How To / Why Make Internet Art

web literacy for artists, makers && creators

The single most important thing you need in order to have a career in the arts is persistence. The second most important thing you need is talent. The third most important thing is a grounding in how the online world works. Its that Important

Cory Doctorow
from Information Doesn't Want to Be Free: Laws for the Internet Age. 2014

How To / Why Make Internet Art is a hypermedia series ( interactive video and Firefox addon1 ) that approaches basic web literacy ( HTML/CSS/JavaScript ) as a contemporary art form ( for makers, designers and creators ). The series positions the web platform as the ultimate artist studio/gallery, frames these technologies as environments rather than simply tools and stresses the importance of introducing a diversity of perspectives into the conversations shaping our digital/networked ecology.

Get Started!

You can consider this a college-ish level course for beginners and you can think of this website as your interactive textbook. I’ll be posting all the videos here as well as supplementary materials for each episode. Watch the introductory video below and if you like where this is going...

← download the WWWeb-Snorkeler
a Firefox addon I made for interactively following along with the tutorials as well as for generally exploring and playing with the web
subscribe to my YouTube channel →
also, turn on notifications if you want to get a heads up on new videos

Episodes List

...so far, many more to come

    Important background on the Net && the WWWeb

  1. The Internet: invented for nuclear war?
  2. The Browser: how it became the artist’s modern canvas
  3. Vannevar Bush, artists && how/why we do History

  4. HyperText Markup Language (HTML)

  5. Markup: in HTML something wrong is nothing wrong
  6. HTML: race, history, bias && a basic html template
  7. HTML: the most important html tag
  8. HTML: how to create a <fart> tag

Is this for You?

The web platform offers unprecedented opportunities for artists; it’s a studio, canvas and gallery all at the same time. This series embraces play and experimentation as core learning ethics, it takes material traditionally geared towards developers and frames them for critically minded artists, in the hopes of introducing diverse and unconventional thinkers into the web development community.

The primary audience is creators ( artists, makers and cultural producers in the broadest sense ). Not necessarily digital artists ( though they are included ) but any creative individual who wants to make contemporary ( as defined above ) culture. These are folks who want to learn how to use computers and the internet as a creative medium itself but who are also interested in the conceptual/political conversations surrounding new-media. The secondary audience is any curious, critically minded netizen, someone living among/with technology who wonders/questions the implications of our digital ecology.

Who am I?

Hi! My name is Nick Briz and I refer to myself as a new-media artist/educator/organizer ( emphasis on the slashes ). AFK ( away from keyboard ) I’m based in Chicago, IL but I live online and am regularly collaborating with folks all over the world. I’ve spent the last decade making web projects ( and other new-media work ) for clients2 and for fun.

I’ve also been teaching3 web literacy ( and other new-media ) courses for artists since 2011. I also regularly organize4 different digital art events from conferences to performance-serieses to lecture-serieses.

Here are some nice things folks have said about me; you can also check out some of my other work on my website: nickbriz.com. Follow me on twitter or github or instagram ( not so active on any other sites these days, especially not facebook ) or send me an email: nickbriz@gmail.com

When human beings acquired language, we learned not just how to listen but how to speak. When we gained literacy, we learned not just how to read but how to write. And as we move into an increasingly digital reality, we must learn not just how to use programs but how to make them. In the emerging highly programmed landscape ahead, you will either create the software or you will be the software. It’s really that simple: Program, or be programmed. Choose the former, and you gain access to the control panel of civilization. Choose the latter, and it could be the last real choice you get to make

Douglas Rushkoff
from Program or be Programmed: Ten Commands for a Digital Age 2010