 1969-70, one of his best known works.

Like Chambers, am interested by the notion of infusing images with something more than 'objective reality', to try to capture more ambient reality, e.g., sights, sounds, thoughts, emotions -- things beyond the narrow view of the camera lens, things 'surrounding' the objective subject of the photograph. Most of the images posted at my sites are examples of this -- not photographs as such, but constructed images utilizing from 3 to 6 photographs, plus drawings and other source materials that relate in some way to the subject proper.

word association -- say as much or little as you like.

Ted Warnell

at?*what'ssomethingyou'vealwayswantedtobeasked? PbN

what books/films/pieces of music/artworks have left an indelible stamp on you?

Ted Warnell
Franz Kafka's "The Castle", Franz Kafka's "The Castle", Karlheinz Stockhausen's "Kontakte", Andrew Wyeth... everything.

how did having children influence your art?

Ted Warnell
My daughters are a natural source of inspiration for my photography and imaging. We sometimes work together; they provide additional source material in the form of ideas, drawings, photographs, 'ambiance'.

what was life like for you pre-internet?

Ted Warnell
Pretty much as it is now, but with a smaller pool of contacts, and fewer influences, resources, and etc. Being online opens new possibilities.

for whom does the internet serve?

Ted Warnell
The Net serves those who serve it, or, the Net works for those who work the Net. This is to say, I think we get from the Net all that we give to it... like everything else, yes?

did you think the internet would progress as it has up to this point?

Ted Warnell
Yes. But, I don't see it as having progressed particularly far thus far, only farther, bigger, and more of the same, with more bells and whistles -- new versions. Old world thinking about how it works and how best to work it still is prevalent on the Net (but the day, too, is young). Progress will be realized when 'new media' thinking comes to the fore.

There are many wonderful examples of a new thinking on the Net now, especially in the works of the net.artists and Web specific artists like Heath Bunting, UK; JODI, Netherlands; MEZ, Australia; Reiner Strasser, Germany; Tom Bell, USA; Barry Smylie, Canada; and numerous others.

Here we see a shift away from 'how do we do this on the Web' and towards 'what can we do here in the Web'. Result of this subtle shift in thinking is some truly innovative ideas and works that cannot exist anywhere but in cyberspace. To me, this is the basis for real progress on the Net.

Readers interested to learn more about the artists mentioned above (and other new media artists) will find Web site links here: - ADVEXP Connections

now that ZINEn is over do you have any other new projects in mind (besides the many others still in progress)?

Ted Warnell
ZINEn grew out of my work with the Art & Technology site for Miningco (now in 1997. For A&T, the purpose was to document the most innovative art and artists working on the Web. ZINEn narrowed the focus to new media specific art, and opened more creative possibilities by adopting an experimental approach and a journal format. It all was a wonderful learning experience and great fun to do.

Future plans are undefined, except as you suggest, James, to continue with those projects already in progress, e.g., a Room without Walls, Realization, syntacticalerror...

what role has 'canada' had in the shaping of you?

Ted Warnell
I was born in Canada and have lived here (coast to coast) for all of my life. It is probable I am shaped in some way by this experience, but have no idea at all about how.

One of the most interesting things about being on the Net is that we need not be restricted by physical being (national or cultural). I have many friends around the world, and am able to take many influences from them. So, feel as much at home working with friends in Europe, Africa, Australia, Asia, or South America, as those in North America, and find cultural differences (and similarities!) most enjoyable -- inspiring! Of course I have Net friends in Canada and enjoy working with them, too.

how has self-employment been thus far?

Ted Warnell
Good. Bad. Mostly good. While I sometimes wonder about what I'm going to be doing tomorrow, I never worry today about losing my job and pulling the plug on my life.

why medicine hat?

Ted Warnell

what's something you've always wanted to be asked?

Ted Warnell
Been waiting all of my life for someone to ask me this question... thank you, James!

Best wishes to you and your readers, and C U in the cyberstream!

james hörner edits canadian content

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