The idea of a virtual gallery has been around as long as the internet. Mostly it just means some jpegs on a web page. Of course, the concept has been implemented in a hundred other ways. Google Art Project, for example, lets you navigate through some of the world’s best known galleries. But I like what Barmecidal Projects have done. They have sized up the Matthew Marks gallery and recreated it digitally, including a range of works from artists that produce non-material stuff. It reads as a digital simulacrum rather than a faithful reproduction. Not sure whether this indicates a lack of expertise or a deliberate concession to the nature of digital art. Probably a bit of both. And there’s a big shiny 3D poo! I love that shit.
I’ve toyed with the idea of digitally recreating well-known galleries to the point where the viewer couldn’t tell the real from the digital. It would be interesting to create documentation of fictional exhibits. These could be personally produced works in which case I’d be faking a career. This in itself would be fairly original and could easily spark a career in itself - the artist who fakes his own ‘high-profile’ exhibitions via documentation. I guess it could prompt the viewer to consider what the gallery experience consists of - whether you need to be there to appreciate the work and whether work becomes authentic by association. On the other hand, I could rip off, alter, hybridise or destroy existing works. I could even alter the fabric of the gallery itself - repaint, tear down walls, insert windows or extensions. Not sure what the point would be but most of these ideas would inevitably start to question the physical, financial and aesthetic role of the art institution.
I should probably do it.