&H Stories | Trends & movements in Contemporary Digital Art

This text is part of a series of short texts that will be published on holmandhimmel.com. In &H Stories, we trace the key trends and movements of contemporary digital art. Drawing on scholarly texts as well as popular media sources and references in the digital art industry, the series will highlight key trends and new activities occurring in the rapidly growing field of digital art, starting with a first few styles and movements that we believe will continue to dominate the field over the next few years.

1. Internet Art
Whereas it is by no means a new movement, nor one that is lacking in research or public discourse, Internet Art is likely to continue gaining cultural relevance as humans continue to bring more and more of their life into the digital domain. Internet Art allows digital artists to evade the traditional institutional systems of the artworld, relying instead on the internet itself to deliver the aesthetic experience. We project that Internet Art will continue to be an increasingly dominant mean of cultural expression, utilizing the key features of the internet – interactivity, connectivity between social and economic cultures and co-creation of subcultures – to create meaning, change and reflection among the next generation of art lovers.

2. Immersive Art
The rise of technology in general, and Virtual Reality, Artificial Intelligence and ICT in particular, has created new ways for artists to create art and connect with their audiences. Immersive Art has grown in popularity over the last few years, with more and more digital artists emphasizing the in-situ relation between the viewer and the work itself. In a world where experiences are the gold of the generation, creating art that truly immerse the viewer undoubtedly match with society at large. With projects such as the Teamlab Borderless Digital Art Museum in Tokyo, Japan leading the way, immersive digital art is likely to continue to evolve within and beyond the digital art scene in the years to come.

3. Celestial Realism
A style rather than a movement, celestial realism defines one of the dominant visual aesthetics of contemporary digital art. What we mean with celestial realism – a terminology not used elsewhere – is the careful combination of realistic objects, codes, nature, or artefacts with the outer-wordly, the surreal, the celestial. This contemporary take on magical realism – one where dreamlike scenarios occur at the center stage of reality – has in many ways come to dominate the type of digital art that is shared, liked and loved on contemporary content sharing platforms. Celestial Realism - realistically depicted, yet dream-inspired works of art - is a style we believe will continue to dominate the aesthetic expression of digital art.